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Rep.Noble, Candy

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State Rep. Candy Noble Files Emergency-Item Bill Protecting Citizens From Cities That Defund Police 
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by: Rep. Noble, Candy
03/03/2021

AUSTIN – State Representative Candy Noble (Lucas) today filed HB 2695, one of six emergency items for the 87th Texas Legislature. Under this legislation, cities that defund the police will have their total revenue from all sources frozen at the levels before they defunded the police, and will be unable to increase those revenues as long as they have defunded the police.

“I’m filing this bill today for the families and businesses that don’t want to see their tax dollars siphoned away from the most basic role of government: providing protection from those who would do them harm,” said Noble, a second-term representative from Collin County. “Local leaders should know that the consequences are steep and swift if they are found to have willfully compromised the safety of their citizens.”

Governor Greg Abbott applauded State Rep. Noble today for leading the fight on this emergency item and standing up for Texans.

“The primary responsibility of government is to protect its citizens. It is outrageous for cities to defund the police and then use those taxpayer dollars to fund pet projects at the expense of public safety,” said Abbott, pointing to the City of Austin’s use of public safety funding to instead provide abortion assistance.

“I am proud to support Representative Noble’s legislation to implement a revenue cap for cities that defund the police. I thank Representative Noble for introducing this important legislation, and I look forward to working together to support the men and women who risk their lives to keep Texans safe.”

There are several key functions of HB 2695, which provide for immediate and lasting action against defunding municipalities. Those include giving citizens the ability to bring a lawsuit if their city or county officials have defunded their police. The purpose of this bill is not to punish cities that have one year of expenses that are greater than the next, such as buying several police cars in one calendar year. Instead, it is to ensure that a municipality doesn’t promote a new pet project over the safety of its citizens.

A citizen may bring a charge against a defunding local government up to 30 days after a budget has been adopted. The state’s oversight team will compare the most recent adopted budget with the entity’s two previous fiscal year budgets and determine if the local government has defunded its law enforcement under the bill’s specific criteria. If a municipality is found to be a “Defunding Local Government” they may remedy the revenue freeze when they can show that they have restored funding cuts to their police.

To read the full bill text, click here.

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