FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 05/23/2019
Legislature Reaches Final Agreement on The Texas Plan; Co-Authored by Representative Leach
Delivers Historic Investment in Classrooms, Substantial
Reduction in Robin Hood & Meaningful Property Tax Relief
AUSTIN – Today, with the support of an overwhelming majority of legislators from the Texas House and Senate, Governor Greg Abbott, Speaker Dennis Bonnen and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick announced the final details of "The Texas Plan," a legislative package providing meaningful property tax relief, historic education and school finance reforms, substantial reductions in recapture payments and monumental investments in our classrooms.
In response, Representative Leach issued the following statement:
"I made a commitment to my constituents to roll up my sleeves and work tirelessly to tackle their skyrocketing property taxes, reduce our school districts’ Robin Hood payments, reform education and make historic investments in our classrooms. Today, with the final details released on The Texas Plan, which I was proud to Co-Author, I can state with confidence that I’ve kept my word. Without question, this legislative package represents the most transformative public school finance reform in a generation and is a huge victory for Texas students, educators and taxpayers.”
Among the many crucial policy components, “The Texas Plan” includes the following:
· $4.5 billion for transformational education reforms; including directing more funds to the classroom to accelerate student achievements
· Over $5 billion in property tax relief with substantial increases in the state’s share of education funding to drive down local property tax burdens
· Approximately $3.6 billion in state funding to reduce local “Robin Hood” payments
· Landmark modernizations and reforms to outdated school finance formulas, ensuring taxpayer dollars are spent effectively and efficiently
· $2 billion for dynamic teacher compensation programs, including bold investments to recruit and retain the highest quality educators and historic infusions of funding to secure and sustain our retired teachers.
Born and raised in Plano, Representative Leach graduated from Plano Senior High School before attending Baylor University. He earned his law degree from Southern Methodist University’s Dedman School of Law and currently practices at the Texas law firm of Gray, Reed & McGraw LLP. Most recently, Leach was selected by Speaker Dennis Bonnen to serve as Chairman of the House Committee on Judiciary & Civil Jurisprudence, and was named to serve on the House Committee on Pensions, Investments & Financial Services and the House Committee on Redistricting. Leach was recently selected by Speaker Bonnen to serve as the House appointee to the State Preservation Board, and he currently serves as a Legislative Member of the Texas Judicial Council. Jeff and his wife Becky, a writer, speaker and artist, are the proud parents of Brady (age 11), Charlotte (age 8) and Landry (age 4). They are active members of Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano, where they have served for several years in the Young Families Ministry.