First Alerts

Legislative Visits Follow-up

You will read more soon about TACT's Legislative Conference and Capitol visits this past weekend, but here's Monday's update:

Subcommittee Considers ORP Rate Increase

The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Education, chaired by Rep. Lois Kolkhorst, is scheduled to consider today the Legislative Budget Board recommendation on funding levels for the Optional Retirement Program.

TACT registered its support with the Subcommittee for the LBB recommendation, which increases the minimum contribution from 6% to 6.4% of salary.  The increase is consistent with the amount needed to fix the actuarial soundness of the Teacher Retirement System.

Faculty Salary Bill: HB 894

State Representative Jim McReynolds has again filed a bill at TACT's request which seeks to increase Texas faculty salaries to the average of the other top ten most populous states over the course of eight years.

The legislation, HB 894, may be viewed by clicking HERE.



State of the State Address

Governor Rick Perry is expected to include certain details of his higher education plan for this session during his Constitutionally-required State of the State Address Tuesday, Feb.

Senator Watson Wants New Flagship

Senator Kirk Watson of Austin today called for a third flagship university in Texas and says his staff is researching the issue to determine whether he will file a bill.

Watson says it's unfortunate that when people think about research centers, they think about the east and west coasts.  "There are great things happening here and we already have premier universities......we need to preserve and enhance them.  But 20 years from now...we want to have at least a third new flagship university."