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Hot List Day 74

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Day 74 of the 82nd Texas Legislature

“Small business should not be used as leverage to get their pet projects done.”
-Will Will Newton, executive director of the National Federation of Independent Businesses, on a pending bill that would make a small-business tax exemption permanent

In her latest post, Abby Rapoport examines one of the only surprises that came out of this week’s voter ID debate and inevitable passage – an amendment that, if this version of the bill passes, will negatively affect senior voters. 

Yesterday morning, a Senate Finance subcommittee voted to restore $4.5 billion to the health and human service portion of the budget, which currently calls for $16.1 billion in cuts. While that may seem like a great feat in this budget crisis, as Alexa Garcia-Ditta reports, some programs are still left unfunded—and some senators aren’t close to satisfied. 

According to an analysis released by the Legislative Budget Board, the House version of the budget will result in hundreds of thousands of job losses should it pass as is. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s Dave Montgomery reports on how the LBB arrived at their numbers and lawmakers’ reactions.  

The House Redistricting committee will spend this morning hearing public and invited testimony on how they should use the 2010 Census data to redraw the lines in House seats. While we haven’t heard too much about redistricting yet, there will likely be tough fights over which members will get to keep their seats and which ones will have to run in uncharted territory.

Alexa Garcia-Ditta is an Observer reporter (and former intern) covering women's health, reproductive health and health care access across the Lone Star State. Before joining the Observer, she was a staff news writer at the San Antonio Current. She holds an MA in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin and BA in journalism and Spanish from UT-Arlington, where she worked for three years on her college newspaper. After graduate school, she dipped her toe in public policy communications at the Center for Public Policy Priorities. When she's not at work, she's probably training for her next marathon.