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S. V Ronnie Cortez Senator Doggett discusses a point with Rep. Gonzalo Barrientos of Austin during the current session. I’ll keep trying, but there just aren’t 25,000 jobs that we can afford to eliminate. In fact, we’re going to ha’e to increase the size of the state workforce.” He’d say, “As much as I’d like to be known as Billion Dollar Bill, I was wrong; it can’t be done we don’t have a billion dollars to spare in the State Treasury.” The Governor has not reduced state employees or state taxes, but he has adopted one major cutback. He has cut his own campaign promises by at least 50%. Like his predecessors, Governor Clements has told people he has a plan to slow crime in Texas. This plan is to talk louder and more harshly than anyone else he’s going to talk crime to death. If we could stop or even slow crime by outlawing it, we would have done so long ago. No doubt there’s merit to some of the governor’s proposals. For example, recently there was a bad court decision on rape -Senator Ray Farabee, working on it long before the Governor, has a good propo sal. t But 90% of this talk about a War on Crime and a War on Drugs is nothing but a promotion of one scheme wiretap tAs the Texas aggravated rape statutes are now, aggravation requires serious bodily injuries, meaning broken bones or permanent injury, or the threat of serious bodily harm that compels submission to the rape. In a Fort Worth case, the aggravated-rape conviction of a man who had dragged, punched, and pushed a woman while raping her was reversed because her injuries did not meet the test in the law. Farabee’s bill would lower the standard of injury to “substantial bodily injury,” specify that any threat can be verbal or nonverbal, change language in the law to focus attention on the rapist’s conduct rather than on the victim’s level of resistance, make rape with an object an offense, and provide that the exclusion of conduct with a spouse does not apply if the married persons have not been cohabiting or an action for divorce or annulment is pending.Ed. ping and a new slush fund in the governor’s office to pay for it. This supposedly anti-government Governor is determined to lay the groundwork for still more government interference in the lives of Texans. In an unusual figure of speech, he said we should “not turn a deaf ear” to wiretapping. Certainly, he would not. He is promoting wiretapping as the greatest thing since Dick Tracy’s two-way wristwatch radio. Wiretapping is an ineffectual tool that is already available now to the Drug Enforcement Administration in those rare situations where it can be useful. If the Senate should want to consider favorably this ill-devised proposal, I have two important amendments that I want to announce in advance: or The “see what you hear” amendment. Electronic eavesdropping only lets you hear; you need to see, too. This amendment will make clear that video is included. I was personally disappointed in the quality of some of Abscam recordings you could hardly hear the Congressman say “I do.” If we pass this bill we need to add dollars to the criminal justice slush fund to buy better-quality video recording devices. If we’re going to do the job, let’s make Texas No. 1. lir The “let government spy on itself” amendment. Under this one, we add “official misconduct” to offenses against which we can tap, tap, tap away. Then we can devote so much energy to listening to each other that we won’t have any left for the invasion of the privacy of an ordinary citizen. Since the last session, the Governor apparently has read in Time or Newsweek that Texas is a “superstate.” Let’s look briefly at what type of insight he offers for addressing the needs of this superstate. NI His tightfisted budgeting loosens up considerably when it comes to highways. He endorsed the $425 million grab that the highway department gets from the state treasury before appropriations for any other programs. By 1982 this program, which is the only one to be allowed to have an automatic cost-of-living increase, will drain $500 million from general appropriations in addition to whatever budget we give it. During the last fiscal year highway maintenance and construction spending increased 55%, the largest increase in any category. Capital outlay for highways, considered alone, went up an amazing 76.5% in one year, and the Governor endorses more spending! NI Frugality stops at the Governor’s door, too. The Clements budget request for his own Austin office includes a $500,000 increase over the LBB recommendation, another $333,000 over and above the LBB recommendation is added for his Washington office and a total of $750,000 more for state efforts in Washington. The total increase proposed for the office of the governor is $4.9 million more than the present budget. Strengthening our presence in Washington may be desirable, but wouldn’t it be cheaper to just install a direct phone line from the governor’s mansion to the White House, and maybe also a cheaper long-term lease on that $625-a-night suite at the Hyatt Regency which the Governor occupied at his own expense during the Inauguration? 1/ The only way to make the various budget increases the Governor proposes and at the same time reduce the LBB proposal by $500 million is to cripple other programs. How ironic that we had an interpreter for the deaf present while the Governor spoke, proposing a budget that cuts $30.2 million from the LBB recommendation for the education of the deaf and other handicapped Texans. It’s nice that he mentioned a new line-item appropriation of $437,000 for the Governor’s Committee for Employment of the Handicapped. If he is really committed to this cause, why did he recommend seven million fewer dollars for rehabilitation of the blind and deaf? It should also be noted that the Governor recommends $31 million less than the LBB for health programs and $26 million less for Vocational Education. 14/ It’s great to have the Governor join the effort for gasohol, but unfortunate that this commitment did not occur before he vetoed the gasohol appropriation for the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station in 1979, which at the time he called “unnecessary.” I What about tne Governor’s interest THE TEXAS OBSERVER 9