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The State Budget Moves in Austin . Austin The Texas budget lay out on the House floor like some kind of giant fruit cake, with legislators sticking in their thumbs in a last-ditch effort to pull out other people’s plums or stuff in additional nuts and raisins. It was the kind of interference that would make a good cook throw up his hands in horror, but 90 amendments and an extra $50 million later the bill was apparently certifiable at a grand total of $26.5 billion. In contrast, the Senate spent only a couple of hours passing a bill $191 million above the magic certifiable mark. The two versions then disappeared into conference committee. Gov . Bill Clements says $610 million in federal money has been lost to Texas because of Reagan Administration budget chops. Spending was up an average at least 18% above the last biennium in the House version of the bill, with last minute additions going to teachers, professors, state employees, statewide elected officials, and even needy and abused children. Rep. Craig Washington of Houston led the floor fights for more money for the kids. In a “help yourself to another lump of coal, Mr. Cratchit” move, the House voted 73-65 to add $10 a year or 87 cents a month to the $33.80 Aid to Families with Dependent Children payments. Washington argued that poor children do not have a lobby, they “don’t have anybody but the members of this House to protect and defend them” a statement equally fraught with Dickensian overtones. Some lawmakers expressed fear that the total $5.2 million involved would bump up against the $80 million welfare ceiling and that handing out that extra 87 cents was “handing out false hope.” Taking the worn-out refrain from the top, Texas is 49th in payments for poor children, just ahead of Mississippi. It is also the 13th richest economy in the world. The House earlier voted 105-38 in favor of sending voters a constitutional amendment to wipe out the welfare ceiling. The Senate has a version that would tie payments to population increases. Abolishing the ceiling is supported by, among others, the Texas Baptist Convention’s Christian Life Commission, but Washington’s opponents in debate pointed out that Texans still might not go for this idea. During debate, Washington asked how many of those present in the chamber could live on their “recognized needs for 1969,” on which AFDC payments currently are based. Not statewide elected officials, for one. The House hiked salaries of the Comptroller, Treasurer, Attorney General, and land, agriculture and railroad commissioners 35% in the next two years. Salaries modestly rise from $51,000 to $65,700 in 1982 and $69,000 in 1983 but after all, these folks are grownups. The House also added $19.5 million to state employee salaries and $10 million over the next two years to faculty salaries in colleges and universities. It voted a 3.4% raise for officers of the Department of Public Safety and $2 million to hire 20 more narcotics officers. During debate on this latter issue, Rep. Lynn Nabers of Brownwood commented that the House had gone for a wiretapping bill costing $800,000 for a possible ten wiretaps a year. Nabers ,said it was his opinion that the best program for fighting narcotics traffic is manpower. Abused Kids Teachers came in for some of the additional goodies in the budget cake. Budget officials said they had overestimated the cost for teacher retirement in the biennium by $28 million, freeing $24 million more for teachers’ salaries. The House gave them 27.7%. During arguments over the Senate version of the bill, Sen. Tati Santiesteban said Texas is 32nd in the nation in teacher pay. Santiesteban failed in earlier attempts to get the teacher pay raise increased to 33%, a figure supported by the Texas State Teachers Association. In another funding switch, Washington and Rep. Stan Schlueter of Salado managed to get $5.5 million that had been earmarked for air conditioning and repairs for the capitol and other state buildings transferred to the Department of Human Resources protective services for abused children. The Department of Human Resources had asked for $138 million to finance investigations of child abuse. The House budget contained $105 until the additional funds were voted. Washington said more than 100 children were killed in child abuse incidents in 1979, and 102 were killed last year. He said 45,000 cases of child abuse were reported. Silence filled the chamber as Rep. Ted Lyon of Mesquite read a newspaper account of weeping nurses in an emergency ward, caring for a battered child who died. “God save the little children, he pleaded as he fought to add a straight $21 million to the bill. “If the Texas legislature doesn’t do it, God will have to do it. Rep. Buck Florence of Hughes Springs argued that adding money was not going to solve the problem the solution lay in tougher penalties for persons convicted in such cases. Florence said parents also have rights and that “the state of Texas cannot be its brother’s keeper. . . . Common sense is involved. We do not and we cannot legislate common sense.” Lyon withdrew his amendment and the House went into arguments on the Schlueter proposal. Rep. Bob Davis of Irving complained that one of his constituents had been more or less harassed by department investigators when his child was injured in an incident obviously not the parents’ fault. He said he objected to an “inquisitorial system of justice” in which the department refused to admit it had made a mistake. “If the Department of Human Resources had apologized, it would have been different to me,” Davis thundered. “It is a system that is bad on both sides.” Washington asked if Davis wanted the abused children of Texas to continue to suffer “for want of one apology from one caseworker.” Washington said he and his wife had been investigated when his child went to the hospital following an overdose of pills taken from his wife’s purse. Washington said he had not resented the inquiry. The Schlueter funding shift was adopted 88-53. Washington was hospitalized later that evening with chest pains. Abortion Issue The House next fought briefly over family planning funds as Rep. 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