From the Office of State Senator Rodney Ellis

For Immediate Release
January 16, 2001
Contact: Jeremy Warren, (512) 463-8393

Statement of Senator Ellis On Governor Perry's Budget Priorities

Austin -- Senate Finance Chairman Rodney Ellis' (D-Houston) comments on Governor Rick Perry's 2002-03 budget priorities.

"I am encouraged by the priorities established by Governor Perry's budget proposal. As I know from working with him on the TEXAS Grant Program, education is a top priority for Governor Perry, and his budget reflects that commitment.

"As the co-author of the TEXAS Grant Program, I am particularly pleased by Governor Perry's call to dramatically increase funding for this important initiative. Education is the key that unlocks the door to opportunity, and strengthening the TEXAS Grant Program will allow thousands of additional Texans to get the education they need to compete in the 21st Century. Providing more resources for this important initiative is one of my top priorities this session and I thank Governor Perry for his continuing support.

"I am also encouraged by his proposal to increase funding for Texas Southern University and Prairie View A&M. Last year, in order to reverse years of neglect, the State of Texas agreed to a plan to provide additional resources. Governor Perry's proposal is an important step in the process. I look forward to working to build a consensus in the Senate to the provide the resources necessary to make this goal a reality.

"Last week, we unveiled a $108.2 billion budget that reflects the reality of a strong but possibly cooling economy. The fact is that we have more good ideas than resources to pay for them. I look forward to working with Governor Perry, Lieutenant Governor Ratliff and my colleagues in the legislature to craft a budget that makes the right investments to help build a stronger foundation for Texas."