From the Office of State Senator Rodney Ellis

For Immediate Release
January 6, 2000
Contact: Jeremy Warren, (512) 463-0113

Senator Ellis Emerging Leader on High Tech Issues
Senator Named to e-Texas Legislative Advisory Committee by Texas Comptroller

(AUSTIN)-- Continuing his emergence as a leader on high tech issues, Senator Rodney Ellis has been appointed to the e-Texas Commission by Texas Comptroller Carole Keeton Rylander. The committee seeks to transform Texas government from its traditional bricks and mortar foundation to a national technological leader that uses bytes, chips and satellite airwaves to deliver services.

"I am delighted to help chart a new course for Texas in the 21st Century," said Ellis. "We must do all that we can to ensure Texas is wired to use technology to make our government more efficient, provide better service and more responsive to the Texans who pay for it."

Senator Ellis is rapidly emerging as a leader on the high tech issues which will shape the 21st Century. Last session, he sponsored legislation creating the new TEXAS Grant program and provided $506 million in business, sales and Internet tax cuts. In addition to the e-Texas Commission, Senator Ellis has also been appointed to the Advisory Council on Digital Economy created by Lieutenant Governor Rick Perry, which will examine tax policy, education, Web privacy and access, and rural economic development to help encourage high tech growth and job creation in Texas.

"In our effort to have a smaller, smarter government, we must have the advice and counsel of lawmakers to realize these goals," Comptroller Rylander said. "I'm confident Senator Ellis will be an integral part of the e-Texas team."

Sen. Robert Duncan, R-Lubbock, will be the commissioner of the Legislative Advisory Committee. Duncan was announced during Rylander's kickoff of the ground-breaking initiative in November. Dr. Wendy Lee Gramm, Thomas G. Loeffler and Hector De Leon will chair the commission.

The following senators will serve on the committee: Ken Armbrister, D-Victoria; John Carona, R- Dallas; Rodney Ellis, D-Houston; Eddie Lucio, D-Brownsville; Bill Ratliff, R-Mt. Pleasant; and Florence Shapiro, R-Plano.

State Representatives serving are: Jaime Capelo Jr., D-Corpus Christi; Wayne Christian, R- Center; Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo; Yvonne Davis, D-Dallas; Dianne White Delisi, R-Temple; Peggy Hamric, R-Houston; Carl Isett, R-Lubbock; Rob Junell, D-San Angelo; Brian McCall, R-Plano; Rep. Anna Mowery, R-Ft. Worth; Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie; and Barry Telford, D-DeKalb.

The e-Texas commission will sponsor public hearings and focus groups in the coming months to assist with the Comptroller's goal of having Texas government accessible 24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week.