From the Office of State Senator Rodney Ellis

For Immediate Release
May 27, 1999
Contact: Jeremy Warren, (512) 463-0113

HOPE Scholarships On Hold to Ensure POW Honored
One day after Texas House Kills Scholarship Bill, Senate Takes Action

(Austin) // One day after the Texas House killed legislation creating a scholarship honoring a Texas POW captured in Yugoslavia, Senator Rodney Ellis (D-Houston) withdrew consideration of the Texas HOPE Scholarship plan in order to keep the Steven Gonzales Scholarship alive.

The Texas Senate was prepared to approve the conference committee report on HB 713, creating the TEXAS Grant program, legislation creating HOPE Scholarships in Texas which will provide thousands of Texas students the opportunity to get a college education.

"Texas has an obligation to honor those who put their life on the line to protect our state and our nation," said Ellis. "The Texas Senate gave Mr. Gonzales its word that his college tuition and fees would be paid for."

On Wednesday, the House killed SB 1902 by Lucio (D-Brownsville) creating a scholarship to ensure Spc. Steven Gonzales has the opportunity to go to college.

"The TEXAS Grant program will pass tomorrow," said Ellis. "We could not wait any longer to ensure we keep our word to Spc. Gonzales and his family."