The Texas Legislative Session

With the Texas Legislature in session our cameras went to Austin to see what might be happening that could impact agricultural producers in our state. Joe Brown has more in this week’s From The Ground Up.

“Out of all the states, there’s four that are semi-financially sound. Texas is the soundest of them all. Now we’d like to take a lot of credit for that, but we need to put it where it belongs and that was on our forefathers. You know whenever they wrote the constitution, they’d just come out of a carpet bagger administration, and they wrote a pretty tough constitution that says we’re going to put the people in charge. If you want to do something, go ask them.”

David Swinford is the former chair of the House Committee on Agriculture and Livestock, and says sometimes agriculture’s worst nightmares come in the form of unintended consequences, that could even be in a bill you yourself were supporting.

“The night before I finally read that thing like I should have read it. So I got up the next day and when they called up my bill, I said guys, y’all all ran to come down here and kill a bad bill. Well, this is it. I don’t know what you’re going to do about it, and I’m not joking, you need to vote no on this bill. Let’s kill this bill. And teach me a lesson.”

Representative Swinford believes when this legislative session has concluded, agriculture will have avoided any major problems created by new legislation.

"We’re going to pass a balanced budget without new taxes, and leave 9 billion dollars in the rainy day fund in case it gets any worse. And we’re going to be down here 140 days and we’re going to do a two year budget for the 9th largest economic entity in the world."

And agriculture is a big part of Texas’ strong economic base.

"By virtue of smart wise men back when they wrote the constitution, they have forced us to be good, and thank God for that."

I’m Joe Brown, taking a look at Brazos Valley agriculture, From the Ground Up.

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