Saturday, May 30, 2009

Supplemental Budget Bill Passes

HB 4586, the supplemental budget bill authored by Representatives Jim Pitts and Craig Eiland and sponsored by Senator Steve Ogden, has passed both chambers and now heads to the Governor for his signature.

The legislation carries important funding for Texas producers and rural communities. Of note is $20 million for the Texas Boll Weevil Eradication Foundation. The money will address critical set backs caused by Hurricanes Ike and Dolly. Texas is the number one cotton producing state in the nation and it's imperative we protect our cotton growers from pests such as the boll weevil.

The supplemental bill will also assist in attracting veterinarians to our rural communities. Right now, Texas is suffering from a major shortage of large animal vets. The Office of Rural Community Affairs has been allocated $500,000 for the Rural Veterinarian Large Animal Loan Repayment Program. The program will address large animal veterinarian needs in rural Texas. The program would require large animal vets to practice in a rural area as a condition for repayment of veterinary school loans.

Our state representatives and senators have put in long hours to come up with legislation that will make Texas a better place to live, work and raise a family. I want to thank them for their patience and continued commmitment to the Lone Star State.

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