Columns/Opinions

Wed
19
Jun
Edgar's picture

Addressing the Border Crisis

HURD ON THE HILL

Our South and West Texas communities are bearing the brunt of the immigration crisis. When crisscrossing the 23rd District of Texas, I consistently hear that folks I represent are concerned about the influx of migrants and subsequent releases by the Customs and Border Patrol. Residents are rightfully concerned about this issue, and the ramifications for public safety and the drain on taxpayer resources. That’s why I took two actions in Congress recently to immediately address these concerns.

Wed
19
Jun
Edgar's picture

Scammers posing as local priests, pastors in charity scam

BBB COLUMN

Reports from Midland, Waco and Fort Worth have revealed a charity scam on the rise. Scammers are posing as local priests and pastors in order to text and call local consumers asking for gift cards or wire transfers, allegedly for charitable purposes.

It is always important to be aware if someone approaches you asking for a donation, even if they claim to be a trustworthy figure or representing a good cause, to do your research before giving to the charity.

Charity scams were one of the top 10 riskiest scams that affected businesses in 2018, according to BBB’s Small Business Scams research report. More than 300 consumers reported charity scams to BBB Scam Tracker nationwide in 2018, with claimed losses ranging as far as $10 to $75,000.

Better Business Bureau serving the Heart of Texas has the following tips to avoid falling victim to this scam:

Wed
12
Jun
Edgar's picture

Governor signs school safety, mental health bill

STATE CAPITAL HIGHLIGHTS

AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on June 6 signed three bills into law to improve school safety and expand access to mental health resources.

“After the horrific shooting (at Santa Fe High School on May 18, 2018) and the subsequent school safety roundtables, I made school safety an emergency item to help prevent a tragedy like this from happening again,” Abbott said. “Today, I am proud to sign legislation to make Texas schools safer for students and teachers. I thank members from both chambers, as well as the many stakeholders, who worked tirelessly to get these bills through the Legislature and to my desk today.”

Wed
12
Jun
Edgar's picture

Thunder Butts

I’m sure you’ve heard that Progressive Democrats like Alexandria Ocasio Cortez from New York and Ed Markey from Massachusetts have said in the Green New Deal that we need to eradicate cows from the face of the earth if mankind is to survive the next 12 years. New Jersey Senator Corey Booker said, “The devastating impact from emissions from the meat industry must end.” I find this hilarious because Booker is a vegan and it’s common knowledge that vegans eat a lot of beans and legumes. Scientists tell us that the average person has attacks of flatulence 14 times per day (really) but vegetarians and vegans, because they consume more beans and legumes, can easily double that daily production, which explains why Booker is one big gasbag.

Wed
12
Jun
Edgar's picture

Funding Senate District 19 Priorities

The state budget, the fundamental reason the Texas Legislature meets every other year, is not a typical family budget.

The state budget comes from two sources of taxation: state and federal. The state’s share of revenue and funds is $164 billion; another $86 billion comes from federal funds. Combined, the Legislature has approximately $250 billion to appropriate for the 2020-2021 fiscal year which begins Sept. 1, 2019.

And this is Texas: we take fiscal responsibility seriously, refusing to spend more of your tax dollars than we take and even reserving some money for savings. The Economic Stabilization Fund, the state’s savings account, projected balance is over $9 billion at the end of this fiscal year.

Wed
12
Jun
Edgar's picture

Financial benchmarking is easier than you think

How do you know if your small business matches up financially with the others in your industry? Most small business owners are curious to know how they compare with other small businesses in their industry, especially in regards to their financials. This is financial benchmarking and it is easier to do than you might think.

Financial benchmarking is important to a small business. It allows you to see how your business is doing in comparison to the average in your industry. It is comparing not to the best in your industry and not to the worst, but to the average. With this information, you can see which parts of your business are doing well and which parts need attention. The comparison is good actionable information and you can continue to compare yourself over time to see trends, especially if you have taken action to improve in an area.

Wed
05
Jun
Edgar's picture

Legislature passes property tax, school finance reform

STATE CAPITAL HIGHLIGHTS

AUSTIN — While the Memorial Day holiday was observed across Texas, lawmakers stayed busy at the state Capitol, voting on key bills in the final three days of the 86th Texas Legislature’s 140-day regular session.

Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Dennis Bonnen did what they jointly set out to do at the beginning of the session in January. They exercised their leadership skills well enough for the Senate and House to pass property tax reform (Senate Bill 2) and school finance reform (House Bill 3), and to pass a state budget for fiscal years 2020-2021 (House Bill 1).

Wed
05
Jun
Edgar's picture

The Texas Legislature has left Austin, now what?

The bustle in the Texas Capitol’s halls hasn’t completely subsided, but the business suits have been replaced by the shorts and Tshirts of summer tourists.

Legislative season is mostly over. The political season is about to start.

Gov. Greg Abbott has until Father’s Day — June 16 — to decide which bills to sign, which ones to veto and which ones will become law without his signature. He’ll go through the budget and scratch out the line items he doesn’t like.

The next day, the political fundraising gates will fly open. The veto deadline ends the fundraising blackout for the state’s elected officials. They can’t raise money while they’re legislating because that looks too much like open bribery. They have to wait.

 

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Wed
29
May
Edgar's picture

Sustainable Agriculture

IT’S THE PITTS

“Our cash flow is not flowing,” I informed my bookkeeper, who just so happens to also be my wife. “I have decided to use my brilliant business mind to raise some cash. Take a letter would you?”

“Who should I address it to?” my secretary/wife asked.

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Wed
29
May
Edgar's picture

Property tax bill doesn’t offer more transparency

AIt took less than one hour for a bill claiming transparency to become less transparent.

On Saturday night, both houses of the Texas Legislature overwhelmingly approved the Conference Committee report on the property tax reform bill that eliminates an important public notice in newspapers – a notice informing voters how much their taxes are about to increase.

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