Notes & Noticias: Well-known Advocates Support My Legislation

Welcome to Notes and Noticias!

Dear Friends,

It’s been a busy few weeks at the Capitol, and I’ve been glad to have some well-known folks around helping to advocate for my legislation.

This week in Notes and Noticias, learn about Willie Nelson and Ray Benson’s support for my bill to help Texas pets, and Elon Musk’s support for my bill to bring electric cars to Texas. Finally, join me in celebrating Paul Qui’s achievements as a chef and entrepreneur in House District 51.

Willie & Ray Support Texas Pets

Two iconic Texas musicians have taken up the cause of HB 2981, the Tax Saving Pet Adoption, Sterilization, and Transfer Act of 2013. I filed this bill to help the government and animal shelters to work better together to save the lives of more pets.

Currently, Texas euthanizes more cats and dogs than any other state.

The bill saves taxpayer money by reducing that number of dogs and cats, through enhancing the health of animals in shelters, and allowing shelters to maintain standards for groups to which they transfer animals.

Our Texas pets have some famous allies in support of my bill: Willie Nelson made a video and Ray Benson recorded a PSA in support of HB 2981.

The bill had a hearing and was voted out of the Committee on Urban Affairs yesterday, so I appreciate Willie and Ray’s help in spreading the word. Please share the videos and help Texas shelter animals find loving homes.

Electric Cars for Texas Drivers

Texas is known as a state that tends to avoid unnecessary business regulations. However, our current laws create an across-the-board ban on automotive sales direct from the manufacturer to the purchaser, thus limiting niche vehicles from finding a market. Essentially, current Texas law is preventing a legal product from being sold in Texas.

That’s why I introduced a bill, HB 3351, to allow manufacturers of electric and battery-powered vehicles to sell cars directly to Texans, which is currently prohibited under the state’s franchise dealer system.

Recently, Elon Musk, CEO and co-founder of Tesla motors — one of the electric car manufacturers whose vehicles cannot currently be sold in Texas — came to the Capitol to emphasize the need for this legislation. Currently, prospective owners can learn about Tesla’s electric cars in showrooms in Austin and Houston, but must order the vehicles from California.

Our state government should not force a business to conform to a certain business model in order to sell its product in Texas.

This week, the bill passed out of the Business & Industry committee, and hopefully soon it will receive a vote on the House floor.

Paul Qui Honored at the Capitol

This month I was glad to recognize a business owner in District 51 who is a rising star in the culinary world.

On the floor of the Texas House, I honored Paul Qui with House Concurrent Resolution 78, in recognition of his many achievements, including James Beard’s 2012 “Best Chef, Southwest,” award and his victory on Top Chef in 2012.

I’m a huge fan of Chef Qui’s. Both professionally and personally, he has been a great representative for Austin and Texas on national television.

Qui’s East Side King eateries have raised the bar for Austin restaurants and I’m excited for his flagship, Qui, to join them in District 51. I know he will continue to make us proud.

Save the Date!

Please join me May 15th as we celebrate 40 years of Latino Leadership at the Texas Capitol.

Mexican American Legislative Caucus 40th Anniversary
Wednesday, May 15, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Capitol South Steps
Joining us wll be American and Latino Grammy Award winner Ramón Ayala and his 50th Anniversary tour.

I am honored to sit as Vice-Chair of the Caucus and welcome residents of House District 51 to celebrate at our Capitol. Feel free to spread the word to all your family members, friends and colleagues.

Thanks again for reading Notes and Noticias. Please LIKE my newsletter to share it on Facebook, and encourage your friends to sign up for it on my website.