News from Mike

Rep. Villarreal To Receive Renewable Energy Award Today

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Today the Texas Renewable Energy Industry Association (TREIA) will award State Representative Mike Villarreal its "State Leadership" Award at its annual conference.

Rep. Villarreal Announces "Texas Tuition Promise Fund" Enrollment September 1

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

On September 1, 2009, the state of Texas will re-open enrollment in the Texas Tuition Promise Fund, which allows Texans to lock in tomorrow's college tuition costs today. The Fund is an important opportunity for parents who want to secure their children's future education in the midst of a struggling economy and rising tuition.

Back to School Press Conference

Monday, August 24, 2009

As local students head back to school, they can look forward to a little relief from the overreliance on standardized tests thanks to the work of a local lawmaker. Earlier this year the Texas Legislature passed amendments by State Representative Mike Villarreal to ensure that students spend more days learning, devote less time to taking tests, and receive high-quality experienced teachers if their test scores show they need extra assistance.

Villarreal Celebrates Legislative Successes

Monday, June 1, 2009

Austin - With the 81st session of the Texas Legislature drawing to a close, Rep. Mike Villarreal celebrated the accomplishments of the last 140 days. "Thanks to the hard work of community members participating in the legislative process, we had a very productive session serving the needs of San Antonio residents," stated Rep. Villarreal.

Villarreal Passes Municipal Financing Bill for Energy Improvements

Friday, May 15, 2009

Austin - Today the Texas House of Representatives approved House Bill 1937, legislation by State Rep. Mike Villarreal to authorize municipal financing of property owners' investments in energy efficiency upgrades or renewable energy devices such as solar panels. The bill allows cities and individual property owners to enter into an agreement by which the city will provide the upfront costs for the energy improvements and the property owners will pay back the city through their property taxes. The legislation was modeled on similar successful programs in other cities around the country.

Rep. Villarreal Passes Adult Career Education Legislation

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Austin - Today Rep. Mike Villarreal passed HB 1935, legislation in the Texas House of Representatives to establish the Jobs and Education for Texans (JET) grant program. The bill reflects the state Comptroller's Texas Works report recommendations to expand the state's efforts to provide workforce training to unemployed and underemployed Texans. "This program will ensure that more families have a path to work hard and secure a stable middle class life," noted Rep. Villarreal. "If you want to work hard, we want to give you the training and support you need to get ahead." One of the programs that could qualify for grants under the legislation is Project Quest in San Antonio. COPS/Metro, which operates Project Quest, strongly supported the bill. "Project Quest has shown that we can succeed in boosting families into the middle class and meeting the needs of local employers," said Rep. Villarreal. "It's time to give this opportunity to more families." ###

House Passes Rep. Villarreal's Pre-K Legislation

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Austin - The Texas House of Representatives approved legislation today seeking to enroll more eligible children into public pre-kindergarten programs. The goal of House Bill 136 by Rep. Mike Villarreal is to ensure that more children start kindergarten with the skills they need to succeed in school rather than falling behind their classmates from day one.

House Passes Villarreal Amendment for Local Teacher Incentives

Friday, April 17, 2009

Austin - Tonight the House of Representatives voted 146-0 in favor of Rep. Mike Villarreal's budget amendment to transfer teacher incentive funds from state programs to local school district programs. The amendment will provide an additional $342 million to school districts through the state's public education funding formulas.

Villarreal Announces $224 Million in New Funding for TEXAS Grants Program

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Press Conference - Fund Financial Aid Monday, April 13, 2009 10:00 a.m. UTSA Downtown Campus Frio St. Building

Mayor Hardberger and Rep. Villarreal Announce Bill to Close Loophole in Tree and Flood Ordinances

Thursday, April 2, 2009

State Representative Mike Villarreal will announce legislation to give cities more muscle to enforce local land use ordinances, such as San Antonio’s tree ordinance and flood regulations.

Villarreal Makes the Case For Investing In TEXAS Grants

Friday, March 13, 2009

Austin - Today Rep. Mike Villarreal along with analysts from the Legislative Budget Board (LBB) gave a presentation to the Appropriations Subcommittee on Education describing the impact of receiving a TEXAS Grant award on a student's persistence and success in college. Rep. Villarreal, a member of the subcommittee, directed the research presented today.

Villarreal Authors Aggressive Legislative Agenda on Education, the Environment, our Economy, and Fair Government

Friday, March 13, 2009

(Austin) – Today marked the last day that Legislators may file new bills during the 81st Legislative session. Representative Villarreal filed a number of new bills today, bringing his total legislative package to 71 bills and 4 constitutional amendments. The lawmaker’s aggressive policy agenda focuses on investing in education, protecting the air we breathe and the water we drink, valuing work and aspiration in these difficult economic times, and fighting for fair government that represents all Texans.

Villarreal Files Energy Efficiency Legislative Package

Friday, March 6, 2009

Austin - Today Rep. Mike Villarreal announced a package of legislation that he has filed to promote energy efficiency in the state. "This legislation reduces air pollution that threatens our families' health and contributes to global warming. It would also save money for homeowners and taxpayers by reducing energy costs," explained Rep. Villarreal. "These bills are a win-win-win for our health, environment and family budgets."

Villarreal Files Legislation to Expand Public Transit in San Antonio

Monday, February 23, 2009

Austin - Today, State Representative Mike Villarreal filed legislation to give voters the power to choose new ways to invest locally in public transit. The bill, H.B. 1674, would give local government amenu of options to raise revenue locally to fund transportation solutions such as buses, light rail and passenger rail, and bike lanes. The lawmaker authored the measure in response to the looming crisis in San Antonio’s transportation infrastructure.

Villarreal Proposes Carbon Impact Statement for All Bills

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Austin - Today Rep. Mike Villarreal filed legislation to require the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) and Legislative Budget Board (LBB) to produce a carbon emission impact statement for all bills filed in the Texas Legislature. The bill, HB 1469, would ensure that legislators consider potential increases or decreases in carbon emissions when voting on legislation. The "Carbon Note" would be similar to the Fiscal Note that is currently included with all legislation for the purpose of determining the fiscal cost to the state and other governmental entities.

Villarreal Named to Subcommittee to Write Education Budget

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Austin - Today Rep. Mike Villarreal was named to the five-person House of Representatives Appropriations Subcommittee tasked with writing the House's first draft of the Texas budget for public and higher education. The appointment to the Subcommittee on Education reflects Rep. Villarreal's ongoing work on public schools and affordable higher education.

Enrollment Deadline This Month for Prepaid College Tuition Program

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The current enrollment period for the Texas Tuition Promise Fund, the state's new prepaid college tuition program, ends February 28. The program allows families to lock in college tuition and required fees at current prices for Texas colleges and prepay those expenses before a child is ready to go to college. The Fund is designed to allow families, regardless of economic background, to achieve their educational goals.

Relief for Struggling Homeowners

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Austin - Rep. Mike Villarreal filed legislation today that could provide much needed relief for struggling homeowners. If adopted the measure would take the first step towards linking property taxes to a homeowner's ability to pay.

Rep. Villarreal Files Clean Elections Bill

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Today State Representative Mike Villarreal filed H.B. 391 to prohibit individuals from contributing more than $100,000 per election cycle to state candidates, political action committees (PACs) and officeholders.

Villarreal Pushes Fairness for Homeowners & Students in Pre-Filed Bills

Monday, November 10, 2008

On the first day to pre-file legislation for the 81st session of the Texas House of Representatives, Rep. Mike Villarreal filed four measures to provide a more level playing field for homeowners paying property taxes and for students at risk of starting school behind their peers.

Legislators Urge Governor To Aid Small Businesses as Economy Struggles

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Today 13 state legislators joined State Rep. Mike Villarreal in urging Governor Rick Perry to support small businesses during these difficult economic times by transferring available funds to the Texas Capital Access Program (TCAP).

Villarreal Leads Push for Renewable Energy Grid

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Today Representative Mike Villarreal is delivering to the state Public Utility Commission (PUC) a letter from 15 state legislators and a petition from 1,781 ordinary Texans calling for a package of transmission lines that maximizes the capacity to carry renewable energy from west Texas to the state's population centers.

Rep. Villarreal Requests Customer Service Review at State Agencies

Monday, April 28, 2008

Representative Mike Villarreal requested that the Legislative Budget Board's Agency Performance Review team investigate customer service at state agencies. In particular Rep. Villarreal asked for a review of the amount of time that individuals calling state agencies spend on the phone before they reach a live person and before they successfully conclude their phone call. Rep. Villarreal made the request after talking to numerous constituents who had trouble contacting state agencies.

Villarreal Urges Reform of TAKS Testing in Public Schools

Monday, April 14, 2008

Today Representative Villarreal testified before the Select Committee on Public School Accountability about his concerns regarding the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) tests and his recommendations for improvement. His testimony is attached.

HHSC Accepts Villarreal's Request to Protect Access to Birth Control

Friday, April 11, 2008

Today the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) informed Representative Mike Villarreal that it will increase the Medicaid reimbursement rate for oral contraceptives provided by clinic pharmacies. The announcement comes after Rep. Villarreal had urged HHSC to raise the rate and had collected more than 1,800 signatures on a petition calling for the increase. The increase will prevent unwanted pregnancies and save taxpayers' money.