Archive for the ‘Independent Texans’ Category
Reminder! The Texas gold rush on groundwater, your land and our elections are up for grabs! Can we grab it back? Join us tomorrow at Our Water, Our Land, Our Elections Lobby Day (Friday, March 24) anytime from 10-4 (preferably high noon) at the Capitol, room E2.002. And join us on Saturday at the Texas Populism Conference in Cedar Creek! (Read this overview before you come to either event -- it will be in your extensive packets).
Saturday's Texas Populism Conference in Cedar Creek
is going to be a doozy with these new additions!
Julie Nitsch, ACC Trusteenew speakers!
- Texas populist Democratic firebrand, David Van Os
- Houston Property Rights, Barry Klein
- Austin's 10-1 communications maven and daughter of East Texas, Jessica Ellison and
- Newly Elected ACC Trustee, Julie Nitsch ===►
Can we come together with a deep concern for the thing we at LIV cherish most -- civil and smart deliberation for the greater good? We shall see!
We link to this fascinating discussion on Jonathan Tilove's blog -- this interview with ABC commentator Matthew Dowd, now resident of Wimberley. His consideration to run as an independent against Ted Cruz is not actually the most interesting part of this --- he's talking about his deep concern for deliberative small "d" democracy -- our brand of populism!
►PS Don't forget a VERY critical Vista Ridge hearing next Tuesday night 6:30 pm in Milano for Milam and Burleson counties! See our events calendar, share it or call us.
For Immediate Release
Texas Populists Building Independent Rural-Urban Alliance
to Protect Water, Land and Elections
Bastrop, TX, 6:00 am: Leaders of the non-partisan, non-profit League of Independent Voters of Texas (LIV) put out the call for Texans to help disengage citizens from partisan warfare and to unite across urban and rural Texas to protect their common and vital interests -- water, land, and elections. They will be joining hands at the Texas Capital on Friday, March 24th for “Our Water, Our Land, Our Elections Lobby Day”, followed the next day by the “Texas Populism Conference: Building the Independent Rural-Urban Alliance” at McKinney Roughs Nature Park in Cedar Creek.
Samantha “Sam” Davis, a former senior staffer for the Bernie Sanders Presidential campaign and new to the LIV Board, said, “The power of populism lies in our ability to unite people to take the power away from those who are set to do real and permanent harm to future generations. Protests are a show of people power, but chances are that you’re still going to have limited or no choice when you walk into the voting booth. That is what we need to change.”
Simsboro Aquifer activist and LIV Board member, Michele Gangnes, said, “The water grid that we called Gridzilla in the last session is back on steroids. At the same time opposition to mass transport of groundwater, also known as the California Water Model, is mounting among ordinary citizens. Landowners don’t want their water taken on the cheap for real estate deals and urbanites don’t want to be saddled with more and more costs of growth. It’s time to unite, regardless of who we voted for last November.”
Calvin Tillman, City Council member of the small town of Aubrey and LIV Board Member said, “Eminent domain for private gain has rural Texans fit to be tied with 9,000 entities that can seize private land. Though we strongly support the reforms carried in this session by Texans for Property Rights, they are not near enough to deal with the cronyism in state agencies that has put rural and urban citizens in the crosshairs of the war between the two parties.”
Both events will cover signature issues at the League of Independent Voters and Texans for Electoral Competition – an ad hoc coalition involving LIV, the Libertarian, Green and Constitution parties, Left Up to Us and Texans for Accountable Government dedicated to:
- Ending the water grabs,
- Stopping eminent domain for private gain, and
- Opening up our electoral process to competitive elections, thereby freeing the millions of Texans who call themselves simply "independent" to exercise their power as voters for change.
More information can be found at IndependentLeagueTX.org or by calling LIV at 512-213.4511.
We here at the League of Independent Voters are not willing to stand there and take what this guy is taking. Are you?
While the country appears irreversibly divided, many ordinary citizens are coming to us and asking "how can I become an independent?" Who knows, maybe there's a chance to save the republic before the two parties' war on each other destroys us and our system of government based on consensus.
What are Texas officials doing? They are locked in fake fight -- the "great potty political debate" (the bathroom bill) -- at the same time an immense and truly immoral transfer of wealth is happening right under their noses. That transfer is the mass movement by profiteers of groundwater (our most valuable Texas resource) to the growth corridors by abusing government condemnation of private property to make it happen. We call it eminent domain for private gain. Millions of people are facing unaffordability, aquifers we depend on face damage or depletion, and the next generation's future is stolen.
Lt. Governor Dan Patrick's appointee, Senator Charles Perry (R-Lubbock), will be rolling out his omnibus water bill, likely on the last day to file a bill -- March 10th. (UPDATE: the bill was released on March 7th -- more coming soon!) Perry held closed interim hearings throughout 2016 and is -- unbelievably -- keeping his bill secret. Texas House Speaker Joe Straus has also appointed water grabbing Rep. Lyle Larson (R-San Antonio) to chair the House Natural Resources Committee. He's the guy who wantonly calls landowners “Balkanizers” if they do not want to sell their water, as if they are wrong-headed rebels who just won’t get with the program. Larson just introduced a bill (HB 2948) to add yet another layer of bureaucracy to the convoluted water code, we suspect for the purpose of adding more opportunities to game it.
You're probably asking yourself, who do these people think they are? The real question is who do we think WE are?
Come join us to answer both those questions! We humbly request that you show up at these urgently important TWO events -- regardless of your party persuasion or who you voted for in the last election:
Please register NOW! Click on the links for each event below for March 24th & 25th
Come to this! Our Water, Our Land and Our Elections Lobby Day -- Friday, March 24th. Reserve a seat NOW for this FREE event at the Capitol. It's from 10 to 4, but show up at noon if you can. For details:
Come to this the next day, Saturday, March 25th:
Texas Populism Conference: Building the Independent Rural-Urban Alliance at McKinney Roughs Nature Trail in Cedar Creek. It's just $25, including lunch, or $15 and you can bring your own. For more info:
Both these events (on Friday, March 24th and Saturday, March 25th) are all about our signature issues here at the League of Independent Voters:
- Ending the water grabs,
- Ending eminent domain for private gain, and
- Opening up our electoral process to competitive elections, thereby freeing the millions of Texans who call themselves simply "independent" to exercise their power as voters for change. (Read about Texans for Electoral Competition here).
The March 25th conference will begin with this question:
►Can citizens from across partisan lines – rural and urban -- work together with both major parties increasingly at war? Or are we just beating our heads against the wall? Let's discuss, you decide.
The League is also establishing a writing team for the independent movement. If you're interested, give us a call or reply to this message.
Please share these events widely. Get a move on, you little dogies. United we stand, divided we fall, y'all.
Are UT Dell Medical School and State Senator Kirk Watson
Misspending Central Healthcare Hospital District Funds?
Austin, 2:30 pm: UT Dell Medical School appears to be misspending taxpayer dollars committed to the Central Healthcare Hospital District. If they are, this raises serious questions about potential violations of law and the public trust, so says longtime reform attorney, Fred Lewis and former State Senator Gonzalo Barrientos (D-Austin). Linda Curtis of Independent Texans is raising questions about her own State Senator, Kirk Watson’s law firm having benefited from it.
From UT's own financial records, the reports shows 84% of all UT Dell Medical School compensation is paid for with Central Health funds and the vast majority of these expenditures are going to personnel who do not provide any health care of any kind.
Linda Curtis of Independent Texans PAC said, “Everyone knows that Senator Watson has been the leading cheerleader for building the medical school, which is fine. However, when he failed to pass legislation in 2011 (SB 821) to authorize Central Health to help pay for medical education, I believe he continued to find ways to get his way. Senator Watson nor UT can now claim that in 2012, when Travis County voters gave the Health District the right to increase property taxes, they also gave them the power to do what SB 821, in its failure, did not do for them. Spending tens of millions of dollars per year -- for things other than health care -- is a rip off of low-income citizens, not to mention all who are paying for it.”
Lewis remarked that, “No other hospital district in Texas, to our knowledge, has funded a medical school’s non-health care services. Hospital districts typically contract with medical schools to provide health care for the poor, but no hospital district other than Central Health funds non-health care services of medical schools.”
Former longtime State Senator for the Austin area, Gonzalo Barrientos, helped draft the bill that passed in the 2003 legislative session to allow for the creation of the Central Healthcare Hospital District. Barrientos commented, “My intent in passing the law that we passed in the legislature was to create a district that medically treated poor people, not tomorrow, not next week, not next year but right now when they’re hurting.”
Senator Kirk Watson is a partner at Husch Blackwell LLP. The firm represents Central Healthcare Hospital District and has paid Watson's firm over $3 million.
For more details on matters contained in this release, see these 4 charts and the Fred Lewis report.
For More Information:
Linda Curtis, Independent Texans, PAC 512-657-2089