Why Should Businesses Attend Legislative Days?
For 172 years, every two years, Texas enters a legislative session. Legislators get together for 140 days to address key issues in Texas communities. Between each session, legislative committees are charged to study these key issues and find information that will help guide future legislative decisions. During Legislative Days, the Garland Chamber coordinates two days for Garland business and community members to visit Austin and hear from various legislative committees. These are a few of the key issues in Garland that will be discussed:
Economic Development & Workforce Development
The Garland Chamber of Commerce continues to support standards and training at all levels of our educational system that provide students with the skills required by employers. It is important to ensure students have multiple pathways to high-growth STEM areas. We support an increase in opportunities for internship, Career and Technical Education programs, and apprenticeships that advance career and college readiness. The Garland Chamber supports the Skills Development Fund to improve workforce and training and produce skilled workers. In addition, we support maintaining the State of Texas Enterprise Fund to encourage economic growth.
Transportation & Infrastructure
The Garland Chamber of Commerce supports all initiatives that increase and improve infrastructure within the region by advocating for regional increases of funds dedicated to the construction of roadways and rail corridors in North Texas. The Chamber supports all funding methods supporting the IH-635 East Corridor Project. These efforts will ensure the maintenance and continued development of our state's transportation infrastructure.
Public & Higher Education
The Garland Chamber of Commerce supports an educational system that provides fair, equitable, and efficient funding for educational institutions and the students they serve. The system should focus on: funding full day pre-K, increasing state funding for school districts with higher percentages of economically disadvantaged and English Language Learners (ELL) students, and continuing to provide flexibility to local districts regarding tax policy. The Chamber supports regional equity, tuition flexibility, and adequate funding, including financial aid for post-secondary education institutions in the region.
Karina Olivares, President of the Garland Chamber, has coordinated and attended Legislative Days since 2015. “As a business owner, you want to attend to have that face-to-face time with your local legislators,” Olivares said. “You can call or email your local legislators, but to make a real impact, come to Austin and have meaningful conversations with them face-to-face. The bigger the group we have going, the bigger the impact Garland can make in Austin.”
View City and Garland ISD Legislative Agendas Here