From the Capitol

Gov. Perry Seeks Relief From Skyrocketing Food Prices

April 25, 2008

Requests Federal RFS Mandate Waiver

AUSTIN – Seeking immediate relief from skyrocketing food costs, Gov. Rick Perry today asked the federal government for a 50 percent waiver from the federal renewable fuel standard (RFS) mandate for ethanol produced from grain.

"We appreciate the good intentions behind the push for renewable fuels. In fact we’re diversifying our state’s energy portfolio at a rapid rate, but this misguided mandate is significantly affecting Texans’ family food bill," said Gov. Perry. "There are multiple factors contributing to our skyrocketing grocery prices, but a waiver of RFS levels is the best, quickest way to reduce those costs before permanent damage is done."

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Gov. Perry Orders Flags at Half-Staff in Memory of Lena Guerrero

April 24, 2008

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today directed that flags be flown at half-staff in memory of former Texas Railroad Commissioner and State Representative Lena Guerrero. He also issued the following statement:

"Lena Guerrero was a bright, passionate woman who worked hard to represent the interests of her constituents both as a representative and as Railroad Commissioner. We served together in the Texas House of Representatives, and I came to know and admire her both as an esteemed colleague and a friend. Her fellow Democrats were surprised at our friendship and her endorsement of my candidacy, but she was the sort of person who placed loyalty and principle ahead of politics."

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Texas Holds 'Em

May 5, 2008

National Review

Kevin D. Williamson

How Lone Star Republicans stopped abusive medical-malpractice lawsuits

That high lonesome sound you hear ululating over the wide-open Texas prairies isn’t coyotes — it’s hungry trial lawyers, forced to subsist on 40 percent of a litigation pie that has gotten a little bit smaller of late.

When Texas Republicans finally took control of the Texas legislature in 2003, tort reform was among their cardinal concerns. But legislation was only part of the fight. Several bare-knuckled political battles, the constitutional amendment known as Proposition 12, and five Rick Perry appointments to the state supreme court have entrenched a battery of reforms, including a cap on non-economic damages in medical-malpractice cases and several measures designed to keep frivolous lawsuits out of court in the first place. The guys in the ambulances are raising a joyful noise; the guys chasing behind are raising hell.

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Statement by Gov. Rick Perry on U.S. Supreme Court Lethal Injection Ruling

April 16, 2008

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today issued the following statement regarding the United States Supreme Court’s ruling to uphold the method of lethal injection in capital punishments:

"Texas is a law and order state, and I stand by the majority of Texans who support the death penalty as it is written in Texas law. It is an appropriate response for the most violent crimes against our fellow human beings."

"Today’s ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court affirms the method the State of Texas has in place to carry out the death penalty."

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Gov. Perry Names Langwell Texas Round-Up 2008 Fit Texan

April 16, 2008

Also Names Recipients of ‘Fit Kid’ and ‘Fit Family’ Awards

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today named Norman Langwell Jr. of Huntsville as the 2008 Texas Round-Up Fit Texan. He also named 9-year-old Kolton Allen of Lexington as Fit Kid and the Gonzales- Paul family of San Antonio as Fit Family.

"I encourage all Texans to use these Texans’ stories as inspiration to take steps toward fitness, incorporating healthy changes in their daily routine that will help improve our quality of life and ensure long-term health," Gov. Perry said.

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Gov. Perry Announces TEF Investment in Solar Power Company

April 15, 2008

HelioVolt to create 160 high-wage jobs in Central Texas

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today announced the state will invest $1 million through the Texas Enterprise Fund (TEF) in HelioVolt Corp. of Austin for the construction of a 125,000 square foot manufacturing facility and development space to test and produce the company’s thin-film solar power cells, which convert sunlight into electricity. The deal will create nearly 160 jobs and $62 million in capital investment.

"Texas is the place to grow a business thanks to our mix of a reasonable regulatory environment, an educated workforce, and a variety of economic incentives that bolster our stature in the global marketplace," said Gov. Perry. "HelioVolt’s investment in this alternative energy technology will not only create more jobs in Texas but also help our state remain at the forefront of the renewable energy market. These advances will also help decrease our dependence on foreign energy sources."

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Gov. Perry Establishes Science and Technology Champions Academy

April 12, 2008

Provides Opportunity and Incentive to Pursue Studies in Critical Fields

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today announced the establishment of the Governor’s Science and Technology Champions Academy for winners of the ExxonMobil Texas Science and Engineering Fair. Winners will receive full scholarships to attend the four and a half day-long residential academy, to be held at the University of Texas San Antonio (UTSA) this summer.

"Science, math, engineering and technology represent the foundation for the majority of tomorrow’s high-demand, high-skill jobs," said Gov. Perry. "This new science and technology academy will allow students to further their studies in the critical fields of tomorrow, enabling Texas to remain competitive in a global marketplace."

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University of Texas and Aga Khan University Establish Historic Partnership

April 12, 2008

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry and His Highness the Aga Khan today participated in a display of unity and mutual respect at the State Capitol as the University of Texas at Austin and the Aga Khan University signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The document establishes a partnership to solve shared challenges and achieve mutual goals.

"We can achieve so much more when we work together, focusing on the common values that unite us instead of the differences that make us unique," said Gov. Perry. "We must bridge the gap of understanding between East and West if we ever hope to experience a future of peace and prosperity."

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Gov. Perry Allocates $1.7 Million from State Planning Assistance Grant Funds

April 7, 2008

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today awarded more than $1.7 million to 19 regional councils of government to pursue local economic development initiatives and facilitate intergovernmental cooperation and planning. Grants are awarded through the State Planning Assistance Grant Program Fund and are distributed by the Governor's Criminal Justice Division (CJD).

"The efficient use of public funds toward maintaining today’s roads, medical care facilities and businesses will produce prosperity for future generations of Texans and continue to make our state one of the best places in the nation to live," Perry said.

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Marine Military Academy Honors Gov. Perry with Iwo Jima Leadership Award

April 4, 2008

HARLINGEN – The Marine Military Academy (MMA) tonight honored Gov. Rick Perry with the Iwo Jima Award. A veteran of the armed forces and a longtime public servant, Gov. Perry is being honored for epitomizing leadership traits that were found during the battle of Iwo Jima.

“The Marine Military Academy is special to me because it represents a bastion of core values that is desperately needed in today’s world,” said Gov. Perry. “The unrelenting emphasis on honor, courage and commitment has propelled the academy to its prominence in the world of character formation and academic education.”

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