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    About Paul Bettencourt

    First elected to the Senate in 2014, Senator Paul Bettencourt represents Senate District 7, which encompasses most of West Harris County. He previously served 10 years, from 1998 – 2008, as the Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector, where he introduced “Smart Government” at the Harris County Tax Office and developed a customer service-driven organization. His team created the first major county online property tax payment system and the first county tax office website with online vehicle registration in Texas. (His motto was “Get on-line, not in-line.”) He was well-known as the “Tax Man” for his outspoken efforts to cut property taxes.

    In the most recent Legislative Session, Senator Bettencourt successfully passed Senate Bill 2, the Texas Property Tax Reform and Transparency Act of 2019, by a vote of 21-9 to bring meaningful property tax reform and relief to all Texas taxpayers. This was the first major property tax reform legislation in almost 40 years, and the culmination of two decades of advocacy.  He also continued his work on adult stem cell therapies in Texas by sponsoring HB 3148, building upon previous legislative sessions to get  government out of the way, allowing new therapies to flourish and give terminally and chronically ill patients hope for a better quality of life.  His work during the 86th Session earned him the distinction of “Senate MVP” by Capitol Inside, “Bull of the Brazos” by Texas Monthly, and he was given the “Citizen’s Choice Award” by Empower Texans.  He has also been called an “architect of tax relief” by Governor Greg Abbott.

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    22 hours ago
    Paul Bettencourt

    91 % of Texans oppose taxpayer funded lobbying...(bit.ly/3slA1Et) quite the statement of support from the public! With over $40 Million of taxpayer dollars being spent by local governments on lobbyists in the 85th session, SB10 passing the full Senate is a HUGE victory for Texas Taxpayers!

    Taxpayer funded lobbying diverts funding from local governments' ability to provide local needs and results in money being used to advocate against the taxpayers interest with the use of their own tax dollars! Senate Bill 10 will prohibit cities and counties from hiring registered lobbyists using taxpayer monies.

    This bill only prohibits instances where the city or county employee would require the person to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305 of the Texas Government code. City or county elected officials, officers or employees will still be able to provide information to members and appear before a legislative committee as they do now.

    Taxpayers don’t want their hard earned money being used against them to advocate against issues like property tax relief! What do you think?
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    91 % of Texans oppose taxpayer funded lobbying...(bit.ly/3slA1Et) quite the statement of support from the public! With over $40 Million of taxpayer dollars being spent by local governments on lobbyists in the 85th session, SB10 passing the full Senate is a HUGE victory for Texas Taxpayers!

Taxpayer funded lobbying diverts funding from local governments ability to provide local needs and results in money being used to advocate against the taxpayers interest with the use of their own tax dollars! Senate Bill 10 will prohibit cities and counties from hiring registered lobbyists using taxpayer monies.

This bill only prohibits instances where the city or county employee would require the person to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305 of the Texas Government code. City or county elected officials, officers or employees will still be able to provide information to members and appear before a legislative committee as they do now.

Taxpayers don’t want their hard earned money being used against them to advocate against issues like property tax relief! What do you think?

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    How about the state lobbying federal government? Why wasnt that included in the bill? Taxpayer funded as well...

    Now please introduce a Bill that stops the government from using our tax $$ to bring in/house/care for illegal immigrants!

    Interesting this bill only targets cities and counties but doesn’t touch state lobbying... Shouldn’t it be what’s good good for the goose is good for the gander?

    Do away with all schemes pertaining to taxpayer funded lobbyists this session!!

    As a Harris county taxpayer for over 35 years. I have seen stagnation in property taxes. Meaning no increase. Yet every single year my taxes increase. Alief I.S.D. being the main and most expensive I have to pay in Houston. So where is your report card. On how you are actually improving? Mayor Turner. Studies don't show you are spending taxpayer money wisely. Apparently Judge Hidalgo is a scared little girl that Obeys You. Leadership my ass. Over taxed with zero benefits. Houston will lose when I leave.

    I believe the Texas Assoc. of County's have spent a lot of our tax money lobbying against property tax reduction. 10 % increases year after year.

    I’m a big fan of Senator Bettencourt’s but this bill missed on the absolute worst offenders of taxpayer-funded lobbying - public school districts which in most areas account for 80% plus of your total property tax bill. The liberal public ed lobbyists like TASB, TASA and the rest of the alphabet soup are the single biggest threat to Texas turning blue. We are literally cranking out angry, entitled little woke socialists. Not to mention every one of the public ed lobbies has opposed property tax reform, Robin Hood repeal, any and all forms of school choice and pretty much everything else conservatives care about. The very fact that they were excluded from this bill demonstrates how powerful they’ve become. Legislators are scared to death of them because they will target them in re-election campaigns with block voting efforts. Like many federal bureaucracies these liberal lobbies - with our taxpayer money - have become too big to control. That’s why it’s imperative they are included in this ban.

    Thank you for what you do. After reading the comments below I would like to ask you if there is more that you can do?

    Great job

    Unfortunately, now it will go to the House to die.

    Thank you for keeping us informed

    I don’t believe a person or organization should be able to give anything to a politician for personal gain. You call it lobbyists money, I call it bribes.

    Long overdue.

    This great Paul, thank you. What about the school districts?

    About Time!!!

    The government should not fund any lobbying.

    👏🏻👏🏻

    Thank you!!!

    👏 👏 👏

    Thank you Sen. Bettencourt. We'll work the other chamber. For schools, don't renew Chpt 313.

    So happy to see this. Congratulations for all of the people in Texas! Sorry to have missed you, but I was up in the gallery quietly cheering.

    Yes this bill should be made law and include State lobbying!

    Your bad ass Paul, please keep it up.

    Hold the line Paul Bettencourt! Proud of you brother

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    1 week ago
    Paul Bettencourt

    3 for 3, a “Hat trick” of excellent voter integrity bills apart of my “Integirty-7” bill package passed the full Senate and move to the Texas House. These 3 bills, SB1112, SB1113 & SB1114 are designed to strengthen voter roll integrity & ensure accuracy in the elections process in Texas. Joint/Co authors of some or all of these bills are Senators Birdwell, Creighton, Kolkhorst, Hall, Hughes, Taylor and Schwertner, and a couple of Democratic Senators actually crossed the aisle and voted for one good public policy solution!

    The 2020 election revealed election code violations across Texas including too many places with election officials that have been non-compliant with the one or more of the requirements of the Texas Election Code. Harris County contemplated skipping signature verification on Absentee Ballots from drop boxes until a Deputy Sec of State intervened to stop them. In my mind, signature verification can NEVER be waived in any election and you can look at what happened in the Battleground States when it did!

    That is why I filed SB1112 to prevent local election officials from suspending that requirement and to make certain they are checking both signatures are from the voter. The other two bills are designed to strengthen the integrity of the voter roll in Texas which is paramount to any election! SB 1113 makes it clear if voter registrars or election administrators aren’t doing their job of timely removing voters that are not eligible to vote of the Voter rolls then the SOS may withhold Chapter 19 funds until they do.

    SB 1114 with an amendment from Senator Hughes, requires the SOS and DPS to enter into an agreement to cross check lists to verify the accuracy of citizenship status, and strengthen cross checks to make sure non-citizens are not put on the Voter Rolls!

    See my press release here: bit.ly/3uLKZ7L
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    3 for 3, a “Hat trick” of excellent voter integrity bills apart of my “Integirty-7” bill package passed the full Senate and move to the Texas House. These 3 bills, SB1112, SB1113 & SB1114 are designed to strengthen voter roll integrity & ensure accuracy in the elections process in Texas. Joint/Co authors of some or all of these bills are Senators Birdwell, Creighton, Kolkhorst, Hall, Hughes, Taylor and Schwertner, and a couple of Democratic Senators actually crossed the aisle and voted for one good public policy solution!

The 2020 election revealed election code violations across Texas including too many places with election officials that have been non-compliant with the one or more of the requirements of the Texas Election Code. Harris County contemplated skipping signature verification on Absentee Ballots from drop boxes until a Deputy Sec of State intervened to stop them. In my mind, signature verification can NEVER be waived in any election and you can look at what happened in the Battleground States when it did! 

That is why I filed SB1112 to prevent local election officials from suspending that requirement and to make certain they are checking both signatures are from the voter. The other two bills are designed to strengthen the integrity of the voter roll in Texas which is paramount to any election! SB 1113 makes it clear if voter registrars or election administrators aren’t doing their job of timely removing voters that are not eligible to vote of the Voter rolls then the SOS may withhold Chapter 19 funds until they do.  

SB 1114 with an amendment from Senator Hughes, requires the SOS and DPS to enter into an agreement to cross check lists to verify the accuracy of citizenship status, and  strengthen cross checks to make sure non-citizens are not put on the Voter Rolls!

See my press release here: bit.ly/3uLKZ7L

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    Thak you Paul for standing strong, to protect the vote. The thing I never hear these Leftists talk about, is how allowing fraudulent votes ACTUALLY disenfranchises legal voters of ALL, colors, creeds, & socioeconomic statuses.

    Harris county just ignored state laws and the Governor. Hidalgo and Turner thinks Harris is a separate state. The state of Harris.

    GREAT job to all. Including the Dem senators that participated in this success!

    Thanks Paul. Continue to guarantee the rights of CITIZENS of the U.S. and Texas. As a veteran I think many of us feel more strongly about voter integrity than the average citizen and more so than most any Democrat who wants to win at any cost and who will break any rule they can get away with to do so. Tell me, where is the election fraud prosecution in Texas and elsewhere?

    Thanks Paul for what you ALWAYS do. For all the years I have known you, you have ALWAYS cared about honesty and the welfare of the Texas voter. Thanks!

    Thank you Paul Bettencourt for your diligent work to ensure accurate and honest election in the Great State of Texas.

    A strong Texan with integrity, a simple word of thanks for trying to protect election and voter integrity in Texas. T G C.

    You would think this would be an easy one. Thank you for doing the right thing and thanks to all the senators for the bipartisan support on this. Maybe someday as a nation we'll get to the standards of at least Puerto Rico or Mexico.

    Now pass Constitutional Carry and 2nd Amendment Sanctuary State Bills.

    Why didn't the state pursue criminal charges against marxist Hildalgo and crooked lefty Turner for their illegal actions

    What is the solution for removing dead people and illegal voters from our current Texas voting rolls? Is there a provision in these Bills to require all Living (voting age) Texans to re-register and vet everyone with a citizenship filter before approving them to cast a ballot in upcoming elections? Bad voter rolls is the starting point for election fraud!

    You need to get law passed ASAP!

    Voter ID is NOT racist. That’s a lie to promote the ability by Democrats to steal an election.

    If those complaining aren’t LEGAL TX residents, go pout somewhere else!!

    Hope every county is following the law.

    Someone please explain how any of these rules "intimidate" minority voters? So what the Democrats are saying is that minorities are timid and fearful... and not strong enough of a culture to vote? Now someone explain how these Democrats can insult minorities over and over again and get any votes.

    Nothing but voter suppression

    They arrested people in Texas for voting fraud. That’s need to pass

    Can someone tell me what the status of these bills are now--on April 13th?

    Thank you for protecting our elections from unlawful votes or fraud

    Keep up the good work Paul even through the Houston Chronicle refused to provide you media access.

    Ah, voter suppression to solve a non-existent "fraud" problem.

    How much voter suppression is enough, Paul Bettencourt?

    Voting laws only suppress Illegal Voting

    Way to go Paul! Appreciate you!

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    1 week ago
    Paul Bettencourt

    The Texas Senate took another stand for your religious freedoms.

    Senate Bill 581, The Homeowners Religious Freedom Act, passed the Texas Senate unanimously 31-0 with bipartisan support and moves to the Texas House. SB 581 will ensure protections for homeowners who wish to place certain religious displays in their front yard. Too many homeowners' associations (HOAs) have adopted restrictive rules that would order the removal of religious displays on homeowners' property. Joint-authors of SB581 are Senators Creighton and Kolkhorst and coauthors are Senators Hancock, Taylor and West.

    The HOA does not own your property and should not be in the business of placing overly burdensome restrictions on the free exercise of your religion. The bottom line is simply that if a homeowner wants to display a Nativity Scene, put a cross or menorah on their door, or exercise their religious freedom, whatever their religion might be, a homeowners' association should not have the right to prevent that. You own your yard too!

    Representative Mike Schofield filed an identical legislation will sponsor SB 581 in the House. Follow the bill online here for more info: (bit.ly/2R4TLiz)
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    The Texas Senate took another stand for your religious freedoms.

Senate Bill 581, The Homeowners Religious Freedom Act, passed the Texas Senate unanimously 31-0 with bipartisan support and moves to the Texas House. SB 581 will ensure protections for homeowners who wish to place certain religious displays in their front yard. Too many homeowners associations (HOAs) have adopted restrictive rules that would order the removal of religious displays on homeowners property. Joint-authors of SB581 are Senators Creighton and Kolkhorst and coauthors are Senators Hancock, Taylor and West.

The HOA does not own your property and should not be in the business of placing overly burdensome restrictions on the free exercise of your religion. The bottom line is simply that if a homeowner wants to display a Nativity Scene, put a cross or menorah on their door, or exercise their religious freedom, whatever their religion might be, a homeowners association should not have the right to prevent that. You own your yard too! 

Representative Mike Schofield filed an identical legislation will sponsor SB 581 in the House. Follow the bill online here for more info: (bit.ly/2R4TLiz)

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    Sad that this law is necessary to protect religious freedom. That should be simply understood from our constitution. Pray for America!

    Hey Mr Bettencourt, how about you suggest we use the $ from the Feds to build a water desalination plant (2 would be better) to be used for supplying major metro areas and saving more for rural towns and areas.

    We need constitutional carry in Texas.we are looking weak and that breaks down our name.

    Calling and emailing Cornyn tomorrow! GOD BLESS TEXAS! GOD BLESS OUR LEADERS WHO ARE IN ALIGNMENT WITH FREEEEDOM!!!!

    Great Paul Bettencourt , now how but reversing the corrupt actions by the likes of GW Bush that gave power & authority over property owners, and revoking all that power & authority then corrupt idiot politicians gave them. I know many people who's been on the receiving end of abuses and harrassment by HOA's using extortion type tactics, threats of taking their property away.

    This is a silly law, unnecessary.

    This is nothing but useless pandering to the religious base, pretending to do something. How about dealing with HOA frivolous lawsuits? Or making cronyism amongst HOA attorneys illegal? HOAs are out of control and ridiculous, as evidenced by even wasting time on this bill.

    It's amusing to see how many Texas are cool with being part of a voluntary association that would allow their freedom to be restricted.

    If a homeowner wants to display religious display in their front yard, maybe they should not associate with an HOA that prohibits it. OR Maybe residents should work with the HOA to amend the rules. This is government overreach.

    You need to completely shut down the HOA then you would have freedom

    I can think of DOZENS of things more important for the Texas Legislature to work on than this silly idea. Just outlaw or severely restrict what an HOA can actually do...problem solved for all kinds of things....

    Yes , instead of taking care of things important to voters like the electric grid.

    As the Board President for our HOA, it is sad that the State of Texas has to pass laws for this. HOA's need to have common sense and allow homeowners the ability to express their religious beliefs.

    As a long time HOA board member I am in favor of limiting HOA powers to just managing the common areas (pools, parks, clubhouses etc) of an association. Residents own their lots and should be able to do as they please.

    I guess people in Texas can go back to having nativity scenes at churches.

    It’s about damn time homeowners association have been getting away with with thinking that they do own our damn property and home!!

    Good can we do something about these pop up management district taxes? Feels like union fees because they tax you but I have yet to see anyone from that organization.

    Cool I’ll get my religious decorations ready.

    How ridiculous that they should have to waste time passing a law like this. If you don’t like something just move on about your business!

    I would never ever live in an HOA run neighborhood!

    Texas better take a stand for our gun rights

    Well they shouldn't of moved to a neighborhood that has HOAs! You read the rules and signed it!

    Makes me wish I still owned that house in Houston. I'd spend Saturday erecting a statue of Baphomet.

    Do we own our bodies too? Or are we going to allow these vaccine passports. Abbots executive order is a start, but it isn’t stopping businesses from requiring them or shutting these companies down that are track/trace and running Vaccine passports. THESE companies have been operating in TX for a year now. All planned and allowed.

    HOAs are either a bane or a blessing. I would push for legislation to make it so the only entity that could take one's home would be the bank holding the note.

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    ICYMI: 91% of Texans oppose using tax dollars to fund lobbyists! #SB10 passes the Senate & moves to House to put a stop to taxpayer funded lobbying.

    Taxpayers don’t want their hard earned money being used against them to advocate against issues like property tax relief! #txlege

    Big day in Texas Senate! Two big bills #SB10 to ban taxpayer funded lobbying & #SB28 the Charter School Equity Act pass to the Texas House. Thanks to Lt Gov @DanPatrick for your leadership and support! #txlege

    Today Republicans in the Texas Senate led the fight to protect taxpayer interests! Sen. @TeamBettencourt shepherded the passage of SB 10, which ensures your tax dollars are not used to hire contract lobbyists to work against taxpayer interests, including property tax reform.

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