Texas higher ed leaders optimistic about funding, faculty uneasy about culture wars as new session starts
Community colleges want a funding overhaul this legislative session, and four-year universities are hoping for a boost in research funds. Meanwhile, faculty are bracing for a potential threat to tenure and limits to conversations about race.
Texas universities propose two-year tuition freeze in exchange for nearly $1 billion in additional state funding
The leaders of the state’s six biggest university systems are seeking the money to fund instruction, university operations and employee health insurance and to cover a free tuition program for veterans and their children.
Texas lawmakers will have $188.2 billion available for the next budget after record-breaking revenue growth
It’s far more money than legislators have ever had at their disposal, with an increase in available funds that dwarfs any previous jumps between cycles. It’s also more money than lawmakers can constitutionally spend.
Texas lawmakers have a $27 billion surplus, but a spending cap complicates their goal of lowering property taxes
Texas homeowners have some of the highest property tax bills in the nation, a byproduct of the state’s reliance on such taxes to help pay for public schools and the state’s lack of an income tax.
Jack Cagle, Tom Ramsey skip commissioners court for 3rd time as budget impasse continues
The impasse over the Harris County budget continued Tuesday with Republican commissioners skipping a meeting for a third time in a row, blocking the Democratic majority commissioners court from adopting a new proposed tax rate.
Judge Lina Hidalgo asking county attorney’s office to consider authority to require commissioners to attend court meeting
In an attempt to pass a budget for Harris County, Judge Lina Hidalgo said she is considering “any and all action” that would bring commissioners into Commissioners Court to allow a vote that she said would fund the budget.
As inflation skyrockets, local Texas governments ponder tax rate increases as they balance budgets
Local governments in Texas have spent the summer preparing their budgets for next year, wrestling with inflation and a law that prohibits them from raising property tax revenues beyond 3.5% without voter approval.
Texas House speaker pitches spending more than $100 million for mental health, school safety programs
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick had asked House leaders to support his push for arming school police officers with bulletproof shields after the Uvalde shooting. House Speaker Dade Phelan is also asking for more money for mental health and school safety programs.
The Salvation Army’s Chic Boutique is back: Here’s how to shop the closets of Houston’s best dressed
Shop, save, and help others in need. Here's a sign THAT life is getting back to normal: The Salvation Army's Chic Boutique is back this week! You can score designer duds at major discounts at this pop-up charity sale. Volunteers collect and curate the best donations all year.
Fed Chair says federal budget needs "return to a sustainable path," but "the time is not now."
When asked if continued spending on infrastructure and COVID-19 relief could set off inflation, Jerome Powell said he doesn't "see that now" and the economy needs to fully recover before spending levels "return to a sustainable path."cbsnews.com
Coronavirus in Illinois updates: Here’s what happened Feb. 5 with COVID-19 in the Chicago area
Among more than 150 readers who told the Tribune in an informal online survey about their experiences trying to get the vaccine, Dyra-Hamel was among the earliest to get it. Most of those who responded said the hardest part was trying to sign up for an opening, while actually getting the shot was easy. Many said they spent a long time scrambling to sign up online, and lucked out to get a slot.chicagotribune.com
Meet your financial goals by starting with these 4 steps
These four baby steps will help you begin to get a handle on your finances for the new year. You can get a free credit report every week through April here. Step 2: Audit your subscriptionsFrom streaming services to clothing, look for recurring monthly fees to your bank account or credit card. Step 3: Check the interest rates on your credit cards and accountsCan you get a lower interest rate or a no-interest balance transfer for your credit card debt? After it expires, credit card companies usually jack up your interest rate.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s budget includes recurring property tax increase, 3-cent gas tax hike and layoffs for city workers, as she seeks to close $1.2B deficit
“The lessons I take from that history are many. Importantly, as Chicagoans, throughout our history we have been tested and we have repeatedly risen to meet and exceed every challenge,” Lightfoot said to a handful of staffers in an otherwise empty City Council chambers. “But what I also know, as a woman of color, is that this time, in 2020, as we rebuild, we must continue to bring others along with us on the journey toward the next chapter in our shared destiny. We cannot afford to leave anyone behind.”chicagotribune.com
HISD board considering $41 million budget amendment
HOUSTON – The Houston Independent School District board will consider approving a $41 million budget amendment on Thursday afternoon. District officials said an additional $17 million for special education has also been under consideration since August. Funding from local agenciesThe board of trustees is scheduled to vote on accepting a total of $2.3 million. Providing out-of-school activities for Chavez High School students such as academic enrichment, fitness, counseling programs, art, music, technology and character education programs. Additional funds will also be considered for construction on Riceville School Road for Lamar High School and $3.1 million for a new sports field and auditorium upgrades at Booker T. Washington High School, according to a press release.
Up to 3,000 city of Houston employees could be furloughed under proposed budget
HOUSTON – There is a $169 million budget gap in the city of Houston’s budget for the next fiscal year, according to the numbers Mayor Sylvester Turner released on Tuesday. The city is reeling from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic and local leaders are not sugar-coating it. City leaders said they need to make drastic cuts, which means thousands of city employees are facing the possibility that they could be furloughed. Turner said he will try to secure more funding to save those jobs by using federal money. “I’ve asked Chief Pena with the fire department and Chief Acevedo and others to take a look at where their employees were used specifically for COVID purposes.
Severance Pay 101: 3 steps to making sure you use the money wisely
The money pay is supposed to help you out until you can get another job. "‘This is where we can cut.’ Do that as part of a severance package. “Once you leave the company, you’re going to have an expiration date on those options,” Rosso said. Fund your healthcare savings accountLastly, if you haven’t funded your healthcare savings account, consider using some of your severance pay to do that. He has more ideas to consider if you are risk of getting a severance package here.