Committee works on hurricane response

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Here's an update from your State Capitol.

Transportation

The House Committee on Transportation is the next stop on our tour of committee interim charges. This 13-member committee has jurisdiction over all matters relating to commercial motor vehicles, our state's roads and bridges, traffic control, and many other areas.

In fact, while most people associate "transportation" with cars and trucks, this committee also oversees policy pertaining to railroads, airports, and water transportation in Texas.

House Transportation has been charged with reviewing the state's response to Hurricane Harvey and natural disaster preparedness with respect to transportation systems and infrastructure. This will be a key issue moving forward, as we need to do all we can at the state level to ensure that both citizens and first-responders have the proper infrastructure in place to evacuate or provide emergency services in the wake of a disaster.

In a similar vein, the committee will also evaluate the state's ability to deliver highway construction projects that reduce congestion and improve mobility in a timely and cost-effective manner.

Additionally, this committee will review existing transportation finance mechanisms and identify opportunities to both improve and develop how we fund our new projects. For those projects that are privately funded, such as toll roads, the committee will examine whether current policies governing toll authorities in Texas are sufficient in providing the transparency and accountability that Texans demand.

Keenly important to interim transportation studies is identifying what innovations are being utilized in other states and at the federal level.

Reminders

The mobile office is on the road for the month of June and looks forward to seeing you on the following dates, in the following locations: June 6th in Centerville at the Leon County Courthouse from 9-11 a.m., or in Madisonville at the Madison County Courthouse from 1:30-3:30 p.m. June 20th in Crockett at the Houston County Courthouse Annex from 9-11 a.m., or in Groveton at the Trinity County Courthouse from 1:30-3:30 p.m. Finally, we will be in San Augustine on June 27th at the San Augustine County Courthouse from 9-11am.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact our office if we can help you in any way. Our district office may be reached at (936) 634-2762, or you can call my Capitol office at (512) 463-0508.

Trent Ashby represents District 57, which includes Madison County, in the Texas Legislature.

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