Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Texas Access to Justice Foundation News Conference

The Texas Access to Justice Foundation hosted a press conference today to raise awareness about the funding shortfall in the Texas legal aid system. This shortfall is a significant problem for lower income families and individuals who are unable to pay for legal representation. As a result these people are faced with losing property, filing bankruptcy, and suffering significant credit impairment. In order to address this issue, I have proposed House Bill 1445. This legislation will allow other civil restitution recovered from an action by the Attorney General on a matter that violates a consumer protection, public health, or general welfare law to be credited to basic civil legal services to the indigent.  The bill will also increase the amount per biennium that may be transferred to the judicial fund from these actions to $50 million.

This legislation is urgently needed to assist lower income families and address the current funding shortfall. I am excited about the help that this legislation will provide and the prospect of "leveling the playing field" so that everyone in the Great State of Texas has the same access to legal representation. More information on this legislation can be found here.

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