AUSTIN – The Texas Senate has passed Senate Bill 500, providing over $6 billion in a supplemental budget bill to address costly devastation from Hurricane Harvey, the Santa Fe school shooting among other issues. The legislation was co-authored by Senator Lois Kolkhorst and provides more than $3 billion for Harvey-related expenses, $100 million for school safety improvements, $300 million for state hospital facilities and $542 million to the Teacher Retirement System. In addition, $100 million was appropriated to refill the Governor's Disaster Fund that had been depleted from Hurricane Harvey. The bill also funds the rebuilding of the UT Marine Science Institute in Port Aransas, with $14.8 million dedicated to the facility.
"This bill was unanimously passed because issues like hurricane relief, retired teachers, and school safety are not partisan issues, they are people issues that impact every Texan. That’s why I was proud to co-author and pass this bill, to provide funding for some of our state's key priorities," said Kolkhorst. "This legislation supports our retired teachers across Texas, helps keep our schools safe, and also sends a strong message that anyone impacted by Hurricane Harvey will not be forgotten."
Senate Bill 500 now moves to the Texas House of Representatives for consideration.