Chambers to honor Speaker Joe Straus

  • Share:
September 24, 2017

Collin County Chambers of Commerce, including Richardson, will honor Texas House Speaker Joe Straus for his 12 years of service in an appreciation luncheon in October.


The Republican representative successfully blocked the Bathroom Bill, which would have required employees and students in state buildings such as public schools to use bathrooms that matched the gender on their birth certificate. A similar bill in North Carolina that gained national attention cost their state more than $3.8 billion in just two years. When asked about the Lieutenant Governor's persistent effort to pass such a bill, Speaker Joe Straus said, "Why would Texas, after seeing the example in North Carolina, want to walk headfirst into a giant cactus?" Texas CEOs and business leaders agreed, lauding the Speaker for stifling policies that would be harmful to the state economy.


Straus’s legislative priorities align with concerns of Texas business and chambers of commerce. He has prioritized reforming the public school finance system as a sustainable, long-term strategy to lower property taxes for Texans. He supported local control to counter Gov. Greg Abbott’s declared efforts to limit the rights of local governments. He ensured that bills supporting higher education funding, a skilled workforce and economic incentives advanced in the lower chamber last session.


"I try to encourage cooperation," the Speaker said of his political strategy last August. "I try to encourage bipartisanship. I know that's not a very fashionable thing today.” His bipartisan approach explains why representatives of both parties have elected him as speaker for five consecutive legislative sessions. While a growing fraction of Republicans have pursued a conservative agenda, the San Antonio lawmaker has continued to employ a mild-mannered, commerce-focused brand of Republican politics in the mold of former Gov. George W. Bush.


The appreciation luncheon will be at 11:30 a.m., Tuesday, Oct. 10 at the Sheraton McKinney Hotel. Register online through the Plano Chamber of Commerce.

Molly Ulmer, Chief Governance Officer