|President Barack Obama the 44th President of the United States (left). Gov. Rick Perry the 47th Governor of Texas (right). Below are a few recent happening related to Pres. Obama and Gov. Rick Perry.|
“Aubrey R. Taylor Communications, the publisher of Your Thought Matters Newspaper would like to share this content with you regarding a few national, statewide, and local happenings related to activities by President Barack Obama, and Rick Perry, the Governor of Texas. Also, don’t forget that early voting for the 2013 General Election in Fort Bend County will begin on Monday, April 29th and end on Tuesday, May 7th. Election Day is Saturday, May 11, 2013.” – Aubrey R. Taylor, Publisher
|President Barack Obama -- 44th President of the United States|
Three years ago today, I signed into law the principle that in the wealthiest nation on Earth, no one should go broke just because they get sick. The Affordable Care Act will give hard-working, middle class families the health care security they deserve and protect every American from the worst insurance company abuses. Already, millions of seniors are saving $600 a year on their prescription drugs. Millions of young people have been able to stay on their family’s health plan until age 26. Preventive care, like mammograms for women and wellness visits for seniors, is covered free of charge. Most importantly, for the sake of our fiscal future, the growth of health care costs is beginning to slow. In fact, last year, Medicaid costs fell for the first time in decades.
Because of the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies will no longer have unchecked power to cancel your policy, deny you coverage, or charge women more than men. And soon, no American will ever again be denied care or charged more due to a pre-existing condition, like cancer or even asthma.
Later this year, millions of Americans will finally have the opportunity to buy the same kind of health care Members of Congress give themselves. Beginning in October, you'll be able to sign up for new private health care plans through a new health insurance marketplace where private plans will compete to save middle class families money. Through these marketplaces, Americans and small business owners will be able to choose from a menu of health plans that fit their budget and provide quality coverage they can count on when they need it most. If you like the plan you have, you can keep it. If you cannot afford a plan, you or your small business may get financial assistance to make it affordable.
There's more work to do to implement this law, and I look forward to working with leaders of both parties to help Americans save money on health care and extend the security of coverage to every family.
|Governor Rick Perry is the 47th Governor of Texas|
STATE HAPPENINGS: Governor and First Lady Honor Women Serving in the 83rd Legislature
Gov. Rick Perry and First Lady Anita Perry today spoke at the Governor's Commission for Women Legislative Luncheon, honoring women serving in the 83rd Texas Legislature. Gov. Perry has appointed more than 2,300 women to serve in key positions throughout state government since he became governor.
"It goes without saying that Texas women are a force to be reckoned with and the strong women who represent their fellow Texans in our State Capitol are profound examples of that," Gov. Perry said. "From lawmakers to teachers and from business leaders to those who are raising the next generation of Texans, they are all paving the way to a brighter future. Women like my wife, First Lady Anita Perry, have helped make Texas the best place to work, live and raise a family by being the very best at whatever leadership roles they decide to undertake."
"In terms of leadership, women have always been on the forefront, finding one way or another to serve their country. The governor and I are honored to be among so many accomplished women leaders today who serve in the Texas Legislature," First Lady Anita Perry said. "For years my husband has surrounded himself with the best and the brightest, so it comes as no surprise many, if not most, of those best and brightest happen to be female."
In celebration of Women's History Month, the first lady honored 38 female legislators during her keynote speech, highlighting the difference women have made in the Texas Legislature as key lawmakers. In addition, she recognized organizations that support active duty military, veterans, female veterans, children and family members of those who have served our country in the armed forces, sometimes paying the ultimate price.
|First Lady Anita Perry (left), and Texas Governor Rick Perry|
The Governor's Commission for Women is a liaison between women and government agencies, specializing in outreach, education, research and referral services to help Texas women live healthier and more productive lives. Under Gov. Perry's leadership, the commission has created the Texas Women's Hall of Fame exhibit; launched a statewide education initiative for more than 27,000 students; donated more than $350,000 through its nonprofit; provided free career development training; launched public awareness campaigns; and recognized contributions made by women to make Texas more prosperous.
|Governor Rick Perry speaking at the Brazoria County Day Breakfast|
Gov. Rick Perry recently spoke at the Brazoria County Day Breakfast, highlighting his priorities to keep Texas the nation's economic leader by strengthening the state's competitive jobs climate, reducing the tax burden on Texans, and investing in infrastructure.
"Texas' economy has become the envy of the nation, due to the hard work, innovative spirit and dedication of entrepreneurs like those in Brazoria County, and the discipline of our state leadership in Austin," Gov. Perry said. "The foundation employers are building on is our jobs-friendly economic climate, which consistently draws the interest of top decision-makers across the business world, and gives them the opportunity to thrive and compete on a global scale."
The governor highlighted the importance of fiscal responsibility, and emphasized the principles outlined in the Texas Budget Compact - practicing truth in budgeting, creating a stronger constitutional limit on spending growth, opposing new taxes or tax increases and making the tax exemption for small businesses permanent, streamlining government by doing away with duplicative programs, and preserving a strong Rainy Day Fund. He also reiterated his call to provide tax relief to Texans.
Gov. Perry also discussed the need to invest in critical water and transportation infrastructure as Texas' population and economy continue to grow. He has called for the use of $3.7 billion from the Rainy Day Fund for a one-time investment in water and transportation infrastructure projects.
|CLICK HERE TO VIEW THIS EDITION OF YOUR THOUGHT MATTERS NEWSPAPER|
“The feature of this “Special Edition” of Your Thought Matters Newspaper is the section on the importance of voting in local elections. This “Special Edition” was made possible by Mayor Annise Parker, Mayor Allen Owen, Congressman Kevin Brady, Houston Controller Ronald C. Green, Houston Mayor Pro-Tem Ed Gonzalez, Houston At-Large City CM -Andrew C. Burks, Jr., Missouri City At-Large CM - Danny Nguyen, Houston City CM - Ellen Cohen, Houston City CM – Wanda Adams, Houston City CM – Mike Laster, Houston City CM – Larry V. Green. 2013 Candidate Georgia D. Provost for Houston’s District – D, 2013 Candidate Rodney Griffin for Missouri City’s District – A, 2013 Candidate for Re-Election to the FBISD School Board Jim Rice, and 2013 Candidate for FBISD School Board Cynthia Lenton Gary. Call Aubrey R. Taylor Communications at: (832)212-8735 to discuss your inclusion in the next edition of Your Thought Matters Newspaper." -- Aubrey R. Taylor, Publisher
CITY LEADERS ON THE IMPORTANCE OF VOTING IN LOCAL ELECTIONS
Mayor Annise Parker, Other Houston City Hall Leaders Answer Call to Share Their Thoughts On The Importance of Voting
“Mayor Annise Parker the 61st Mayor of Houston, and only the second woman to hold the position of chief executive officer for the City of Houston recently took a moment to share her thoughts on the importance of voting at the request of Aubrey R. Taylor, publisher of Your Thought Matters Newspaper. Other Houston City Hall leaders who also took the time out of their busy schedules to share their thoughts on the importance of voting in local elections were: Houston’s City Controller Ronald C. Green; Houston’s Mayor Pro-Tem Ed Gonzalez; Houston’s At-Large Position 2 Council Member Andrew C. Burks, Jr.; Houston’s District C Council Member Ellen Cohen; Houston’s District D Council Member Wanda Adams; Houston’s District J Council Member Mike Laster; and Houston’s District K Council Member Larry Green. I’m thankful that these leaders found value in our quest to inform, empower, inspire, and encourage Americans to get involved in local elections. For in the end, all politics are local.”
Mayor Annise Parker, Currently Only the Second Woman to serve as Houston's Chief Executive takes a Moment to Share Her Thoughts on The Importance of Voting
"I remember voting as a kid with my parents. That was back in the days when you walked into a voting booth, pulled a red curtain behind you, picked your candidates and pulled a lever to cast your ballot. My parents took me every November, and I’ve gone every year as an adult. It’s important to vote for many reasons, but I’ll focus on three.
1) It’s the only opportunity we have, as citizens, to hold our elected officials accountable to the promises they make to us when they’re running for office. I’ve been elected eight times now, so I know that when I make a promise on the campaign trail, voters are listening, and voters will remind me of my promises when I come back in two years.
2) Someone said to me recently – if you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu. Elected officials make very important decisions about how your money is spent and what limits are placed on your life. It’s important that your elected officials know that you care about your rights and your money – and the best way to show them that you care is to vote.
3) And finally, 150 years ago, voting was reserved for a privileged few. African Americans and women risked their lives fighting for the right to vote. They won in 1870 and 1920, respectively. That isn’t very long ago, and every election I am proud to honor those brave civil rights activists by heading to the polls and casting a ballot."
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
Houston City Controller Ronald C. Green Shares His Thoughts on the Importance of Participating in Local Elections
“In times like these it is important that all who can vote should exercise their right to. Not at any moment in our time has our country been so politically polarized, we have gun law bills, budget and deficit issues, the issues that are currently being discussed in Washington have a trickle-down effect to cities and local municipalities. It is important that we have the right leadership in place so that our city is ready to handle those problems. Locally, our economy, public project initiatives and quality of life all depend on the representation YOU the citizen vote for. The City of Houston’s leadership helps in making decisions that make sure that the aforementioned are available to you. That is why it is important for you to participate in local elections. In no other elections, state or nationally, can you personally hold your elected official accountable for the well being of the city that you live in. You want and need responsible men and women to make sure that your taxes are being put to good use, whether you are Republican or Democrat. We need YOU to help Houston thrive as a city, we need YOU to ensure Houston has the quality of life for families and visitors to enjoy and prosper in. Your vote helps in achieving those goals.”
Ronald C. Green
Houston City Controller
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
City of Houston Mayor Pro-Tem, District H Council Member Ed Gonzalez Shares His Thoughts on Why Voting Matters
“Voting is a fundamental right granted to us by our forefathers, it is a right that sets our nation apart from many in the world, and it is a right that I encourage all citizens to exercise. Elections impact who represents us at every level of government, those representatives are the individuals that advocate for the needs of our communities, of our families, and of our future generations. Electing a representative ensures that your voice is heard at City Hall, at the State Capitol, and in Washington D.C. As a local elected official, I take pride in fighting for the needs of the District H constituents that I represent. Keeping our neighborhoods safe, ensuring that our roads are in good condition, increasing the amount of greenspace in the community, and encouraging economic development are some of my main priorities. I know that I was elected to serve my community and I strive to listen to its needs each and every single day. I sincerely hope that all voters will take time to cast a ballot, particularly during a local election. Our government is only as good as the people that we send to represent us. Make sure that you head to the voting booth and continue to make your voice heard.”
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
Houston City Council Member Andrew C. Burks Shares His Thoughts On The Importance of Participating In Local Elections
"Exercising your right to vote in local elections gives you a powerful voice in the issues that directly impact our family. When we think about the political decisions that make the greatest differences in our lives, we often think about Washington, D.C. But the truth is that some of the decisions that have the largest impact on us are made at City Hall.
The brave police officers and fire fighters keeping us safe depend upon responsible local elected officials to ensure they are effective. The roads we drive on, the water we drink, and the parks and libraries our families use are all maintained by your local elected officials.
The services we use most are local. That is why it is important to participate in local elections. When you have a concern, it is your locally elected officials who are the most responsive. As members of the community, mayors and council members are more in touch with the everyday needs of our neighbors. As a voter, you want to ensure that the services impacting you the most are in the hands of someone you can trust and who understands your needs.
Your vote makes its biggest difference in local elections. Low turnout in local races means your voice is louder and stronger. Your participation ensures your needs are represented and that our city will remain a great place to call home for generations to come.”
Andrew C. Burks Jr.
City Council At-Large Position 2
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
Houston City Council District C Representative Ellen Cohen Takes A Moment to Share Her Thoughts On The Importance of Participating in Local Elections
“Democracy is the cornerstone of our country from the federal level down to the local level. I was raised to believe that democracy means “one person, one vote,” and that exercising your vote is a responsibility as well as a right. In a politically polarized nation, making your voice heard from the ballot box becomes even more urgent.
In Houston, though voter turnout in our last national election (2012) was above 60%, unfortunately, in our last localelection (2011) turnout was less than 15%. This is particularly regrettable because all politics is local. Local government is responsible for the most immediate concerns of our citizens’ daily lives. From streets to parks to libraries to water, your local government officials make or influence the policy decisions that impact our lives. Consequently, holding elected officials accountable for their decisions is vital to a well-functioning city, state, or nation.
Furthermore, particularly in a local election, every vote is critical. Elections that are determined by 10, 100, or 500 votes are more common than many citizens are aware. Since a small voting pool magnifies the effect of a singular vote, participating in a local election can have a great impact on your life. Enfranchisement for all has been hard-won in America, and we owe it to our forebears to honor their sacrifices by exercising the right and responsibility to vote.”
Houston City Council District C
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
Houston City Council Member Wanda Adams Shares Her Thoughts on The Importance of Voting in Our Local Elections
“Many times, local elections do not receive a high voter turnout rate because individuals feel that those elections are not as important as voting for national elected officials. Voting in local elections is actually more important because it is the best way to have your voice heard immediately. Local elected officials are the individuals who carry-out fiscal mandates, laws, and actions that are created on a national and state level. Citizens should see their local officials working in their communities by the projects that are being completed in their neighborhoods. The Mayor and City Council choose city department leaders who make decisions regarding infrastructure repair, water services, health services, solid waste services, libraries, parks, and many other services that affect everyone living in the city. These elected officials are the public servants that you should see physically working in the community and working for the community. They have vested interests that are parallel to their constituents because they drive your streets daily, visit the parks with their loved ones, receive city services, and live in your neighborhoods. Local officials know your concerns because they share them. If someone isn’t voting in local elections, they are saying that they are not concerned with the issues that matter most – the issues that affect home.”
Houston City Council District D
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
Houston City Council Member Mike Laster Shares his thoughts on the importance of voting in local Elections
“Local elections are important because local government is the foundation of democracy. Your voice is heard the most at the local level and local officials are some of the most accessible and responsive to the voting public. Your daily life is directly affected by local government – from trash pick-up to pot holes to police and fire services to building permits. All of us are called upon to build up our communities and participation in local elections is the most effective way to do that.”
Houston City Council District J
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
Shared Thoughts from Houston City Council District K Council Member Larry V. Green on Why it's Important for Voters to Participate in Local City-Wide Elections
“It is important for voters to participate in local city-wide elections because elected officials can help determine the economic, educational and social well-being of entire communities. For example, two very important tasks of city council members include making laws and allocating money. Elected officials are the gatekeepers for millions of dollars in tax revenue—that is, money paid by anyone in the public old enough to purchase taxable merchandise, own property, or earn a paycheck. Elected officials control which individuals, groups, communities, businesses, and institutions receive taxpayer dollars, how much they receive, and the purpose for which they can use the money.
Local elected officials are public servants who serve at the pleasure of ordinary citizens—like you and me. For example, in city elections in Houston, every two years voters go to the polls to decide whether their elected officials deserve another term in office. Ultimately, elected officials, including me, are judged by the quality of our leadership. Are we accessible to the public? Do we represent all demographics, rich, poor, everyone? Do we bring money or other resources back to our Districts? Do our decisions or voting record reflect the priorities we promised when asking for your vote?
The policies generated from your participation in local city-wide elections shape almost every aspect of our lives. It is important that voters do not take a back seat in the political decisions that result in these policies. Let your voice be heard by voting in all local city-wide elections.”
Houston City Council District K
|CLICK HERE TO SEE SPOTLIGHT|
-- CLICK HERE FOR OPEN LETTER FROM GEORGIA D. PROVOST
DON'T FORGET TO REMIND EVERYONE YOU KNOW IN FORT BEND COUNTY TO VOTE IN THE SATURDAY, MAY 11TH GENERAL ELECTION
MISSOURI CITY, TEXAS: Watch Out for the Missouri City Council District A Race involving Bobby Marshall, Rodney Griffin and Yolanda Ford on Saturday, May 11, 2013
By Aubrey R. Taylor
President, Aubrey R. Taylor Communications
The Publisher of Your Thought Matters Newspaper
Back in the 2011 General Election face off in Missouri City for the District A City Council seat Rodney Griffin came within 33 votes of unseating the incumbent Bobby Marshall. However, a dismal 6.52% voter turnout in the (6) six precinct district largely made up of African-American voters proved a little too much for Griffin to overcome in his quest to unseat the incumbent. But Rodney L. Griffin is back on the ballot again in the 2013 General Election to be held on Saturday, May 11, 2013. However, he's not facing the incumbent alone this time around. Yolanda Ford, a local architectural designer and urban planner is also in the race seeking to unseat Councilman Bobby Marshall.
-- CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT TRUSTEE JIM RICE
-- CLICK HERE IF YOU CAN VOTE IN THE MISSOURI CITY 2013 ELECTION
-- CHECK OUT THE STATE OF MISSOURI CITY -- BY RODNEY L. GRIFFIN