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Texas House of Representatives District 135

Justin Ray

Justin Ray is the Republican Candidate. A Business Development and Sales Engineer, Ray is the incumbent Mayor for the City of Jersey Village, and a father of three children. Ray’s top priorities include investing more state funds in public education and improving teacher’s salaries, reducing property taxes for Texas homeowners, increasing public safety by supporting strong border security, and putting an end to human trafficking.

Criminal Justice & Public Safety

  • “Keeping the community safe is and always will be a top priority of mine. As a longtime member of this community with three young children, it is imperative that we work to ensure HD 135 remains a safe and vibrant place to live, work, and raise a family.
  • During my time as Mayor of Jersey Village, I oversaw law enforcement priorities and provided them with the tools needed to do their job. As your State Legislator, I will continue to support policies that will not hinder our local law enforcement agencies.
  • “Texas has a responsibility to work collaboratively with Federal authorities to ensure the protection of its citizens, eradicate the scourge of human trafficking, and to preserve the integrity of the rule of law.”

Education Funding & Teacher Pay

  • “Texas is an economic engine of opportunity and prosperity. Our state’s economy will continue to grow only with an educated population. As a father of children in public schools, a school volunteer, and the husband and son of public-school teachers, I understand the unique challenges facing our Texas school districts.”
  • “As State Representative, I will draw upon my first-hand experiences working directly with the hardworking public-school teachers and administrators.”
  • “I will support measures that address the needed school funding and teacher salaries. The State of Texas should strive to work hand in hand with school boards, teachers, and parents to provide an excellent education for Texas children.”

Texas Economy & Taxes

  • “Texas is a destination for businesses and families due to our pro-business environment. Our State must continue to embrace policies that encourage business investment and entrepreneurship.”
  • “We must strive to keep regulation and taxes low in order to maintain a business-friendly environment that is the foundation of Texas’ economic prosperity.”
  • “My experience as mayor, working with businesses in the community and understanding their role, will serve me well in Austin. I will always work for the residents of House District 135 to encourage economic, regulatory, and taxation policy that supports and incentivizes growth in our community.”

Healthcare

  • Nothing listed on Campaign website for this issue

Immigration

  • “I will continuously support the protection of the United States southern border. A secure border with Mexico is critical to the continued safety of our communities. “

Reproductive/Women’s Health

  • Nothing listed on Campaign website for this issue

Infrastructure & Environment

  • Nothing listed on Campaign website for this issue

Social Services

  • “What sets our great state apart is our reliable adherence to time tested values. We must continue to embrace and hold steadfast to these Texas values.”
  • “Our policies should continue to support the rights of the unborn, religious freedom, and second amendment rights. Texas must always remain a bastion of individual rights and personal freedom, and I will work tirelessly to ensure it does.”

Jon Rosenthal

“Jon Rosenthal is the current Representative for State House District 135, and the Democratic Candidate. A Mechanical Engineer, Rosenthal is a former Project Manager and Subsea Systems Engineer in the oil and gas industry, and a father to two children. Rosenthal’s top priorities include reducing property taxes for Texas homeowners and closing corporate property tax loopholes, investing more state funds in public education, resolving inequality in our legal system, and expanding Medicaid to cover ALL Texans.”

Criminal Justice & Public Safety

  • “The inequities in our criminal justice system are serious and systemic challenge that we must confront with conviction and pragmatism. From the conduct of police officers to uneven sentencing to the for-profit prison model, critical changes are needed to ensure that all Americans are viewed equally in the eyes of the law.”
  • “There are concrete actions we can take now that I continue to fight for in Austin – like reforming our state bail system and strengthening the relationship between law enforcement and the communities they serve through de-escalation training and community policing initiatives.”
  • “I support the Second Amendment. I also believe that there exists no conflict between the basic rights of gun owners and common-sense gun reform. We need to strengthen our background check system and close loopholes that allow some gun sales to happen without even cursory check into whether or not an individual should own a guns.”

Education Funding & Teacher Pay

  • “Funding a high-quality education system for our children is a top priority of mine. We need to evaluate our corporate tax structure and close corporate loopholes that drain our state’s revenue to the detriment of critical areas like education funding.”
  • “We must ensure that the gains we achieved in our most recent session can be funded in a sustained way. We must also change the paradigm around standardized testing and evaluation systems – which is why I’m pushing for important reforms to be made to STAAR exams.”
  • “ Finally, education professionals are the backbone of our education system. It’s time to give them a much-needed raise – our teachers, support staff, and hard-working administrators. We must also ensure that retired teachers are given the benefits and protections they deserve.”

Texas Economy & Taxes

  • “As our state population continues to grow, many communities will face challenges as they seek to support this growth and provide services for their new residents. In the 86th Legislative Session, the ability of cities and counties to self-govern was substantially curtailed with the passage of Senate Bill 2. Ultimately, it is up to citizens to determine the quality of services we want in our communities, and we must then find a way to cover the costs they entail.
  • “Our heavy reliance on property taxes to fund the basic business of government has meant that we have few alternative sources of revenue when roads must be widened and critical services like police and fire provided throughout a growing region.”
  • “I believe that all Texans who are willing to work hard should have the economic opportunity and a fair shot at earning a living wage in a safe environment. With this in mind, I will work to establish a $15 per hour minimum wage for our state.”

Healthcare

  • “The rising cost of healthcare is on the minds of an increasing number of Texans. I believe that every American ought to have access to affordable, high-quality healthcare. In the richest country on the planet, there is no reason why our citizens should be forced to choose between putting food on the table and paying for a medical procedure or prescription.”
  • “We had an opportunity to do something meaningful about healthcare in our state, but, rather than pass a budget amendment that would have expanded Medicaid to cover more people, the GOP majority in the State House refused. They’ve instead decided to leave billions of dollars on the table – money that could be making a real difference to everyday Texans. Inaction on an issue this important is unacceptable, and it’s why I’m fighting to hold them accountable.”
  • “We must fight for Medicaid Expansion to reduce cost and expand access across Texas – and I won’t stop fighting until that’s a reality.”

Immigration

  • Nothing listed on Campaign website for this issue

Reproductive/Women’s Health

  • “Jon will work hard to get Texans the medical care they need. Our laws should promote and safeguard Texans’ health by increasing our insurance coverage, not limiting our healthcare options. “
  • “We should ensure access to a full range of reproductive healthcare and education, from sex ed to contraception to abortion to prenatal and postpartum care. When deciding to become a parent, it’s vital that a person be able to consider all of their options, no matter their income or zip code.”

Infrastructure & Environment

  • “From getting Hwy. 290 completed to improving our flood recovery and flood mitigation efforts, Harris County has vital infrastructure projects that we need to move forward on. To accelerate progress, I believe that we must implement an incentive system for road construction. We should reward contractors for finishing projects early, not delaying them unnecessarily.”
  • “Texas is uniquely position to lead a Clean Energy Revolution. Our leadership won’t just result in improving our environment and fighting climate change, although that remains a top concern of mine.”
  • “Clean energy also has a clear economic benefit. As the oil and gas industry contracts, more and more energy jobs will be tied directly to Clean Energy. That’s why it’s important to encourage commercial growth by incentivizing clean energy and pushing for more environmentally friendly business practices in Texas.”

Social Services

  • Nothing listed on Campaign website for this issue

Paul Bilyeu

Paul Bilyeu is the Libertarian Candidate, and a United States Navy Veteran. After a decade of military service, Bilyeu served in various positions with a company called Allen Bradley, now Rockwell Automation. Bilyeu and his wife have resided in Cypress, Texas for over 11 years, and have raised 5 children ranging in age from 20-31. Bilyeu’s top priorities include protecting the freedoms of the individual, defending against foreign aggressors, and reforming our judicial systems to ensure fairness and equality in restitution for damage to lives, liberty or property of another.

Criminal Justice & Public Safety

  • I will oppose any legislation which hinders or prevents individuals from obtaining, owning and carrying any firearm.
  • “Consumers then have the right to patronize (or not) businesses with policies that meet their personal preference regarding firearms. The private business is then subject to free market pressure to either allow consumers to carry or not. It is entirely up to the business owner and patrons. We should allow the free market to determine this and not government.”

Education Funding & Teacher Pay

  • “We need to remove government from our education system. First, I propose we abolish Article 7 of the Texas Constitution which calls for the State of Texas to provide government controlled, and managed, education. Additionally, abolish any compulsory education laws. Government should NOT be in the business of education.”
  • “Eliminate the Texas Education Agency and reject federal education mandates and funding over the course of 5 years. Place schools back in the control of parents and their local communities. Schools are then funded using free market principles. Parents, no longer paying property and other taxes, are now free to shop around for schools that are right for their child.”
  • “No more standardized tests. No more "state" created or financed curriculum. Parents take back control of their child's education. Local schools and communities will then have no other option but to compete for "Customers" (parents and children) and their money. They will have to shift to free market thought by providing strong curriculum's, great facilities and strong teachers.”
  • “Great teachers will be better compensated for their hard and successful work while marginal and under performing teachers will either work hard to improve or find another career.”

Texas Economy & Taxes

  • “I propose eliminating ad valorem/property taxes entirely. Once again, this would occur over the course of several years, in tandem with education reform, allowing communities to prepare and plan. “
  • “As your state representative, I make these pledges to my constituency: I will never vote to create new regulations. I will never vote to increase or create new taxes I will never vote to increase the size, scope and role of government. I will never vote to increase or create new government spending. I will do everything I can to reduce government intrusion into our lives and our wallets.”
  • “I will NEVER be owned or beholden to any person, legislator, government bureaucrat, corporation, lobbyist, group, political action committee or political party.”

Healthcare

  • “Government should also not be involved in healthcare. Government, at both the federal and state levels, is the primary contributor to the sky rocketing costs of health care and prescription medications. Return the system to free market principles. Remove government oversight and regulation. Pretty quickly, the cost for health care and prescription drugs will fall dramatically and become very affordable.”
  • Regarding COVID-19 response: “The only role government has here, if any, is to provide the most up to date information as fast and as accurately as humanly possible. Individuals and private businesses are better equipped to manage this crisis than the government. Relying on government, the nanny state, to make decisions for individuals, families and businesses about their safety is absolutely wrong. Individuals, not government, can manage this or any crisis. Why is everyone so quick to defer control to government? Once you give it away, you never get it back.”

States Powers

  • “As an initial step towards freedom for the individual, I would first use my position in the Texas legislature to advocate for nullification (invalidate and refuse to enforce) all unconstitutional federal laws or mandates. It is also important to note that nullification of unconstitutional laws is a good starting point. However, it does not mean I support everything in the U.S. Constitution or that it is the end all document for how we should govern. I still 100% support the rights of the individual regardless of the Constitution.”
  • “This is not to slight the founders or the long-lasting legacy that has been, and is, the U.S. Constitution. It clearly sets the rules for a very limited federal government. If only this nation hadn't strayed from some of those original ideas. The authors would be embarrassed by the out of control leviathan the federal government has become.”
  • As stated, getting back to a true constitutional government with both individual and states rights at the forefront is a good place to start but it is by no means the end point of change that needs to occur. “

Immigration

  • Nothing listed on Campaign website for this issue

Reproductive Health

  • Nothing listed on Campaign website for this issue

Infrastructure & Environment

  • “As it stands right now, the proposed Houston to Dallas High Speed Rail project will go right through District 135. The question that needs to be answered is how is this project being funded? The champions and owners of this project will proclaim that it is 100% privately funded. If this were the case, fine. Free markets rule. I will oppose the high speed rail project regardless of its location in Cypress/Jersey Village or other. Taxpayers should not be funding this private project nor allowing and encouraging the use of eminent domain to seize land in support of it.”
  • “The back to back to back rain events in Houston are nothing to laugh about or minimize. The three years from 2015-2017 saw devastating floods to homes and neighborhoods in the Houston area and HD135. My hope is that these events are outliers and will not be common place in the years to come.”
  • “Neither the federal nor state government is best positioned to provide disaster mitigation or relief for our community. Individuals and individual communities are best suited to do this. Government has a long history of being the problem in disaster situations rather than the solution.”
  • “Communities and individuals should get together and decide what is best for their community. Create a plan and move forward. Initial funding for any flood mitigation or recovery in HD135 should come from the Texas Rainy Day fund. 25% of this fund is from taxes collected in Harris County. Some portion of that belongs to the people of HD135. Period. End of story.”

Social Services

  • I fully support the full legalization of marijuana for both medicinal and recreational use. As a Texas State Legislator, I will use my seat to abolish all laws that either criminalize or restrict its use.
  • We must STOP allowing our government to dictate what individuals do with their lives. Government should not have the power to determine what private, free individuals consume.
  • Individuals who then consume this or other substances should not expect government to "save" them if their decisions cause them harm in some way. Additionally, individuals should be held accountable if their use of this, or any substance, causes damage to the life, liberty or property of another.