Texas IAF Fights to Protect ACE Fund from Senate Special Item Cuts

[Excerpts below]

Since 2014, Texas has paid nonprofits across the state to help nearly 800 poor, older students navigate their way through community college….

The programs face uncertain futures because they are funded using a budgeting tactic known as a special item. Those items are used to pay for specific programs at universities by sending the schools that host them money outside the normal higher education funding formulas…..

Next year, that kind of help could end, though not because lawmakers are unhappy with the program. If the Senate gets its way in ongoing state budget negotiations, the Legislature would overhaul the way it pays for higher education in Texas — and funding for the Texas Innovative Adult Career Education Grant Program could disappear.

“It has nothing to do with our program or the effectiveness of it,” said Elizabeth Valdez, lead organizer for The Metropolitan Organization in Houston, which is advocating for lawmakers to continue funding the grant….

[Photo Credit: Gabe Hernandez, Texas Tribune]

Commentary: Funds Help Adult Career Program Boost Workforce, Families, Austin American Statesman

State Should Continue Funding ACE Job Training, San Antonio Express-News [pdf]

Proposed Higher Education Funding Overhaul Could Come With Collateral Damage, Texas Tribune

Senate ResolutionSenate of the State of Texas

Texas Job Program Shows Unusually Strong, Lasting Gains, Study FindsAustin American Statesman [pdf]

Study Affirms Project QUEST AchievementsSan Antonio Express-News

Escalating Gains: Project QUEST’S Sectoral Strategy Pays OffEconomic Mobility

Texas Innovative Adult Career Education (ACE) Grant Program: The Wise Investment for Proven Economic Development, Texas IAF

Press Recognizes Texas IAF

Texas IAF leaders take the stage

IAF Celebrates 40 Years Making Texas BetterEl Paso Times [pdf]

Grassroots Grows Up, Texas Observer [pdf]

Ordinary People Acting ExtraordinarilySan Antonio Express News [pdf]

Austin Interfaith, COPS and the Big BangAustin American Statesman [pdf]

Austin Interfaith Celebrates 30 Years of Building PowerAustin American Statesman [pdf]

De los Santos: My Life-Changing Work with Valley Interfaith, Rio Grande Guardian [pdf]

Organizacion Que Ayuda a la Comunidad Inmigrante en Texas Cumple 40 Anos y se  Marca Nuevos ObjetivosLa Voz [pdf]

Interfaith Dialogue: Austin Group Celebrates 30 Years of Faith in ActionCatholic Spirit

TMO Focuses on ‘People Power’, Houston Chronicle

Faith Groups Joining in Larger Networks Celebrate 40 Years of Reducing Poverty in TexasNational Catholic Reporter

Grassroots Grows Up by the Texas ObserverQuorum Report

Cardinal & Bishops Laud Texas IAF

1604 - Bishop Fiorenza's Letter of Congratulations

As the 40+ anniversary of the Texas IAF approaches, religious judicatories have begun congratulating the network for over four decades of leadership development and transformation.  Descriptions of the work of the network range from “virtuous” to “transformative” and “a force for change.”

Click below to read letters from:

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo,Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston

Archbishop Joseph A. Fiorenza, Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston

Bishop Daniel E. Flores, Diocese of Brownsville

Bishop Joe S. Vasquez, Diocese of Austin

Auxiliary Bishop Greg KellyDiocese of Dallas

Bishop Michael F. Olson, Diocese of Fort Worth

Texas IAF Fights Anti-‘Sanctuary’ Senate Bill 185

Texas IAF faith leaders across the state arrived at the Capitol to fight Senate Bill 185, which would outlaw sanctuary cities in Texas and threaten local efforts to build better relationships between police and communities.  Sponsored by State Senator Charles Perry, from Lubbock, the bill would prohibit cities from forbidding police to enforce immigration laws.

Click on testimony and press below:

Reverend John Ogletree of First Metropolitan Church and TMO


Reverend Carlos Zuniga of St. Pius X Catholic Church and Valley Interfaith

South Texas Groups to Oppose ‘Show Us Your Papers’ LegislationRio Grande Guardian

Religious Leaders Urge Senators to Protect Local CommunitiesNetwork of Texas IAF