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Letter from TAD President 2/10/11

Letter from TAD President 2/10/11

Texas Association of the Deaf, Inc.
P.O. Box 1982
Manchaca, Texas 78652


February 10, 2011

To TAD members, friends and supporters:

On behalf of the TAD board, I am taking this opportunity to address the
current issues that affect the deaf and hard of hearing citizens of Texas.
While our legislators are facing their most challenging session as I write,
I want everyone to know that TAD has been in touch with key representatives
and senators since last September!

Indeed, we started months before the 82nd session started in early January.
If you have been reading our past website postings and newsletters for the
last three years, our activities at the state capitol have been duly noted.
Furthermore, I myself have attended a crucial luncheon with legislators at
the annual event that was arranged by the Disability Policy Consortium last
month. TAD has also partnered with the Coalition of Texans with
Disabilities on several endeavors, especially at rallies arranged by CTD.

How many of you know that we have a successful public forum online that is
free to anyone who joins Yahoo groups? This highly informative forum is
called Texas Deaf Issues, which is moderated by David Pierce who carefully
lists all the issues, news, past laws, priorities and currents bills
affecting all of us. Since the forum group was initiated three years ago by
TAD, we have nearly 500 essential postings. That crucial site also lists 12
bills affecting all of us. Check it out this free service and learn how
closely we keep feeling the pulse of legislative action and other vital

In essence, TAD supports all statewide programs that affect the general well
being of the deaf and hard of hearing people in Texas. Among the programs
directly impacted by serious budgetary cuts for the next two years are ACC,
SWCID, regional day school program, DARS, UT, LU, etc. Unfortunately, no
statewide program is exempted from the inevitable cuts. Contacting the
administrators of various such programs includes my constant communication
with Superintendent Claire Bugen. There is never a question or concern
about the historic partnership between TAD and TSD. Our record clearly
shows how many times TAD has influenced the course of TSD over the last 40
years. To assume otherwise constitutes ignorance or misguided advisement.
Indeed, we are proud of our longtime relationship with TSD and TAD is proud
to represent the state of Texas after 125 years of advocacy endeavors.

By the way, it has come to my attention that some people are assuming that
TSD will be closed by the Texas legislature this spring. Let me inform you
that there is NO truth to that rumor. Like all state agencies or school
districts, there is this mandated 10% cut across the board. Due to the
uniqueness of TSD in serving a large number of Special Needs students, there
will be legal questions about the expected cuts. Again, I repeat, TAD
supports TSD and all other state programs and we will endeavor to
communicate our concerns to the current Texas legislature.

In closing, on behalf of the Texas Association of the Deaf, we appreciate
your attention to this vital letter or recent vlog. In you have any
questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact me at [email protected]

Sincerely yours,

Paul Rutowski
TAD president



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