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Legislation to impose a new tax on nursing home residents has managed to stay alive despite ardent opposition from conservatives.

One of the most nefarious items that has gone before the Texas Legislature this session, House Bill 2766 by State Rep. JD Sheffield (R–Stephenville) would impose what activists have come to call a “granny tax” on nursing home residents.

But it’s not billed as a tax increase, no, HB 2766 is a “reinvestment allowance,” that would collect funds from nursing home customers and then return them to the nursing homes themselves. In essence, HB 2766 is little more than of a price increase sponsored by the government.

To quote the bill: “A facility may not list the reinvestment allowance as a separate charge on a resident’s billing statement or otherwise directly or indirectly attempt to charge the reinvestment allowance to a resident.”

In other words, not only would the Texas Legislature be adding a new tax on senior citizens, but they’d also make sure they never find out about it.

Despite being opposed by a majority of Republican lawmakers, HB 2766 passed the Texas House and is bizarrely refusing to be defeated in the Texas Senate. Indeed, sources in the Capitol allege that the bill could be voted out of the Health and Human Services Committee on Sunday evening, giving it just enough time to make it to the Senate floor and pass.

While the Democrats on the committee are in lockstep support of passing the legislation, Republicans still hold a majority and can block the bill if they choose. Conservatives should call lawmakers and tell them to oppose this crony tax increase both in committee, and, if necessary, the Senate floor.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick: (512) 463-5342

Charles Schwertner: (512) 463-0105

Dawn Buckingham: (512) 463-0124

Konni Burton: (512) 463-0110

Lois Kolkhorst: (512) 463-0118

Charles Perry: (512) 463-0128

Van Taylor: (512) 463-0108