One of the most onerous pieces of legislation filed in the Texas House could be filed again if its author wins re-election to the Texas Legislature this March.
State Rep. J.D. Sheffield of Gatesville is one of the most liberal Republicans in the Texas Legislature—notching a dismal 39 on the Fiscal Responsibility Index, a mere six points better than the best-performing Democrat.
Sheffield has also repeatedly authored legislation to enact what is known as the Nursing Facility Reinvestment Allowance, commonly referred to as a “granny tax.” The enactment of Sheffield’s legislation would allow parent companies of nursing facilities to increase fees on residents and receive federal matching funds.
According to Dr. Deane Waldman at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, Sheffield’s previous legislation made no assurances that money generated from the granny tax “will be spent on patient care as opposed to corporate profits or administrative overhead.”
The legislation, which is supported by most Democrats and opposed by most Republicans, died in the Texas House last session, but Sheffield could pass the bill if he’s re-elected. All he would need are enough rogue Republicans to join with Democrats, which was his method of passing the bill in 2016.
Sheffield will be in even better shape to pass the granny tax if Democrats are successful in taking the Texas House. Republican activists are working hard against that, but an ongoing effort by the left to contest so many seats has put the majority in that chamber in jeopardy.
Sheffield faces two opponents in the ongoing Texas Republican Party primary election: businessman and rancher Cody Johnson, and local attorney Shelby Slawson.