On Saturday, State Representative Giovanni Capriglione officially filed for reelection to the position he has held since January of 2013.

Capriglione said, “Serving District 98 in the Texas House of Representatives has been one of the greatest honors of my life. If reelected, I promise to continue to fight for limited and efficient government while working tirelessly to ensure the voices of those living in House District 98 are heard.”

State Rep. Giovanni Capriglione filing for 2018 Repubican primary

Since taking office, Capriglione has taken bold steps to champion ethics reform legislation that provided for greater accountability and transparency in state government. Furthermore, Capriglione has worked to pass key legislation on issues such as cybersecurity, protection of life, border security, education reform, and economic development.

These efforts and others have earned Capriglione statewide recognition. During his tenure, Capriglione has earned a variety of awards and honors including: FOIFT’s Open Government Lawmaker of the Year, TCC Foundation’s Champion for Higher Education, Consumer Protection Watchdog Hall of Fame, a 100% Pro-Life Rating and the People’s Champion award from Texans For Accountable Government.

Additionally, his efforts to promote small business development in Texas recently earned him a 100% rating from the National Federation of Independent Business. Capriglione’s resolve to serve with diligence and transparency has made him a strong voice and advocate for conservative governance in Texas.

Capriglione received a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from Worcester Polytechnic Institute prior to receiving his MBA from Santa Clara University. He and his wife, Elisa, have three children and reside in Southlake. He owns a private equity management company focusing on businesses in Texas.

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State Representative Giovanni Capriglione Receives Accolades for Work on Higher Education

(Southlake)- On Thursday, State Representative Giovanni Capriglione received the “Champion for Higher Education” award from Tarrant County College for his efforts to improve investment opportunities for community colleges during the 85th Legislative Session.

After learning of the limited investment opportunities available to local community colleges, Capriglione partnered with Senator Jane Nelson of Denton to pass HB 1472, which afforded community colleges more flexibility in managing their oil and gas royalties. The unanimous passage of this important bill will result in a net increase of up to $800,000 per year, which will be available for student scholarships and additional needs.

Capriglione stated, “I am humbled to receive this recognition, but my real reward is seeing students receive the benefits of higher education. I look forward to partnering with our local community colleges in the future as we seek to find additional ways to open doors for students to pursue their dreams of continued education.”

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Proposition 1 (property tax exemption for disabled veterans):  proposes a constitutional amendment that would permit the Texas legislature to expand the circumstances under which a partially disabled veteran or their spouse may qualify for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of part of the market value of the veteran’s residence homestead. Currently, the Texas legislature may provide that a partially disabled veteran or their spouse is entitled to an exemption from ad valorem taxation of a percentage of the market value of the disabled veteran’s residence homestead only if the residence homestead was donated to the disabled veteran by a charitable organization at no cost to the veteran. The amendment would allow the Texas legislature to provide that the exemption also may be taken when the residence homestead was donated, sold, or transferred to the disabled veteran by a charitable organization for less than the market value of the residence homestead.

Proposition 2 (expansion of home equity loans): proposes a constitutional amendment to require that certain conditions be met for the refinancing of a home equity loan to be secured by a voluntary lien on a homestead. The amendment also would: redefine what is excluded in the calculation of the cap on fees associated with a home equity loan, lower the cap from 3% to 2% of the original principal amount of the extension of credit, and specify that such fees are in addition to any bona fide discount points used to buy down the interest rate. The amendment would further specify the list of authorized lenders to make home equity loans, change the threshold for an advance of a home equity line of credit, allow agricultural property owners to acquire home equity loans, and update technical terminology in the Texas Constitution.

Proposition 3 (limiting service of appointees by the Governor) proposes a constitutional amendment that would prevent certain office holders from serving indefinitely beyond the expiration of their term. Office holders who are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate and receive no salary would only be able to serve until the last day of the first regular session of the Texas legislature that begins after their term expires.

Proposition 4 (notification of Attorney General in court cases of unconstitutional statutes) proposes a constitutional amendment that would allow the Texas legislature to require any court that is hearing a challenge to the constitutionality of a state statute to notify the attorney general of that challenge, if the party raising the challenge notifies the court that the party is challenging the constitutionality of such statute. Additionally, the amendment would allow the Texas legislature to set a period of not more than 45 days following the notification to the attorney general that the court must wait before rendering a judgment that a state statute is unconstitutional.

Proposition 5 (allows more professional sports teams to hold charitable raffles) proposes a constitutional amendment to provide a more detailed definition of “professional sports team” for purposes of their charitable foundations, which the Texas legislature may permit to hold charitable raffles. The amendment also deletes a requirement that an eligible professional sports team charitable foundation permitted by the Texas legislature to hold charitable raffles had to be in existence on January 1, 2016.

Proposition 6 (property tax exemption for surviving spouses of first responders killed in the line of duty) proposes a constitutional amendment that would allow the Texas legislature by general law to provide that a surviving spouse of a first responder who is killed or fatally injured in the line of duty is entitled to receive an exemption from ad valorem taxation from all or part of the market value on the surviving spouse’s residence homestead, as long as the surviving spouse has not remarried since the death of the first responder.

Proposition 7 (allows financial institutions to conduct raffles to incentivize customers to save money) proposes a constitutional amendment that would allow the Texas legislature to make an exception to the law regarding the award of certain prizes. Currently, the Texas Constitution requires the Texas legislature to pass laws prohibiting lotteries, raffles, and other programs where the award of gifts is based on luck or chance. The proposed amendment would make an exception to this general rule to allow the Texas legislature to authorize credit unions and other financial institutions to institute programs which, in order to encourage savings, would award prizes based on luck or chance to the credit union’s or financial institution’s customers.

 

Grapevine resident Bella Austin graduated from Colleyville Heritage High School last spring, and is set to begin her college career at Texas A&M University, with a major in physics.

In August, Rep. Capriglione met Bella at an office supply store where she was working when she thanked him for sending a congratulatory letter for her acceptance to the NASA High School Aerospace Scholar (HAS)program, where she spent a week at NASA working with their engineers and scientists to create a mission to Mars. She shared how the program has allowed her to attend Texas A&M to pursue a degree in physics.

After visiting with her for a few minutes, Rep. Capriglione was so impressed by her ambition that he decided he wanted to a create a special scholarship for students residing in District 98 that wish to pursue degrees in science, technology, engineering or math. Rep. Capriglione also has a degree in physics and is a member of the Innovation & Technology Caucus of the Texas House. He says “students like Bella are paving the way for our future. They will make important discoveries and have an incredible impact on our lives. I want to support students like her through the establishment of this scholarship.”

As a Colleyville Heritage Panther, Bella participated in organizations such as the chemistry club, National Honor Society, and the student advisory board. After teaching herself competitive swimming techniques by watching YouTube videos and practicing in her apartment complex pool, she became captain of her water polo team where she was recently named MVP, and was a member of the high school swim team all four years.

Bella Austin is an incredible young woman and is the inspiration for this scholarship. Students interested in receiving a 2017 District 98 STEM Scholarship should contact the district office for more information. Congratulations Bella and best of luck at Texas A&M University.

—Press Release from Rep. Capriglione’s Office

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September 1, 2016 by FOIFTexas

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is one in an occasional series of opinion pieces on legislators and other Texans who are openly committed to sustaining government transparency and accountability. The articles are being prepared and distributed by the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas and the Texas Press Association.

By DAVE MONTGOMERY

During the 2015 Texas Legislature, while most other transparency and ethics reform proposals were headed toward the trash heap, Rep. Giovanni Capriglione secured near-unanimous passage of a new law that has enabled the public to see who benefits financially from dealings with the government.

His victory in pushing through House Bill 1295, requiring the disclosure of interested parties in state and local government contracts, cemented Capriglione’s stature as one of the state capitol’s leading advocates of government accountability. Now, with the approach of the 2017 Legislature, Capriglione hopes to build on his success by seeking to blunt the impact of state court decisions that rolled back access to public records.

The 43-year-old Southlake Republican has made transparency a key ingredient in his legislative agenda since winning election to the House in 2012. He sums up his outlook by recycling a quote from U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis more than 100 years ago: “Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants.”

“Transparency is one of those principles that you can never have enough of,” Capriglione said. “Accountability in government is of fundamental importance. And that accountability starts with the ability to see how the government spends your money.”

Capriglione, who is seeking re-election to a third term over a Democratic challenger in his heavily Republican northeast Tarrant County district, is targeting two Texas Supreme Court rulings as he looks toward the 85th Legislature that starts on Jan. 10.

Both rulings, made in 2015, have tightened access to public records held by private and non-profit entities. The court ruled that the non-profit Greater Houston Partnership was not required to disclose its financial records even though it performed economic development duties for the city of Houston and was partly supported by public funds.

Public access watchdogs have also deplored the court’s ruling in favor of a Boeing Aerospace company operating in San Antonio. The 7-1 court majority ruled that Boeing and other private entities doing business with the government can block the release of information that the companies contend would give an advantage to competitors.

Capriglione said he plans to introduce legislation to effectively undo the court rulings through changes in the Texas Public Information Act, thus restoring access to documents that previously were considered public. The two bills would be the first measures he introduces for the 2017 session, he said.

Describing what he called the “chilling” decision in the Boeing case, Capriglione said it allows private entities that don’t want information disclosed “to basically shut down that access.”

“We’ve got to get back to where I think people want to be. If you’re going to have access to public dollars, you should have to disclose that information,” he said.

Capriglione’s success with House Bill 1295 contrasted with the collapse of nearly two dozen other accountability and transparency measures, many of them contained in a polarizing omnibus bill, despite Gov. Greg Abbott’s pledge to dedicate the 2015 session to ethics reform. Described by the Texas Tribune as “a leading advocate of ethics reform in the notoriously unrestrained Texas Legislature,” Capriglione secured passage with a unanimous vote in the House and only one dissenting vote in the Senate.

Signed into law in June 2015, the measure requires the disclosure of “interested parties,” those with a financial benefit, in government contracts of $1 million or more. So far, more than 5,200 certificates with the required information have been posted on the Texas Ethics Commission website, which offers customized searches to look for interested parties, government entities and businesses.

Next session, Capriglione said, he hopes to expand on information available to the public under the new law, including identifying which interested parties are elected officials. As a freshman lawmaker, Capriglione pushed unsuccessful legislation that would have required state elected officials to disclose government contracts in which they had a financial interest.

Capriglione, a private equity manager and father of three, said he recognized the need for expanded public access before he became a House member when he personally experienced challenges in unearthing information.

“I was trying to find information about local budgets, and I just found it to be very difficult,” he said. “The more information I tried to find, the more I felt it should be easier to get.”

As a candidate in 2012, Capriglione said, he discovered plenty of sympathizers while block-walking throughout House District 28, telling potential constituents of his goal to shed more sunlight on state and local government.

“After talking to a few thousand of them, it became clear that is what the average person wants,” he said.

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Dave Montgomery is a Texas freelance journalist. He wrote this story on behalf of the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas, which hosts its state conference Sept. 8, 2016, in Austin.

By: Rep. Capriglione, Giovanni

The North Texas Special Needs Assistance Partners (SNAP) has asked Representative Capriglione to serve as their emcee and honorary chairman for the Third Annual Boots & Bling Casino Night Gala on September 24 at the Hurst Conference Center.

“We are very excited to have Representative Capriglione serve as this year’s Boots & Bling Casino Night honorary chairman and emcee. North Texas SNAP receives no federal or state funding, operating solely on benevolent gifts from fundraising events, caring individuals, businesses, organizations and foundations,” said SNAP Executive Director Brandy Schimmel. “Boots & Bling Casino Night is our largest fundraising event of the year, providing funds to sustain programs and services for individuals 17 and older living with intellectual and developmental disabilities in North Texas.”

North Texas SNAP is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization serving individuals 17 and older living with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The organizations mission is to create and support a variety of programs that assist these individuals in achieving and sustaining full lives.

For more information or to purchase event tickets, please visit www.ntxsnap.org.

Contact: Courtney Roberts

“Take a Veteran to School Day” event to feature State Rep. Giovanni Capriglione, Keller High School alumnus and retired U.S. Army Sgt. Joe Washam

 

FORT WORTH, Texas – Charter Communications, Inc., (NASDAQ: CHTR), HISTORY and the students of Keller Middle School will show appreciation for local veterans with a “Take a Veteran to School Day” event featuring an appearance from State Rep. Giovanni Capriglione and keynote address from Sgt. Joe Washam, a U.S. Army veteran and 1998 graduate of Keller High School.

Dozens of local veterans from all branches of the military are expected to participate in the Veterans Day event that will combine musical performances and other tributes for those who have served in the armed forces. The program is scheduled for 2:45 p.m., Nov. 11, at Keller Middle School, 300 College Ave., in Keller.

“Take a Veteran to School Day” is a national program developed by HISTORY to link veterans with students nationwide. From class visits to school assemblies, these events provide a way for students to learn more about the history of Veterans Day. Inviting veterans to share their stories connects generations while helping young people learn about the past.

Charter Communications teamed with HISTORY to add Keller Independent School District’s Keller Middle School to the list of thousands of schools in all 50 states participating in the “Take a Veteran to School Day” program this year.

During his service with the U.S. Army and Army Reserves, Washam served as an infantryman. In 2004, he deployed to Iraq where he assisted in the search for weapons of mass destruction. On April 26, 2004, he was severely wounded in an explosion at a suspected chemical weapons site in Baghdad, suffering a shrapnel wound and third-degree burns over 40 percent of his body. He was hospitalized at Brooke Army Medical Center for 20 months, and he was awarded the Purple Heart on his 24th birthday.

Washam will share his personal experiences with students as he discusses the important purpose of Veterans Day – honoring America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.

Rep. Capriglione, R-Southlake, will also address the students on the significance of Veterans Day. He was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 2012 and is serving his second term representing District 98, which encompasses all or part of Grapevine, Colleyville, Southlake, Keller, Westlake, North Fort Worth and Haslet.

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About Charter
Charter (NASDAQ: CHTR) is a leading broadband communications company and the fourth-largest cable operator in the United States. Charter provides a full range of advanced broadband services, including Spectrum TV™ video entertainment programming, Spectrum Internet™ access, and Spectrum Voice™. Spectrum Business™ similarly provides scalable, tailored, and cost-effective broadband communications solutions to business organizations, such as business-to-business Internet access, data networking, business telephone, video and music entertainment services, and wireless backhaul. Charter’s advertising sales and production services are sold under the Spectrum Reach™ brand. More information about Charter can be found at charter.com.

About HISTORY®
HISTORY®, now reaching more than 98 million homes, is the leading destination for award-winning original series and specials that connect viewers with history in an informative, immersive and entertaining manner across all platforms. The network’s all-original programming slate, including scripted event programming, features a roster of hit series including American Pickers®, American Restoration™, Ax Men™, Counting Cars™, Pawn Stars®, Swamp People® and The Legend of Shelby the Swamp Man as well as HISTORY®’s first scripted series Vikings, and epic miniseries and special programming such as The Bible and the Emmy® Award-winning Hatfields & McCoys, Men Who Built America, Gettysburg, Vietnam in HD, America The Story of Us® and 102 Minutes That Changed America. The HISTORY® website is the leading online resource for all things history, and in 2011, the United States Library of Congress selected HISTORY®’s Civil War 150 site for inclusion in the historic collection of Internet materials related to the American Civil War sesquicentennial. www.history.com. For more press information and photography, please visit us at http://press.aenetworks.com.

Austin, TX- Representative Giovanni Capriglione will host a town hall meeting at Keller Town Hall, 1100 Bear Creek Parkway, on Thursday, June 25, at 7 p.m.

Rep. Capriglione will discuss the main takeaways from the 84th Legislative Session, including: transportation funding, public education updates, border security improvements, and a host of other topics.

AUSTIN — House Bill 1881 passed the Texas Senate and is headed to the governor’s desk for signature. This bill allows pre-K-12 private schools to allow parents to pay for their children’s tuition through a credit or debit card instead of absorbing the fees in their school budget. Representative Giovanni Capriglione (Southlake) is the bill’s author and Senator Brandon Creighton (Conroe) is the senate sponsor.

Currently, private schools are not allowed to charge these fees as a way to offset some of their expenses and their counterparts – public schools, public and private colleges and universities, are allowed to pass along the fee.

“H.B. 1881 provides a new avenue for parents and guardians to pay for their child’s tuition at private and parochial schools,” said Senator Creighton. “This means private schools can use every dollar they can in the classroom and no longer absorb the cost incurred by processing fees. State government should always look for opportunities to remove road blocks in the day-to-day lives of our citizens.”

“This is an issue brought to me by several constituents,” remarked Representative Capriglione. “This bill will give parents flexible payment options, as well as help private schools cover their costs, which is important for large and small schools alike. H.B. 1881 is mutually beneficial for parents and schools, and I’m pleased it has passed the Legislature.”

House Bill 1881 is strongly supported by the Texas Private Schools Association, representing more than 800 accredited private schools and 250,000 students throughout the state.

On May 14, Governor Greg Abbott announced that thanks to an offer from the Texas Enterprise Fund, Kubota Tractor and Credit Corporations, based in Torrance, California, will be moving their headquarters to Grapevine, Texas.

Kubota President and CEO, Masato Yoshikawa, when asked why the move would take place responded by saying… “[Texas’] business friendly climate, state incentives and geographical location were important factors” in the decision to relocate. The corporate headquarters relocation is expected to create at least 344 new jobs, and at least $50 million in capital investment in the state.

State Representative Giovanni Capriglione responded, “Kubota’s relocation is a significant economic development for Grapevine and for Texas. Grapevine City Council has done a great job in supporting and encouraging this venture. I’m proud to represent Northeast Tarrant County and the citizens of Grapevine, and I look forward to witnessing firsthand how the relocation will positively impact the community.”

Construction on the new facility in Grapevine will begin in 2015 and is scheduled to be complete during the early months of 2017.

Serving in his second term in the Texas House, Representative Capriglione is focusing his efforts on strengthening economic development, promoting government transparency, and finding fiscally responsible solutions. Representative Capriglione serves on the Appropriations, Investments and Financial Services, and Local and Consent Calendar Committees. He is also the chairman of the Subcommittee on State and Local Bonded Indebtedness.