You can have a voice in the Capitol
Calling and emailing your elected officials gets your voice heard loudest by legislators and their staff. Find your elected officials here
When contacting your legislator via phone or email, remember these guidelines to make your contact more effective:
- Keep your contact short and to the point. Any staff or legislator you contact during the session is juggling hundreds of bills and conversations every day; focusing your conversation will make you more memorable later on.
- Have your facts handy, but don't get lost trying to cram every fact and statistic into your conversation. If you're using specific numbers double-check their accuracy first. The Center for Public Policy Priorities Blog on the budget is a great resource for this.
Twitter and Facebook have become important parts of the legislative process and can help get the attention of legislators, but often do not get the same attention as phone calls or emails. However, these are great tools to see what your legislator is doing throughout the day and provide an outlet for information-sharing on topics relevant to their activities.
If you are interested in testifying in person at the Capitol, public committee hearings during the session and in the interim provide opportunities, including being invited to speak on specific topics or bills. Sharing how you've been affected by changes in the budget, consumer protection issues, and dozens of other matters which come before the Texas legislature helps to make state government more responsive to the "average" Texan. If you are one of these affected residents, you have a role to play in the legislative process in Austin. For more information on testifying click here.