Zwiener’s HB 2344 and HB 2350 heard in house committees

Driftwood, TX — Today, Representative Erin Zwiener (D-Driftwood) laid out House Bill 2344 and House Bill 2350 in the House Public Education Committee and House Natural Resources Committee.

“Portfolio-based writing assessments can provide a better and more thorough assessment of students’ progress in writing without the negative impacts of standardized writing testing,” said Rep. Zwiener. “Standardized writing tests increase student hesitancy to write, can often derail a student’s progress and don’t provide a reliable assessment of a student’s skills. It’s time to use a better tool.”

“Nature-based infrastructure is a powerful tool for mitigating flooding and also provides additional benefits such as aquifer recharge, outdoor space, and reducing heat islands,” said Rep. Zwiener. “HB 2350 will let municipalities use a bottom-up approach to develop locally directed projects to fit their community’s needs.”

HB 2344 Writing Portfolio
This legislation would allow school districts to implement a writing portfolio to fulfill the writing component of required state reading assessments.

Standardized writing assessments grade students based on a formula, and teaching this formula to students often leads them to become less creative and more uncertain in their writing abilities.

Writing portfolios grade students on their body of work and provide a more thorough reflection of their skills.

HB 2350 Nature-Based Infrastructure
This legislation would incentivize nature-based infrastructure projects through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund.

Communities seeking loans for wastewater system upgrades can access extra funds for projects such as rain gardens, wetlands, and other projects that create permeable surfaces, allowing rainwater to percolate into aquifers rather than running off surfaces.

The nature-based infrastructure project would be funded through a decrease in the interest rate on the overall project. Although nature-based infrastructure can help reduce the impact of flooding and increase groundwater supply, it has not been widely adopted throughout the state.

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