Landgraf Calls on TRS to Find Tax-Payer Friendly Office Space

ODESSA — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) sent a letter to the executive director of the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) on Tuesday asking the agency to reconsider its decision to sign on to a decade-long lease for office space in downtown Austin that will cost TRS $326,000 per month in rent payments.

"For the better part of the last decade, teachers and legislators have been told that the Teacher Retirement System of Texas was on the brink of financial insolvency," Landgraf writes in the letter. "The 10-year lease agreement for the office space in downtown Austin for TRS' Investment Management Division staff does not support such a claim."

TRS agreed to terms to lease three floors of Indeed Tower, which is still under construction on 6th Street in the heart of downtown Austin. The 100,000 square foot space would serve as the new location for its 180-person investment management division.

"I am confident TRS can find suitable office space that does not call into question the agency's commitment to being an effective steward of state resources," Landgraf's letter continued. "If alternative space cannot be found in the Austin area, I would be happy to help the agency find extremely affordable office space out here in the Permian Basin."


Landgraf and Mass Violence Committee Meet in El Paso

EL PASO — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) joined other legislators at a field hearing of the House Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety on Thursday in El Paso. This is the third field hearing conducted by the committee in a city that has recently experienced a mass shooting.

"I hope this hearing helped the people of El Paso take another step towards healing even though nothing can ever replace the lives lost on that fateful day in August," Landgraf said. "I'm deeply saddened that our communities will forever be linked because of two acts of mass violence that took place less than 30 days apart, but I have renewed hope in my fellow Texans after witnessing the resolve of those who testified at Thursday's hearing."

The House Select Committees on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety was created following the deadly shootings in El Paso and Odessa in August of 2019. The purpose of the committee is to receive testimony and make proposals to the Texas Legislature to help reduce the occurrence and impact of mass violence. “My goal for this committee is to propose methods for reducing mass violence in Texas while preserving constitutional due process and protecting the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Texans,” Landgraf added.


Monahans Artist Paints Ornament for Capitol Christmas Tree

AUSTIN — This Christmas, an ornament that highlights Monahans hangs on the Texas-grown Christmas tree in the State Capitol building. Robert Peña of Monahans designed and created the ornament, which captures the beauty of the sun setting in the West Texas sky behind silhouettes of pumpjacks and windmills.

"I am proud to have such a beautiful ornament to pay tribute to Monahans and the rest of House District 81 at the Capitol this Christmas," State Representative Brooks Landgraf said. "Mr. Peña works in the oilfield, but he has obviously still found time to become a fine artist, providing another example of a hard-working West Texan with many talents."

Rep. Landgraf & artist Robert Peña. Rep. Landgraf & wife, Shelby Landgraf.

The ornament will hang proudly on the 25-foot native Texas Christmas tree in the Texas House Chamber through the end of December.


Landgraf Joins Texas Tribune’s Odessa Event Discussing Oil’s Impact on Texas

ODESSA — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) will be a panelist at an event hosted by The Texas Tribune to discuss Texas' oil and gas sector. The panel, titled BOOM: A Conversation About How the Oil and Gas Sector Impacts Texas, is scheduled to take place from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM on Tuesday, December 10 in the Saulsbury Campus Center at Odessa College.

"I'm thrilled to have an opportunity to shine a light on how the entire state benefits from the hard work of West Texans," Landgraf said. "It's important for all Texans to understand the blessings and challenges that come with being one of the planet's largest producers of oil and natural gas."

The panel will be moderated by Ross Ramsey, executive editor of The Texas Tribune, a nonpartisan, nonprofit media organization that informs Texans about public policy, politics, government, and statewide issues. Tracee Bentley, president and CEO of the Permian Strategic Partnership, is among the panelists joining Rep. Landgraf.

"I encourage everyone in the Permian Basin to register to attend this event," Landgraf continued. "There’s no charge for admission, and lunch will be provided."

For additional information, or to register for the event free of charge, visit: www.texastribune.org/events.


Landgraf Announces Odessa Meeting for Mass-Violence Prevention Panel

ODESSA — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) encourages Odessans to take part in the upcoming hearing of the House Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety, set to take place in Odessa on November 7, 2019. 

The House Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety hearing will be conducted in the Joe Zant Community Room at Odessa College beginning at 9:00 AM on Thursday, November 7, 2019. The public is invited to attend and provide testimony regarding the impact of the mass shooting that occurred in Odessa on August 31, 2019.

"I'm calling on Odessans to once again show up and make your voices heard," Landgraf said. "This is your opportunity to speak directly to elected officials from across the state to share your thoughts and concerns about solutions to prevent acts of mass violence in Texas without having to make the six-hour drive to Austin."

"I want to thank Chairman Darby, a fellow West Texan, for choosing to hold a hearing in Odessa," Landgraf continued. "This is a necessary step as our community continues to heal in the aftermath of the August 31 attack. In addition to myself and Chairman Darby, there are eleven other members of the committee who will be there to listen to everyone who wants to testify."


Landgraf No Longer Supports Bonnen as House Speaker

ODESSA — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) announced today that he no longer supports Speaker Dennis Bonnen (R-Angleton).

"Texans deserve honesty and transparency from their elected officials, from city council to governor," Landgraf said. "It is with this high standard in mind that I officially withdraw my support for Speaker Bonnen. I cannot in good conscience continue to support him as speaker of the Texas House when it is clear that he lied to the members of this body and the people of Texas. Many of his words and actions during the months since the successful legislative session do not reflect the values of the West Texans I serve."


Landgraf Encourages Public Participation in Senate Committee Hearing

ODESSA — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) calls on Odessans to participate in the upcoming hearing of the Senate Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety, set to take place in Odessa on October 17, 2019.

"This committee hearing provides an opportunity for folks to share their thoughts and concerns as we work together to heal as a community, state and nation," Landgraf said. "I'm thankful the voices of Odessans and West Texans will be heard during these proceedings."

The Senate Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety hearing will be conducted in Deaderick Hall at Odessa College beginning at 2:00 PM on Thursday, October 17, 2019. The public is invited to attend and provide testimony regarding the impact of the mass shooting that occurred in Odessa on August 31, 2019.

"I'm grateful to Lt. Governor Patrick and Chairwoman Huffman for providing Odessans with a chance to speak to their state elected officials without having to make the six hour drive to Austin," Landgraf continued. "But if you can't make it to this hearing, don't worry, you will have another opportunity later this year."

The House Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety, of which Landgraf is a member, is tentatively scheduled to conduct its own hearing in Odessa before the end of 2019.


Landgraf and Mass Violence Committee Meet in Wake of Odessa Shooting

AUSTIN — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) joined other legislators in the first hearing of the recently-created House Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety on Tuesday at the Texas Capitol. The purpose of the committee is to receive testimony and make proposals to the Texas Legislature to help reduce the occurrence and impact of mass violence.

"This hearing is the next step in gathering feedback from the public and law enforcement to ultimately propose policies that promote public safety while protecting the constitutional rights of law-abiding Texans," Landgraf said. "I want to make sure that the voices of Odessans and West Texans are heard during these proceedings."

The House Select Committees on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety was created earlier this month following the deadly shootings in El Paso and Odessa. In addition to regular committee hearings at the Texas Capitol in Austin, the committee announced it will also conduct hearings throughout the state, including at least one hearing in Odessa.


Wounded Ector Co. Deputies Honored by Abbott and Landgraf in 9/11 Ceremony

AUSTIN — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) joined Governor Greg Abbott to present a prestigious state award to five deputies from the Ector County Sheriff's Office who had been shot in the line of duty.

Investigator Cody Smith, Investigator Javier Leyva, Investigator Joshua Devin Pool, Reserve Deputy Ricardo Rodriguez, and Captain Steven John McNeill of the Ector County Sheriff's Office were each presented with the 2019 Star of Texas Award in the Texas House of Representatives chamber Wednesday morning.

"The willingness of our law enforcement officers to put themselves in harm's way to protect our community is the ultimate testament to duty and sacrifice," Landgraf said. "I'm thankful to have such brave men and women in uniform for the Ector County Sheriff’s Office, and I am forever grateful to all those who work daily to keep Texans safe."

Investigator Smith, Investigator Pool and Reserve Deputy Rodriguez were all injured during the execution of a search warrant on January 14, 2019 when a known narcotics dealer opened fire in the 7300 block of Kentucky Avenue in West Odessa. After sustaining gun shot wounds the deputies returned fire, killing the man.

Investigator Leyva was shot in the leg on August 8, 2014. Leyva was in pursuit of a suspect charged with deadly conduct, when he was shot near the intersection of 10th and West Loop 338 in Odessa

And on September 17, 2010, Captain McNeill was shot in the shoulder in West Odessa by a landowner upset with a local company.

The Star of Texas awards were created by the Legislature in 2003. Since then, more than 500 brave Texans have been honored with the recognition.

Pictured in the photo from left to right is Investigator Smith, Captain McNeill, Sheriff Griffis, Investigator Pool, Investigator Leyva, and Reserve Deputy Rodriguez.


Landgraf Announces Town Hall Schedule

ODESSA — State Representative Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) provides the following schedule of upcoming Town Hall events in the four counties (Andrews, Ector, Ward, and Winkler) he serves in the Texas House of Representatives. During these events, Rep. Landgraf will provide a brief on the state's response to the August 31 tragedy in Odessa and discuss the 2019 legislative session. Rep. Landgraf encourages his fellow West Texans to take this opportunity to share their thoughts.

"Now, more than ever, it is important for West Texans to hear directly from their elected officials," Landgraf said. "These town halls are an opportunity for folks to share their thoughts and concerns as we work together to heal as a community.”

Ward County
WHEN:      Monday, September 9, 2019 | 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
WHERE:    Ward County Event Center
                   1525 East Monahans Parkway, Monahans, Texas

Andrews County
WHEN:      Tuesday, September 10, 2019 | 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
WHERE:    Andrews Business & Technology Center
                   201 NW Avenue D, Andrews, Texas

Odessa
WHEN:      Monday, September 23, 2019 | 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
WHERE:    Odessa College, Saulsbury Campus Center (Joe Zant Room)
                   201 W University Blvd., Odessa, Texas

West Odessa
WHEN:      Tuesday, September 24, 2019 | 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
WHERE:    Kellus Turner Community Center
                   2262 West Sycamore Drive, Odessa, Texas

Winkler County
WHEN:      Monday, September 30, 2019 | 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
WHERE:    Poor Daddy's BBQ
                   123 N. Mulberry, Kermit, TX