Ross Ramsey Executive Editor

Ross Ramsey is executive editor and co-founder of The Texas Tribune. Before joining the Tribune, Ross was editor and co-owner of Texas Weekly for 15 years. He did a 28-month stint in government as associate deputy comptroller for policy and director of communications with the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. Before that, he reported for the Houston Chronicle from its Austin bureau and for the Dallas Times Herald, first on the business desk in Dallas and later as its Austin bureau chief, and worked as a Dallas-based freelance business writer, writing for regional and national magazines and newspapers. Ross got his start in journalism in broadcasting, covering news for radio stations in Denton and Dallas.

Recent Contributions

Why Texas House Won't Agree to Senate Budget

Sen. Steve Ogden, R-Bryan, attempts to get votes to suspend the rules on CSSB1580 a Senate spending bill on April 28, 2011.
Sen. Steve Ogden, R-Bryan, attempts to get votes to suspend the rules on CSSB1580 a Senate spending bill on April 28, 2011.

It might not matter, in the end, whether the Senate wants to use some of the Rainy Day Fund to balance the budget. The House isn’t likely to go along unless the proposition is delivered on a tea cart pushed by Gov. Rick Perry and third-party conservative groups who have been hounding lawmakers to hold the line.

Suddenly Serious

Texas Weekly

It's a misleading headline; they've been serious. But this was the week with redistricting on the floor of the House and no budget on the floor of the Senate. Redistricting is often a noisy and bloody affair, and this might be a case when the availability of information took the sting out of the fight. Not so long ago, redistricting maps and data were closely held until the big reveal on the House floor. Members got to see pieces of the maps — their own districts and some of their neighbors' — but it wasn't unusual to see politicians in near cardiac condition when the maps were put on the easels for the first time and they got a peek at the whole state.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of Apr. 25, 2011

Aguilar and Weber on a subdued debate over homeland security, Galbraith on rising concern about natural gas drilling, Grissom on a controversial psychologist, Hamilton on the aftermath of the Rick O'Donnell episode, Philpott on the comptroller's apology, Ramshaw with more on the statewide database of child abusers, E. Smith interviews Lance Armstrong, M. Smith on what House budget cuts would mean for school districts, M. Stiles on how redistricting would change things for each House member, Tan on the Senate's wobbly attempts to approve a budget and my interview with David Dewhurst: The best of our best content from April 25 to 29, 2011.

Texas Senate Debates "Non-Tax Revenue"

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, Sen. Carlos Uresti, Sen. Robert Duncan and Sen. Dan Patrick review amendments to Senate Bill 16, the abortion sonogram bill.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, Sen. Carlos Uresti, Sen. Robert Duncan and Sen. Dan Patrick review amendments to Senate Bill 16, the abortion sonogram bill.

The Texas Senate, digging publicly for money while it battles quietly over a proposed budget, approved a "non-tax revenue" bill that would make $4.3 billion available for spending over the next two years.

Dewhurst Makes Budget Pitch to Senators

Lt. Governor David Dewhurst (c) goes over legislation with colleagues on the Senate floor April 18, 2011
Lt. Governor David Dewhurst (c) goes over legislation with colleagues on the Senate floor April 18, 2011

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, trying to build enough support to bring the budget up for consideration this week, appealed in writing to state senators, supporting the plan and a provision that would allow the state to spend $3 billion from the Rainy Day Fund.

Interactive: Texas House Redistricting Proposal

The House Redistricting Committee and its chairman, state Rep. Burt Solomons, R-Carrollton, have revised the current Texas House map. Use this interactive table to see which districts changed the most politically under the proposal, which is set for debate today.

In Texas, a Political Tug-of-War Over Taylor County

A joint Texas Senate Committee holds a public hearing Tuesday from regulators and the Texas power industry on the power outages that hit the state on February 2nd at the height of the worst winter storm this season.  Chairman of the committee, Sen Troy Fraser (R-Horseshoe Bay) talks to the press.
A joint Texas Senate Committee holds a public hearing Tuesday from regulators and the Texas power industry on the power outages that hit the state on February 2nd at the height of the worst winter storm this season. Chairman of the committee, Sen Troy Fraser (R-Horseshoe Bay) talks to the press.

Troy Fraser lost a redistricting fight 20 years ago. Now he's in another redistricting battle — with another Republican and based more on what part of the state is shrinking (his area's population) than on politics. He's determined not to lose.

Cuts, Part Two

Texas Weekly

A $176.5 billion budget — 5.9 percent smaller than the current budget — won approval from the Senate Finance Committee right and will come to a full Senate vote after the Easter break.