Buckle Up For Blackouts

What to know: Texas hasn’t had an energy crisis in 3 years. But with the power grid on shaky footing and the worst of the summer heat still to come, concerns about rolling blackouts have once again emerged.

The TPPF take: Buckle up. An overreliance on wind and solar increases volatility, making an Energy Emergency Alert more likely when temperatures rise.

“The problem with the Texas grid is so simple it’s infuriating: Relying too heavily on unpredictable wind and solar, without enough reliable reserve capacity, means higher volatility — leading to higher prices and increasing need for expensive interventions by ERCOT to avoid outages,” said Jason Isaac. “It’s up to the Texas Legislature to prioritize stability and reliability, not popularity.”

For more on power grid stability, click here.

Are Texas ISDs Broke? 

What to know: Amid cries for increased public school funding to avoid layoffs and budget cuts, Texas Gov. Abbott pushed back, pointing out that the Legislature rejected efforts to increase public school funding in 2023.

The TPPF take: Texas ISDs don’t need more funding. They just need to spend their money wisely.

“Schools like Dallas ISD pay their superintendents north of $300,000 annually; while Fort Worth ISD spent $40 million to build its new headquarters,” said Mandy Drogin. “These school districts are not facing deficits due to a lack of funding — which totaled $6 billion last year — but are instead a result of grossly irresponsible spending.”

For more on school district spending, click here.

Biden Border Theater

What to know: The Biden administration introduced a new rule this week, meant to curb the illegal entry of immigrants that might be a national security threat into the country. The new rule allows Border Patrol agents to screen for public safety threats immediately upon entry.

The TPPF take: The new rule will be ineffective in practice and is just another example of political theater by the Biden administration.

“This rule does nothing and is just political posturing by the Biden administration rather than getting to the root of the problem, said TPPF’s Selene Rodriguez. “The border crisis will never be solved unless Biden takes real, substantive action to secure the border.”

For more on the border, click here.