Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) was in Dallas Thursday to deliver his biennial State of the State Address.
The address, hosted by the Dallas Regional Chamber, was held inside the Fairmont Dallas hotel.
Abbott discussed what lawmakers accomplished during the 86th legislative session.
"The state of Texas continues to be the most exceptional state in the United States of America" said Abbott.
His previous State of the State address touched on school finance reform and increasing teacher pay; school safety; a mental health consortium to collaborate on statewide mental health initiatives; property tax reform and disaster preparedness and recovery.
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Abbott focused on Dallas at times during the speech. He complimented Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson on tackling the violent crime spike in the city, and he also spoke about the October tornado recovery. Abbott told reporters he sent a letter to FEMA to request another extension to submit a major disaster declaration. The disaster declaration hinges on the validation of $38.5 million in uninsured losses. So far, according to FEMA, that number has not been hit yet.
"Our obligation is to add up the damages to show that is does qualify FEMA assistance. We are working with FEMA as we speak. I have asked for an extension of time for us to be able to do it. I think that we will be able to show FEMA that Dallas and the Dallas area does qualify for FEMA assistance," he said.
The governor makes the trip to Dallas with the 2020 campaign in full swing. Democrats hope to take back the Texas house, after making big gains in 2018. Abbott believes Republicans should run on their record of accomplishments in the last legislative session, pointing to property tax cuts and road construction.
"It's a record that sells well, because it showed they tended to the needs of voters. And I'll tell you this, I think not only are we going to ensure that all Republican house members are re-elected. I think we are going to add gains including right here in Dallas County," said Abbott.
Abbott is already involved in the legislative races and has endorsed all of the Republican incumbents in the house and is now working through the senate.