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Williams says he's staying on as Texas education commissioner

Houston Chronicle
February 11, 2015

By Lauren McGaughy

AUSTIN – Michael Williams said Monday he expects to be kept on as Texas commissioner of education through the 2015 legislative session.

"I think most people know I actually live, my wife lives, in Arlington, then we own a place here. I'm not selling my condo any time soon," Williams told the Chronicle.

Asked whether he had received indication that he would be kept on in the post through the session, Williams said, "I have. I have. I'm not going anywhere soon. That's an announcement for somebody else to make."

Williams made the remarks after testifying before the Senate Finance Committee on public education funding.

The Midland native has a lengthy history in government, serving under President George H.W. Bush in the U.S. Department of the Treasury and U.S. Department of Education, and was appointed to the Railroad Commission in 1998 by then-Gov. George W. Bush. Former Gov. Rick Perry appointed Williams education commissioner in 2012.

Williams' tenure technically expired the day Perry left office last month. He can continue to serve through the session without being reappointed by the governor, at which time Greg Abbott would have to reappoint him or choose his own commissioner.

Texas education lobbyists and advocates said Williams' remarks were unsurprising. All expect Abbott to appoint his own commissioner after the session ends in June.