Jack Brooks’

Key Accomplishments

“The American public doesn’t want any more words … they’re especially tired of the purists among us who want 100 percent or nothing.”

–Jack Brooks

Brooks did not write every word of every piece of legislation he sponsored. As with almost all laws, the language in the documents themselves often coalesces from the contributions of many technical experts. As stated in the book, more junior members of his committees even humorously remember how the chairman could sometimes abscond their good idea and slap his own name on them. Brooks’ contribution was knowing what ideas to put his weight behind, knowing what the American people wanted and needed, and what their representatives in Congress would get behind.

Among Brooks’ many contributions to his District, the State of Texas and the USA are the following:

  • Lamar Junior College declared a four-year university
  • Chairman of subcommittee on Government Activities
  • Expansion and financing of the Sam Rayburn Reservoir–the largest freshwater reservoir in Texas
  • Civil Rights Act of 1964
  • Voting Rights Act of 1965
  • Automatic Data Processing Act of 1965
  • Architects and Engineers Act of 1972
  • Chairman of Government Operations, 1975 – 1989
  • Secured funding for the deepening and widening of the Sabine-Neches Waterway
  • Authorized the Neches River Saltwater Barrier project in 1974
  • President, NATO Parliamentary Assembly, 1980-1982
  • Secured funding for the Galveston Bay Study and the development of the Wallisville Reservoir
  • Secured funding for the Port of Galveston and Texas City Port improvements
  • Authorized legislation to provide flood insurance to businesses and individuals
  • Paperwork Reduction Act
  • Secured funding for the completion of the Big Hill Strategic Petroleum Reserve
  • Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, 1989-1995
  • Civil Rights Act of 1991
  • Credited for saving the space program, Brooks was instrumental in obtaining funding to help NASA with the International Space Station
  • Completion in Contracting Act of 1994 establishing a Federal Procurement Office
  • Violent Crime and Law Enforcement Act of 1994
  • Approved plans for the Public Health Service Hospital in Galveston and its affiliation with the University of Texas Medical Branch
  • Obtained funding for the wastewater treatment facilities in Netherland, Cheek, China, Nome, Lumberton, Port Neches, and Groves
  • Obtained millions of dollars in funding for development in the city of Port Arthur and responsible for the development of the area where Central Mall and Walmart are located
  • Obtained funding to build the hurricane levee system in Jefferson County
  • Obtained funding for the Taylor’s Bayou Flood Projection Project