One month to go in the 85th Legislative Session. Both the Texas House and the Senate are sending our final bills over to the other side before taking up the bills of the opposite chamber, only to meet in the middle on the Governor’s desk by Sine Die, which falls on Monday, May 29th this year.
At this point in session there are many competing interests, jockeying to pass last minute legislative priorities or to shore up funding in the budget. The budget is in conference committee, where the differences between the House and Senate budgets are being ironed out.
Recently, I have passed a number of bills through the Senate including:
- Senate Bill 188 – Provides liability protection to Good Samaritans who rescue a vulnerable individual or pet from a hot car.
- Senate Bill 1622 – Creates a “Camo Alert” program for missing military and veterans who suffer from PTSD or a traumatic brain injury.
- Senate Bill 1854 – Reduces paperwork requirements for classroom teachers.
- Senate Bill 190 – Allows Child Protective Services Caseworkers to better handle the most important child abuse cases by providing an avenue to close old unsubstantiated cases.
While there may be less than 30 days remaining in the legislative session, there remains much work to do for my constituents. I hope all those who live in District 19 will take the time to contact me with their opinion on important matters before our state government.
Unfortunately, the past few days have brought tragedies that have overshadowed the work being done under the pink dome.
On the Senate Floor, in just the first two days of May, we’ve solemnly adjourned in the memory of the victims and families who lost everything in a series of tornados in Northeast Texas over the weekend, some of the worst our state has seen in years that ultimately saw four Texans lose their lives, with several more still missing.
We also heard the shocking news of a brutal stabbing attack just blocks away from the Capitol on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin, in which a bright young man from Graham, Texas lost his life.
Finally, we adjourned in the honor of Joseph Ray Perry, World War II veteran and father of former Governor, and current Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, who passed away last week.
Even with heavy hearts, we honor the victims, include them and their families in our prayers, and we use their memory as inspiration to make Texas an even better place for our kids and grandchildren over the next month.