With Dade Phelan likely to become the Texas House speaker, Price said Phelan will have the “incredibly difficult job” of placing members on committees and deciding who will chair them. The Phelan Administration at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, The House Agenda at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, The Senate Agenda at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, Writing the Budget at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, Drawing the Maps at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, What the Black Caucus Wants at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, What the Women's Bloc Wants at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, Meet the New Members at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, Reporters' Roundtable at The Texas Tribune's symposium previewing the 2021 legislative session, weeklong virtual symposium Dec. 7-11 previewing the state’s upcoming legislative session, who will retire as speaker at the end of his term, nothing the state hasn’t worked through before. Thousands of bills are expected to be filed during the session, but less than one in four of those will become law, Ramsey said. The Texas Tribune and Spectrum News have teamed up to present a free week-long event — from Dec. 7 to 11 — previewing the 2021 proceedings. The gavel doesn’t drop to open the 2021 Texas legislative session until Jan. 12, but state lawmakers are already giving us an indication of what they will be working on next year. The conversation, moderated by Tribune CEO Evan Smith, highlighted the inner workings of the Texas Capitol, from how a bill becomes a law to the differences between the Legislature’s upper and lower chamber. The legislative agenda also states that the City of San Antonio supports Medicaid expansion in Texas, aligning with the County’s legislative agenda passed on Tuesday With a Republican-controlled state House and Senate, however, Medicaid expansion remains unlikely in Texas. Dec. 22, 2020, We surveyed some of The Texas Tribune’s reporters and editors about what they’d be watching come Jan. 12, when state lawmakers are scheduled to gavel in the new session. The conversation, moderated by Tribune reporter Patrick Svitek, also featured state Sen. José Menéndez, D-San Antonio, state Sen. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, and state Sen. Charles Perry, R-Lubbock. The redistricting process — redrawing congressional and state legislative districts — could take longer than usual this year, two state lawmakers said. Health care will likely be top of mind for Texas lawmakers as they return to the Capitol for the 2021 legislative session during the worst public health crisis in a century. A North Texas county extends its mask mandate to February 28, 2021, after the 87th Texas Legislative Session starts. Monday marked the first day bills could be prefiled. A Texas redistricting committee is holding field hearings across the state ahead of 2021 mapmaking, including in San Antonio on Thursday. Throughout the event, lawmakers, state officials and journalists discussed the impact of 2020 elections on the state House and Senate, the impact of COVID-19 on the state budget, the priorities of lawmakers in both chambers, calls for action on racial justice and police brutality, what the redistricting process is likely to look like and more. It’s a policy pressure cooker. “I think just the fact that we only had one woman on the Calendars Committee — the committee that sets the agenda for the entire House — was a hard pill to swallow.”. On January 12, lawmakers from across the state of Texas … At Tuesday’s City Council meeting, Bill Longley, an attorney with the Texas Municipal League, told city officials it is important for them to prepare for what is sure to be a busy 2021 in Austin. Greg Abbott, have pledged to “back the blue.”. The conversation, moderated by Tribune CEO Evan Smith, included Tribune political reporters Cassi Pollock, Alex Samuels, Patrick Svitek and Alexa Ura. “All the good members of the Legislature will at least entertain the discussion about this, and let’s see if we can’t agree to do something that changes the outcome of policing in Texas,” Dutton, D-Houston, said. Media support is provided by Spectrum News. 2021 Texas Legislative Session Bills; Prepare for a (Legislative) Gun Battle in Texas Next Year. Do you value our journalism? Nov. 17, 2020 Support Comes From. Those include redistricting, law enforcement, criminal justice reform, property taxes, and other issues voted on by Texas voters. Dec. 1, 2020, The Legislature is set to convene in January. Ura said their level of input will depend on how early Texas receives census information, and that overall, she’d be surprised if the process was complete by the end of the session. “It's up to the 150 of us to come together for the betterment of Texas,” Goldman said. Texas Legislative Session Preview. Dec. 9, 2020, Adelson's Las Vegas Sands has built a stable of high-powered lobbyists for the session, which starts in January, and the company acknowledged Tuesday that it is serious about bringing casinos to Texas. “My hope is that we make it a work environment where we can get the job of the people done in a safe and professional way,” Menendez said. Full Story, by Ross Ramsey The current police union contract expires Sept. 30, 2021. State Sen. Chuy Hinojosa, D-McAllen, also joined the conversation moderated by the Tribune’s executive editor, Ross Ramsey. Full Story, by Patrick Svitek and Mitchell Ferman … In 2021, the Texas Senate will have 18 Republicans and 13 … More than 800,000 people lack adequate broadband infrastructure, according to a letter sent to Gov. “We have different police departments with different policies,” Collier, D-Fort Worth, said. Nov. 30, 2020, The seasons change in the political world, too. This will be the second public hearing for the Texas House Redistricting Committee to gather public input about how lawmakers should redraw political district lines to account for a decade's worth of population growth and demographic changes. Analysis: Texas elections are over. The 87th Legislature's regular session runs from Jan. 12 to May 31. January 12, 2021: 87th Legislature convenes at noon (Texas Constitution, Article III, Section 5(a); Texas Government Code, Section 301.001) March 12, 2021: 60-day bill filing deadline ( Texas Constitution, Article III, Section 5(b) ) I don't know.”, Four members of the Texas Senate outline what’s on the agenda for the upper chamber. By. King said he was working with the House parliamentarian to draft rules to allow virtual meetings where the public can weigh in on how new maps are drawn. Find a complete list of them here. The conversation, moderated by Tribune CEO Evan Smith, also included Joe Moody, one of Phelan’s more prominent Democrat supporters from El Paso, and Angie Chen Button, R-Richardson. Texas Senate panel weighs banning abortion in 2021. Today, members of the Texas House and Senate began filing bills. Texas Legislature; Bill seeking to modify Texas ‘castle doctrine’ causes stir ahead of 2021 legislative session click2houston.com - Aaron Barker. Full Story, by Cassandra Pollock “But 2020 proved another disappointment for the state’s minority party as Republicans remained dominant in Texas, appearing poised to maintain victories in all statewide offices and both chambers of the Legislature,” the Texas news outlet reported. How many times? A month before the 2021 legislative session, much remains unclear, including how a session will work during a pandemic and what the priorities of the governor, lieutenant governor and House speaker will be, Texas Tribune reporters said. Full Story, by Ross Ramsey “And we have to pick and choose what bills get paid when times are tough, and how to manage feeding our family, and how to manage educating our kids, and all the things that women and mothers have to do across the state.”, Incoming members of the Texas Legislature discuss their plans and priorities for their first legislative session. Dec. 1, 2020, Nearly a dozen pieces of legislation, all of them filed by Republicans, target mail-in balloting, illegal voting and misbehaving elections officials — inspired by events and talking points from the previous election cycle. Other than redistricting, setting the budget and addressing the impacts of the coronavirus, the governor, lieutenant governor and presumptive House speaker, Dade Phelan, haven’t made their legislative priorities clear, Svitek said. The Texas version is a bit quieter, but it's underway. “This is where we go to debate, jump up and down, scream at each other, come out with a kind of forced agreement – and if you can't get together, it doesn't function right.”. Falling along party lines, the new members had different views for addressing the budget and managing COVID-19 during session, though all three said they supported Dade Phelan, the presumptive Texas House speaker. Huffman was joined by state Rep. Phil King, R-Austin, in a conversation moderated by Ross Ramsey, executive editor of The Texas Tribune. State Reps. Hinojosa and Julie Johnson, D-Carrollton, spoke about what the women’s bloc is hoping for in the upcoming legislative session during a conversation with Emily Ramshaw, the co-founder and CEO of the 19th, a nonprofit newsroom focused on gender equity. Huffman said she plans to introduce a similar proposal. “We have so many tools in our toolbox that we’ll be able to work through it. Several Texas lawmakers said the upcoming legislative session will likely be pushed into a special session next year if federal census results are delayed for long. This time around, a group of Democratic lawmakers are hoping to change that, having formed an “Equity Caucus” to advocate for women’s equity in House leadership and pledging to vote as a bloc for the House speaker, going public with its pick of Dade Phelan. January 12, 2021: 87th Legislature convenes at noon (Texas Constitution, Article III, Section 5(a); Texas Government Code, Section 301.001) March 12, 2021: 60-day bill filing deadline ( Texas Constitution, Article III, Section 5(b) ) “There’s a lot of unknowns,” said state Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, who chairs the Senate Select Committee on Redistricting. Two Texas lawmakers said despite an expected shortfall of almost $5 billion for the current two-year budget, they hope to increase funding for health care and broadband services in the next budget, without increasing taxes. Full Story, by Patrick Svitek The Texas Legislature is the state legislature of the US state of Texas. In 1931, the legislature made possession of any amount of marijuana a felony offense, punishable by up to life in prison. MAKEUP BY PARTY: The Texas Senate currently has 19 Republicans and 12 Democrats. From the state budget to health care to education policy — and the politics and impact of the coronavirus behind it all — we focus on what Texans need to know about the biennial legislative session. “It will be some pain, yes, but nothing compared to 2011.”, Redistricting leaders in the Texas House and Senate look toward the process of drawing the district maps that will take place this year. The 87th Legislature's regular session runs from Jan. 12 to May 31. Third, definitely, he is trustworthy.”, The panelists also said that Phelan, like Dennis Bonnen — who will retire as speaker at the end of his term after a secret recording revealed he encouraged the targeting of 10 GOP members for primary challenges — has the same focus and knack to get things done as his predecessor and will, as Hunter said, fairly call “balls and strikes.”, Texas House members spell out their top priorities heading in to the 2021 legislative session. TEXAS STATE SENATE. In an ongoing effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Texas State Capitol, Capitol Grounds and Visitors Center are currently fully closed to the public. We have to live with the results. Johnson said some Democrats and Republicans weren’t aware of women’s lack of opportunity in the House until the group of women lawmakers brought it up. By Jacob Asmussen | December 10, 2020. The 2021 must-do menu also includes legislative and congressional redistricting, which is generally a big ol’ mess even when there’s not a pandemic. Lawmakers in January will tackle issues including the next state budget and redistricting. Full Story, by Ross Ramsey He also supports rapid testing in the Capitol and will require masks in his office. Here at Progress Texas, we’re going through every bill filled in the 2021 Texas Legislative Session. The Democrats only needed nine seats to take control of the House. “What this pandemic tells us is that we have a problem … in Texas, and now all the people are seeing it.”, Women’s equity is at the top of the agenda for state Reps. Gina Hinojosa and Julie Johnson, co-founders of the Texas Legislature’s Women’s Equity Bloc. Legislators will also be selecting a new Speaker of the House during the opening of the 2021 legislative session. The new Legislature is scheduled to convene on Tuesday, January 12, 2021. The Texas Legislature doesn’t meet very often. “We want to aim to provide uniformity, some type of consistent system, that people in Texas can look to and say, ‘This is what is expected of our law enforcement officers all across the state.”’. “It's crazy to think that it's not contentious at some moments,” Price said. After the 2020 Census, redistricting will occur, with congressional districts redrawn for the 2022 through 2030 elections. 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