Print Page   |   Sign In
News & Press: News

DPSOA Legislative Update - Wright Report

Friday, September 20, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: John Pike
Share |

 

View this email in your browser

 

 

The 2019 Legislative Session ended back in May, and members departed on a wave of accomplishment and hope that the decisions made in 140 days will take Texas into the future. So manycritical issues tackled: addressing school finance reform; providing for greater transparency and citizen engagement in the property tax process; identifying solutions to improve the state’s disasterresponse; securing our children and schools; passing, unanimously, the state’s biennial budget including funding for many of the top legislative priorities; ensuring Texas has a sound financial“Rainy Day Fund” in the long-term; improving service delivery for maternal health; protecting Medicaid recipients with improved coordination and breaking down regulatory barriers for providersand patients alike, and much more. It was a Session to remember, primarily due to the emphasis on unity, compromise, and the need to find common ground on issues important to Texas citizens.The realization of so many of these goals was a shining example of how, perhaps, things can work in government.

Unfortunately, this summer has also been marked by tragedy— first, a mass shooting at an El Paso Walmart, followed by another shooting on a West Texas highway between Odessa and Midland.Governor Abbott responded quickly to both by first establishing a domestic terrorism task force, and then creating a safety commission. In the same vein, the House and Senate elected to createSelect Committees on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety. Both Chambers have announced their respective members with Rep. Drew Darby chairing the House, and Sen. JoanHuffman chairing the Senate. Senator Huffman has quite a bit on her plate going forward, as she is also the Chair of the Senate Redistricting Committee. That being the case, Lt. Governor Patrickmade some changes to Committee Chairs with the announcement that Sen. Bryan Hughes is the new Chair of Senate State Affairs. Governor Abbott issued eight executive ordersto strengthen law enforcement’s response to mass violence. There is mounting pressure for the Governor to call a special session. However, he has yet to act.

In the midst of all of this, the impending elections are moving into the spotlight. Texas, like the rest of the country, is preparing for primaries in March and a General Election in November. Already,some of the well-known and established Texas House members have decided not to seek re-election: Representatives Eric Johnson, Jonathan Stickland,John Wray, John Zerwas, and Jessica Farrar.All House members are up forre-election in 2020. The special election for these seats will be held on November 5th.On theSenate side,Sen. Jose Rodriguez from El Paso recently decided he will not seek re-election. Texas House member, Rep. Cesar Blanco announced he intends to run for that open Senate seat.Sen. Royce West has thrown in his hat to challenge U.S. Senator John Cornyn. While 16 Texas Senators are up for re-election this cycle, there is still the possibility that thetraditionally held Democratic seat that switched Republican with the win by Senator Pete Flores, could change back. These changes also do notaccount for the possibility of members from either Chamber seeking higher office, as Texas is losing a number of long-standing members in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Much is at stake in the 2020 election cycle. Many are wondering whether some of the more vulnerable Republican seats could switch parties, resulting in Democrats taking the Texas House.Onthe other hand, a number of seats held by Democrats could also be vulnerable. What does this all mean?If the Democratic party takes the House, there will likely be a new Speaker, newcommittee chairs and assignments, and new policy priorities. Another variable in this equation is the possibility that both parties pick up seats and lose seats, resulting in a closer margin altogether.What is certain is that voters go to the polls in March and November to decide. One thing that we can all count on – election season is here.

While the majority of the Legislature’s work may have concluded in May, it doesn’t stop there asHouse and Senate interim charges are forthcoming.Again, it is a waiting game, but legislative activity is sure to pick up this Fall and kick into higher gear come January 2020.Temperatures in Texas remain as hot as the politics with everyone watching and waiting for the next big headline to drop. With so much at stake and so many unanswered questions, it looks likeeveryone has to give it time to unfold, and in the meantime— enjoy the ride. At the very least, it is guaranteed to be an interesting one.

 

Interim Activities

 

Mass Violence Prevention & Community Safety, Select
10:00 AM, Thursday, September 26, 2019
E1.036 (Finance Room)

The Senate Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety will hold a public hearing to consider organizational and informational matters and to hear invited testimony.

No public testimony will be considered.

 

 

Redistricting
4:00 PM, Wednesday, October 9, 2019
Fort Worth, TX

The Committee will meet to hear invited and public testimony at Tarrant County College Trinity River Campus - Action Suites on the 4th floor of main building located at 300 Trinity Campus Circle, Fort Worth, TX 76102.

The purpose of the interim field hearings is to solicit public input on the 2021 legislative redistricting process and provide context to the official 2020 Census data that the 87th Legislature will receive by April 2021. Since the Legislature will not receive official data from the U.S. Census Bureau until the 87th session is underway, these interim field hearings seek to maximize the opportunities for Texans to share information they believe relevant to the upcoming redistricting process, including information about communities of interest within our state.

Invited testimony: Texas Demographic Center and Texas Legislative Council, Mapping and Redistricting Section

The chair may limit individual public testimony time in consideration of all participants.

 

 

Redistricting
4:00 PM, Thursday, October 10, 2019
Dallas, TX

The Committee will meet to hear invited and public testimony at Dallas City Hall, Council Chamber on the 6th floor located at 1500 Marilla Street, Dallas, TX 75201.

The purpose of the interim field hearings is to solicit public input on the 2021 legislative redistricting process and provide context to the official 2020 Census data that the 87th Legislature will receive by April 2021. Since the Legislature will not receive official data from the U.S. Census Bureau until the 87th session is underway, these interim field hearings seek to maximize the opportunities for Texans to share information they believe relevant to the upcoming redistricting process, including information about communities of interest within our state.

Invited testimony: Texas Demographic Center and Texas Legislative Council, Mapping and Redistricting Section

The chair may limit individual public testimony time in consideration of all participants.

 

 

Redistricting, Select
9:00 AM, Tuesday, October 29, 2019
E1.004 (Capitol Auditorium)

The Senate Select Committee on Redistricting will hold a public hearing to consider organizational matters and to hear invited testimony only. The committee will meet in the Capitol Auditorium, E1.004, located at 1100 Congress Avenue, Austin, Texas 78701.

No public testimony will be considered.

If you are unable to attend, a video archive of the hearing will be available shortly after the conclusion of the hearing at the following link:https://bit.ly/2ZkEqc6

 

 

Hearing Summaries

 

The House Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety met Tuesday. The Senate Committee meets on Thursday.


Some takeaways:
Discussions on strengthening current laws and enforcement included:

  1. Increase enforcement overall.
  2. Strengthening conviction rates for application falsifications.
  3. Updating the warrant database to include interstate/FBI communications.
  4. Increase of roadside apprehensions with greater accessibility to information on potential offenders.
  5. Prevention of transferring of firearms to people who have committed felonies.
  6. Prevention of transferring of firearms to people who have broken laws that would prohibit them from possessing firearms (i.e. violating a protective order).
  7. Ability for law enforcement to search for weapons where violations have occurred.
  8. Creation of Fusion Centers like the ones in North Texas that do intelligence gathering. Texas has 7 centers currently.

Discussion on reporting included:

  1. Reduction of deadline in reporting convictions.
  2. Reduction of deadline in reporting protective orders.
  3. Reduction of deadline on reporting of warrants.
  4. Reporting criminal history information or threats to state and federal databases in a timely manner.
  5. Developing community engagement systems for reporting of suspicious behaviors.

Discussion on technology:

  1. Using social media and other digital formats to aid in threat detection and assessments as well as reporting
  2. Developing a collaborative effort between digital media companies and law enforcement officials to monitor threats

Discussion on mental health:

  1. Threat assessment teams include an analyst, psychologist, and victim’s coordinator. Does not include a psychiatrist.
  2. Funds are not available for psychological threat assessments currently.
  3. A system needs to be put in place for communication between law enforcement (local, state, fed and mental health) for proper sharing of information when a threat is detected.

Chairman Darby closed out the conversation with a discussion on the implementation dates issued under the Governor’s Executive Orders. The first three have 30 and 60-day implementation requirements. DPS reported their confidence in meeting these deadlines as the agency has drafted intake question document; adopted an information-sharing environment with US Homeland Security to help with the information sharing as it relates to legal standards; and has been working closely with the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement on training with specific reference to communications and dispatch operators.

 

 

Watch live broadcasts of House hearings and meetings here. Watch live broadcasts of Senate hearings and meetings here.

 

Elections

 

Dates and Deadlines

  • October 21, 2019:Early voting begins for November 5, 2019, Special Elections
  • November 5, 2019:Special Elections for House District 28, House District 100, and House District 148
  • December 9, 2019:Filing deadline for 2020 Elections
  • January 15, 2020:Campaign finance reports due
  • March 3, 2020:Primary Elections
  • May 26, 2020:Primary Runoff Elections
  • July 15, 2020:Campaign finance reports due
  • November 3, 2020:General Election

 

 

Races

Candidates for the November 5, 2019, Special Elections


House District 28candidates:

  • Ana Allred (R-Houston) anesthesiologist
  • Gary Gates (R-Rosenberg) real estate investor; ran statewide for Railroad Commission in 2016 and for Senate in District 18 in 2014 (special election)
  • Gary J. Hale (R-Katy) business owner
  • Tricia Krenek (R-Katy) attorney
  • Sarah Laningham (R-Richmond) sales; owns an airport shuttle service; ran for State Representative in House District 14 in 2018
  • Clinton D. Purnell (R-Katy) logistics and customs compliance
  • Elizabeth “Eliz” Markowitz (D-Katy) educator

House District 100candidates:

  • James Armstrong, III (D-Dallas) CEO
  • Lorraine Birabil(D-Dallas) legal associate; former aide to Congressman Marc Veasey
  • Daniel Davis Clayton (D-Dallas) owner of Public Opinion, LLC
  • Sandra Crenshaw (D-Dallas) retired; former Dallas City Council member; ran for State Representative in House District 110 in 2016
  • Paul K. Stafford (D-Dallas) attorney with Thompson & Knight; ran for State Representative in House District 115 in 2014

House District 148candidates:

  • Rob Block (D-Houston) firefighter
  • Kendra Yarbrough Camarena (D-Houston) teacher; daughter of former State Representative Ken Yarbrough; ran for State Representative in House District 138 in 2010
  • Carol Denson (D-Houston) teacher
  • Anna Eastman (D-Houston) education consultant
  • Adrian Garcia (D-Houston) paralegal; former Harris County Sheriff; former Houston City Council member; ran for Mayor of Houston in 2015; ran for Congress in District 29 in 2016
  • TerahIsaacson (D-Houston) physician
  • Michele Leal (D-Houston) consultant
  • Mia Mundy (D-Houston) executive search consultant; ran for Senate in District 6 in 2018 (special election)
  • Penny “Morales” Shaw (D-Houston) attorney
  • Alva Trevino (D-Houston) attorney
  • Chris Watt (D-Houston) attorney
  • Chris Carmona (R-Houston) attorney; ran for State Representative in House District 148 in 2014
  • Luis La Rotta (R-Houston) power generation engineer; chair of the Republican Liberty Caucus Houston-Bay Area
  • Ryan McConnico (R-Houston) consultant; ran for State Representative in House District 148 in 2018

 

Headlines

 

 

Fundraisers

 

Representative Garnet Coleman
Austin Club, 110 E 9th St, Austin, TX 78701
September 19, 2019
8:30 AM - 9:15 AM

Representative Stan Lambert
Austin Club, 110 E 9th St, Austin, TX 78701
September 25, 2019
2:30 PM - 4 PM

Representative Art Fierro
Austin Club, 110 E 9th St, Austin, TX 78701
September 25, 2019
4:30 PM - 6 PM

Representative Lina Ortega
Austin Club, 110 E 9th St, Austin, TX 78701
September 25, 2019
11:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Kendra Yarbrough Camarena for HD 148
Austin Club, 110 E 9th St, Austin, TX 78701
September 25, 2019
5 PM - 6:30 PM

Representative Barbara Gervin-Hawkins
Alamo Beer Company, 202 Lamar, San Antonio, TX 78202
September 25, 2019
4:30 PM - 6:30 PM

Representative Drew Darby
Austin Club, 110 E 9th St, Austin, TX 78701
September 26, 2019
4 PM - 6 PM

Representative Mary Gonzalez
Austin Club 110 E. 9th St. Austin, Texas
September 26, 2019
11:30 AM - 1 PM

Representative Cesar Blanco
Austin Club 110 E. 9th St. Austin, Texas
September 26, 2019
4 PM - 6 PM

Representative Eddie Lucio III
Austin Club 110 E. 9th St. Austin, Texas
September 27, 2019
11:30 AM - 1 PM

Senator Charles Schwertner
Schwertner Ranch Event Center, 1200 Lindemann Rd, Schwertner, TX 76573
September 28, 2019
6 PM - 8 PM


Eric Wright & Associates has a proven record of creating
competitive advantages for clients in the Texas
legislative environment. Many corporations and associations
have benefitted from our expertise.

We’re a full-service government relations consulting firm
just a blockfrom the state capitol in Austin.
We create opportunities, define strategies and deliver solutions
to challenges involving the executive, legislative
and regulatory branches of Texas state government
.


Please email for a freeconsultation.

 

 

EWA Website

EWA Facebook

EWA LinkedIn

EWA Twitter

 

512-478-7500

info@wrighttexas.com
Unsubscribe from this list

Copyright © 2016 Eric Wright & Associates

 

 


more Events

The upcoming calendar is currently empty.

Click here to view past events and photos »

Membership Software Powered by YourMembership  ::  Legal