Update on the 87th Legislative Session

State Rep. Lynn Stucky

Governor Greg Abbott named the following as emergency items, or items the Legislature can vote on within the first 60 days of the session, which began Jan. 12:

* Expanding broadband access

* Passing laws that prevent cities from defunding the police

* Fixing the “flawed bail system” via the Damon Allen Act

* Election integrity so Texans can have “trust and confidence in the outcome of elections”

* Coronavirus-related civil liberty protections for “individuals, businesses and health care providers that operated safely during the pandemic”

* Winterization of Texas’ power system and for the Legislature to ensure the necessary funding for winterization (added Feb. 18, 2021)

House committee assignments were named on Feb. 4, by Speaker Dade Phelan. I am honored to have been named Vice Chair of the House Committee on County Affairs. The County Affairs Committee has jurisdiction over legislation related to counties, including their organization, creation, boundaries, government, and finance and the compensation and duties of their officers and employees; establishing districts for the election of governing bodies of counties; regional councils of governments; multicounty boards or commissions; relationships or contracts between counties; and the Commission on Jail Standards.

Additionally, I have been reappointed to the powerful House Committee on Appropriations and the Appropriations Subcommittee on Article III. The Appropriations Committee is the budget writing committee. We are constitutionally required to pass a balanced state budget for the next two years.

Article III deals specifically with funding for public and higher education in the State of Texas. This appointment will allow me to protect the monumental reforms and investments we made to public education formula funding and tax relief from last session. The subcommittee also has authority over the Teacher Retirement System (TRS).

Committee meetings for all House committees have begun and legislation is starting its way through the process.

On Feb. 25, there was a joint hearing conducted by the House Committees on State Affairs and Energy Resources. The committees considered the factors that led to statewide electrical blackouts during the unprecedented weather events that occurred in mid-February. This was the first step in establishing what went wrong and how we can ensure an event like that never happens in the State of Texas ever again.

I’d also like to reiterate that while there are additional protocols in place, the Capitol and my office are open to the public. Details on how to reach me or my staff with concerns, comments, or anything you may need assistance with can be found here:

PO Box 2910

Austin, TX 78701

Office: E2.822

Capitol Phone: 512-463-0582

For issues in Denton County, my District Office is at:

400 West Oak Street, Suite 106

Denton, TX 76201

District Phone: 940-243-0230

As always, it is an honor to serve as your state representative!