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The Texas Blue
Advancing Progressive Ideas

Karl Lynch's blog

Bill Tracker: SB 105 North Texas Law School

Early on in this legislative session I talked about SB 105 that would create a new law school in Dallas. I wanted to track the bill’s progress.

Bill Tracker: HB 1000 No Sales Tax on Energy Efficient Products

HB 1000 eliminates sales tax collection on certain products if the products are energy efficient. The list of products is long, and includes dishwashers, refrigerators, ceiling fans, and compact fluorescent lightbulbs.

Bill Tracker: HB 3829 v. HB 104 - Residents

Tuition at our state universities is different for in-state students and out-of-state students. In-state “residents” pay less to attend our colleges. This reality is repeated in most states in the United States.

Bill Tracker: SB 127 – Communities in Schools

About five years ago, my office was located in the same building as the local chapter of Communities in Schools (CIS). The staff at CIS would have lunch with us and recruit us for various events. I took several field trips and made some school visits, and I found that kids today are as bright, sassy, and nervous as when I went to school. These kids, however, needed a little bit more help to keep them on the road to graduation due to other distractions going on in their lives.

Bill Tracker: SB 583 Counseling to Fast Track Divorce

SB 583, introduced by Senator Dan Patrick, would change the mandatory waiting time before finalizing a divorce. Currently, the waiting period is 60 days. This legislation would increase the waiting period to 180 days. In a strange exception, couples that go to 10 hours of counseling would only have to wait 90 days. The bill was left pending in committee.

Bill Tracker: HB 2683 – State Sponsored Marriage Counseling

HB 2683 made it out of committee and passed in the House. The unofficial record vote was 72 – 68. The bill has five authors and numerous coauthors.

Bill Tracker: SB 601 and 602 – Restricting Actions of Police Organizations

Senator Van de Putte introduced SB 601 and 602. These bills arduously restrict the activities of labor organizations that represent peace officers when and if the labor organization accepts state funding.

SB 602 prohibits a labor organization that represents peace officers from: 1) establishing a political committee, 2) assisting a political committee in performing political activities, and 3) making political contributions or political expenditures IF the labor organization accepts a grant or appropriated money from a state agency.

Bill Tracker: HB 110 – Limitations on Campaigns

Our Presidential hopefuls have been busy. Raising $25 million dollars in a few months at $2,300 clips is quite difficult. By comparison, Texas political hopefuls do not have any limitations on how much they can raise from one particular individual.

Bill Tracker: SB 129 Finally Recognizing That Gifts Have Value

In an effort to clean up the state house, SB 129 seems on its way to becoming law. SB 129 has a long list of companions: HB 72, HB 255, SB 558 are essentially all the same bill.

Bill Tracker: SB 86 and HB 121 – Dating Violence Policies

SB 86 would require each school district to adopt and implement a policy to address dating violence. The bill dictates that a definition of dating violence must be included in the policy.

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