Yes, it is indeed 2020! Shutdowns galore, an unsettled election, riots and an America that is deeply divided create so much uncertainty for us all. Thank goodness for Texas!
In Texas, we have electoral certainty. We have a Governor and Lt. Governor that will not face election for another two years. They are already organized to get started on the upcoming Legislative Session. And the House of Representatives division of Democrats and Republicans remains the same, with a new Republican Speaker. While the House will have to officially vote on Opening Day for Representative Dade Phelan (R-Beaumont), the current House State Affairs Chairman, is being universally accepted by Democrats and Republicans as the “Presumptive Speaker Elect”.
When it comes to the State of Texas Politics, we don’t mess around. As we like to say here in the Lone Star State – “Don’t Mess with Texas”. And that is great news for business, policymakers and all clients of LLK LLC!
Bill filing is currently underway for the 87th Legislative Session, set to begin January 12th for 140 days. As per usual, thousands of bills are expected to be filed. But the number to make it through the process will largely depend on the process of the Session during a pandemic. These are unprecedented times. The Senate and House are currently working overtime to decide what that process will be as far as access and public hearings… Stay tuned for more on that…
The Session itself, will be one of the toughest in recent memory. The State Budget is item number 1. It’s technically the only bill that the Legislature must pass for the state’s upcoming fiscal year. Expect a lot of healthcare legislation, particularly during this time of Covid. Other items at the forefront are items that the Governor has “opened up” during the pandemic from the delivery of alcohol, telemedicine and numerous other regulatory items. The power of State power vs. Local powers are sure to be at the top of the list. And late in the Session, Redistricting (a once every ten-year process to draw the Legislative lines for the next decade) is never boring!
At our press time over 809 bills have been filed. Many to date that have been filed are re-files of bills that have not passed in past Legislative Sessions. One bill that is sure to gather bi-partisan support is a bill to allow the day after the Super Bowl as a designated holiday!
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. Everyone be safe out there. We will keep you apprised of any major developments surrounding our Texas Government. All the Best! Lara Keel, President, LLK LLC.