Tag Archives: Texas Legislature

Wednesday, July 17, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Hot race shaping up for Republicans in HD 47

Former Austin City Council Member Don Zimmerman outraised four other Republican candidates vying for the chance to meet Democratic state Rep. Vikki Goodwin in the House District 47 race next year.Zimmerman reported raising nearly $37,700 in his July 15 filing…

Wednesday, July 3, 2019 by Jo Clifton

City to get land for Shoal Creek bike bridge

As a result of two bills sponsored by Rep. Donna Howard and Sen. Kirk Watson, both Austin Democrats, the city of Austin will soon have an easement on state property that will allow for construction of a pedestrian-bicycle bridge connecting…

Friday, June 28, 2019 by Jo Clifton

‘Shot clock’ bill resets development review time

As Austin city leaders had their attention focused on the 3.5 percent tax cap that moved through the Texas Legislature, legislators were busy approving a bill that could have a serious impact on the city’s efforts to regulate development. The…

Friday, May 31, 2019 by Andrew Weber

Texas lawmakers tried to take the reins from cities this session. The results were mixed.

For the last handful of legislative sessions, the Texas Legislature has had it in for Austin and other cities.GOP lawmakers who regularly thumb their noses at “big government”-minded efforts in D.C. have filed bills targeting city laws regulating everything from…

Wednesday, May 29, 2019 by Jack Craver

Travis County contemplates small wins, big losses at Legislature

Every week while the state Legislature is in session, Travis County’s chief lobbyist, Deece Eckstein, briefs members of the Commissioners Court on the bills that might affect the county. In recent months, the weekly briefing has usually been bleak, but…

Wednesday, May 22, 2019 by Ashley Lopez

State lawmakers approve legislation shielding most Texans from surprise medical bills

Surprise medical bills may be a thing of the past for many Texans. In a unanimous vote, the Texas House approved a Senate bill banning health care providers from sending steep medical bills to insured Texans in emergencies.Senate Bill 1264…

Friday, May 3, 2019 by Chad Swiatecki

State bill no longer targets Austin’s MLS deal

A Senate bill that many felt could endanger the city’s lease deal on a new soccer stadium has been amended in a way that appears to have created an exception for the roughly $250 million structure.On Thursday, State Sen. Paul…

Friday, May 3, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Watching Legislature, city delays financial forecast

Without final action on the property tax bill moving through the Texas Legislature, Austin budget planners are holding off on presenting the city’s financial forecast to City Council. At this point, however, legislative watchers expect final passage of SB 2,…

Thursday, April 18, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Austinites testify for, against Precourt bill

Dave Greeley, president of Precourt Sports Ventures, told a Senate committee Tuesday night that SB 1771 “would jeopardize the viability” of Austin FC, the soccer club slated to play in the stadium his company has agreed to build at McKalla…

Friday, April 5, 2019 by Andrew Weber

Austin defends its short-term rental rules before Texas lawmakers

Austin’s rules on short-term rental units – advertised on apps and sites like Airbnb and HomeAway – are under fire at the Texas Capitol. House lawmakers heard testimony Thursday on a bill that would override the city’s ban on properties…

Wednesday, March 6, 2019 by Ashley Lopez

House Speaker Pelosi says attempted voter purge in Texas shows need for stronger federal protections

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made a visit to East Austin on Tuesday to promote sweeping voting reform legislation currently before Congress.Among other things, House Bill 1 would ensure online voter registration or automatic registration for citizens across the country. The…

Thursday, February 14, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Buda seeks passage of aquifer storage bill

Buda’s explosive growth, from about 7,300 people in 2010 to nearly 17,000 today, coupled with a changing climate that brings both floods and drought, means that the city has to carefully manage its water resources.The city is hoping to move…

Friday, January 25, 2019 by Ryan Thornton

County pushes for progress amid state’s political battles

Travis County has already filed bills for a third of its dozen legislative priorities for the 86th Texas Legislature since the session began Jan. 8.One of these priorities is to ensure that sobering centers are authorized to assume responsibility for…

Wednesday, January 23, 2019 by Andrew Weber

Texas wants to put more autonomous vehicles on the road

Like a mirage on a sun-beaten West Texas highway, the future of autonomous vehicles in Texas isn’t altogether clear. A new state effort hopes to clear up the prospect of an increasingly connected fleet of vehicles on the road.The Texas…

Thursday, January 17, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Better session ahead, legislators say

Senator Kirk Watson told those gathered at the Real Estate Council of Austin luncheon on Wednesday that he is “more optimistic than I have been in the past by quite a bit” about the possibility of resolving numerous problems related…

Thursday, December 6, 2018 by Chad Swiatecki

Local pols examine impacts, options in state school funding debate

Leaders from all levels of government in Central Texas, plus most of the area’s school districts, learned Wednesday that they could be in for budgetary hits if state lawmakers pass limits on local property tax increases without restructuring the state’s…

Tuesday, November 27, 2018 by Chad Swiatecki

Austin, TravCo leaders brace for state laws targeting revenue, local control

Austin leaders have started gaming out the budget cuts and possible staffing and service reductions that would come from possible state caps on property tax increases.At last week’s meeting of the Austin Regional Affordability Committee, city staff briefed a consortium…

Wednesday, October 17, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Property taxes, Austin Energy top city’s worry list

Once again, the city of Austin, along with other large Texas cities, will face a grueling task as the 2019 legislative session begins in January.Intergovernmental Relations Officer Brie Franco told City Council during Tuesday’s work session that she and the…

Thursday, July 12, 2018 by Audrey McGlinchy

Texas usually fights Austin at the Capitol. Lately, the fight is in the courtroom.

The city of Austin has endured several legal jabs from the state in the past couple of months.Recently, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton stepped into a dispute over the makeup of the city’s Planning Commission. A week ago, the city…

Monday, July 2, 2018 by Elizabeth Pagano

Austin Monitor Radio: Deece Eckstein

This week, Travis County Intergovernmental Relations Coordinator Deece Eckstein joins Austin Monitor freelancer Caleb Pritchard and editor Elizabeth Pagano. Listen in below to hear predictions about the upcoming session of the Texas Legislature and a review of some of the…

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