As the special session of the Texas legislature wraps up, funding is announced for part two
The second special session is already due to start on Saturday.
AUSTIN, Texas – The first special session ended on Friday and the second round on Saturday.
So what topics has Governor Greg Abbott appealed to?
He wants lawmakers to pass bills on all points of the first extraordinary session, including electoral reform and bail reform. He also added six new topics. He notably put COVID-19 and education on the agenda, mentioning the ban on mask warrants right.
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It has been 25 days since House Democrats in Texas broke the quorum and traveled to Washington, DC, to prevent a vote on the controversial electoral reform bill. On Friday they claimed victory by killing this bill.
“Yes, we managed to miss the time for the first special session, but we are not naive to think that we have won the war and that our job is done because tomorrow we will face new challenges with a new battle” , said Rep. Nicole Collier.
Lawmakers also acknowledged that Friday marked the 56th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson, coming into force. They held a rally at the Texas Capitol on Friday night:
Governor Abbott has said he will continue to call special sessions until electoral reform is passed.
Also on Friday, Gov. Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, President Dade Phelan, Senate Finance Committee Chair Jane Nelson and House Supply Chair Dr. Greg Bonnen announced an additional month of funding for the Texas Legislature before the second session. The current budget will fund the legislature until August 31.
“Texans shouldn’t have to pay for lawmakers who quit their jobs and leave business unfinished,” Gov. Abbott said. “Today, funding is temporarily restored for legislative staff who will be needed to pass critical legislation on the appeal, including COVID-19 funding for health care, public school education strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic, providing property tax relief, funding our retired teachers, protecting our adopted children and securing the border. ”
“As Lieutenant Governor of Texas and Co-Chair of the Legislative Budget Council, I was never going to let the irresponsible Democrats on the run take away the paychecks and benefits of our Capital staff who work hard every day for the people. of Texas, ”the lieutenant governor said. Governor Patrick.
“As a former legislative staff I know firsthand the dedication of those who work for elected officials and our legislative bodies,” said President Phelan. “President Greg Bonnen and I have worked with Lt. Gov. Patrick, President Nelson and the Texas House and Senate to expand funding for salaries and benefits for those who devote a great deal of time and energy to service. of our great state. Every voter in Texas deserves leaders who will fight for them in Austin and Texas House will deliver real results for the people of Texas in the Second Special Session. “
“We care deeply about our staff, and this action will prevent any disruption of their salaries or benefits during our deliberations,” Nelson said. “This is a temporary extension, which can be made permanent if lawmakers show up for work in the special session.”
“The Texas House of Representatives, President Phelan and I care deeply about our legislative staff who serve the State of Texas,” said Dr. Bonnen. “With the help of Lieutenant Governor Patrick, President Nelson and our colleagues in the Senate, we identified a solution to meet the needs of our staff who support us and our constituents throughout the year. However, Common-sense Texans have known that for a long time … mandate corrections require our absent colleagues to return to work so that we can pass section X of the budget to fully fund our staff and other legislative agencies. “
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