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The Texas Capitol, May 15, 2015.
The Texas Capitol, May 15, 2015.

Analysis: A Short List with Some Explosive Issues

It's not the end of the session, but Tuesday marks the end of the line for a lot of legislation. And the fates of the items at the bottom of the House's list could be determined by long debates on ethics, guns, abortion and state spending limits.

The Brief: May 26, 2015

Empty Texas House seat with paperwork, May 1, 2015.
Empty Texas House seat with paperwork, May 1, 2015.

The House faces a major deadline today; it's the last day to take up contested Senate bills and, as such, the session promises to last until the clock strikes midnight. It doesn't help that a major backlog of controversial legislation awaits House members.

House Signs Off on Body Camera Bill

Austin police Chief Art Acevedo and Austin Police Association President Kenneth Casaday speak with Sen. Royce West D-Dallas on Feb. 12th, 2015 inside Texas Capitol as the Senate Committee on State Affairs listens testimony on SB 11 & SB 17.
Austin police Chief Art Acevedo and Austin Police Association President Kenneth Casaday speak with Sen. Royce West D-Dallas on Feb. 12th, 2015 inside Texas Capitol as the Senate Committee on State Affairs listens testimony on SB 11 & SB 17.

The Texas House has tentatively approved legislation that could increase the use of cameras worn by police officers, an effort to smooth relations between law enforcement and the public by making their interactions more transparent.

 

Senate Won't Include "Abortion ID" Provision

State Sen. Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, and state Rep. Geanie Morrison, R-Victoria, are shepherding House Bill 3994 through the Legislature. The bill would tighten the requirements on "judicial bypass," the legal process used by minors seeking abortions without parental consent.
State Sen. Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, and state Rep. Geanie Morrison, R-Victoria, are shepherding House Bill 3994 through the Legislature. The bill would tighten the requirements on "judicial bypass," the legal process used by minors seeking abortions without parental consent.

The sponsor of a bill meant to impose additional restrictions on minors seeking abortions without parental consent will not pursue a controversial provision that would have required women to show a form of identification.

 

Senate Clears Bill Restricting Minors Seeking Abortions

Sen.Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, continues debate with Sen. Kirk Watson on HB3994 an abortion reform measure on May 25, 2015.
Sen.Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, continues debate with Sen. Kirk Watson on HB3994 an abortion reform measure on May 25, 2015.

After four hours of debate and more than a dozen failed amendments by Democrats, the Senate on Monday gave preliminary approval to far-reaching restrictions on minors seeking abortions in Texas without parental consent.

Proposal Targets Residency Requirement for Statewide Elected Officials

House Appropriations Chair John Otto explains a budget amendment to a colleague during House Bill 1 debate March 31, 2015.
House Appropriations Chair John Otto explains a budget amendment to a colleague during House Bill 1 debate March 31, 2015.

Statewide elected officials would no longer be required to live in Austin under a constitutional amendment that could be headed to voters on a general election ballot. The House tentatively backed the measure on Monday.