GOVERNMENT: State Agencies

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.

Proposal Targets Residency Requirement for Statewide Elected Officials

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.

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Government Salary Database Updated

State Cemetery Could Soon Be Under New Management

The Texas State Cemetery is home to more than 900 Texans who have shaped the civic and political life of the state, including 13 governors and Stephen F. Austin, the so-called Father of Texas.
The Texas State Cemetery is home to more than 900 Texans who have shaped the civic and political life of the state, including 13 governors and Stephen F. Austin, the so-called Father of Texas.

Lawmakers are aiming to restructure the chain of command at the Texas State Cemetery. But longtime caretakers of the famous graveyard think a measure moving through the Capitol goes too far in shifting power.

Stars From Texas, Hollywood Align at Alamo Event

Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush poses in front of Alamo with singer Phil Collins and actor Bill Paxton following a preview event of the 10-part series Texas Rising on May 18th, 2015.
Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush poses in front of Alamo with singer Phil Collins and actor Bill Paxton following a preview event of the 10-part series Texas Rising on May 18th, 2015.

A Lone Star-studded audience including Land Commissioner George P. Bush and Cecilia Abbott, the first lady of Texas, got a sneak preview of the new miniseries Texas Rising at a red-carpet fundraising event Monday night at the Alamo.

House Takes Step to Patch Pension Fund Hole

State Rep. Dan Flynn, R-Van, co-chair of the House Committee on Transparency in State Agency Operations, is shown calling an executive session on May, 12, 2014.
State Rep. Dan Flynn, R-Van, co-chair of the House Committee on Transparency in State Agency Operations, is shown calling an executive session on May, 12, 2014.

State workers would pay more into their retirement system but get pay raises to offset the cost under legislation that earned preliminary House approval Monday. 

Sid Miller Backed, Then Nixed, Ag Agency Remodel

Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller at Texas Republican Convention in Fort Worth, June 5th, 2014.
Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller at Texas Republican Convention in Fort Worth, June 5th, 2014.

Hand-scraped wood floors. Custom ceiling tile. A shower. Those items may not sound like upgrades a cash-strapped agency would need, and new Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller ultimately didn't think so, either. After initially supporting a big renovation at the agency, Miller decided to nix it, officials say.

Rules Hurt Family Violence Programs, Nelson Says

Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, during a Health and Human Services committee hearing on Feb. 19, 2013.
Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, during a Health and Human Services committee hearing on Feb. 19, 2013.

State regulations are unnecessarily holding up funds for shelters and programs that help victims of family violence, state Sen. Jane Nelson says. She wants to loosen the rules, even as she leads the charge to tighten other state contracting procedures. 

 

House Approves Protections for Breast-Feeding Moms

Patients wait to be seen at the People's Community Clinic in Austin, which provides state-subsidized women's health services to low-income women, in July 2014.
Patients wait to be seen at the People's Community Clinic in Austin, which provides state-subsidized women's health services to low-income women, in July 2014.

The Texas House on Thursday gave preliminary approval to a measure that would require public employers to provide accommodations for mothers who need to pump breast milk while at work.

Integrity Unit Won't Resume Inquiry Into DPS Contracts

Texas Department of Public Safety officers patrol Anzalduas Park as part of Operation Strong Safety. Texas National Guard soldiers deployed to the area on Monday will help DPS in its mission, officials said.
Texas Department of Public Safety officers patrol Anzalduas Park as part of Operation Strong Safety. Texas National Guard soldiers deployed to the area on Monday will help DPS in its mission, officials said.

Responding to a request by the Texas Department of Public Safety to renew an investigation into the department’s border security contracts, the head of the state’s anti-corruption unit said Monday that it was not equipped to continue the investigation.