GOVERNMENT: State Agencies

Spouses of Gay Public Employees Eligible for Benefits

A couple arranges a marriage license at the Travis County Clerk's office on June 26, 2015.
A couple arranges a marriage license at the Travis County Clerk's office on June 26, 2015.

As of Wednesday, public employers including Texas agencies and universities will allow current and retired gay and lesbian employees to enroll their same-sex spouses in the same benefit programs and services available to opposite-sex couples.

Residency Requirement for Statewide Elected Officials Could Change

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.

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.

George P. Bush Headlines Red Carpet 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 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.

 

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.