State Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston, chairman of the House Public Education Committee, speaks about his school finance bill on May 24, 2017. 
<p>State Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston, chairman of the House Public Education Committee, speaks about his school finance bill on May 24, 2017.&nbsp;</p>

School finance legislation is pronounced dead

Senate Education Chairman Larry Taylor on Wednesday afternoon said that he would not appoint conferees to negotiate with the House on a proposed school finance overhaul. “That deal is dead,” he said.

 
Commissioner Steven Weinberg attended the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's quarterly meeting via video conference on May 23, 2017. Weinberg quit the day of the meeting. Chairman Kevin Lilly, left, alongside Commissioner Ida Clement Steen, right, recognized Carla Thompson with a promotion to Captain.
<p><span>Commissioner Steven Weinberg attended the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's quarterly meeting via video conference on May 23, 2017. Weinberg quit the day of the meeting. Chairman Kevin Lilly, left, alongside Commissioner Ida Clement Steen, right, recognized Carla Thompson with a promotion to Captain.</span></p>

Another top TABC honcho departing amid controversy

Steven Weinberg abruptly quit this week as commissioner of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, which has been roiled by reports of extravagant spending, mismanagement and heavy-handed regulation. 

Retired Houston firefighters and their supporters watch from the state House gallery on May 6, 2017.&nbsp;
<p><span>Retired Houston firefighters and their supporters watch from the state House gallery on May 6, 2017.&nbsp;</span></p>

Houston pension bill heads for governor's desk, but firefighters are still mad

The House passed a controversial Senate version of a Houston pension bill, angering firefighters. But in Dallas, leaders appear to have coalesced around a bill that once divided the mayor and first responders in that city.

Another top TABC honcho departing amid controversy

Commissioner Steven Weinberg attended the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's quarterly meeting via video conference on May 23, 2017. Weinberg quit the day of the meeting. Chairman Kevin Lilly, left, alongside Commissioner Ida Clement Steen, right, recognized Carla Thompson with a promotion to Captain.
<p><span>Commissioner Steven Weinberg attended the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission's quarterly meeting via video conference on May 23, 2017. Weinberg quit the day of the meeting. Chairman Kevin Lilly, left, alongside Commissioner Ida Clement Steen, right, recognized Carla Thompson with a promotion to Captain.</span></p>

Steven Weinberg abruptly quit this week as commissioner of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, which has been roiled by reports of extravagant spending, mismanagement and heavy-handed regulation. 

Houston pension bill heads for governor's desk, but firefighters are still mad

Retired Houston firefighters and their supporters watch from the state House gallery on May 6, 2017.&nbsp;
<p><span>Retired Houston firefighters and their supporters watch from the state House gallery on May 6, 2017.&nbsp;</span></p>

The House passed a controversial Senate version of a Houston pension bill, angering firefighters. But in Dallas, leaders appear to have coalesced around a bill that once divided the mayor and first responders in that city.

 

Texas House backs voter ID overhaul, with changes

State Rep. Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas,&nbsp;asks questions about Senate Bill 5, the voter ID bill, which has been declared an emergency item by Gov. Abbott, on May 23, 2017.
<p><span>State Rep. Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas,&nbsp;asks questions about Senate Bill 5, the voter ID bill, which has been declared an emergency item by Gov. Abbott, on May 23, 2017.</span></p>

The 95-54 vote followed a six-hour debate that saw fierce pushback from Democrats, who argued the legislation wouldn’t go far enough to expand ballot access and might discourage some Texans from going to the polls.

House backs Giddings measure targeting "lunch shaming"

State Rep. Helen Giddings, D-Desoto, holds up a sample of a piece of cheese given to students who lack money to pay for school lunches in Dallas area schools during a personal privilege speech on the House floor May 9, 2017, where she chastised House Freedom Caucus members for killing her bill on school lunches for poor kids.&nbsp;
<p>State Rep. Helen Giddings, D-Desoto, holds up a sample of a piece of cheese given to students who lack money to pay for school lunches in Dallas area schools during a personal privilege speech on the House floor May 9, 2017, where she chastised House Freedom Caucus members for killing her bill on school lunches for poor kids.&nbsp;</p>

After several failed attempts and compromises during the legislative session, Rep. Helen Giddings finally succeeded in getting the House to pass a measure that targets "lunch shaming" in schools.

Texas Senate looks to resurrect bathroom, property tax bills

At a May 17, 2017, news conference, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick told reporters that the House had to pass two items &mdash; property tax reform and the "bathroom bill" &mdash; or he'd look to force a special session.
<p><span>At a May 17, 2017, news conference, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick told reporters that the House had to pass two items &mdash; property tax reform and the "bathroom bill" &mdash; or he'd look to force a special session.</span></p>

The Texas Senate, hoping to resurrect its versions of bathroom and property tax proposals dear to Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, grafted both of them onto unrelated county affairs legislation early Wednesday morning.

 

The Brief: A late-night blow to Texas "bathroom bill" compromise

Members of the clergy and others supporting LGBT rights gather outside the Texas House chamber May 3, 2017 to show support for the community affected by "bathroom bill" legislation pending at the 85th Legislature.&nbsp;
<p>Members of the clergy and others supporting LGBT rights gather outside the Texas House chamber May 3, 2017 to show support for the community affected by "bathroom bill" legislation pending at the 85th Legislature.&nbsp;</p>

Inching toward the legislative finish line and with the possibility of a special session looming in the distance, the Texas Legislature had another busy Tuesday.  

Field to replace Mechler takes shape

Texas GOP Chairman Tom Mechler speaks at the&nbsp;State Republican Convention in Dallas on May 13, 2016.
<p><span>Texas GOP Chairman Tom Mechler speaks at the&nbsp;</span>State Republican Convention in Dallas on May 13, 2016.</p>

The most-discussed potential candidates had all made up their minds by the end of Tuesday, with a two-way race emerging between Houston-area businessman Rick Figueroa and Travis County GOP Chairman James Dickey.

Grieving mom “humbled” and “relieved” after Senate passes autopsy bill

Wyatt McDaniel&nbsp;died in an accident while playing in a sand pile with his little brother on Jan. 25, 2013. His mother, Lara McDaniel, was not able to view his body until after his autopsy and is advocating for Texas lawmakers to adopt "Wyatt's Law."
<p><span>Wyatt McDaniel&nbsp;<span>died in an accident while playing in a sand pile with his little brother on Jan. 25, 2013. His mother, Lara McDaniel, was not able to view his body until after his autopsy and is advocating for Texas lawmakers to adopt "Wyatt's Law."</span></span></p>

Lara McDaniel was devastated when her 7-year-old son died in an accident. An investigator didn't allow her to see her child's body until three days after his death — after an autopsy had been conducted.