GOVERNMENT: Legislature

Inspection stickers will begin disappearing from Texas vehicles when the state rolls out a new single-sticker program for inspection and registration on March 1, 2015.
Inspection stickers will begin disappearing from Texas vehicles when the state rolls out a new single-sticker program for inspection and registration on March 1, 2015.

Lawmaker Asks Ken Paxton to Weigh In on Car Registration Debate

Amid a turf battle between the state's Department of Motor Vehicles and some Texas counties over who should handle vehicle registration renewals, a state lawmaker has asked Attorney General Ken Paxton to weigh in.

Lawmaker Asks Ken Paxton to Weigh In on Car Registration Debate

Inspection stickers will begin disappearing from Texas vehicles when the state rolls out a new single-sticker program for inspection and registration on March 1, 2015.
Inspection stickers will begin disappearing from Texas vehicles when the state rolls out a new single-sticker program for inspection and registration on March 1, 2015.

Amid a turf battle between the state's Department of Motor Vehicles and some Texas counties over who should handle vehicle registration renewals, a state lawmaker has asked Attorney General Ken Paxton to weigh in.

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Interactive: Bill Tracker for the 83rd Session

Sharp Drop in Abortions Followed Restrictions

Lara Chelian, center, and her mother, Renee Chelian, both abortion providers from Michigan, hold signs in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., as Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt is argued inside on March 2, 2016. The case is focused on the Texas law known as House Bill 2.
Lara Chelian, center, and her mother, Renee Chelian, both abortion providers from Michigan, hold signs in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., as Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt is argued inside on March 2, 2016. The case is focused on the Texas law known as House Bill 2.

The number of drug-induced abortions in Texas plummeted in the first full year after the state's strict 2013 abortion law took effect, according to statistics released Thursday by the Texas Department of State Health Services. 

Abortion Legal Fight Cost Texas More Than $1 Million

Demonstrators celebrated at the U.S. Supreme Court on June 27, 2016, after the court struck down a Texas law imposing strict abortion regulations.
Demonstrators celebrated at the U.S. Supreme Court on June 27, 2016, after the court struck down a Texas law imposing strict abortion regulations.

The legal battle to defend Texas' 2013 abortion restrictions — which the U.S. Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional on Monday — cost Texas taxpayers more than $1 million, according to records obtained by The Texas Tribune.

Vindication For Wendy Davis and "Unruly Mob"

Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, during her filibuster of an abortion bill on June 25, 2013.
Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, during her filibuster of an abortion bill on June 25, 2013.

Almost three years to the day after Wendy Davis held the Texas Senate floor in a filibuster against abortion restrictions that galvanized reproductive rights activists, vindication came Monday in the form of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

Lawmakers Ask Whether Agencies Abused Emergency Leave Policy

State Reps Todd Hunter, Lyle Larson and Chris Turner listen as representatives of the State Auditor's Office testify before the House Committee on General Investigating and Ethics July 12, 2016.  The committee is investigating the use by state agencies of emergency leave and settlement payments to departing employees.
State Reps Todd Hunter, Lyle Larson and Chris Turner listen as representatives of the State Auditor's Office testify before the House Committee on General Investigating and Ethics July 12, 2016. The committee is investigating the use by state agencies of emergency leave and settlement payments to departing employees.

Lawmakers peppered policy experts with questions about whether state agencies who keep departing employees on the state payroll by placing them on "emergency leave" violated state law, during a hearing on Tuesday. 

Six Months In, Few Open Carry Complaints

Delegate James Blair of Cherokee County open carries a firearm while leaving the Dallas Convention Center at the Republican Party of Texas gathering on May 14, 2016.
Delegate James Blair of Cherokee County open carries a firearm while leaving the Dallas Convention Center at the Republican Party of Texas gathering on May 14, 2016.

Six months ago when properly licensed Texans began openly carrying handguns, anti-gun activists and Second Amendment backers were sharply divided over what to expect. So far, gun owners seem to have the most complaints.

Paxton Ramps Up Fight Against Transgender Policy

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton holds a press conference on June 9, 2016 in front of the U.S. Supreme Court to discuss the filing of a lawsuit against the state of Delaware
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton holds a press conference on June 9, 2016 in front of the U.S. Supreme Court to discuss the filing of a lawsuit against the state of Delaware

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton on Wednesday asked a federal judge in Wichita Falls to put a nationwide halt on the Obama Administration’s directive instructing school districts across the country not to discriminate against transgender students.

Pay Caseworkers and Fosters More, Chief Says

Hank Whitman, commissioner of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, took office May 1.
Hank Whitman, commissioner of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, took office May 1.

In a wide-ranging interview, Hank Whitman, the new commissioner overseeing Child Protective Services, explains how he thinks he can turn around a child welfare agency crippled by low morale, high turnover and a spate of high-profile child deaths.