Tribpedia: Gary Elkins

Chairwoman of the state Senate Finance Committee Jane Nelson and state House Appropriations Chairman John Otto.
Chairwoman of the state Senate Finance Committee Jane Nelson and state House Appropriations Chairman John Otto.

Limited Contracting Fixes Moving Forward

Amid a series of scandals, most lawmakers say they want to reform the way Texas hands out billions in state contracts. Discussion has narrowed to a handful of bills that some warn are merely first steps.

 

State Rep. John Carona holds up his right hand during his first swearing-in ceremony for the 72nd Legislature on January 8, 1991.
State Rep. John Carona holds up his right hand during his first swearing-in ceremony for the 72nd Legislature on January 8, 1991.

Slideshow: Sen. John Carona Through the Years

Take a photographic trip through Sen. John Carona's career in the Texas Legislature, from his swearing in as a freshman House member in 1991 to his chairmanship of the powerful Senate Committee on Business & Commerce.  

Avid outdoorsman Brady Knowlton is hoping noodling will become legal in Texas.
Avid outdoorsman Brady Knowlton is hoping noodling will become legal in Texas.

There's More Than One Way to Land a Catfish

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Hand fishing — that is, sticking your hand down the throat of a fish — is a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of up to $500. But not for long. State lawmakers on Thursday approved a bill to legalize hand fishing, sending it to the governor.

State Rep. Vicki Truitt, R-Southlake,  debates from the back microphone in the Texas House on May 13, 2011.
State Rep. Vicki Truitt, R-Southlake, debates from the back microphone in the Texas House on May 13, 2011.

As Clock Winds Down, Bill Body Count Mounts

It’s easier to spike legislation than to pass it, and timing is important. Nothing is dead for certain until the session ends, but lots of important things are not done, and the regular session ends on Memorial Day.