Tribpedia: James "jim" Keffer

Texas House Appropriations Chairman John Otto, R-Dayton, looks at his computer while state Rep. Jimmie Don Aycock, R-Killeen, stands nearby on June 1, 2015.
Texas House Appropriations Chairman John Otto, R-Dayton, looks at his computer while state Rep. Jimmie Don Aycock, R-Killeen, stands nearby on June 1, 2015.

Analysis: Legislature Losing Some Key Players

It will be more than a year before we know everyone who is and is not coming back to the Texas Legislature, but the trickle has started, and some big players are leaving the field. 

House Speaker Joe Straus (left) and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.
House Speaker Joe Straus (left) and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.

The Brief: April 23, 2015

The word of the day on Wednesday was tension, which infected the traditional weekly breakfast work meeting held by the state's top three leaders and later manifested itself on the House floor as members selected their budget negotiators.

Granbury resident Joe Williams (left) stands with City Council Member Rose Myers and Hood County Commissioner Steve Berry under a Lake Granbury resident's dock in the Waters Edge neighborhood on Lake Granbury's north shore. The lake is 53 percent full.
Granbury resident Joe Williams (left) stands with City Council Member Rose Myers and Hood County Commissioner Steve Berry under a Lake Granbury resident's dock in the Waters Edge neighborhood on Lake Granbury's north shore. The lake is 53 percent full.

Criticism of Water Policy Flows From Conservatives

Many conservative activists in Texas worry that when it comes to state water policy, Republican leaders have not focused on principles like small government, private property rights and local control. 

An oil & gas drilling rig is drilling a well for Pioneer Natural Resources in the Eagle Ford Shale formation near Yorktown.
An oil & gas drilling rig is drilling a well for Pioneer Natural Resources in the Eagle Ford Shale formation near Yorktown.

House Tentatively Approves Fracking Disclosure Bill

The Texas House gave tentative approval to a bill on Wednesday that would require gas companies to publicly disclose the chemicals they use in the controversial drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing.

A worker untangles a hose at a Fountain Quail water management and treatment facility in Roanoake, Texas. Fountain Quail cleans and separates water used in fracking for natural gas removal.
A worker untangles a hose at a Fountain Quail water management and treatment facility in Roanoake, Texas. Fountain Quail cleans and separates water used in fracking for natural gas removal.

Texas Could Require Disclosure of Drilling Chemicals

A recently introduced bill would make Texas one of only a few states to require natural gas companies to disclose, for a public website, what chemicals they use in the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing.

Joe Straus' face on a slot machine. Screen grab from internet ad.
Joe Straus' face on a slot machine. Screen grab from internet ad.

TribBlog: RINO Hunters

The latest salvo in the speaker race is a slick internet video that argues the House should have a more conservative speaker than Joe Straus. And it suggests the fight to come, knocking over dominoes with the pictures of "Republicans In Name Only" who could be targets in the GOP primaries two years from now: Keffer, Truitt, Geren, Solomons, Eissler, Cook...