Texas Legislature 2019 | Texas Public Radio

Texas Legislature 2019

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The Texas Senate unanimously passed legislation expanding the Texas Compassionate Use Program on Wednesday. The legislation is expected to become law, enabling more patients to purchase marijuana-derived CBD oil in Texas.

Ryan Poppe | Texas Public Radio

Texas lawmakers overwhelmingly approved an effort to allow farmers to grow industrial hemp in the state.

Ryan Poppe / Texas Public Radio

The Texas Senate tentatively approved a bill Tuesday that would add more transparency and accountability to sexual assault reporting systems in colleges and universities throughout the state.  

Ryan Poppe / Texas Public Radio

Updated on March 7, 2019.

Texas leads the nation in arrests for possessing small amounts of marijuana. According to the most recent statistics available, there were 60,000 arrests in 2016 over possession of less than an ounce of the drug.

KUT.org

Texas lawmakers want to end a backlog of untested rape kits. A bipartisan bill introduced Tuesday aimed to help thousands of women find justice and closure. The legislation was named after a sexual assault survivor who was denied justice after waiting decades for her evidence to be tested.

Ryan Poppe | Texas Public Radio

Groups pushing for an expansion of the state’s medical marijuana law joined people pushing decriminalization and total legalization efforts at the State Capitol on Thursday.  

The 400 people gathered in Austin comprised a colorful crowd of diverse cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. But they all shared one objective: reform of the state’s current marijuana laws.

Heather Fazio, director of Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy, said it has been a “banner year” for marijuana advocacy in Texas.

Ryan Poppe / Texas Public Radio

House Speaker Dennis Bonnen has handed out committee assignments, and South Texas lawmakers now lead 10 of those committees.


Ryan Poppe

Updated at 7 p.m.

Gov. Greg Abbott, who was sworn into office Tuesday to begin his second term, made school finance reform and improving educational outcomes his top priorities during his inaugural address at the state Capitol.

State Rep. Diego Bernal speaks to students at Churchill High School Oct. 16, 2018.
File Photo | Camille Phillips | Texas Public Radio

After failing to pass legislation to reform public school funding in 2017, state leaders have pledged to make it a top priority this legislative session.

The Texas Public School Finance Commission spent 2018 creating a roadmap for lawmakers to enact that reform, but key questions remain.


Ryan E. Poppe

The next Texas legislative session begins in January, and lawmakers began filing their legislation Monday.