Texas Nonprofit Sector Receives Attention of Texas Legislators in the 2017 Session

End-of-session final summary:

The 85th Texas Legislature Regular Session ended on May 29, 2017, featuring more than 7,000 bills and resolutions in both houses that occupied the attention of lawmakers and affected citizens and groups. Compared to controversies and issues in the past, this was a quiet and relatively challenge-free session for the charities, state associations, foundations and community-based volunteer organizations that comprise the Texas nonprofit sector. The following summary list of bills and issues include these highlights:  [Read and print the full summary here.] [Read more…]

Texas Legislation Affecting Nonprofit Organizations Approaches Session’s End

85th Texas Legislature, 2017 Regular Session
As of April 30, 2017

• Legislators race to the finish of session: 

With four weeks remaining in the 85th regular session, legislators are scrambling to get bills passed in their house and quickly referred to a friendly committee in the other house for quick action. There are now more than 7,000 bills and resolutions on file, depending on how you count them. Bills that passed one house but are not moving this week in the other house are likely dead “by the clock” for this session, unless the legislator is skillful in attaching the key elements of a short bill onto a compatible bill that is moving through the process and to final passage.

> Read and print the full summary here. [Read more…]

First Summary of Bills in the 2017 Texas Legislature Affecting Nonprofit Organizations

Bill filing deadline has passed on the “60th day” of session:

A first snapshot of the variety of issues before the 2017 Texas Legislature is now available.  The 60th day has passed, which is the last day for senators and representatives to file bills.  There are now more than 7,000 bills and resolutions on file, depending on how you count them.  A bill may have a duplicate or companion bill filed in the other chamber, but there remain millions of lines of legislative text to manage before adjournment on May 29. [Read more…]

Texas Legislature 2017 Preview

Issues to consider in reviewing Texas legislative proposals that affect nonprofits and associations

The 85th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, will be called to order on January 10, 2017, but already hundreds of proposed bills have been pre-filed by sponsors in the House and Senate. More than 6,000 bills will be filed during the session. The challenge becomes how to sort through them and identify the bills that directly affect the nonprofit sector and the interests of community leaders, volunteers and those who support community-based organizations, statewide associations and foundations. [Read more…]

Texas Legislature’s “interim committee” work picks up in 2016 — stay informed

Much of the preparation and work for the 2017 legislative session will be initiated during the 2016 interim period by House and Senate committees through “charges” issued by the speaker and lieutenant governor. Stakeholders, advocacy groups and interested persons should monitor these committee agendas and be alert to background research, policy discussions, consensus-building and committee public hearings. These activities can result in important bill drafts that emerge full-blown early in the 2017 session, often with considerable member support. At that point, it may be too late to influence or oppose a bill or policy shift that has accrued broad support. [Read more…]