This Week in Texas: Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Posted April 29, 2015 in The Mignon Memo

The Plot Thickens

  • Budget conferees have been announced and are tasked with ironing out a final budget for the 2016-2017 biennium. Conferees have started meeting to negotiate a compromise between the House and Senate versions of the budget.

House conferees:

John Otto (R–Dayton)

Sylvester Turner (D–Houston)

Trent Ashby (R–Lufkin)

Sarah Davis (R–West University Place)

Larry Gonzales (R–Round Rock)

Senate conferees

Jane Nelson (R–Flower Mound)

Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa (D–McAllen)

Joan Huffman (R–Houston)

Lois Kolkhorst (R–Brenham)

Charles Schwertner (R–Georgetown)

  • Few things inspire more anxiety in Capitol regulars than the phrase “special session.” However, with federal decisions on redistricting and voter ID pending, Texas lawmakers could be heading back to the office for some legislative overtime.
  • The House and Senate agree that they want to lower taxes—but which taxes? The Texas House approved a 4.9 billion dollar tax cut on Tuesday, which would not only cut the franchise tax but also lower sales tax for the first time in Texas history. The House plan, which included no cuts to property tax, conflicts with the Senate’s tax plan, which focuses on property tax. In the coming weeks, the Legislature may be headed for a tax-cut showdown!


Only in Austin…

The 84th Session’s Silliest Bill captions: This session has seen its fair share of serious bills but some silliness slipped through the legislative cracks. In no particular order, check out some of the captions:

  1. Relating to honesty in state taxation.
  2. Relating to a written agreement concerning a projectile that travels across a property line.
  3. Relating to the naming by the Texas Historical Commission of certain areas without historical value that are on historic sites.
  4. Designating #Texas as the official hashtag of Texas.
  5. Relating to the sale and purchase of shark fins or products derived from shark fins; creating a criminal offense.

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