This Week in Texas: Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Posted December 5, 2019 in The Mignon Memo

Christmas Arrives at the Texas Capitol

The Christmas season officially arrived at the Texas Capitol and Governor’s Mansion on Monday, with the horse-drawn carriage delivery of Christmas trees from the Texas Christmas Tree Growers Association.  Elves will spend the week decorating the massive trees now standing in the Texas House and Senate Chambers, and visitors from all over the state will be able to enjoy them through the New Year.  For the eleventh year in a row in the Texas House, each of the 150 members will have the opportunity to place a special ornament, decorated by constituents to represent their district, on the tree – some past ornament collections can be seen here, here and here.  We can’t wait to show you the beautifully decorated trees next week!

Newsworthiness from the Texas Capitol:  Filing Deadlines and Interim Charges

Candidates have until next Monday, December 9th, to file to run for political office in Texas.  After the candidate filing deadline, we’ll have the big picture of who’s retiring, who’s going to have a primary election and what the hot general election races will be.  If you’d like to keep up with candidate filings, the Texas Secretary of State’s website has all of the information here.

Additionally, the Texas Senate and the Texas House have each released their lists of committee interim charges, which can be found here and here.  Senate and House committees will spend the next year studying these specific issues, using the findings to file legislation for the 87th Legislative Session which begins at noon on Tuesday, January 12, 2021.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott to Chair Republican Governors Association for 2020

Gov. Greg Abbott was named chair of the Republican Governors Association for the 2020 elections just before the Thanksgiving holiday.  Currently in his second term, Gov. Abbott is not on the ballot in 2020 but governors in 11 other states are, including 7 Republicans.  He previously served as vice chair of the RGA.

Only in Austin

Now that the tryptophan from Thanksgiving dinner has worn off, we’ve got a new restaurant recommendation for you:  Carpenters Hall, the beautiful new on-site restaurant at the Carpenter Hotel near Zilker Park.  The property has been open a little over a year so now is a good time to check it out — though reservations are a good idea as it’s always hopping!  The hotel took over what was the union hall building for Austin Carpenters Local 1266, which was built in 1948.  The location now includes the 93-room boutique Carpenter Hotel, the Q Hut (a half-dome outdoor party place), Carpenters Hall restaurant and the Hot L Coffee café.  Chef Grae Nonas, of former Austin restaurant Olamaie, says the food is “a fresh eyes-approach of the Texas/Austin past” – we just say it’s delicious.