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Bill Statistics & Upcoming Deadlines

As the 84th Legislature draws to a close, a series of end-of-session deadlines begin to take effect. Below is a list of deadlines that occur next week:
  • Monday, May 11: Last day for house committees to report house bills and house joint resolutions.
  • Tuesday, May 12: Deadline for house to distribute last House Daily Calendar with house bills and joint resolutions.
  • Wednesday, May 13: Deadline for house to distribute last House Local and Consent Calendar with consent house bills.
  • Thursday, May 14: Last day for house to consider house bills and joint resolutions on second reading on House Daily or Supplemental Calendar.
  • Friday, May 15: Last day for house to consider consent house bills on second and third reading and all third reading house bills or joint resolutions on House Supplemental Calendar.
House and Senate calendars are available on the Texas Legislature Online, and Senate agendas are available in hard copy from the library (Rm. 2N.3). 
Bill statistics for the period of Nov. 10, 2014 - May 6, 2015 are below.
  House Bills (HB) & Joint Resolutions (HJR) Senate Bills (SB) & Joint Resolutions (SJR)
Filed  4,339 2,135
Reported out of committee 1,818 809
Passed by chamber of origin 686 599
Referred to committee in opposite chamber 502 564
Reported out of committee in opposite chamber 52 140
Passed opposite chamber 6 54
Sent to the Governor 2 29
Signed by the Governor 0 4

Bill Statistics, April 30th

As we enter the last month of the 84th Regular Session, we'll be frequently updating our blog with bill statistics. Below are statistics as of today at 2:50 p.m.

Two bills have passed both chambers and have been signed by the Governor. They are:

SB 219: Relating to the provision of health and human services in this state, including the powers and duties of the Health and Human Services Commission and other state agencies, and the licensing of certain health professionals; clarifying certain statutory provisions; authorizing the imposition of fees.

SB 293: Relating to a clarification of the law governing eligibility of certain events for funding under the Major Events trust fund.

  House Bills (HB) & Joint Resolutions (HJR) Senate Bills (SB) & Joint Resolutions (SJR)
Filed  4,336 2,130
Reported out of committee 1,546 748
Passed by chamber of origin 470 530
Referred to committee in opposite chamber 107 147
Reported out of committee in opposite chamber 11 50
Passed opposite chamber 1 27
Signed by the Governor 0 2

Bill Statistics at the 45th Day of Session

Yesterday marked the 45th day of the 84th Regular Session. That means we're 3/4 of the way to the 60-day bill filing deadline, which is Friday, March 13, 2015. For those who are curious, here is a look at bill statistics in comparison to a similar period last session.
Bills and Joint Resolutions
83rd Regular Session
(Nov. 12, 2012-Feb. 21, 2013)
84th Regular Session
(Nov. 10, 2014-Feb. 26, 2015)
House filed 1,733 2,057
Senate filed 743 834
Total filed 2,476 2,891
House referred to committee 1,188 837
Senate referred to committee 588 721
Total referred to committee 1,776 1,558
House scheduled for hearing 30 25
Senate scheduled for hearing 82 24
Total scheduled for hearing 112 49
House reported out of committee 1 2
Senate reported out of committee 33 5
Total reported out of committee 34 7

Bills Effective on January 1, 2015

On January 1, 2015, provisions of 6 bills passed during the 83rd Legislature took effect.  
To keep up with new laws throughout the year, check the Library's list of bill effective dates.

Bills Effective September 1, 2014

On September 1, 2014, provisions of 11 bills passed during the 83rd Legislature, Regular Session and 2nd Called Session will take effect, relating to public schools, motor vehicle inspections, indigent defense, veterans, public retirement systems, regulation of abortion, and other topics.
Additionally, sections of bills passed during the 82nd Legislature, Regular Session and 82nd Legislature, 1st Called Session in 2011 will take effect on September 1.
To keep up with new laws throughout the year, check the Library's list of bill effective dates.

Legislative History of the "Pregnant Patient" Law

What is the history of the "pregnant patient" law?
There are technically two applicable laws, Health & Safety Code 166.049 and 166.033, which are both part of the Texas Advance Directives Act, Health & Safety Code 166.001 et seq.  Here is the history of these two sections:

SB 148, 65th Regular Session (1977) added Vernon's Civil Statutes Art. 4950h, the Natural Death Act, including the "Directive to Physicians" form that contained the phrase, "If I have been diagnosed as pregnant and that diagnosis is known to my physician, this directive shall have no force or effect during the course of my pregnancy."  The "Directive to Physicians" form is now in Health & Safety Code 166.033, where it includes the statement, "I understand that under the Texas law this directive has no effect if I have been diagnosed as pregnant."

HB 403, 69th Regular Session (1985) amended the Natural Death Act to add, among other amendments, Vernon's Civil Statutes Art. 4950h, section 4E: "Life-sustaining procedures may not be withheld or withdrawn under this Act from a patient who is pregnant." That particular provision was not present in the introduced bill but was added during the House committee process.  The language is currently in Health & Safety Code 166.049, where it states, "A person may not withdraw or withhold life-sustaining treatment under this subchapter from a pregnant patient."

In 1989, a non-substantive revision bill moved these sections from the Civil Statutes to the Health & Safety Code.  A subsequent bill, SB 1260, 76th Regular Session (1999), condensed various advance directive and life support-related statutes, including the Natural Death Act, into Health & Safety Code Chapter 166.

New Laws Effective January 1, 2014

On January 1, 2014 provisions of 73 bills passed during the regular session of the 83rd Legislature took effect.
Additionally, sections of bills passed during the 82nd R.S. and 82nd 1st C.S. in 2011 and the 81st R.S. in 2009 took effect on January 1.
To keep up with new laws throughout the year, check the Library's list of bill effective dates.

Upcoming Constitutional Amendments Election - Nov. 5

On November 5, 2013, voters will have a chance to consider nine constitutional amendments proposed by the 83rd Legislature. The proposed amendments cover a wide range of topics, including taxes, reverse mortgages, and the creation of a State Water Implementation Fund.
For background and analysis of the ballot propositions, see the House Research Organization's Constitutional Amendments Proposed for Nov. 2013 Ballot, and the Texas Legislative Council's Analyses of Proposed Constitutional Amendments.
Do you have questions about election procedures? Visit the Texas Secretary of State's website for answers.
The Texas Constitution is one of the longest in the nation and it's still growing. The Constitution is changed through amendments, which are proposed by the Texas Legislature and accepted or rejected by the voters.
Since the current Constitution was adopted in 1876, 474 amendments have been accepted and 179 have been defeated.
Amendments Proposed for the November 5, 2013 ballot by the 83rd Legislature, Regular Session
The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to provide for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of all or part of the market value of the residence homestead of the surviving spouse of a member of the armed services of the United States who is killed in action.
The constitutional amendment eliminating an obsolete requirement for a State Medical Education Board and a State Medical Education Fund, neither of which is operational.
The constitutional amendment to authorize a political subdivision of this state to extend the number of days that aircraft parts that are exempt from ad valorem taxation due to their location in this state for a temporary period may be located in this state for purposes of qualifying for the tax exemption.
The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to provide for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of part of the market value of the residence homestead of a partially disabled veteran or the surviving spouse of a partially disabled veteran if the residence homestead was donated to the disabled veteran by a charitable organization.
The constitutional amendment to authorize the making of a reverse mortgage loan for the purchase of homestead property and to amend lender disclosures and other requirements in connection with a reverse mortgage loan.
The constitutional amendment providing for the creation of the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas and the State Water Implementation Revenue Fund for Texas to assist in the financing of priority projects in the state water plan to ensure the availability of adequate water resources.
The constitutional amendment authorizing a home-rule municipality to provide in its charter the procedure to fill a vacancy on its governing body for which the unexpired term is 12 months or less.
The constitutional amendment repealing Section 7, Article IX, Texas Constitution, which relates to the creation of a hospital district in Hidalgo County.
The constitutional amendment relating to expanding the types of sanctions that may be assessed against a judge or justice following a formal proceeding instituted by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct.

Legal Citations to Legislation

The Greenbook: Texas Rules of Form After a legislative session, the library is often asked about legal citations to legislation. The following style formats are from The Greenbook: Texas Rules of Form, 12th edition, by the Texas Law Review. Please note that a different citation method is available in the Texas Legislative Council Drafting Manual.


Session Laws (rule 10.3):
Citations to session laws may be used if the statute has not yet appeared in the Vernon’s Texas Civil Statutes Annotated or Vernon’s Texas Codes Annotated, or when citing for the historical fact of enactment. There are five elements of a session law citation:
  1. Name of the statute: use the official short title or popular name, if available. Otherwise use “Act of [date of enactment].” The Greenbook specifies that “The date of enactment is the date of the final relevant legislative action on the bill, not the date of executive approval.”
  2. Legislature and session of enactment: use 83d for 83rd Legislature, use R.S. for Regular Session, use C.S. for Called Sessions and number as: 1st C.S., 2d C.S., 3d C.S.
  3. Chapter and section number of the session law: use lower case, i.e., "ch.” A session law may have many section numbers, which may be cited individually with a "§" symbol, or "§§" for more than one section.
  4. General and Special Laws of the State of Texas year and page number (or the Vernon’s Texas Session Law Service pamphlets prior to the publication of bound volumes).
  5. Future location in the code.
Higher Education Outcomes-Based Funding Act, 82d Leg., R.S., ch. 1120, 2011 Tex. Gen. Laws 2882.
Act of May 26, 2013, 83d Leg., R.S., ch. 211, § 9, 2013 Tex. Sess. Law Serv. 903 (West) (to be codified at Tex. Educ. Code § 28.00222).
Act of May 27, 2011, 82d Leg., R.S., ch. 1087, §§ 1, 5, 2011 Tex. Gen. Laws 2822, 2823-24.
Unenacted Bills (rule 14.1.1):
Tex. S.B. 315, 83d Leg., R.S. (2013).
Tex. H.B. 8, 83d Leg., 2d C.S. (2013).
Concurrent and Joint Resolutions (rule 14.1.2):
Tex. S. Con. Res. 12, 83d Leg., R.S. (2013).
Tex. H.R. Con. Res. 33, 83d Leg., R.S. (2013).
Tex. H.R.J. Res. 133, 83d Leg., R.S. (2013).
Tex. S.J. Res. 1, 83d Leg., R.S. (2013).
When documenting legislative history, include citation to the General and Special Laws of the State of Texas:
         Tex. S.J. Res. 14, 68th R.S., 1983 Tex. Gen. Laws 6683 (Veterans' Land Program and Veterans' Housing Assistance Program).

Wrap-ups of the 83rd Legislature

Following each legislative session in Texas, organizations, state agencies, and other entities publish "wrap-ups" summarizing new laws and key legislative developments in areas such as education or the environment. Wrap-ups can range from a simple list of bills to a detailed report that includes background information and expert analysis.
At the library, we track legislative wrap-ups since they can be excellent research tools. Listed below is a short selection. More are available, and some are still being written. To find one on a topic that interests you, check the websites of organizations or state agencies that focus on the issue, or contact the library for assistance.
State Agencies:
Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission
Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services
Texas Department of Criminal Justice
Texas Education Agency
Texas Veterans Commission
Associations and Organizations:
Association of Rural Communities in Texas
League of Women Voters of Texas
Texas AgriLife  Extension Service – Texas Agriculture Law Blog
Texas Association of Community Colleges
Texas Association of Counties
Texans Care for Children
Texas District & County Attorneys Association (TDCAA)
Texas Humane Legislation Network
Texas Medical Association (TMA)
Texas Municipal League (TML)
Texas Renewable Energy Industries Association
TexasVox: The Voice of Public Citizen in Texas

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