Texas Senate

Ryan Poppe

From private school vouchers to property tax reforms, now that the Texas Senate has cleared its requirement of passing a bill that licenses the existence of some state agencies, the game is on to pass the other priorities Gov. Greg Abbott outlined ahead of this summer’s special session.  

Ryan Poppe / TPR News

Lawmakers in the Texas Senate have taken up a bill that would allow judges and county clerks to deny marriages to same-sex couples based on their religious beliefs.  Opponents question whether the bill, if enacted, would violate a person’s constitutional rights and whose rights would they be violating?

The bill by State Senator Brian Birdwell, a Granbury Republican, would exempt county clerks from having to draw up a marriage license for a same-sex couple and county judges from performing them, if doing so violated their own religious beliefs.

Ryan Poppe

Lawmakers in the Texas Senate have passed a two-year budget that would require local property owners to pay a bigger chunk of the public education tab.  It's a budget that seems on a direct collision course with House's budget.

Ryan Poppe

Education leaders in the Texas Senate discussed the creation of tax-credit vouchers and private school choice options on Tuesday.  It’s an issue that has pitted House education leaders against those in the Senate when it comes to public school funding vs. private school options.

Friendswood Republican Sen. Larry Taylor is the chairman of the Senate Education Committee and the author of a bill that would create a private school choice option as an alternative to public schools in Texas.

Ryan Poppe

Legislation aimed at reducing homeowners’ property taxes passes out of the Texas Senate.   But some critical of the bill still worry it will reduce what cities and counties use to fund their local police, fire, and emergency services.

The bill introduced by Sen. Paul Bettencourt would lower the percentage that cities and counties could raise property taxes when property values aren’t providing enough revenue to fund local municipalities’ budgets.

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