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[00:00:01]

ALL RIGHT.

IT IS FOUR OH ONE

[Legislative Affairs Committee on December 21, 2020]

AND I'D LIKE TO WELCOME EVERYBODY TO THE CITY.

GARLAND LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS COMMITTEE COMMITTEE MEETING.

WE ARE MEETING REMOTELY, UH, TODAY, UM, PER USUAL.

UH, I HAVE WITH ME, UH, COUNCIL MEMBER, VJ WILLIAMS, COUNCIL MEMBER, RICH, ALVIN STAFF, JOINING US, THE CITY ATTORNEY, BRAD NEIGHBOR, DEPUTY CITY MANAGER, MITCH BEACH, AND OUR LEGISLATIVE, UH, LIAISON.

UH, LAURA HAS VEGA.

I'LL GET THAT RIGHT.

UH, FIRST ON THE AGENDA IS APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES.

UH, WE'LL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO DO THOSE ISSUES APPROVAL.

WE HAVE A, WE HAVE A MOTION BY COUNCILMAN ROBIN TO APPROVE A SECOND BY COUNCIL MEMBER WILLIAMS, ALL IN FAVOR.

AYE.

ANY OPPOSED MINUTES ARE APPROVED AND LAURA I'LL GET THE SIGNED AND EMAILED OVER TO YOU THIS WEEK.

OKAY.

UH, SECOND ON THE AGENDA.

UH, COUNSELOR VOLUMES HAD REQUESTED A PRESENTATION ON THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS.

IT'S A GREAT IDEA AND APPRECIATE YOU BRINGING IT FORWARD, SIR.

UH, TY BRIE WITH, UH, UH, WHO WAS OUR, OUR, UH, BOOTS ON THE GROUND IN AUSTIN, UH, IS GOING TO BE WITH US TODAY TO GIVE THAT PRESENTATION THAI.

IT'S ALL YOURS, SIR.

OKAY.

UM, I AM EMAILING MY PRESENTATION RIGHT NOW TO LAURA.

SORRY, I DIDN'T UM, I DIDN'T KNOW IF I SHOULD SEE HER SQUEAK SCREEN HERE, LAURA, OR SHOULD I WAIT FOR YOU TO PUT IT UP? TELL ME, UM, I THINK YOU CAN GO AHEAD AND SHARE SCREEN.

YEAH, TY, IF YOU CAN, IF HE WANTS TO GO AHEAD AND GIVE IT A SHOT THAI, AND THEN IF WE HAVE ANY PROBLEMS, WE'LL SEE IF WE CAN DO IT FROM OUR END.

OKAY.

UM, I APOLOGIZE.

I'M TECHNICALLY CHALLENGED.

UM, THERE SHOULD BE A BUTTON AT THE VERY BOTTOM ON MINE.

IT'S A GREEN BUTTON THAT SAYS SHARE SCREEN AND THEN THAT'LL SHARE.

AND IF YOU HAVE YOUR PRESENTATION ALREADY OPEN ON YOUR COMPUTER, OR IF YOU HIT THAT, THEN YOU CAN CLICK ON THAT ONE AND IT SHOULD SHARE IT FOR YOU.

ALL RIGHT.

JUST GIVE ME ONE SECOND.

I'M GETTING THERE OR WE DO HAVE SOMEBODY THAT'S TRYING TO GET IN.

DO WE HAVE A PUBLICLY AVAILABLE ZOOM LINK OR IS THERE A REGISTRATION PROCESS FOR THIS ONE? THERE IS THROUGH THE, THE, UH, WEB POSTING, BUT THEY'D HAVE TO COME IN AS A PARTICIPANT.

THAT'S FINE.

I'LL SEND THE LINK OVER.

I'M TRYING TO GET A LINK TO THE PEOPLE AND YOU ALL SEE THAT CAN Y'ALL SEE MY YES, YES, YES SIR.

IT SAYS LEGISLATURE ONE-ON-ONE WE GOT IT.

RIGHT.

OKAY.

WELL I'LL JUST, UM, I'LL JUST LAUNCH INTO IT IF THAT'S OKAY.

AND I'M, I'M ALL ABOUT, UM, UH, PLEASE STOPPING ME AND ASKING QUESTIONS.

UM, SO PLEASE DO NOT HESITATE TO DO THAT.

UM, I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE HELPFUL TO START, UM, AND TALK ABOUT WHO REPRESENTS THE CITY OF GARLAND AT THE CAPITOL.

UM, YOU HAVE TWO STATE SENATORS, UM, STATE SENATOR NATHAN JOHNSON.

I'M A DEMOCRAT.

NO, I'LL GET IN.

I HAVE A SLIDE FOR HIM AND A SLIDE FOR REPRESENT, EXCUSE ME, SENATOR HALL.

UM, SO YOU HAVE TWO STATE SENATORS THAT WAY THAT RE THE BOUNDARIES OF THEIR DISTRICTS, STATE SENATE DISTRICTS ARE DRAWN.

UM, THEY, THE, UH, NORTHERN PART OF GHANA, CARLIN IS REPRESENTED BY NATHAN JOHNSON IN THE SOUTHERN PART OF GARLAND IS, IS REPRESENTED BY STATE SENATOR BROWN, PAUL.

UM, AND THEN YOU HAVE FOUR OR STATE REPRESENTATIVES THAT REPRESENT ONE PART OF, OF GARLAND, UM, ANGIE, JEN BUTTON.

WHO'S WHO OF Y'ALL MANY OF Y'ALL KNOW PERSONALLY AND HAS BEEN AROUND FOR OVER A DECADE.

UM, VICTORIA WHO'S I THINK COMING UP ON OUR THIRD SESSION, UM, ANNA MARIA RAMOS, UM, WHO IS COMING UP ON HER SECOND SESSION AND, UH, REPRESENTATIVE RETTA, ANDREWS BOWERS, WHO IS, WE'LL BE COMING UP ON HER SECOND SESSION.

SO LAST SESSION, YOU KNOW, WE, IT WAS DEFINITELY A YOUNGER DELEGATION IN THE HOUSE, UM, WITH TWO FRESHMEN AND A SOPHOMORE AND REPRESENT A BUTTON WHO'S BEEN THERE FOR AWHILE.

UM, SO, AND THEN WE'LL SEE, IT'LL BE FASCINATING TO SEE, UM, THIS IS ONE OF THE THINGS I'LL TALK ABOUT IS THE RE-DISTRICTING, UM, HOW THINGS WILL CHANGE, UM, IF IT CHANGES WHO'S Y'ALL WHO REPRESENTS YOU, WHAT YOUR DELEGATION LOOKS LIKE, UM, WITH, FOR THE CITY OF GARLAND, AS THE LEGISLATURE GOES THROUGH A TRADITIONING PROCESS, WHICH I'LL TALK ABOUT HERE IN A LITTLE BIT.

UM, SO YOU GOT STATE SENATOR NATHAN JOHNSON.

HE WAS ELECTED IN 2018 HAS TERM ENDS.

THEY SERVE A,

[00:05:01]

A SIX, HE SERVES A SIX YEAR TERM.

SO HIS TERM ENDS, UM, JANUARY OF 2023.

UM, SO HE, IF HE'S REELECTED IN THE FALL, I'M SORRY, HE STARTS AT FOUR YEAR TERM.

IF HE'S REELECTED IN THE FALL OF 2022, HE'LL SERVE ANOTHER FOUR YEAR TERM.

UM, AND SO, UH, YEAH, HE'S GOING TO BE GOING INTO A SECOND LEGISLATIVE SESSION, THIS UPCOMING REGULAR SESSION.

AND THEN YOU SEE THE COMMITTEES HE SERVES ON, UM, WITH 31 MEMBERS AND AS MANY, MANY COMMITTEES AS THE LEGISLATURE HAS IN THE SENATE, EXCUSE ME.

UM, THERE, THEY GOT TO SERVE ON A LOT OF DIFFERENT COMMITTEES.

UM, AND THEN YOUR OTHER STATE SENATOR IS BOB HALL AND, UM, ELECTED IN 2014.

HE WAS REELECTED IN 2018.

UM, HE'LL BE UP FOR REELECTION IN 2022, UM, AND REPUBLICAN AND, AND CHAIRMAN AGRICULTURAL COMMITTEE AND SERVES ON VARIOUS COMMITTEES.

UM, AND, UH, I THOUGHT IT WAS IMPORTANT TO KIND OF GIVE YOU A BIG PICTURE OF WHO THE LEADERSHIP IS CURRENTLY AT THE, AT THE LEGISLATURE.

UM, YOU'VE GOT GREG GOVERNOR, GREG ABBOTT, REPUBLICAN ELECTED 2014, UM, HE'S WILL BE UP.

HE WAS REELECTED IN 2018 AND HE'LL BE UP FOR REELECTION IN 2022.

IF, IF HE DECIDES THAT HE WANTS TO RUN FOR REELECTION AGAIN, UM, THEN YOU'VE GOT LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR, DAN PATRICK.

HE WAS A, HE WAS A STATE SENATOR.

UM, THEN HE BECAME, UM, A LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR WAS ELECTED 2014, REELECTED 2018, AND HE'LL BE UP FOR POTENTIAL REELECTION IN 2022.

UM, AND THEN YOU GOT SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, WE'LL HAVE A BRAND NEW SPEAKER.

THIS IS THE PRESUMPTIVE SPEAKER CAUSE THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR AND THE GOVERNOR ARE ELECTED BY THE VOTERS OF TEXAS, THAT THE LOOT SPEAKER IS ELECTED BY THE MEMBERS OF THE TEXAS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.

SO, UM, IT'S PRETTY UNIQUE IN THAT REGARD.

AND, UM, AND SO DAVE FEELIN FROM BEAUMONT, UM, HAS BEEN, UH, A LEGISLATOR OR STATE REPRESENTATIVE FOR SOME TIME.

UM, HE HAS GOTTEN SHORTLY AFTER THE NOVEMBER 3RD GENERAL ELECTION, HE OBTAINED ALL THE PLEDGES THAT HE NEEDED TO SHOW.

HE HAD A MAJORITY OF THE TEXAS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES THAT WOULD SUPPORT HIM FOR SPEAKER.

SO HE IS, HE IS GOING TO BE ELECTED SPEAKER ON THE FIRST DAY OF THE SESSION.

THEY ALWAYS ELECT THE SPEAKER THE FIRST DAY OF THE, OF THE REGULAR SESSION.

AND EVEN WHEN YOU HAVE A SPEAKER THAT'S, YOU KNOW, COMING BACK RUNNING, YOU KNOW, LIKE STRAUSS AND OR PETE LANEY, UM, YOU'RE ALWAYS ELECTING GETTING ELECTED FOR TWO YEARS CYCLE AS SPEAKER TO YOUR TERM EVERY, THE FIRST DAY OF THE REGULAR SESSION EVERY SECOND.

SO, UM, THAT'S JUST PART OF THE EQUATION.

SO IT'LL BE INTERESTING TO SEE HOW A FRESHMEN, WE HAD A FRESHMEN LAST SESSION WITH DENNIS BONNEN, WE'LL HAVE ANOTHER FRESHMEN SPEAKER AND FEEL FEELING WE'LL SEE HOW THAT PLAYS ITSELF OUT.

UM, THOUGHT IT WAS IMPORTANT TO MENTION THESE DATES.

UM, YOU'VE GOT, UM, THE NOVEMBER 9TH, THE MONDAY AFTER THE LEGISLATIVE, UH, AFTER THE GENERAL ELECTION ON TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 3RD, YOU HAD, UM, LEGISLATE DOORS COULD BE BEGIN FILING PRE-FILING BILLS.

SO THE PERIOD FROM NOVEMBER 9TH TO THE FIRST DAY OF SESSION, WHICH IS JANUARY 12TH, IT'S CALLED THE PRE-FILING PERIOD.

CAUSE YOU'RE FILING BILLS BEFORE THE LEGISLATIVE, THE REGULAR SESSION STARTS.

UM, BUT THAT'S, I MEAN, THAT'S, IT'S, AND YOU'LL SEE A STATISTIC I'LL HAVE FOR YOU HERE IN A LITTLE BIT.

THAT'LL KIND OF BLOWS MY MIND, UM, IN LIGHT OF COVID AND ALL OF THE SITUATIONS WHERE WE'RE DEALING WITH.

UM, AND SO JANUARY 12TH, 20 AND 21 IS THE FIRST DAY OF THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION, UM, BY, UH, PER THE TEXAS CONSTITUTION, THAT LEGISLATURE MEETS FOR 140 DAYS EVERY TWO YEARS IN REGULAR SESSION, OF COURSE THE GOVERNOR COULD CALL SPECIAL SESSIONS.

UM, BUT AS FAR AS REGULAR SESSION THAT IT'S, IT'S, UM, 140 DAYS EVERY TWO YEARS, UM, THEN MARCH THE 12TH IS THE NEXT BIG DEADLINE.

THAT'S THE 60 DAY BILL FILING DEADLINE.

SO ALL THE BILLS THAT HAVE GENERAL APPLICATION AFTER TWO THAT APPLIED TO MORE THAN THEY'RE MORE THAN JUST A LOCAL BILL, UM, THEY HAVE TO, UH, BE FILED BY MARCH THE 12TH OR THEY'RE DEAD.

LIKE YOU CAN'T, WELL, LET ME TAKE THAT BACK.

YOU CAN FILE A BILL AFTER MARCH THE 12TH, BUT IT TAKES THE VOTE OF THE HOUSE AND THE SENATE TO ALLOW YOU TO FILE THAT BILL.

UM, AND IT'S HIGHLY UNUSUAL.

UM, BUT YOU CAN'T, YOU STILL WILL SEE BILL, UH, LOCAL BILLS THAT ARE FILED THAT LET'S SAY CREATE A MUNICIPAL UTILITY DISTRICT OR DEAL WITH A SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICT.

THOSE CAN BE FILED AFTER MARCH THE 12TH, BUT THERE'S ALWAYS THE TIME PERIOD LEADING UP TO THAT MARCH 12TH DEADLINE, PARTICULARLY THE WEEK, YOU'LL SEE THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF BILLS FILED RIGHT UP AGAINST THE DEADLINE.

IT'S JUST, I GUESS, HUMAN NATURE.

UM, THEN MAY 31ST IS THE SAUDI DIE WITHOUT DAYS.

[00:10:01]

AND IS, IS THE TERM IN LATIN? UM, THAT'S THE, THAT'S THE 140 A DAY AND THE LEGISLATURE WILL END THEIR SPECIAL SESSION.

AND THAT TYPICALLY SEEMS LIKE IT'S BEEN FALLING ON MEMORIAL DAY IN THE LAST FEW SESSIONS.

UM, AND THEN THE GOVERNOR HAS 20 DAYS TO SIGN OR VETO A BILL AFTER THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION ENDS AFTER THE SAUDI DIE.

SO, UM, THAT'S, THAT'S SOME LEGISLATIVE DATES OF INTEREST.

I THOUGHT THAT YOU WOULD, YOU WOULD FIND INTERESTING.

AND THESE STILL, YOU KNOW, BILL FILINGS STATISTICS JUST KIND OF BLOW ME AWAY BECAUSE EVERYBODY'S SAYING, YOU KNOW, THE LEADERSHIP'S TELLING EVERYBODY WE'RE GONNA, THERE'S GOING TO BE LESS BILLS FILED.

UM, THERE'S, YOU KNOW, THE, THE LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL STRUGGLING THE ATTORNEYS FOR THE LEGISLATURE IS STRUGGLING TO KEEP UP WITH THAT.

THEY'RE HAVING, UM, WORK FROM HOME ISSUES AND STAFFING ISSUES BECAUSE OF COVID, THEY'RE SAYING IT'S GOING TO BE HARDER TO HAVE LEDGE COUNCIL HELP DRAFT A BILL FOR LEGISLATE DOORS.

UM, BUT YET THERE'S STILL, UM, HERE WE ARE DECEMBER 21ST AND WE'VE HAD 1,155 BILLS FILED.

WHEREAS TWO YEARS AGO WE HAD 870 BILLS FILED AS OF DECEMBER 30, FIRST OF THAT YEAR OF 2018 BEFORE THE SESSION.

SO IT'S A SIGNIFICANT NUMBER OF MORE BILLS.

AND YET WE HAVE COVID AND THE LOGISTICS OF THE LEGISLATURE WILL BE DIFFERENT THAN, THAN WHAT ANY OF US HAVE EVER SEEN IN OUR LIFETIME.

UM, A LOT LESS ACCESS TO THE CAPITOL AND JUST A LOT OF LOGISTICAL ISSUES.

UM, BUT YET THE LEGISLATORS ARE FOLLOWING BILLS, LIKE IT'S GOING OUT OF STYLE.

UM, AND I'LL EXPLAIN WHERE I THINK THE CHOKE POINTS WILL BE APPLIED BY THE SPEAKER LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR.

CAUSE THEY'RE, THEY'RE REALLY LEERY OF HAVING A LOT OF, UM, ACTIVE ON THE FLOOR, A LOT OF LONG DISCUSSIONS ON THE FLOOR WHERE THEY CAN HELP IT.

IT'S JUST GOING TO BE A DIFFERENT SESSION.

AND SO IT'S JUST, IT'S VERY IRONIC THAT THERE'S THEN YEAH, I DON'T KNOW IF IRONIC IS THE RIGHT WORD.

IT'S JUST VERY INTERESTING THAT THERE'S THIS MANY BILLS THAT HAVE BEEN FILED SO FAR.

LAST SESSION, THERE WAS 7,000 BILLS FILED, UM, AND ABOUT SIX, 15 TO 20% IS THE AVERAGE THAT PASSED THE 16 DOES 20% OF THE, OF THE TOTAL NUMBER OF BILLS IS WHAT TYPICALLY PASSES EVERY SESSION.

UM, AND THAT NUMBER, THE LOCAL BILLS THAT PASS THAT NOBODY HAS AN ISSUE WITH, UM, THEY, THEY, THEY REALLY BOAST BOOST THAT NUMBER.

SO THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS IS DEFINITELY SET UP TO, TO KILL BILLS RATHER THAN FOR BILLS TO PASS.

AND I THINK THAT WAS HOW THE, THE FOUNDERS OF, OF THE STATE OF TEXAS, YOU KNOW, WANTED TO, AND THE WRITERS OF THE TEXAS CONSTITUTION WANTED TO CREATE SUCH A PROCESS.

UM, AND JUST TO KIND OF EXPLAIN A LITTLE BIT ABOUT HOW THE PROCESS WORKS AT THE, AT THE LEGISLATURE.

UM, SO THE BILLS HAVE TO BE BY THE TEXAS CONSTITUTION REQUIRES BILLS TO BE READ ON THREE SEPARATE DAYS OR YEAH, THREE SEPARATE LEGISLATIVE DAYS.

UM, THE FIRST TIME IT'S READ AND, UM, IT'S TYPICALLY DONE THAT THE LEGISLATURE WILL DO ITS WORK FOR THE DAY AND THEN THE CLERKS WILL READ OFF THE BILLS AS EVERYBODY GOES AND STARTS GOING TO COMMITTEE MEETINGS OR GOING TO MEETINGS BACK IN THEIR OFFICES.

SO THE, THE CLERKS IN THE HOUSE AND THE SENATE, WE'LL JUST RUN THROUGH ALL THE BILLS THAT, UM, THEY'RE INTRODUCED ON THE FLOOR AND THEN REFERRED TO THE COMMITTEE.

UM, AND SO THAT, THAT THING HAPPENS AND THERE'S ALMOST, THERE'S VERY LITTLE FANFARE ASSOCIATED WITH THAT.

THEN THE BILL GOES TO COMMITTEE, IF A BILL IS PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE, AND I'LL TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE COMMITTEE REQUIRE A PROCESS HERE IN A SECOND, BUT ONCE A BILL GOES THROUGH COMMITTEE, IT HAS A HEARING IT'S PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE AND IT'S SET ON THE HOUSE OR SENATE FLOOR TO BE HEARD.

UM, THEN, THEN IT'S CALLED THE SECOND READING ON THE FLOOR OF THE SENATOR HOUSE.

AND, UM, THEN THE BOOK THAT'S REALLY WHERE THE HEAVY LIFTING THAT'S REALLY WHERE A BILL, UM, HAS ITS SIGNIFICANT CONSIDERATION AND DEBATE.

AND ACTION ON A BILL.

AMENDMENTS ARE OFFERED IS REALLY THAT SECOND READING ON THE FLOOR OF THE HOUSE OR SENATE.

AND THEN THE THIRD READING IS, YOU KNOW, THE BILL IS BROUGHT UP ONE MORE TIME AND EVERY NOW AND THEN THERE'S AMENDMENTS THAT ARE DONE, BUT IT'S A PRETTY HIGH BAR IN THE HOUSE AND SENATE TO AMEND ON THIRD READING.

UM, BUT IT'S TO GIVE THE LEGISLATURE ONE MORE TIME.

THERE, THERE ARE BILLS THAT HAVE DIED ON THIRD READING, PARTICULARLY TOWARDS THE END OF THE PROCESS.

UM, WHEN WE'RE GETTING INTO MAY AND THINGS ARE MODERATE, THINGS ARE FLYING.

UM, BUT THAT THIRD READING TYPICALLY IS PRETTY, UM, UNEVENTFUL AND ROUTINE, BUT SOMETIMES IT CAN GET IT CAN, YOU KNOW, ISSUES CAN POP UP FROM WHAT OVERNIGHT THAT CAN CAUSE A BILL TO HAVE ISSUES ON THIRD READING.

UM, JUST FOR LIKE LEGISLATIVE TERMINOLOGY, IF A BILL IS PASSED THE CHAMBER THAT IT WAS FILED IN, UM, THEN IT'S IT'S, THE BILL IS SAID TO BE ENGROSSED.

IT'S AN ENGROSSED VERSION, A BILL.

IF IT'S PAST THE ORIGINAL CHAMBER, YOU KNOW, HOUSE BILL PASSES THE HOUSE OR A SENATE BILL PASSES THE SENATE, AND THEN IF THE BILL PASSES THE OTHER CHAMBER, UM, THEN

[00:15:01]

AND BILLS HAVE TO PASS BOTH CHAMBERS TO BE ABLE TO GO TO THE GOVERNOR, UM, THEN IT'S CONSIDERED ENROLLED IF IT PASSES THE OTHER CHAMBER AND, YOU KNOW, JUST KIND OF A LEGISLATIVE STRA STRATEGIC COMMENT.

UM, A LOT OF PEOPLE HAVE, UM, YOU KNOW, THEY'RE REPRESENTED BY A STATE REP AND A STATE SENATOR AND THEY HAVE FOR, YOU KNOW, FOR LACK OF A BETTER TERM, A LEGISLATIVE INSURANCE POLICY, BECAUSE YOU HAVE A SENATE VERSION OF THE, OF THE SAME BILL AND A HOUSE VERSION OF THE SAME BILL.

AND YOU HAVE BOTH LEGISLATE DOORS FILE, THE SAME BILL ON THE HOUSE AND THE SENATE, YOU WORK BOTH OF THEM AND YOU CAN THEM GOING.

AND, UM, EVENTUALLY AT SOME 0.1 OF THEM, ONE BILLS MOVING FASTER THAN THE OTHER.

AND SO YOU KIND OF SLOW DOWN THE, THE OTHER BILL AND LET THE BILL THAT'S MOVING FAST, LET THAT COME OVER TO THE OTHER CHAMBER.

AND THEN YOU RUN WITH THAT BILL.

AND SOMETIMES YOU PASS BOTH, BOTH BILLS OUT OF THE ORIGINAL CHAMBERS JUST TO KEEP THE BILL.

YOU KNOW, PEOPLE FEEL LIKE THEY'RE, THERE'S A NEED.

UM, AND THEN THEY, THEY GO TO THE OPPOSITE CHAMBER AND WORK YOUR WAY UP.

BUT AT SOME POINT YOU, YOU STOP ONE OF THE BILLS.

SO THAT ONLY, YOU KNOW, ONLY ONE BILL IS GOING TO PASS ONLY ONE VERSION OF THE BILL, BUT, BUT IT'S, LIKE I SAID, IT'S LEGISLATIVE INSURANCE POLICY TO GET BOTH BILLS MOVING.

UM, EVEN THOUGH THEY'RE THE SAME BILL, BUT YOU'RE TRYING TO JUST SEE, YOU KNOW, ONE, YOU'RE KIND OF FIGURING OUT WHERE THE ISSUES ARE WITH THE BILL WHO HAS QUESTIONS ABOUT IT.

CAUSE YOU KNOW, EVENTUALLY EVEN IF IT PASSES, THE ORIGINAL CHAMBER IS GOING TO COME OVER TO THE OTHER CHAMBER, BUT ALSO YOU'RE JUST TRYING TO GIVE YOURSELF, CAUSE SOMETIMES IT WON'T SHOCK.

Y'ALL, YOU KNOW, AS CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS TO KNOW THAT SOMETIMES BILLS DIE, NOT BECAUSE OF THE MERIT OR THE SUBSTANCE OF THE BILL, BUT BECAUSE OF POLITICS AND BY HAVING THIS OTHER BILL MOVING, UM, IF THAT ORIGINAL BILL IS KILLED OR ONE BILL IS KILLED FOR SOME POLITICAL REASON, YOU STILL HAVE THIS OTHER BILL THAT'S MOVING AND YOU STILL HAVE A CHANCE TO, UM, HAVE A BILL PASS.

UM, SO IT'S, IT'S, THAT'S, THAT'S WHY YOU SEE A HOUSE AND SENATE VERSION OF THE SAME BILL.

UM, I WANTED TO GIVE YOU A LITTLE BACKGROUND ON THAT.

SO IF IT, BILL GOES TO COMMITTEE, THEN IT'S REFERRED TO A COMMITTEE, ALL THE COMMITTEES, YOU KNOW, THERE'S THE WAYS AND MEANS AND HANDLES TAXES.

THERE'S A NATURAL RESOURCES THAT HANDLES WATER.

THERE'S YOU NAME IT? EACH COMMITTEE HAS ITS OWN JURISDICTION AND HANDLES CERTAIN BILLS.

AND YOU KNOW, THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR AND THE SENATE AND THE SPEAKER IN THE HOUSE, ONCE A BILL IS, IS FILED, THEIR STAFF WORKS TOGETHER.

AND THEN THEY REFER A BILL TO COMMITTEE, WHICH IS THE FIRST READING AND THE, SO IT'S THE SPEAKER AND LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR.

THAT'S ONE OF THE THINGS THAT, HOW THEY WELD POWDER POWER IS WHAT COMMITTEE THEY REFER YOUR BILL TO.

UM, AND SO, AND THE, AND THE COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN OR PERSONS, I SHOULD SAY, CHAIR PERSONS ARE NAMED BY THE SPEAKER AND THE, AND THE, UM, LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR.

THAT'S ONE OF THE, ANOTHER WAY THAT THEY EXERCISE THEIR POWER IS THEY PUT THEIR ALLIES AND THE PEOPLE THEY TRUST IN THERE, THE CHAIRMANSHIPS, UM, OR THE DIFFERENT COMMITTEES.

AND THEN THEY HAVE CHAIRMAN'S CHAIRPERSON'S MEETINGS EVERY WEEK.

AND THEY TALK ABOUT THE BILLS THAT ARE COMING UP AND THE CONTROVERSIES THAT ARE POPPED UP.

AND, AND THEN THERE'S BEHIND THE SCENES CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN THE SPEAKER AND HIS STAFF OR LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR, HIS STAFF, AND THE COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN, AS FAR AS WHAT BILLS ARE GOING TO GET OUT OF THEIR COMMITTEE AND WHAT BILLS ARE GOING TO DIE.

AND IT'S UM, SO, YOU KNOW, LIEUTENANT, GOVERNOR SPEAKER REFERRED TO BILLS TO THE COMMITTEES, THEN, UH, THEN EACH OF THE MEMBERS HAVE TO REQUEST A, UM, A COMMITTEE HEARING, UM, FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE, I WOULD LIKE MY ABILITY TO GET A HEARING.

AND SO, YOU KNOW, SOMETIMES IF YOU CAN BELIEVE IT, SOME LEGISLATORS FILE BILLS, BUT NEVER HAVING INTENTION OF REQUESTING A HEARING, THEY JUST WANT YOU TO BE ABLE TO TELL PEOPLE BACK HOME AND THEIR DISTRICT, HEY, I FILED YOUR BILL AND THE CHAIRMAN DIDN'T LIKE IT.

SO HE NEVER SET IT FOR HEARING, OR SHE NEVER SAID FOR HEARING, BUT THERE'S SOMETIMES FOR POLITICAL REASONS, THE AUTHOR OF THE BILL NEVER REQUESTS A COMMITTEE HEARING, UM, FOR THEIR BILL.

AND SO THAT THEN, YOU KNOW, THEY, THEY KNOW THEY'RE GOING TO KILL THE BILL, THAT THEIR OWN BILL THAT WAY, UM, WHICH IS WHAT THEY WANT.

BUT SO TYPICALLY PEOPLE FILE, YOU KNOW, UH, SUBMIT A REQUEST FOR A COMMITTEE HEARING, AND THEN IT'S UP TO THE SPEAKER.

AND IT'S UP TO THE CHAIRMAN OF THAT COMMITTEE, WHETHER TO SET YOUR BILL FOR HEARING OR NOT.

AND THEN ONCE YOUR BILL IS SET FOR HEARING, YOU'LL GET A PUBLIC NOTICE SEVERAL DAYS IN ADVANCE.

TYPICALLY THE THURSDAY, THURSDAY, OR FRIDAY BEFORE THE COMMITTEE HEARINGS ON MONDAY, TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY, THEY TYPICALLY HAVE COMMITTEE HEARINGS EARLY IN THE WEEK.

SO THE LEGISLATE DOORS, ONCE THEY'RE DONE THEIR BUSINESS ON THE FLOOR OF THE SENATOR OF THE HOUSE TOWARDS THE, AS THE WEEK, THE WEEKENDS, AS WE GET TOWARD WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY, THEY CAN GO HOME.

UM, THEY DON'T HAVE TO HAVE COMMITTEE HEARINGS AFTER, AFTER MEETING ON THE HOUSE OR SENATE FLOOR ON THURSDAY, YOU KNOW, WEDNESDAYS AND THURSDAYS.

UM, AND SO, BUT THAT I THINK IS GOING TO CHANGE COVID IS GOING TO CHANGE THAT I'M HEARING MORE AND MORE, THAT THEY'RE GOING TO SPREAD THE COMMITTEE HEARINGS OUT DURING THE WEEK TO KIND OF MINIMIZE THE AMOUNT OF PEOPLE UP AT THE CAPITOL.

THAT'S ONE OF THE WAYS THEY'RE DEALING

[00:20:01]

LOGISTICALLY WITH COVID IS TO, UM, SPREAD THE COMMITTEE OR HERRINGS OUT.

AND INSTEAD OF HAVING THEM ALL FRONT-LOADED, UH, MONDAY, TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY, UM, AND, UH, SO THE BILLS HERE, YOU GET A, NOTICE, YOUR BILLS, SEPARATE HEARING, YOU GOTTA GET YOUR WITNESSES LINED UP IF YOUR LEGISLATE DOOR, UM, THE PEOPLE THAT ARE THERE ARE GOING TO TESTIFY IN SUPPORT OF THE BILL, THEN THE LEGISLATE DOOR, YOU KNOW, WHEN THE CHAIRMAN CALLS THE BILLS UP IN COMMITTEE, SOMETIMES THEY GO IN ORDER.

TYPICALLY THEY DON'T ON WHAT THE NOTICE, YOU KNOW, THE COMMITTEE SCHEDULE IS, UM, THEN TH THAT LEGISLATE DOOR LAYS OUT HIS, HIS OR HER BILL TO THE MEMBERS EXPLAINS THE BASIS OF THE BILL, WHY THEY FILED THE BILL, WHAT THE NEED FOR WHAT THE THERE'S A NEED FOR THIS BILL AND ANSWERS ANY QUESTIONS.

AND THEN THE AUTHOR OF THE BILL.

IT'S THE AUTHOR.

WHEN IT'S THE PERSON THAT FILES THE BILL IN THE ORIGINAL CHAMBER, IT'S THE SPONSOR.

WHEN THE BILL GOES OVER TO THE OTHER CHAMBER AND IT LEGISLATOR OR PICKS IT UP.

SO AUTHOR IN THE ORIGINAL CHAMBER SPONSOR IN THE OTHER CHAMBER.

SO THE, THE AUTHOR SPONSOR LAYS OUT THE BILL.

THEN THEY SIT DOWN AND THEN THE CHAIRMAN STARTS, YOU KNOW, ASKING WITNESSES, CALLING OUT WITNESSES.

YOU HAVE TO GO.

AND THEY'VE, THEY'VE KIND OF TRANSITIONED, STARTING TO TRANSITION.

AND YOU USED TO JUST FILL OUT A WITNESS CARD AND THEN SUBMIT IT TO THE COMMITTEE CLERK AT THE HEARING.

NOW YOU HAVE KIOSKS THAT YOU CAN ENTER IN YOUR WITNESS INFORMATION AND THEY'LL HAVE IT ELECTRONICALLY.

AND THEN THE SPEAKER, THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE WILL CALL UP PEOPLE TO TESTIFY BASED ON WHAT YOU'VE, HOW YOU FILLED OUT ON THE KIOSK.

AND SOME PEOPLE ARE STILL USING WITNESS CARDS, BUT YOU SAY, HEY, UM, I'M, YOU KNOW, JOE JOHN SMITH, I'M HERE REPRESENTING THIS ENTITY.

I'M HERE TO TESTIFY FOR OR AGAINST THIS BILL.

AND YOU PROVIDE YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION.

UM, AND THEN THEY CALL YOU UP.

AND THEN YOU TESTIFY ON THE BILL AND YOU ANSWER QUESTIONS THAT ANY LEGISLATE DOORS MIGHT HAVE.

AND THEN THEY GO THROUGH THE WITNESS LIST.

AND THEN THEY CLOSED THE PUBLIC TESTIMONY ON A BILL, AND THEY TYPICALLY LEAVE A BILL, PARTICULARLY EARLY IN THE SESSION.

THEY LEAVE A BILL PENDING AND THEY DON'T VOTE ON IT UNTIL THE NEXT COMMITTEE HEARING.

AND THAT WAY IT GIVES LEGISLATORS THE TIME TO LOOK AT IT, WHAT THEIR STAFF THINK ABOUT IT, WORK WITH THE MEMBERS, TRYING TO FIGURE OUT IF THERE'S ANY AMENDMENTS OR CHANGES THAT NEED TO BE MADE TO THE BILL.

UM, AND THEN, UM, THEN THE BILL IS BROUGHT UP AT THE NEXT COMMITTEE HEARING TO BE VOTED ON AND POTENTIALLY VOTED OUT OF COMMITTEE.

NOW YOU MIGHT HEAR THE TERM COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTES.

AND WHAT THAT MEANS IS THAT BY THE, YOU KNOW, IT'S AMAZING WHEN YOU FILE A BILL WHO COMES OUT OF THE WOODWORK, WHEN IT BECOMES PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE, AND THEY GO TO THE AUTHOR AND SAY, HEY, I'VE GOT THESE ISSUES WITH THE BILL.

CAN YOU HELP ME? I'VE GOT THESE TWEAKS.

AND, YOU KNOW, A LOT OF TIMES, MOST TIMES, LITERALLY DOORS TRY TO WORK WITH PEOPLE CAUSE THEY DON'T WANT, THEY DON'T WANT WITNESSES COMING AND TESTIFYING AGAINST THEIR BILLS UP AT THE EPIC THE COMMITTEE HEARING.

SO THEY WORK ON THE BILL AND MAKE WHATEVER REVISIONS.

AND THEN THEY THEY'RE WORKING WITH LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL, WHO I SAID BEFORE AS THE ATTORNEYS FOR THE LEGISLATURE AND THEN THE, THE TEXAS LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL PRODUCES A COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE.

SO IT INCLUDES ALL THE CHANGES THAT THAT AUTHOR OR SPONSOR OF THE BILL REQUESTED SINCE THEY ORIGINALLY FILED THE BILL AND, UM, COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTES ARE PRETTY COMMON.

UM, THERE'S ALWAYS THINGS THAT PEOPLE FIND KNOW GRAMMATICAL AREAS, WORDSMITHING ERRORS, YOU KNOW, REFERENCES TO OTHER STATUTES.

UM, SO THE COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTES ARE A PRETTY COMMON OCCURRENCE.

SO THEY, AND THEN THE AUTHOR AND SPONSOR WOULD HAVE TO EXPLAIN WHEN HE LAYS OUT THE BILL, HE OR SHE LAYS OUT THE BILL AND HEARING IN THE COMMITTEE HEARING WHAT'S DIFFERENT BETWEEN THE ORIGINAL FILED VERSION AND THE COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE VERSION, SO THAT ALL THE LEGISLATE DOORS AND ALL THE PEOPLE IN THE CROWD KNOW WHAT, WHAT, WHAT CHANGED WHAT'S WHY IS THE COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE DIFFERENT AND EXPLAINS WHY THE CHANGES ARE OR, OR MADE? SO, UM, AND THEN, SO THEN BILLS ARE PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE AND THEN THEY GO TO IN THE SENATE, THEY GO TO THE, UM, LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR'S OFFICE AND HE, OR SHE DECIDES, YOU KNOW, WHAT BILLS ARE GOING TO BE, UM, BROUGHT UP ON THE SENATE FLOOR WITH, WITH A CAVEAT WHICH I'LL GET INTO.

AND THEN IN THE HOUSE, THE BILLS GO FROM COMMITTEE TO THE HOUSE CALENDARS COMMITTEE.

IF IT'S A LOCAL BILL, IT GOES TO THE HOUSE, LOCAL AND CONSENT CALENDARS COMMITTEE, AND THEY SET THE HOUSE LOCAL AND CONSENT CALENDAR.

IF IT'S A REGULAR BILL GENERAL APPLICATION, UM, IT GETS SENT TO THE, UM, HOUSE HOUSE CALENDARS COMMITTEE AND THEY WORK WITH THE SPEAKER TO SET THE BILLS THAT COME UP ON THE CALENDAR.

SO IN THE HOUSE, YOU'VE GOT THE DAILY HOUSE CALENDAR, THE SUPPLEMENTAL HOUSE CALENDAR, LOCAL CONSENT AND RESOLUTIONS, CALENDAR CONGRATULATORY, AND MEMORIAL CALENDAR.

AND THEN IN THE SENATE, YOU'VE GOT THE REGULAR ORDER OF BUSINESS AND THEN, WHICH IS ESSENTIALLY THE CALENDAR AND THEN THE LOCAL AND UNCONTESTED CALENDAR.

SO A LOT OF TIMES WHEN BILLS, YOU KNOW, HAVE

[00:25:01]

A HEARING IN COMMITTEE, THERE'S NOBODY THAT TESTIFIES AGAINST IT.

UM, IT'S A, IT'S SOMETHING EVERYBODY LIKES AND THINKS IT'S NEEDED.

CHAIRMAN'S IN FAVOR OF IT.

THEY'LL MAKE A MOTION TO SEND A BILL, EVEN IF IT'S NOT A LOCAL BILL, IF IT'S NOBODY HAS AN ISSUE WITH IT, THEY'LL REFER IT TO THE LOCAL AND CONSENT CALENDAR IN THE HOUSE OR THE LOCAL AND UNCONTESTED CALENDAR AND THE SENATE.

SO THERE'S, THERE'S THINGS OTHER THAN LOCAL BILLS THAT ARE ON THOSE CALENDARS.

AND THAT'S A WAY TO REALLY RUN THROUGH AND KIND OF SPEED UP THE PROCESS ON NON-CONTROVERSIAL ITEMS, UM, IS TO, IS FOR COMMITTEES TO SEND THEM TO THOSE LOCAL CALENDARS AS TO HAVEN'T, AS OPPOSED TO HAVING TO SEND THEM TO THE HOUSE OR SENATE FLOOR WHERE IT'S MUCH MORE DEBATE, A LOT MORE, UM, ATTENTION AND APPLIED TO A BILL.

AND, UM, IT'S A LOT HARDER TO GET THE BILL, YOU KNOW, OFF THE HOUSE AND SENATE FLOOR.

UM, BUT AGAIN, THAT'S ANOTHER WAY THAT THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR AND THE SPEAKER EXERT POWER IS THROUGH THE CALENDARS AND WHAT BILLS ACTUALLY MAKE IT TO THE HOUSE OR SENATE FLOOR.

UM, AND I THINK THAT'S ONE OF THE WAYS I THINK HOW YOU'RE, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE ASK ME, WELL, HOW ARE THEY GOING TO LIMIT? YOU KNOW, THERE'S ALWAYS BEEN THIS, THIS NOT A CONVERSATION ABOUT TRYING TO LIMIT INTERACTION AND LIMIT PUBLIC PARTIES, NOT LIMIT PARTICIPATION, BUT THAT THE IT'S JUST GOING TO BE A DIFFERENT LEGISLATIVE SESSION FOR THE LEGISLATORS DOORS THEMSELVES, LET ALONE THE PUBLIC BECAUSE OF COVID.

AND, UM, LIKE WHAT'S HOW DO WE LIMIT, YOU KNOW, WHAT, WHAT THE, THE LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY AND IT'S, YOU KNOW, HOW MANY BILLS GET HEARD IN COMMITTEE? HOW MANY BILLS GET VOTED OUT THAT THE SPEAKER IS GOING TO USE THE CHAIRMAN AND TO MAKE SURE THAT THAT THINGS ARE CLAMPED DOWN, EVEN AS MANY BILLS HAVE BEEN FILED.

AND THEN IN THE, THE SENATE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR IS GOING TO TALK TO HIS CHAIR PERSONS AND SAY, YOU'RE NOT GOING TO SET THAT MANY BILLS FOR HEARING, AND YOU'RE NOT GOING TO VOTE THAT MEANT, PUT THEM PUT BILLS UP FOR A VOTE TO VOTE THEM OUT OF COMMITTEE.

AND THEN, AND THEN THE NEXT STEP THAT THE SPEAKER AND LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR CAN IMPACT HOW MANY BILLS ARE HEARD ON THE FLOOR AND LIMIT LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY IS HOW MANY BILLS ARE SET ON THE CALENDARS? UM, THAT THE HOUSE IS A LOT EASIER TO FOLLOW BECAUSE IT PRETTY MUCH LAYS OUT AND THEY GO, THE HOUSE GOES IN ORDER, AND YOU CAN LOOK AT THE HOUSE CALENDAR, AND MAN, YOU CAN JUST GO CHICK, CHICK, CHICK, HERE WE GO.

AND YOU CAN, YOU CAN WALK UP, GO TO THE GALLERY, HEAR A BILL THAT'S HEARD AND YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHAT IS COMING NEXT.

I MEAN, THEY POSTPONE BILLS SOMETIME.

UM, BUT FOR THE MOST PART, YOU KNOW, WHERE THEY ARE IN THE CALENDAR SET A WHOLE DIFFERENT STORY.

UM, AND, UM, BASICALLY THE REGULAR ORDER OF BUSINESS, EVERY BILL THAT IS VOTED OUT OF A SENATE COMMITTEE IS PUT ON THE REGULAR ORDER OF BUSINESS.

SO THE SENATORS ALL KNOW AND THEIR STAFF ALL KNOW, HEY, HERE'S THE LIST OF ALL THE BILLS THAT POTENTIALLY COULD BE THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR COULD, COULD RECOGNIZE SOMEBODY TO BRING UP.

UM, AND THIS IS KIND OF AN INTERESTING TWIST THAT WE'LL SEE OUT, UH, AT THE FIRST PART OF SESSION.

UM, TYPICALLY, YOU KNOW, FOR 70, I THINK 70 YEARS, UM, THERE WAS WHAT WAS CALLED THE TWO THIRDS RULE IN THE TEXAS SENATE THAT IT TOOK TWO THIRDS OF THE, UM, THE SENATORS TO AGREE TO LET A BILL TO COME UP ON THE SENATE FLOOR.

IF THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR RECOGNIZED YOU TO BRING THAT BILL UP.

AND, UM, THAT, YOU KNOW, BROUGHT A LOT OF, UM, NEGOTIATION MEDIA, YOU KNOW, A LOT OF IT, IT, ONE PARTY COULDN'T JUST VOTE, IT VOTE, YOU KNOW, THE PARTIES VOTES AND, AND IN THE SENATE YOU HAD ALWAYS HAD TO HAVE BECAUSE OF THE NUMBERS YOU ALWAYS HAD TO HAVE SUPPORT FROM THE OTHER PARTY TO BE ABLE TO MAKE THAT, MEET THAT TWO THIRDS RULE, TO BRING A BILL TO THE, TO THE HOUSE OR TO THE SENATE FLOOR.

WELL, UM, LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR, PATRICK, BECAUSE OF THE WAY THE, THE, THE, THE ELECTIONS HAVE GONE AND THE NUMBERS, UM, THAT LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR PATRICK A COUPLE SESSIONS AGO LOWERED IT TO 60% THAT YOU JUST NEEDED TO HAVE A 60% VOTE OF THE SENATORS TOO, BECAUSE THE REPUBLICANS HAD ENOUGH TO HAVE 60% WHERE IT WOULD JUST BE REPUBLICANS ONLY COULD VOTE AND THEY COULD BRING A BILL TO THE FLOOR OF THE SENATE.

UM, AND, UH, SO, AND THEN, BUT NOW TH TH THE, UM, DENVER IT'S NOW, IT WAS 19 TO 12, AND THAT'S WHERE THE 60% WA, UH, WORKED NOW.

IT IS 18, 13 SWORDS REPUBLICANS, THE DEMOCRATS AND THE TEXAS HOUSE AND SUE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR PATRICK HAS TOLD PEOPLE AND SAID PUBLICLY, YOU KNOW, I'M VERY STRONGLY CONSIDERING CHANGING THAT TO A MAJORITY VOTE.

YOU JUST NEED A MAJORITY VOTE TO BRING A BILL TO THE SENATE FLOOR.

AND, UM, BECAUSE OF THE WAY THE NUMBERS OF REPUBLICANS, THE DEMOCRATS, UM, AND SO THAT'S, UH, THAT'S KIND OF A NEW DEVELOPMENT AND PEOPLE ARE TALKING ABOUT A LOT LEADING INTO SESSION THAT WE'VE GONE FROM THE TWO THIRDS RULE TO THE 60% RULE THAT LOOKS LIKE WE'RE GOING TO GET A MAJORITY VOTE, TO BRING A BILL OUT OF, YOU KNOW, TO BRING, UH, TO BE ABLE TO BRING A BORE BILL TO THE SENATE FLOOR.

AND THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR CAN RECOGNIZE ANYBODY ON ONE ON

[00:30:01]

THE BILL, THAT'S ON THE REGULAR ORDER OF BUSINESS.

AND TYPICALLY WHAT WILL HAPPEN IS THE SPEAKER.

I MEAN, THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR WILL TELL PEOPLE AHEAD OF THE DAY BEFORE THE STAFF, HIS STAFF, OR HER STAFF WILL TELL THIS THE MEMBERS, HEY, YOUR BILL'S COMING UP TOMORROW, OR THESE BILLS, OR YOU'RE GOING TO BE RECOGNIZED TOMORROW ON THESE BILLS, UM, ON THE SENATE FLOOR.

SO IT'S, YOU CAN'T REALLY TELL WHAT OTHER THAN YOU HAVE A OVERALL CUMULATIVE LIST OF ALL THE BILLS THAT ARE ELIGIBLE TO BE BROUGHT UP.

YOU REALLY DON'T KNOW UNLESS YOU HAVE STAFF TELLING YOU OR MEMBERS TELLING YOU, HEY, YOU'RE MY BILLS.

YOU KNOW, THE BILL IS GOING TO COME UP TOMORROW.

YOU DON'T REALLY KNOW WHAT BILLS ARE COMING OUT.

UM, ON THE SENATE CALENDAR, IT'S HARD, IT'S A LOT HARDER TO FOLLOW.

UM, AND THEN, YOU KNOW, IF A BILL, UM, PEOPLE ASK HOW TO CONFERENCE COMMITTEES COME INTO THIS.

BASICALLY IF, UM, YOU KNOW, BILL PASSES THROUGH ONE CHAMBER, IT LOOKS A CERTAIN WAY, HAS CERTAIN VERSION OF IT.

IT GOES OVER TO THE OTHER CHAMBER.

THEY MAKE CHANGES TO IT.

THEY MEND IT.

THEY HAVE A COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE.

UM, THEN YOU GOT TO GO TO CONFERENCE COMMITTEE TO WORK OUT THE DIFFERENCES.

IF A BILL MAKES IT ALL, YOU KNOW, ALL THE WAY THROUGH ONE CHAMBER MAKES IT THROUGH THE OTHER CHAMBER.

AND NO CHANGES ARE MADE, THAT BILL IS PASSED.

IT IS GOING TO THE GOVERNOR FOR HIS CONSIDERATION AND POSSIBLE, UM, BETO OR, OR SIGN, YOU KNOW, HE COULD SIGN IT.

UM, AND, UM, BUT IF IT'S GOING TO CONFERENCE COMMITTEE NOW, I THINK ONE OF THE MISNOMERS, OR ONE OF THE MISUNDERSTANDINGS THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE HAVE ABOUT THE LEGISLATURE IS IN CONFERENCE COMMITTEES IS I'D SAY 99% OF THE TIME, 97% OF THE TIME LEGISLATE DOORS, AREN'T GOING INTO A ROOM AND NEGOTIATING AND HAVING A CONFERENCE COMMITTEE THAT HAPPENS FOR THE BUDGET.

UM, BUT FOR THE MOST PART, MOST BILLS DON'T DO THAT.

TYPICALLY WHAT HAPPENS? THE SPEAKER SPEAKER APPOINTS FIVE REPRESENTATIVES, LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR APPOINTS FIVE SENATORS, AND THEY SERVE ON THE CONFERENCE COMMITTEE AND TYPICALLY THE AUTHORS OF THE, OF THE AUTHOR AND THE SPONSOR WORK ON THE BILL.

THEY COME UP, THEY TRY TO FIGURE OUT THE DIFFERENCES.

THEY COME UP WITH A VERSION THAT THEY'VE TALKED TO PEOPLE IN FORMALLY ON THE FLOOR.

UM, THEY'VE NEVER GONE TO A MEETING AND TRY TO WORK OUT THE DIFFERENCES, AND YOU JUST NEED TO HAVE THREE SIGNATURES FROM REPRESENTATIVES AND THREE SIGNATURES FROM THE SENATE.

YOU DON'T EVEN HAVE TO HAVE ALL FIVE SIGNATURES.

YOU JUST NEED THREE AND THREE.

AND IF YOU CAN KIND OF HORSE TRADE AND GET THE LANGUAGE WORKED OUT, EVERYBODY CAN LIVE WITH IT AND GET THOSE SIX SIGNATURES.

THEN, THEN THAT CONFERENCE COMMITTEE REPORT IS BROUGHT UP ON THE HOUSE FLOOR AND ON THE SENATE FLOOR AND THE FULL HOUSE AND SENATE TO HAVE TO VOTE, TO ADOPT THAT CONFERENCE COMMITTEE.

AND THEN AT THAT POINT, ONCE THAT CONFERENCE COMMITTEE REPORT IS ADOPTED THAN IT IS SENT TO THE GOVERNOR FOR HIS OR HER CONSIDERATION AND ACTION.

SO THAT'S ONE OF THE THINGS THAT PEOPLE THINK THERE'S THESE BIG NEGOTIATIONS GOING ON AND, YOU KNOW, FIVE LEGISLATION, YOU KNOW, 10 LEGISLATORS IN A ROOM GETTING AT, YOU KNOW, YELLING AT EACH OTHER, TRYING TO WORK THINGS OUT.

AND TYPICALLY THAT'S NOT THE CASE.

THEY JUST IT'S, IT'S PEOPLE INDIVIDUALLY WORKING AND TALKING TO PEOPLE AND WORKING IT OUT AND GETTING THE SIGNATURES, UM, T TO ON THE CONFERENCE COMMITTEE REPORT.

AND THEN THE GOVERNOR, UH, GOVERNOR'S ACTION.

BASICALLY, THE GOVERNOR HAS 20 DAYS TO ON THE LAST DAY OF SESSION TO VETO A BILL, SIGN A BILL OR A LAW, IF HE DOESN'T DO ANYTHING, THEN HE ALLOWS THE BILL TO BECOME LAW BY TAKING NO ACTION.

UM, IF A GOVERNOR VETOED A BILL, BUT IT'S MORE THAN 10 DAYS BEFORE THE END OF SESSION.

SO MAY 21ST, HE VETOED THE BILL FOR THAT, THAT GIVES THE LEGISLATURE TIME.

AND THOSE LAST 10 DAYS TO OVER TURN THE GOVERNOR'S VETO.

UM, THAT'S WHY TYPICALLY THE GOVERNOR, YOU KNOW, ANY BILL PASSES, UM, BEFORE THAT 10 DAYS, THE GOVERNOR WAITS UNTIL AFTER THE LEGISLATURE, YOU KNOW, ADJOURN, SANDY DIE, THEN HE OR SHE TAKES ACTION IN THAT 20 DAYS AFTERWARDS BECAUSE THEY KNOW IF THEY DO IT BEFORE THAT MAY 21ST TIME PERIOD BEFORE THE 10 DAYS BEFORE , THEY, THEY HAVE, THE LEGISLATURE HAS OPPORTUNITY TO OVERTURN IT.

IF THEY, IF A BILL IS PASSED WITHIN THE LAST 10 DAYS OF SESSION, THEN IT AUTOMATICALLY GOES A GOVERNOR AND THE LEGISLATURE CAN'T OVERTURN IT.

SO THERE'S SOME GAMESMANSHIP GOING ON THERE.

UM, AND I THOUGHT I WOULD TALK, AND I'VE BEEN TALKING, TALKING, TALKING, BUT I'M GETTING CLOSE TO WRAPPING THIS UP AND WE'LL TAKE ANY QUESTIONS.

UM, JUST THOUGHT IT WAS IMPORTANT FOR THIS SESSION TO TALK TO YOU ABOUT SOME OF THE BIG TICKET ITEMS, BIG PICTURE ITEMS THAT I SEE THIS LEGISLATURE DEALING WITH.

UM, AND, YOU KNOW, STATE BUDGET IS A HUGE DEAL.

I THINK THE PICTURE IS A LITTLE BIT BETTER FOR OUR STATE, UM, AS THINGS THAT ECONOMY HAS COME BACK A LITTLE BIT, BUT, YOU KNOW, WE GOT A DOUBLE WHAMMY IN THE SPRING BETWEEN THE OIL AND GAS, UM, ISSUES THAT WE'VE HAD AS A, YOU KNOW, AS A, AS A, AS A WORLD.

UM, THERE WAS A PRICE WAR GOING ON AND, AND THE PRICE OF OIL AND GAS, THE BOTTOM DROPPED OUT THAT HURTS TEXAS BECAUSE OF, AS WE ALL KNOW, THE, UM, ALL OF THE, UM, SEVERANCE TAXES AND ALL THE TAXES THAT ARE ASSOCIATED WITH THAT, THE STATE RECEIVES

[00:35:01]

FROM THE, FROM THE PRODUCTION OF OIL AND GAS AND SALE OF OIL AND GAS.

UM, IT'S REALLY HELPED US BALANCE THE BUDGET.

YOU KNOW, IT'S REALLY BEEN A BIG BENEFIT TO THE LEGISLATURE WHEN WE'VE HAD THIS WHOLE SHALE PLAY AND FRACKING HAS REALLY PROVIDED THEM MORE MONEY TO HELP BALANCE THE BUDGET THAN THEY'VE BEEN, AND THEN WHAT THEY WILL HAVE THIS SESSION.

UM, AND THEN SALES TAX HAS HURT THE STATE, YOU KNOW, AS THE ECONOMY WITH COVID WAS NEGATIVELY AFFECTED, AS YOU ALL KNOW, MORE THAN ANYBODY, UM, THAT THAT'S BEEN A, THOSE TWO DOUBLE WHAMMIES BETWEEN COVID AND THE OIL AND GAS WARS THAT GLOBALLY, UM, THE LEGISLATURE IS GOING TO HAVE A BIT OF A DEFICIT TO MAKE UP.

SO THEY'RE GOING TO, THAT'S THE ONE BILL, THE LEGISLATURE IS REQUIRED BY THE TEXAS CONSTITUTION TO PASS EVERY REGULAR SESSION IS THE BUDGET.

EVERYTHING ELSE CAN NOT PASS AND THEY CAN GO HOME AND THEY'VE DONE EVERYTHING.

THE TEXAS CONSTITUTION REQUIRES THEM AS LONG AS THEY PASS A STATE BUDGET.

RE-DISTRICTING I MENTIONED THAT EARLIER, THIS IS THE, YOU KNOW, HERE WE HAVE THE CENSUS, AS WE'RE ALL AWARE EVERY 10 YEARS.

SO THE NEXT REGULAR SESSION, THE CONSTITUTION SAYS, YOU HAVE TO DEAL WITH REGULAR SESSION, OR AT LEAST BRING IT UP DURING REGULAR SESSION.

UM, YOU HAVE TO START WITH, YOU TAKE THE NUMBERS THAT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT PROVIDES TO THE STATES, AND YOU WORK ON DRAWING BOUNDARIES FOR THE TEXAS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, THE TEXAS SENATE, AND THE US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.

AND SO THERE'S KIND OF A LITTLE QUICK, FUNNY SIDE JOKE IS THE LEGISLATORS JOKE OF HOW MANY CONGRESSMEN COME BACK TO AUSTIN? HOW MANY, HOW MANY DINNERS AND HOW MANY MEETINGS US CONGRESSMEN HAVE WITH THEM IN THE, IN THE YEARS THEY'RE DOING REDISTRICTING AND THAT THEY DON'T SEE THEM FOR 10 YEARS AND ALL OF A SUDDEN THEY'VE GOT BUDDIES AGAIN, CAUSE IT'S REDISTRICTING TIME.

UM, SO THAT'S GOING TO BE A BIG DEAL.

YOU KNOW, THE CENSUS HAS BEEN DIFFERENT THIS YEAR BECAUSE OF COVID.

AND SO WE DON'T KNOW, YOU KNOW, TYPICALLY THE NUMBERS ARRIVE, YOU KNOW, AT THE END OF THE YEAR, BEGINNING OF THE NEXT YEAR.

SO IT'S PLENTY OF TIME FOR REGULAR SESSION TO DEAL WITH, UM, REDISTRICTING, BUT BECAUSE OF COVID AND ALL THAT, IT THERE'S SOME QUESTION OF WHEN EXACTLY THE NUMBERS WILL SHOW UP FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AS FAR AS, SO THAT THE STATE CAN START THE REDISTRICTING PROCESS.

UM, THEY DON'T HAVE TO FINISH THE RE-DISTRICTING, UM, EVER DURING REGULAR SESSION, THEY JUST HAVE TO START IT.

AND SO THEN THEY CAN CALL SPECIAL SESSIONS TO KEEP WORKING ON IT, IF THAT'S WHAT THEY FEEL IS NECESSARY.

UM, I THINK YOU'RE GOING TO SEE A LOT OF LEGISLATION AND, AND HOW THE STATE AND, YOU KNOW, A LOT OF GOVERNMENTAL ENTITIES LIKE YOURSELVES DEALT WITH COVID AND TO TRY TO TRY TO IMPROVE BASED ON OUR EXPERIENCE AS A STATE, UM, ON HOW WE CAN DEAL WITH FUTURE PANDEMICS BETTER THAN, UM, WE HAVE IMPROVED, YOU KNOW, EVERY TIME THERE'S A FLOOD, EVERY TIME THERE'S A DROUGHT, YOU ALWAYS SEE LEGISLATION THAT COMES OUT OR HURRICANE, UM, ANY KIND OF, YOU KNOW, THESE KINDS OF SIGNIFICANT DISASTERS.

UM, YOU SEE LEGISLATION THAT COMES OUT NEXT SESSION TO TRY TO DEAL WITH HOW THE STATE RESPONDED TO THAT.

SO I THINK YOU'LL SEE THAT A LOT OF, BECAUSE OF GEORGE FLOYD AND ALL THE THINGS THAT HAVE GONE ON IN OUR COUNTRY OVER THE LAST YEAR, I THINK YOU'RE GOING TO SEE A LOT.

I'M ALREADY SEEING A LOT OF BILLS DEALING WITH POLICE REFORM.

UM, AND SO, YOU KNOW, WITH THE REPUBLICAN CONTROLLED LEGISLATURE, I DON'T KNOW ABOUT THE SUCCESS RATE OF THOSE BILLS AS FAR AS, BUT I KNOW A LOT ARE BEING FILED.

UM, AND WE'RE TRACKING ALL THAT FOR GARLAND AND WRITING SUMMARIES UP SO THAT WE CAN KEEP YOU ALL INFORMED ON THAT.

BUT THAT'S DEFINITELY A THEME THAT HAS DEFINITELY COME TRUE WITH ALL THE BILLS THAT HAVE BEEN FILED THAT I'VE, I'VE BEEN LOOKING AT AND THEN ELECTION, I THINK THERE'S SOME, A LOT OF BILLS HAVE BEEN FILED TO TRY TO DEAL WITH THINGS THAT CAME UP DURING THE NOVEMBER, UM, YOU KNOW, GENERAL ELECTION.

UM, SO WE'LL, IT'LL BE FASCINATING TO SEE WHAT COMES OUT OF THAT.

AND THEN AS FAR AS LIKE ADDITIONAL LEGISLATIVE ISSUES FOR THE CITY OF GARLAND THAT I WANTED TO PUT ON YOUR RADAR SCREEN, YOU KNOW, REVISIONS TO THE OPEN MEETINGS ACT, I KNOW THERE'S A LOT OF INTEREST IN TRYING TO FIND, FIGURE OUT IF WE CAN REVISE THE OPEN MEETINGS ACT.

UM, IF THE LEGISLATURE CAN TO TRY TO ALLOW MORE VIDEO CONFERENCING AND MORE VIRTUAL PARTICIPATION.

NOW THAT WE'VE SEEN THAT IN A LOT OF SITUATIONS, WE CAN, PEOPLE CAN MAKE IT, UM, GOVERNMENTAL ENTITIES CAN MAKE IT WORK.

SO I THINK THAT'S DEFINITELY, THERE'S AN EFFORT GOING ON THERE.

UM, TAXPAYER FUNDED LOBBYING, UM, THAT'S, WE'RE TALKING ABOUT, UM, OUTSIDE INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS LIKE MYSELF, WE'RE TALKING ABOUT INSIDE IN-HOUSE, UM, NO MINERAL RELATIONS, YOU KNOW, UH, REPRESENTATIVES AND WE'RE TALKING, UM, ASSOCIATIONS LIKE TML AND TEXAS HAITIAN COUNTIES, AND THOSE THAT ARE UP ARE ACTIVE AT THE CAPITOL.

SO RIGHT NOW THE BILL THERE'S BEEN TWO BILLS FILED ONE IN THE SENATE, ONE IN MY RE UH, SENATOR BOB HALL, AND THEN ONE BY REPRESENTATIVE MAYES MIDDLETON WHO HAD THE BILL LAST SESSION THAT, THAT WERE FILED, BUT DID NOT PASS.

UM, SO THERE'S A BIG EFFORT.

THERE WAS A STATE AFFAIRS COMMITTEE HEARING ON, UM, THAT ISSUE, STATE,

[00:40:01]

TAXPAYER FUNDED LOBBYISTS IN, UH, LOBBYING, UM, IN A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO.

UM, SO THAT'S GOING TO BE A BIG ISSUE.

I KNOW FOR CITIES AND A LOT OF OTHER GOVERNMENTAL ENTITIES, UM, YOU KNOW, I THINK THERE'LL BE A CONTINUED, UM, EFFORT, UNFORTUNATELY, TO UNDERMINE CITIES, AUTHORITY, UH, A CITY STORY AND JURISDICTION.

WE'VE SEEN IT.

I MEAN, THAT'S ONE OF THE GREAT THINGS ABOUT I'VE ENJOYED.

WELL, I'VE ENJOYED PICKING BRAD'S BRAIN.

I'VE ENJOYED WATCHING BRAIN, UH, BRAD AND BRIAN ENGLAND'S MIND WORK, UM, UNFORTUNATE WHAT WE'RE HAVING TO WORK ON.

UM, BUT IT'S LIKE, THEY HAVE SO MUCH INSTITUTIONAL KNOWLEDGE WHEN THEY SEE A BILL, THEY KNOW WHAT, WHAT A PARTICULAR INDUSTRY IS TRYING TO DO TO UNDERMINE A CITY'S REGULATION.

AND I'LL GO TO LEGISLATE DOORS AND STAFF AND SAY, HEY, YOU KNOW, REALLY WHAT THIS BILL, THIS BILL DOES.

AND THEY WERE LIKE, NO, WE HAD NO IDEA.

SO IT'S, UM, THERE'S A LOT OF PEOPLE I'M AFRAID, PETE, THERE'S A LOT.

IF YOU'VE EVER HAD A BEEF WITH A CITY, THE LAST COUPLE OF SESSIONS, PARTICULARLY LAST SESSION, IT'S BEEN YOUR TIME TO COME TO THE LEGISLATURE AND TRY TO SOLVE YOUR ISSUE WITH A CITY.

UM, BECAUSE THERE'S BEEN A LOT OF NEGATIVITY, UNFORTUNATELY, TOWARDS CITIES AS Y'ALL ARE VERY AWARE.

UM, AND THEN, YOU KNOW, I KNOW THERE'S A BILL THAT'S OUT THERE THAT DEALS WITH MUNICIPAL OWNED UTILITIES.

UM, SO I THINK, YOU KNOW, THERE'S, THERE'S THAT BILL OUT THERE THAT, UH, SENATOR SCHWERTNER HAS ALREADY FILED THAT, YOU KNOW, COULD IMPACT, UM, YOUR, YOUR ENTITY, SO YOUR UTILITIES.

SO I JUST WANTED TO PUT THAT ON YOUR RADAR.

AND SO, UM, THAT'S, THAT'S MY POWERPOINT AND, UM, I'LL STAND FOR ANY QUESTIONS.

I FEEL A LOT OF INFORMATION AT YOU, BUT I TRIED TO DO MY BEST TO KINDA GIVE YOU AN OVERVIEW OF WHAT'S GOING ON.

ALL RIGHT.

I THINK RICH'S DOG HAS A QUESTION SHE'D LIKE TO KNOW WHILE YOU'RE ON HER LAWN.

AH, THERE YOU GO.

THERE YOU GO.

UH, ALL RIGHT.

MEMBERS, ANY QUESTIONS? REMEMBER WILLIAMS, GO AHEAD, SIR.

THANKS FOR SURE.

I THANK YOU VERY MUCH, THAI, REALLY VERY EDUCATIONAL AND SOME, AND SOME PAUSE, FRIGHTENING PRESENTATION, BUT, BUT, UH, BUT THANKS.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, SIR.

UM, JUST TO HIM, CAN YOU TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE ROLES OF, UH, CAUSE ARE NO ROLE IN THIS CHART, BUT THAT VARIANCE PREVIOUS STATE INDICATES THE ROLES OF CHIEFS OF STAFFS AND THIS WHOLE PROCESS AS TO WHICH LEVEL YOU GET ATTENTION, YOU GET AUDIENCES EVEN GETTING INTO THE HEARING OF GETTING INFORMATION.

WOULD YOU TALK ABOUT THAT? AND LIKE, I MAY ASK MY SECOND QUESTION AND I'M DONE HOW THE LEGISLATURE HAS THIS, THIS CULTURE, THIS HABIT OF KILLING STUFF, UH, BILLS BY THE HEARING PROCESS, EITHER POSTPONING THEM, DRAGGING THEM OUT, UH, RESCHEDULING THEM ADJUST TO WEARING YOU OUT.

UH, PARTICULARLY WHEN YOU HAVE, UH, YOU ARE THERE ON A SPECIFIC BILL AND YOU HAVE FOLK WHO ARE LINED UP TO COME AND SPEAK, UH, ON A BILL.

UH THERE'S, THERE'S ALWAYS THAT, THAT A STRATEGY.

OKAY.

YOU, YOU, YOU ARE HERE, YOU COUNCIL PERSONS ARE HERE, WHOMEVER'S REPRESENTING THE CITY.

UH, BUT UH, THE HEARING WAS SUPPOSED TO BE AT NINE, BUT WE'RE GOING TO SWITCH IT TO NINE TONIGHT, UM, OR, UH, NINE NEXT WEEK.

SO, UH, UH, TY, CAN YOU SPEAK TO THOSE 2.1 ON THE ROLE OF THE CHIEF CHIEFS OF STAFFS AND THIS WHOLE PROCESS AND THAT FINAL POINT, PLEASE.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, MS. CHAIR.

YES, SIR.

UM, THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR THE, FOR THE QUESTIONS.

YEAH.

CHIEFS OF STAFF AND THE STAFF IS SO IMPORTANT.

UM, YOU KNOW, THAT'S ALWAYS PART OF A CRUCIAL PART OF THE RELATIONSHIP, UM, THAT YOU TRY TO BUILD WITH LEGISLATE DOORS IS, IS THEIR STAFF.

UM, BECAUSE A LOT OF TIMES WHERE THE LEGISLATORS ARE, YOU KNOW, RUNNING AROUND, UM, GOING TO COMMITTEE HEARINGS AND ON THE FLOOR, YOU KNOW, YOU CAN HAVE THAT POINT OF CONTACT WITH THAT CHIEF OF STAFF AND, YOU KNOW, ALL THESE OFFICES AND, YOU KNOW, IF YOU'VE ALL PROBABLY EXPERIENCED YOU'RE IN THEIR OFFICES AND ALL OF A SUDDEN IF A PARTICULAR NUMBER RINGS AND THAT, AND IT HAS A LITTLE RED FLASHING DOT ON THEIR PHONE, THOSE CHIEFS OF STAFF AND THE, SORRY, I GOT TO PICK UP THIS PHONE, IT'S THE MA IT'S THE LEGISLATURE OR FROM THE, FROM THE FLOOR.

SO THEY PICK UP THAT PHONE.

SO THEY'VE GOT A DIRECT CONDUIT TO THE MEMBER, TO THE LEGISLATURE.

AND SO, UM, YES, BUILDING THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH THAT STAFF AND THE CHEAPEST STAFF HAS ACHIEVED.

THE STAFFS, I I'D ARGUE IS KINDA LIKE THE, THE QUARTERBACK, I'M A BIG SPORTS GUY.

AND SO, UH, YOU KNOW, A SPORTS ANALOGY, UM, YOU KNOW, THE, THE, THE LEGISLATIVE DOOR IS THE RUNNING BACK AND IS GONNA CARRY THE BALL AND GET IT OVER

[00:45:01]

THE GOAL LINE.

BUT THAT QUARTERBACK'S GOT TO SIT THERE.

THAT'S CHIEF OF STAFF HAS GOT TO MAKE SURE THAT STAFFERS GOING TO THAT OFFICE AND THAT STAFFERS GOING TO THAT OFFICE.

AND THERE, THEY'VE GOT ALL THE COMMITTEES HERE, YOU KNOW, COVERED, AND, AND THAT IS, OR AN AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLER, YOU KNOW, THAT CHIEF OF STAFF, MAKING SURE THE CONSTITUENTS ARE HAPPY, THE LEGISLATE DOORS, WHERE THEY NEED TO BE, UM, THAT'S YOUR YOU'VE HIT THE NAIL ON THE HEAD THAT, THAT CHIEF OF STAFF IS A CRUCIAL, CRUCIAL PERSON AND ROLE.

UM, AND THEN AS FAR AS THE, YEAH, THERE ARE TACTICS TO, YOU KNOW, UM, WHEN THEY KNOW THEY HAVE A LOT OF PEOPLE THAT ARE OPPOSED TO A BILL, YOU KNOW, THEY CAN, THEY CAN SET IT AT DIFFERENT TIMES TO, UM, UH, TO TRY TO WHERE, YOU KNOW, THEY KNOW PEOPLE ARE DRIVING INTO AUSTIN, GOING TO DO THEIR DEAL AND DRIVING HOME.

AND THAT'S WHY YOU HAVE LEGISLATORS THAT REALLY TRY TO GET GOES.

A LOT OF TIMES THEY'LL SET, UM, HEARINGS FOR EIGHT IN THE MORNING OR SEVEN 30 IN THE MORNING, AND THEN THE, THE SENATE AND THE HOUSE TYPICALLY GO IN AT 10 O'CLOCK IN THE MORNING.

SO THEY TRY TO HEAR AS MANY BILLS AS THEY CAN BEFORE 10 O'CLOCK, BECAUSE SOME PARTICULARLY AS YOU GET LATER AND LATER IN SESSION, YOU DON'T KNOW WHEN, WHAT TIME THEY'RE GOING TO BE GETTING OFF THE HOUSE OR SENATE FLOOR, BECAUSE IF THEY HAVEN'T FINISHED THEIR WORK IN COMMITTEE, THEY'LL, THEY'LL RECESS THE COMMITTEE.

AND THEN, YOU KNOW, THEY HAVE TO BE ON THE FLOOR AT 10 O'CLOCK AND THEN THEY'LL WAIT UNTIL THEY'VE ADJOURNED THE ACTION ON THE FLOOR OF THE HOUSE OR SENATE, AND THEN BRING THE COMMITTEE BACK AND CONTINUE TO HEAR BILLS.

SO, YOU KNOW, IF THAT'S WHY THEY USE A LOT OF TIMES, YOU'LL HEAR LEGISLATORS SAY, HEY, I'VE GOT THIS GUY OR THIS WOMAN FROM IN, FROM LUFKIN OR TEXARKANA, SHE NEEDS TO TESTIFY SO SHE CAN GET BACK HOME.

CAN YOU PLEASE LET HER GO AHEAD AND TESTIFY? UM, LEGISLATE DOORS, TRY TO TAKE CARE OF THEIR LOCAL FOLKS, BUT IF THERE'S LIKE A BILL LIKE SENATE BILL TWO, YOU KNOW, TACK, YOU KNOW, THE BIG PROPERTY TAX REFORM BILL, I MEAN, THAT THING, UM, IT WAS, YOU KNOW, IT'S, IT'S A RE IT, YOU KNOW, THAT THING WOULD ALL NIGHT AFTER NIGHT AFTER NIGHT.

AND, YOU KNOW, IT'S, IT'S, THE LEGISLATURE WANTS EVERYBODY TO BE HEARD.

UM, AND SO THEY, THEY DON'T WANT TO IN PARTICULARLY THE HOUSE, THEY'LL LET PEOPLE GO ON AND ON AND ON THE SENATE IS A LITTLE MORE STRINGENT ABOUT ALLOWING PEOPLE THREE MINUTES TO TESTIFY, UNLESS THEY HAVE QUESTIONS AND THEN TRYING TO LIMIT THAT TESTIMONY.

UM, BUT YEAH, I MEAN, IT'S, IT'S AN ENDURANCE CONTEST AND A LOT OF WAYS.

UM, AND YOU KNOW, SOME OF, THAT'S PROBABLY A FUNCTION OF THE FACT THAT WE'RE ONLY MEETING 140 DAYS EVERY OTHER YEAR.

AND SO THERE'S SOME URGENCY TO GET THINGS DONE BECAUSE POTENTIALLY IF WE DON'T HAVE ANY SPECIAL SESSIONS, THEN WE WON'T BE ABLE TO DEAL WITH THIS ISSUE UNTIL TWO YEARS FROM NOW.

UM, AND SO IT'S JUST, UM, AND, AND, YOU KNOW, I ASK PEOPLE, YOU KNOW, THERE'S SO MANY DIFFERENT THIS SESSION BECAUSE THE COVID, BUT, YOU KNOW, I, CAUSE I FULLY ANTICIPATE THE LEGISLATURE WILL COME IN ON, ON JANUARY SEC, 12TH ADOPT THE HOUSE AND SENATE RULES ELECT, YOU KNOW, DADE FEELING SPEAKER.

AND THEN I BET YOU, THEY DON'T COME BACK TO AUSTIN FOR 30 DAYS.

UM, AND TYPICALLY THOSE FIRST 60 DAYS, THEY CAN'T HEAR A BILL ON THE FLOOR OF THE HOUSE OR SENATE, UNLESS THE GOVERNOR DECLARED THAT AN EMERGENCY.

AND I'M, I JUST THINK IT'S UNLIKELY.

HE'LL DO THE GOVERNOR ABBOTT WILL DECLARE MANY, UM, BILL'S EMERGENCIES IN THAT FIRST 60 DAYS.

SO THEY MIGHT DO A LOT OF MEMORIAL RESOLUTIONS AND THANKING SO-AND-SO FOR BEING AT THE CAPITOL.

AND IT'S, YOU KNOW, AN OLA COUNTY DAY AT THE CAPITOL AND, AND IT'S ALL THESE RECEPTIONS, YOU KNOW, THAT, I JUST DON'T THINK YOU'RE GOING TO SEE THAT THIS SESSION.

UM, AND SO IT'S JUST GONNA, IT, THE SESSION IS JUST GOING TO LOOK VERY, VERY DIFFERENT AND PEOPLE GET FRUSTRATED AND I KNOW LEGISLATE DOORS THAT HAVE QUIT.

THEY JUST, AFTER ONE SESSION, THEY'RE LIKE, THIS DRIVES ME NUTS THAT THE LEGISLATURE KIND OF PIDDLES AROUND PIDDLES AROUND PEDALS AROUND, AND THEN IT COULD BE PASSING BILLS AND HEARING BILLS IN MARCH AND APRIL AND THE SENATE ON THE HOUSE AND SENATE FLOOR.

BUT THEY DON'T BECAUSE ALL THE SPEAKERS CONTROLLING THAT, AND THAT MAKES THE SPEAKER PARTICULARLY MORE POWERFUL THAT IF YOU GOT THIS BIG GLUT, THIS BIG BACKUP OF BILLS, EVERYBODY NEEDS SOMETHING FROM THE SPEAKER TO TRY TO GET THEIR BILL ON THE HOUSE OR SENATE ON THE HOUSE FLOOR.

SO THE MORE THAT'S THERE, YOU KNOW, IT'S NOT THE MOST EFFICIENT BOARD OF GOVERNANCE GOVERNMENT, BUT THERE'S A, THERE'S A METHOD TO THE MADNESS.

THERE'S A REASON WHY THEY, THEY WORK A WHOLE LOT HARDER IN APRIL AND MAY BECAUSE IT, THE SPEAKER SETS IT UP THAT WAY.

THAT'S MY LONG-WINDED ANSWER TO YOUR QUESTION, COUNCIL MEMBER.

ALL RIGHT.

DO WE HAVE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS, MR. CHAIRMAN, SIR, GO AHEAD.

IF I COULD ASK TY REAL QUICK, UM, UH, I'VE BEEN HEARING RUMORS THROUGH OUR SOURCES, UH, OF DIFFERENT WAYS.

THEY'RE GOING TO RUN THIS SESSION, UM, WITH RESPECT TO COVID.

UM, YOU KNOW, THERE WAS THIS INDICATION

[00:50:01]

THAT THEY SAID TODAY, OH, WE'RE GOING TO OPEN UP THE CAPITAL, BUT I DON'T THINK THEY REALLY MEAN THAT YOU HAVE ANY SENSE OF WHAT THEY'RE TALKING.

NO, I DON'T.

UM, YOU KNOW, IT'S INTERESTING, THERE IS, UM, YOU KNOW, THE CONVERSATIONS I'VE HEARD IS THERE'S GOING TO BE A TENT OUTSIDE THE CAPITOL.

UM, AND THEY'RE GOING TO DO TESTING ON SITE, QUICK TESTING, YOU KNOW, IN A TENT BEFORE YOU CAN GO.

BUT THE DAYS OF JUST BEEN ABLE TO WALK UP TO THE CAPITOL, YOU KNOW, GO THROUGH THE METER, THE DETECTOR, THE METAL DETECTOR, AND WALKING RIGHT TO YOUR HEARING THOSE DAYS, THAT'S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN THIS SESSION.

UM, SO YOU KNOW, THEY, THERE'S A LOT OF TALK OF HAVING SOME KIND OF, YOU CAN PROVE YOU'VE BEEN VACCINATED, THEN YOU'LL GO INTO A SPECIAL LINE.

WHEREAS IF YOU HAVEN'T, YOU GOT TO GET TESTED.

UM, THERE'S A HOUSE COMMITTEE, THERE'S A HOUSE TASK FORCE WORKING ON WHAT THAT LOGISTICS WILL LOOK LIKE.

UM, BUT I, AND YOU EVEN HAVE BRED A REQUEST FOR ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OPINION THAT SOMEBODY FROM THE FAR, FAR RIGHT, UM, BRISCOE CAIN HAS SUBMITTED THAT SAID, WHAT IS, WHAT, WHAT IS REQUIRED OF LEGISLATE TOWARDS THE VOTING COMMITTEE AND THE HOUSE, AND, UM, BASICALLY ASTON LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR ATTORNEY GENERAL, PAXTON, DO WE HAVE TO VOTE IN PUBLIC? IS THAT LEGAL UNDER TEXAS LAW? DO WE HAVE, DO THE MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE AND SENATE HAVE TO VOTE IN PUBLIC AND COMMITTEE AND, UM, ON THE FLOOR TO BE FOR THAT TO BE A LEGITIMATE VOTE OR CAN THEY VOTE VIRTUALLY? AND SO THAT'S, THAT'S, IT'LL BE FASCINATING TO SEE WHAT ATTORNEY GENERAL PAXTON COMES UP WITH.

UM, BUT YEAH, BRAD, I MEAN, I JUST, I THINK THEY'RE GOING TO LET LIMITED NUMBERS IN, I THINK THEY'RE GOING TO MAKE YOU TEST BEFORE YOU COME IN.

I THINK POTENTIALLY YOU'RE GOING TO HAVE TO HAVE AN APPOINTMENT AND TO BE ON A LIST TO BE ABLE TO MEET WITH THE LEGISLATE DOOR.

UM, I JUST THINK THE ACCENT WHILE THE PUBLIC AT CAPITOL WILL BE QUOTE UNQUOTE, OPEN THE ACCESS TO IT WILL BE VERY DIFFICULT TO, TO, TO GET IN, YOU KNOW, TO BE, TO BE ABLE TO GET INTO THE LEGISLATURE, INTO THE CAPITOL.

ANY WORD ON HOLDING SOME OF THESE COMMITTEE HEARINGS BY ZOOM.

DOES THAT LOOK TO BE REAL? I THINK SO.

I THINK WHAT IN THE HOUSE AND SENATE, UM, THAT RULES WILL LEARN A LOT WHEN WE SEE WHAT THOSE RULES LOOK LIKE.

UM, AND SO I THINK, YOU KNOW, ONE OF THE THINGS YOU'LL SEE IS I THINK POTENTIALLY IN THE SENATE, YOU'LL, YOU'LL HAVE THE MEMBERS IN THE STAFF IN ONE ROOM AND IN THE CAPITOL, AND THEN YOU'LL HAVE ALL THE WITNESSES AND THE PUBLIC IN ANOTHER ROOM.

AND SO THEY'RE GOING TO HAVE PEOPLE IN TWO DIFFERENT ROOMS AND YOU'LL, YOU'LL TESTIFY FROM ANOTHER ROOM TO THE LEGISLATIVE DOORS.

AND SO, UM, I THINK THE SENATE IS LIKELY TO DO THAT.

THE HOUSE I THINK, IS STILL WORKING ON IT, BRAD.

SO, UM, IT'S A, I DON'T KNOW, IT'S LIKE, I'VE TOLD PEOPLE WHAT, HOW THE LEGISLATURE, HOW THE REGULAR SESSION LOOKS LIKE IN JANUARY AND FEBRUARY COULD LOOK TOTALLY DIFFERENT THAN WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE IN APRIL AND MAY WHEN WE GET MORE PEOPLE VACCINATED, UM, YOU KNOW, THERE'S GOING TO BE, UM, YOU KNOW, YOU'RE ALREADY HEARING LIKE ABBOTT'S GETTING VACCINATED TOMORROW AND THERE'S SOME LEGISLATE DOORS KNOW THAT HAVE ALREADY GOTTEN VACCINATED.

UM, I THINK THEY'RE GOING TO FIND A WAY TO BE ONE OF THE FIRST GROUP, YOU KNOW, FIRST IN THE FIRST GROUP OF PEOPLE BEING VACCINATED.

SO THEY MIGHT BE A LITTLE MORE WILLING AS TIME GOES ON AND MORE PEOPLE GET VACCINATED, MORE WILLING TO MEET IN PERSON AND HAVING, YOU KNOW, MORE OF A NORMAL LEGISLATIVE PROCESS BECAUSE MOST OF THEM I WOULD ARGUE WILL PROBABLY BE VACCINATED BY MARCH AND APRIL.

UM, SO I THINK YOU'RE GOING TO, IT'S GOING TO CHANGE THE LOOK OF THE LEGISLATURE WILL CHANGE OVER THE COURT FROM THE BEGINNING TOWARD, UNTIL THE END.

SO HI IS