May 25, 2007
Is HB13 going down?

I'd almost forgotten about HB13 since it passed out of the House nearly three weeks ago. A much-amended version was passed by the Senate early this week, and apparently those amendments have left it open to attack.

Yesterday afternoon the ever-resourceful Fort Worth Democrat Rep. Lon Burnam unleashed three points of order on the governor's homeland security bill, HB 13.


Burnam hit the bill with two points on germaneness and one point on the fact it violated the two-subject rule. There is so much in the bill that has nothing to do with homeland security that it seems likely the points will be sustained. The bill's author Rep. David Swinford could try to get it sent back to the Senate to strip off their amendments but it seems a little late in the game. The Homeland Security Bill might be dead.

This would mean that the status quo remains and it would be up to the next legislature to wrest TDEx from the governor's hands. But it also gives folks more of an opportunity to have a real debate about how homeland security should be handled in Texas and what the appropriate role is for the governor in the mix.

There was some good work done on HB13 in the House, and it will be a shame not to see those things get implemented. But on balance, HB13 is a net negative, and its death will not be a shame. We'll see if this really is it.

(Unhappy thought: Would Governor Perry call a special session for this? HB13 was a priority for him. Ugh.)

UPDATE: Brandi Grissom has more.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on May 25, 2007 to That's our Lege

I hear it's toast. The question is, what does that mean? If the budget conferees give Perry his money, he doesn't need HB 13 to spend it, and the House restricted his power so he might not like what he got in a special. You never say never until sine die, but I think it's headed for what Trotsky called the dustbin of history. And while there may be a special on transportation, I'd be shocked if this merits one.

Posted by: Gritsforbreakfast on May 25, 2007 12:25 PM