87th Legislature – Week 5
Here’s an update as we head into Week 5 …
Leadership of the major committees saw some changes, but also saw some of former Speaker Bonnen’s chief lieutenants remain in key positions. For instance, Greg Bonnen (Friendship, TX) – the former Speaker’s brother – was tapped to head the Committee on Appropriations, replacing Gio Capriglione (R-Southlake) who had been overseeing the budget process leading up to the release of H.B. 1, the House’s initial draft of the budget. Dustin Burrows (R-Lubbock) who had chaired Ways and Means during last session’s monumental property tax reforms will now chair the powerful Calendars committee. Craig Goldman (R-Fort Worth), who was often seen on the dais of the House Chamber last session, will chair Energy Resources. He will be taking the reins from Chris Paddie (R-Marshall) who will assume the Speaker’s former role as chair of State Affairs. Todd Hunter (R-Corpus Christi) will head the Redistricting committee during this redistricting cycle.
Speaker Phelan also placed thirteen close Democratic allies in key positions: Joe Moody (D-El Paso), who will again serve as Speaker Pro Tem, is vice-chair of Calendars. Terry Canales (D-Edinburg) will continue as chair of Transportation. Chris Turner (D-Tarrant) will chair Business & Industry. Joe Deshotel (D-Beaumont) will chair Land & Resource Management. And Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston) will chair Licensing & Administrative Procedures.
But, the Speaker signaled his reliance on new confidants as well. Brooks Landgraf (R-Odessa) will chair Environmental Regulation. Will Metcalf (R-Conroe) will chair House Administration. Briscoe Cain (R-Deer Park) will chair Elections.
Governor releases his budget. On Friday, the Governor released his budget for the 2022-2023 biennium. The budget echoes many of the priorities that he emphasized in his state of the state. The document is primarily a policy statement and does not play any formal role in the appropriations process. You can view Governor’s Budget here.
Senate Finance will begin consideration of the state’s budget. As we mentioned last week, Senate Finance will begin its consideration of S.B. 1, the state’s budget, this week. Today, they will hold an organizational meeting. Later this week, they will begin consideration of Article I and Article IV.