Legislative Issues

TPA LEGISLATIVE REPORT, MAY 2017

Like all other sessions, this 85th Regular Legislative session is limited to 140 days – 20 weeks to get the peoples’ business done. By the time you see this report we will be in the middle of the final crush of legislative action. The Senate has been passing emergency legislation for a couple of weeks. The House is now ready to launch into its own accelerated bill passing mode. Hearings of committees for the last few weeks have been relatively light. But, from now on, the agendas will be longer as more than 6,000 bills, pushing and shoving, race for the finish line.
That means our Legislative Committees, both Juvenile and Adult, already the most active in my experience, will be pressed even harder to fend off, amend or kill bad bills that threaten our ongoing progress.
After years of diverting larger and larger numbers of offenders from high cost incarceration(TDCJ-around $60/day; and juveniles, around $440/day in state secure facilities) this budget shortfall threatens to wreck the careful balance between costs of supervision and public safety. This careful balance is only possible when the front end of the system is fully funded at low cost-per-day rates paying for effective supervision in the community. This allows the Legislature to allocate costly incarceration beds, whether for juveniles or adults, for those who pose clear threats to public safety. This chaotic session will be remembered for years to come, and not in a good way.

 

Adult Supervision Legislation

 

Juvenile Supervision Legislation

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