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Legislative Reference Library of Texas
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Legislative Reference Library of Texas
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Current Articles

The Legislative Reference Library produces a weekly list of current journal articles for members of the legislative community. Each week, librarians select and abstract articles of interest to the legislature from the latest issues of over 300 journals, newsletters, state documents, and trade publications. Electronic copies of the Current Articles list are distributed to legislative offices each Friday.

The Legislative Reference Library is located on the second floor of the State Capitol building in Room 2N.3. For more information, please call the Library at 512 463-1252.

June 10, 2021 list Print (PDF)

"States should improve the design of their rainy day funds." By Elizabeth C. McNichol and Ed Lazere. Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, June 3, 2021, pp. 1-15
Assesses the structural features and effectiveness of state rainy day funds. Compares state rainy day fund balances, including Texas, in fiscal years 2006 and 2019.
See: https://www.cbpp.org/sites/default/files/6-3-21sfp ...
"Fact sheet: What’s at stake as states cancel federal unemployment benefits." By Andrew Stettner. Century Foundation, May 13, 2021, pp. 1-6
Argues that governors backing out of federal pandemic unemployment benefits will inflict damage upon state economies and their most vulnerable populations — especially workers of color. Notes the benefits are 100 percent federally funded. Finds $8.7 billion is at stake in Texas and over 1.3 million Texas workers will be impacted following a cutoff of benefits.
See: https://tcf.org/content/commentary/fact-sheet-what ...
"The future of big oil: ExxonMobil loses a proxy fight with green investors." Economist, May 29th-June 4th, 2021, pp. 57-58
Discusses the mounting pressure on supermajor oil companies to embrace the transition to a low-carbon future.
"Can nuclear power go local?" By Jessica R. Lovering and Suzanne Hobbs Baker. Issues in Science and Technology, Spring 2021, pp. 50-55
Discusses the history and current operation of nuclear energy. Argues that new nuclear technology should be considered to meet future energy needs.
See: http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true ...
"High and rising working-age mortality in the US: A report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine." By Kathleen Mullan Harris, Steven H. Woolf, and Darrell J. Gaskin. JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), May 25, 2021, pp. 1-5
Summarizes a 2021 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) that details declining life expectancy among working-age adults in the U.S. from drug and alcohol use, suicide, and cardiometabolic diseases. Discusses mortality disparities by race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and geography, as well as implications for health policy.
See: https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/ ...
Report at: https://www.nap.edu/read/25976/chapter/1
"Transportation solutions for congested 'boomtown' cities." By Connor Harris. Report (Manhattan Institute), May 2021, pp. 1-15
Discusses ways that cities experiencing significant population growth can improve transportation capacity. Presents case studies of the current transportation infrastructure as well as recommendations for future improvement of five boomtown cities, including Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin.
See: https://media4.manhattan-institute.org/sites/defau ...
"A dead battery dilemma." By Ian Morse. Science, May 21, 2021, pp. 780-783
Explains the challenge of safety hazards in electric vehicle battery recycling operations and the search for more efficient recycling methods.
"Deadly kingdom." By Maryn McKenna. Scientific American, June 2021, pp. 26-35
Explains how drug resistant fungal infections could lead to the next pandemic. Describes how some COVID-19 patients become susceptible to fungal infections due to steroids, prescribed to reduce inflammation caused by COVID-19 infections.
"More states consider automatic criminal record expungement." By Kristian Hernández. Stateline (Pew Charitable Trusts), May 25, 2021, pp. 1-4
Reports several states introduced bills this year that would require automatic clearing, expungement, or sealing of criminal records under certain circumstances. Notes critics' concerns that a lack of transparency in the expungement process could threaten public safety.
See: https://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis ...
"Republicans disagree on claims that the 87th session was 'the most conservative in Texas history.'" By Brad Johnson. Texan, June 3, 2021, pp. 1-4
Analyzes the conservative successes and failures of the 87th legislative session. Quotes Representatives Jared Patterson, Justin Holland, and Kyle Biedermann, and former Republican Party of Texas Chairman Allen West.
"Texas legislative session ends without major reform to Governor's emergency powers." By Daniel Friend. Texan, June 2, 2021, pp. 1-3
Reviews the status of legislation proposed to amend the Governor's emergency management and pandemic response powers under the Texas Disaster Act (Texas Government Code, Chapter 418). Discusses HB 3, SJR 45, and SB 1025, 87th Legislature.
Related information at: https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/GV/htm/GV. ...
"The fear and future of remote jury proceedings." By Roy Ferguson. Voice for the Defense, June 2021, pp. 14-16
Reexamines previous arguments against the hearing of criminal cases through online trials. Concludes a "digital divide" that would exclude minority and lower-income residents from jury pools has not materialized in remote cases tried during the COVID-19 pandemic.
See: https://www.voiceforthedefenseonline.com/newslette ...
Related information at: https://www.voiceforthedefenseonline.com/zoom-tria ...