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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.

July 22, 2021 list Print (PDF)

"County roads 101." By Julie Anderson. County Progress, July 2021, pp. 30, 32, 34
Explains the basics of county roads, public roads located in unincorporated areas of a county. Examines the five systems of county road administration described in Chapters 251 and 252 of the Texas Transportation Code, including the "precinct system" and the "unit system."
See: http://dashboard.mazsystems.com/webreader/74086?pa ...
"Lone-Star politics: Texodus." Economist, July 17th-23rd, 2021, p. 22
Reports on the Texas House Democratic Caucus' flight to Washington, D.C., to deny Republicans the quorum needed to pass the latest version of a bill regulating elections. Includes comments by Representatives Armando Walle and Diego Bernal.
See: https://www.economist.com/united-states/2021/07/17 ...
"Welfare and work: Make it pay." Economist, July 17th-23rd, 2021, p. 64
Considers whether cutting Americans' supplemental unemployment benefits will ease current labor shortages.
See: https://www.economist.com/finance-and-economics/20 ...
"Who’s really driving critical race theory legislation? An investigation." By Sarah Schwartz. Education Week, July 19, 2021, pp. 1-10
Addresses the origin and the complexity of recent state legislation related to critical race theory, classifying these measures into five categories. Includes discussion of HB 3979, 87th Legislature, R.S.
"Community assessment for mental and physical health effects after Hurricane Irma — Florida Keys, May 2019." By Yaritbel Torres-Mendoza, et al. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), July 2, 2021, pp. 937-941
Studies the Florida Department of Health's (FDOH) use of a modified Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER) to assess the community's mental, physical, and economic health after Hurricane Irma and develop public health interventions to decrease the suicide rate. Argues emergency preparedness plans should strengthen mental health services after a disaster, particularly in the long-term recovery phase.
See: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/pdfs/mm7026 ...
"The end of the highway." By Megan Kimble. Nation, July 12-19, 2021, pp. 14-21
Discusses the Texas Department of Transportation's (TxDOT) plan to spend $25 billion widening highways to relieve traffic congestion, including the I-35 Capital Express Project. Considers the possibility of removing highways altogether as a way to restore communities, such as the movement to remove I-345 in Dallas. Includes Representative Armando Walle's HJR 109, 87th Legislature, R.S., a proposal that would have allowed the State Highway Fund to be spent on public transportation, sidewalks, and bicycle paths.
"Many in jail can vote, but exercising that right isn't easy." By Matt Vasilogambros. Stateline (Pew Charitable Trusts), July 16, 2021, pp. 1-4
Highlights the widespread confusion about the voting eligibility of people detained in local jails awaiting trial or those convicted of misdemeanors. References a 2020 report from the Prison Policy Initiative that explains which jailed people may be legally eligible to vote.
See: https://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis ...
Report at: https://www.prisonpolicy.org/reports/jail_voting.h ...
"After restructuring state employees pension, Legislature's 13th check for retired teachers stalled by quorum break." By Brad Johnson. Texan, July 16, 2021, pp. 1-3
Reviews the status of SB 7, 87th Legislature, 1st C.S., a bill that would provide retired teachers with an additional "13th check," which would be the lesser of their current monthly payment or $2,400. Reports the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) has 3.5 times the unfunded liability and 4 times the membership as the Employees Retirement System of Texas (ERS), although ERS has a higher unfunded-liability-per-member ratio. Discusses the $317 billion unfunded liability of Illinois' state pension systems as a "warning sign" that inspired recent ERS reform legislation, SB 321, 87th Legislature, R.S. Quotes Representative Greg Bonnen.
"Speaking out: Joe Deshotel, Texas House of Representatives, 22nd District." Texas Builder, July/August 2021, pp. 30-31
Interviews Representative Joe Deshotel, Chairman of the House Committee on Land and Resource Management, about eminent domain, career and technical education to improve the skilled labor workforce, and the Texas housing economy.
See: https://www.texasbuilders.org/site/publisher/files ...
"Legislative session ends with REALTOR wins." By Jaime Lee. Texas Realtor, July 2021, pp. 18-19
Highlights bills supported by Texas REALTORS (also known as the Texas Association of Realtors) that passed in the 87th Regular Session of the Texas Legislature and were signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott.
Related information at: https://www.texasrealestate.com/members/communicat ...
See: https://www.texasrealestate.com/wp-content/uploads ...