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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.

May 27, 2021 list Print (PDF)

"Estebanico's America." By Annette Gordon-Reed. Atlantic Monthly, June 2021, pp. 62-68
Argues the benefit of teaching the diverse and complicated aspects of American history, using as an example the author's childhood Texas history lessons and the story of Estebanico, the African slave who travelled in the Texas Gulf Coast with explorer Cabeza de Vaca.
See: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2021/ ...
"As pandemic eviction moratorium ends, households with children face greater risk of homelessness." By Sara Shaw, Chrishana M. Lloyd, and Marta Alvira-Hammond. Child Trends, May 18, 2021, pp. 1-3
Describes how the end of the pandemic-related federal moratoria on evictions and foreclosures will disproportionately affect households with children. Maps state data from the U.S. Census Bureau's Household Pulse Survey to analyze the prevalence of households with difficulty paying for housing. Notes Texas ended enforcement of federal eviction protections on March 31, 2021.
Report at: https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/household- ...
See: https://www.childtrends.org/publications/as-pandem ...
"Hacking and ransoms: Post-colonial studies." Economist, May 15th-21st, 2021, pp. 22-23
Points out the weaknesses in America's cybersecurity and the growing risks to its energy infrastructure.
"Race in America." Economist, May 22nd-May 28th, 2021, pp. 3-12
Examines how policymakers can narrow racial disparities while helping all Americans leave injustices behind.
"Texas bills aim to boost rights for parents accused of mistreating kids." By Sara Tiano. Imprint, May 18, 2021, pp. 1-3
Describes two Texas bills that would strengthen parental rights in child protection courts: HB 567, 87th Legislature, which will go into effect on September 1, will expand access to court-appointed counsel for low-income parents, and SB 690, 87th Legislature, pending legislation that would continue allowing virtual court appearances.
See: https://imprintnews.org/top-stories/texas-bills-ai ...
"Texas plan to outsource foster placement suffers blow." Imprint, May 20, 2021, p. 1
Discusses Family Tapestry's withdrawal from the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services foster care privatization initiative in Bexar County.
See: https://imprintnews.org/child-welfare-2/texas-plan ...
"Disparities in COVID-19 vaccination coverage between urban and rural counties — United States, December 14, 2020–April 10, 2021." By Bhavini Patel Murthy, et al. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), May 21, 2021, pp. 759-764
Notes residents of rural communities are at an increased risk for severe COVID-19–associated morbidity and mortality, and finds vaccination coverage was lower in rural counties (38.9 percent) than in urban counties (45.7 percent). Includes state-level data on vaccination coverage and the percentage of individuals who traveled outside their county of residence for their first dose.
See: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/pdfs/mm7020 ...
"Opioid use disorder treatment: How Vermont integrated its community treatment standards into its state prisons." By Eliza Mette and Jodi Manz. National Academy for State Health Policy, May 2021, pp. 1-7
Discusses the state of Vermont's efforts to provide medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder (OUD) within the Vermont Department of Corrections. Highlights the program's keys to success, including peer support services, continuity of care, and continued funding. Includes links to program documentation and state legislation.
See: https://www.nashp.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/V ...
"Increasing the minimum wage." By Saige Draeger. NCSL Legisbrief, May 2021, pp. 1-2
Summarizes state and federal efforts to increase the minimum wage. Notes that a 2019 Pew Research Center survey indicated two-thirds of Americans favored raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. Mentions a Congressional Budget Office report on the effects of the federal Raise the Wage Act of 2021.
Report at: https://www.cbo.gov/system/files/2021-02/56975-Min ...
Related information at: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house ...
See: https://www.ncsl.org/Portals/1/Documents/legisbrie ...
Related information at: https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/07/30/t ...
"Texas pension woes." By Dennis W. Jansen, et al. Private Enterprise Research Center (Texas A&M University), April 2021, pp. 1-40 (Note Length)
Analyzes 99 state and local pension plans in Texas and finds unfunded liabilities reached $86 billion in 2019 and the funding ratio of assets to liabilities was 77 percent. Discusses potential reforms relating to updated accounting standards, funding and contribution rates, and pension options for new hires. Includes analysis of the Teacher Retirement System (TRS), the Employees Retirement System (ERS), the Texas County and District Retirement System (TCDRS), and the Texas Municipal Retirement System (TMRS).
See: https://perc.tamu.edu/perc/media/perc/policy%20stu ...
"Federal coronavirus aid to bring surplus dollars with stipulations." By Brad Johnson. Texan, May 23, 2021, p. 1
Details the recent guidance from the U.S. Department of the Treasury on the disbursement of $350 billion in federal aid in the American Rescue Plan Act. Reviews the allocations to Texas: $16 billion to the state, as well as $10 billion for local governments, $5 billion for infrastructure, potentially to include broadband expansion, and $11.2 billion in public school funding.
Related information at: https://home.treasury.gov/system/files/136/FRF-Int ...
Related information at: https://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/house ...
"Crossover Court helps juvenile offenders with open CPS cases." By Joshua Luke Sandoval. Texas Prosecutor, May-June 2021, pp. 1-4
Discusses the creation and operation of Bexar County's Crossover Court, which serves juveniles who have both referrals for delinquent conduct and involvement with Child Protective Services.
See: https://www.tdcaa.com/journal/crossover-court-help ...