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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.

January 07, 2021 list Print (PDF)

"Four months that left 54,000 dead from COVID in long-term care: The oral history of an American tragedy." By David Hochman. AARP, December 3, 2020, pp. 1-9
Considers the disproportionate number of COVID-19 deaths of residents and workers in long-term care facilities. Explains these residents make up only 1 percent of the U.S. population, but they accounted for approximately 43 percent of all U.S. COVID-19 deaths between March and the end of June 2020. Presents the views of long-term care residents and workers related to their experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic.
See: https://www.aarp.org/caregiving/health/info-2020/c ...
"The committee on life and death." By Jordan Kisner. Atlantic Monthly, January/February 2021, pp. 38-46
Details the struggles of healthcare providers prioritizing patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mentions Texas counties' turning away of patients due to full hospitals as one consequence of a lack of state-level guidance on crisis levels of care. Explores how similar bioethical concerns could affect the topic of coronavirus vaccine distribution.
See: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2021/ ...
"Brief report on Texans’ views on a COVID-19 vaccine." By Shao-Chee Sim, et al. Episcopal Health Foundation, December 2020, pp. 1-10
Reports findings from the Episcopal Health Foundation's statewide survey in November and December of 2020 on the likelihood of Texans getting the COVID-19 vaccine. Notes 63 percent say they are likely to get the vaccine, but the majority of Texans have some hesitancy.
See: https://www.episcopalhealth.org/wp-content/uploads ...
"Adding a climate lens to health policy in the United States." By Renee N. Salas, et al. Health Affairs, December 2020, pp. 2063-2070
Provides recommendations outlining how to include climate-informed assessments into health care decision making and health policy. Discusses taking a more population-based approach to health care delivery, prioritizing health care system decarbonization, adapting data infrastructure, developing a climate-ready workforce, and paying for care.
See: https://www.healthaffairs.org/doi/pdf/10.1377/hlth ...
"Mitigating health disparities after natural disasters: Lessons from the RISK Project." By Ethan J. Raker, et al. Health Affairs, December 2020, pp. 2128-2135
Presents findings from the RISK Project, a study of low-income parents who lived in New Orleans at the time of Hurricane Katrina. Discusses policy priorities that highlight opportunities to combat disasters’ health consequences by reducing exposure, addressing needs in their aftermath, and continuing support over the longer term.
See: https://www.healthaffairs.org/doi/pdf/10.1377/hlth ...
Related information at: https://www.riskproject.org/
"More Texas foster youth are sleeping in state offices than at any other point in recent years." By Brittney Martin. Imprint, December 21, 2020, pp. 1-2
Finds more Texas foster children slept in state offices or hotels during October and November 2020 than any point since 2016. Includes comments from the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services on the detrimental effect of COVID-19 on finding foster families and maintaining providers.
See: https://imprintnews.org/foster-care/texas-foster-y ...
"Care makes cents: Investment in preserving Texas' rural courthouses pays off." By Andy Rhodes. Medallion (Texas Historical Commission), Fall 2020, pp. 6-9
Highlights the return on investment in the Texas Historical Commission's (THC) Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program (THCPP). Outlines the various dividends resulting from the preservation of iconic county courthouses and historic downtowns, and discusses recently awarded grants. Includes photos of courthouses in Fayette, Grimes, Presidio, and Wharton counties.
Related information at: https://www.thc.texas.gov/preserve/projects-and-pr ...
See: https://www.thc.texas.gov/public/upload/publicatio ...
"Monopolization is killing art." By Josephine Livingstone. New Republic, December 22, 2020, pp. 1-3
Explores the idea that media is expanding without regulation and creating markets where new talent is overlooked. Mentions the State of Texas, et al. v. Google LLC antitrust lawsuit, which alleges the tech giant sought to suppress competition and gain profits from online targeted advertisements.
See: https://newrepublic.com/article/160715/monopolizat ...
Related information at: https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov/sites/default ...
"States are finally revoking cops' license to steal." By Jacob Sullum. Reason, January 2021, pp. 56-62
Recounts the development of civil asset forfeiture as a tool of law enforcement since 1988, and highlights laws in New Mexico, Nebraska, and Arizona that seek to curb abuses of asset forfeiture. Notes that Texas is rated a "D+" in the Institute for Justice's Policing for Profit study of civil asset forfeiture laws.
See: https://reason.com/2020/12/19/states-are-finally-r ...
Report at: https://www.ij.org/report/policing-for-profit/
"The costs of closing DACA initial enrollments." By Ike Brannon and M. Kevin McGee. Regulation (CATO Institute), Winter 2020-2021, pp. 30-34
Claims that closing the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to new entrants will cost the U.S. billions of dollars in federal, state, and local tax revenue and will not boost U.S. citizens' employment and wages.
See: https://www.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/2020-12/ ...
"Grade: incomplete." By Gretchen Vogel and Jennifer Couzin-Frankel. Science, November 27, 2020, pp. 1023-1027
Considers how schools are faring during the COVID-19 pandemic. Presents a series of questions and answers related to how schools can operate safely during the pandemic.
"Legislating in the age of COVID." By Celeste Embrey. Texas Banking, December 2020, pp. 8-11
Previews legislators' priorities and the priorities of the Texas Bankers Association (TBA) for the 87th Legislature. Addresses the logistics and operational challenges of holding a legislative session amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
See: https://www.texasbankers.com/Magazine/Magazine/Fea ...
"Speaking out: Trey Martinez Fischer, Texas State Representative — 116th District." Texas Builder, November/December 2020, pp. 32-34
Interviews Representative Trey Martinez Fischer about the policy areas in the jurisdiction of the House Committee on Business and Industry, oversight of unemployment compensation at the Texas Workforce Commission, his involvement in legislation related to natural disaster contracting scams (HB 2856, 86th Legislature), and the major issues Texas will face entering a new decade.
See: https://www.texasbuilders.org/site/publisher/files ...
"COVID-19 response has been starkly different for indigenous communities in Texas." By Pauly Denetclaw. Texas Observer, December 15, 2020, pp. 1-2
Discusses the disproportionate impact COVID-19 has had on the Native American populations in Texas and the strict measures the tribes have taken to protect their communities.
See: https://www.texasobserver.org/covid-19-indigenous- ...
"2020 real Texas budget: The state of Texas’s spending." By Vance Ginn, Rod Bordelon, and Talmadge Heflin. Texas Public Policy Foundation, December 2020, pp. 1-12
Provides a historical overview of the Texas state budget from 2004 to the present. Recommends limiting government spending and improving the budget process.
See: https://files.texaspolicy.com/uploads/2020/12/0814 ...