Current Articles for December 07, 2023
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 Thursday.
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.
Energy affordability report.
By Joe Trotter.
American Legislative Exchange Council, 2023, pp. 1-26.
Provides a breakdown of energy prices and policies by state, including in electricity; gasoline; and diesel. Highlights the need to balance consumer energy costs while tackling environmental challenges.
Texas battles Wall Street over munis.
By Amanda Albright and Danielle Moran.
Bloomberg Businessweek, November 20, 2023, pp. 24-25.
Discusses ongoing tensions between Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and large banks that follow environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) investment policies. Posits that banning large banks from participating in the Texas bond market would result in higher financing costs for municipalities in the state.
See: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2023-11-14/texas-turns-battle-over-muni-bonds-into-wall-stre ...
AI is already disrupting education, but only 13 states are offering guidance for schools.
By Bree Dusseault and Justin Lee.
Center on Reinventing Public Education, October 2023, p. 1.
Looks at state-level guidance for emerging artificial intelligence technology in public education. Urges that states should take action to implement guidance quickly.
Up to 2.1 million U.S. construction workers are illegally misclassified or paid off the books.
By Laura Valle Gutierrez, et al.
Century Foundation, November 12, 2023, p. 1.
Examines the problem of worker misclassification and off-the-books payments in the construction industry, arguing these practices allow contractors to evade the legal and tax obligations of regularized employment. Evaluates the level and costs for all fifty states and the District of Columbia and estimates worker misclassification cost taxpayers in Texas $832 million in 2021.
See: https://tcf.org/content/report/up-to-2-1-million-u-s-construction-workers-are-illegally-misclassifie ...
Minnesota data sharing may be model for near-real-time tracking of drug overdose hospital and ED trends.
By Riley D. Shearer, et al.
Health Affairs, November 2023, pp. 1568-1574.
Highlights how an electronic health record (EHR) data-sharing collaboration within Minnesota was adapted to monitor trends in substance use-related hospital and emergency department (ED) visits. Argues this type of monitoring can aid in detecting trends in real time and in intervention efforts.
An escape from failing schools.
By Emma Waters.
Heritage Foundation, November 2023, p. 1.
Commentates on the increase of and value of homeschooling in America.
Microgrids: A major step towards climate resilience.
By Merle Weidt.
New America, November 21, 2023, p. 1.
Observes the effect of climate change on the severity of natural disasters, including the effect on electrical grids. Defines "microgrids" or “mini-grids,” self-sufficient energy systems that can operate independently from a centralized grid system while supplying a distinct geographic area with energy, and discusses their benefits. Notes that installation costs are currently reducing the likelihood of large-scale adoption and recommends that countries should make financing them a top priority.
More Americans are getting news on TikTok, bucking the trend seen on most other social media sites.
By Katerina Eva Matsa.
Pew Research Center, November 15, 2023, p. 1.
Notes that a small but growing share of U.S. adults — from three percent in 2020 to fourteen percent in 2023 — say they regularly get news on TikTok, in contrast with many other social media sites, where news consumption has either declined or stayed about the same in recent years.
See: https://www.pewresearch.org/short-reads/2023/11/15/more-americans-are-getting-news-on-tiktok-bucking ...
Tipping culture in America: Public sees a changed landscape.
By Drew DeSilver and Jordan Lippert.
Pew Research Center, November 9, 2023, p. 1.
Summarizes the results of a Pew survey about tipping culture in the U.S. Discusses how Americans feel about the basics of tipping and how they view recent developments. Notes various services for which Americans do and don’t tip – and how much they tip when they do. Comments on factors affecting whether and how much Americans tip.
When foster care kids are sex trafficked, some states fail to figure it out.
By Nada Hassanein.
Stateline.org, November 22, 2023, p. 1.
Explains the findings of a recent U.S. Department of Health and Human Services report on sex trafficking, which examined the foster care systems of five states, including Texas. Examines the prevalence of sex trafficking of children in the foster system and the difficulties of identifying and helping trafficking victims.
Report at: https://oig.hhs.gov/oei/reports/OEI-07-19-00371.pdf
See: https://stateline.org/2023/11/22/foster-care-kids-are-often-sex-trafficked-many-states-fail-to-figur ...
Texas ranks lowest state in personal freedom according to Cato Institute.
By Cameron Abrams.
Texan, November 28, 2023, p. 1.
Highlights the Cato Institute's new report, Freedom in the 50 States, ranking the states on a combination of personal and economic freedoms. Finds that Texas ranks 17th overall, but last in personal freedom, based on criminal justice, travel, gambling, education, marijuana, and tobacco policies. Mentions HB 218, 88th Legislature, R.S., that did not pass, relating to penalties for marijuana possession, and the recent debate on school choice.
See: https://thetexan.news/state/texas-state-news/texas-ranks-lowest-state-in-personal-freedom-according- ...
Report at: https://www.freedominthe50states.org/
Report at: https://www.freedominthe50states.org/overall/texas
Soybean industry impacts U.S., Texas economies.
Texas Agriculture, November 3, 2023, p. 4.
Summarizes a study that shows the value and impact of the U.S. soybean industry. Notes that the study found the soybean sector's total economic impact on the U.S. economy averaged $124 billion, while soybeans have a $1.4 billion impact on Texas revenues and have resulted in 5,450 paid jobs.
Report at: https://www.nopa.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/08/0LMC_SoyEconStudy_Aug2023.pdf
The good and bad of wearable health technology.
By Elizabeth Roberts.
Texas Nursing, Winter 2023, pp. 18-20.
Describes the growing market for wearable health technology such as Fitbits, Apple Watches, and point-of-care diagnostic devices. Outlines some of these devices' applications in health care and reviews the literature on patients' perceptions of using them. Notes some concerns, including hacking risks and low interoperability and reliability, and shares personal anecdotes of using wearable health technology for patient care.
Innovate to educate: Emerging technologies in nursing education.
By Jennifer Roye.
Texas Nursing, Winter 2023, pp. 10-13.
Describes the rapid evolution of nursing education to include significantly more reliance on technology. Discusses how technologies such as e-learning platforms, simulation-based learning, electronic health records, telehealth, and artificial intelligence are changing nursing education and training.
This 11-year-old Brownsville ISD honor student was put in solitary.
By Josephine Lee.
Texas Observer, November/December 2023, p. 1.
Highlights the case against Timothy Murray, a fifth grader from Brownsville ISD, whose school sent him to solitary confinement. Outlines and scrutinizes current state law which allows the arrest and criminal charging of children. Mentions HB 473 and SB 133, 88th Legislature, R.S., and SB 11, 86th Legislature.