In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community. 

  • Review the final rule related to bump stocks. (U.S. Department of Justice, December 18, 2018)
  • Consider the popularity of vaping among teens. (National Institute on Drug Abuse, December 17, 2018)
  • Explore facets of school safety, including educator training and student mental health. (Federal Commission on School Safety, December 18, 2018)
  • Read about lawsuits related to public officials blocking people on social media. (Nextgov, December 13, 2018)

Members of the Texas legislative community may request the articles below here or by calling 512-463-1252. 

  • "Teaching in Texas: Along the border." By Jesus Chavez. ATPE News (Association of Texas Professional Educators), Winter 2018, pp. 22-27.
    Examines how geography and culture influence learning. Profiles teachers whose classrooms are significantly affected by the Texas-Mexico border.
  • "State and local efforts to support young adult mental health: Policy for transformed lives." By Nia West-Bey, Shiva Sethi, and Paige Shortsleeves. Center for Law and Social Policy, November 2018, pp. 1-19.
    Features mental health policies to support young adults ages 18-25 in four states (Maryland, Michigan, New Mexico, and Oregon) and three cities (Louisville, Los Angeles, and New York City). Highlights best practices, challenges, and necessary policy and systems supports for improving young adult mental health.
  • "Texas: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (state fact sheet 2018)." Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, December 3, 2018, pp. 1-2.
    Provides Texas state demographic data on who participates in SNAP (formerly food stamps), benefits received, and SNAP's economic benefits. Related information at:
  • "Many challenges ahead." By David Lerman, et al. CQ Weekly, November 26, 2018, pp. 32-33.
    Summarizes likely agenda for the 116th Congress. Discusses the Democrats' majority in the House of Representatives.
  • "Conquering CO2: Towards zero carbon." Economist Technology Quarterly, December 1, 2018, pp. 3-12.
    Examines whether the problem of a changing climate can be overcome and what it would take to get carbon dioxide out of the global economy.
  • "A smarter war on drugs." By Howard K. Koh, R. Gil Kerlikowske, and Michael P. Botticelli. JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), December 11, 2018, pp. 2301-2302.
    Outlines tactics to better address substance use or dependence disorders by connecting the worlds of criminal justice and health, including drug courts, increased access to naloxone for overdoses, diversion from prosecution and jail toward case management and support services, and postoverdose outreach.
  • "The long-term economic forecast for Texas metropolitan areas." By M. Ray Perryman. Perryman Report and Texas Letter, Vol. 35, No. 9, pp. 1-3, 6.
    Provides economic projections for the state's largest metropolitan statistical areas from 2017-2045.
  • "The perfect storm: Flood compliance amid changing environmental, regulatory and financial conditions." By Mark Liston. Texas Banking, December 2018, pp. 14-17.
    Explores the impact of a changing environment and recent "superstorm" hurricanes, such as Hurricane Harvey, on the financial services industry, including the National Flood Insurance Program, and the importance of flood hazard determination for lenders.
  • "Opioid overreach?" By Joey Berlin. Texas Medicine, December 2018, pp. 40-43.
    Details physicians' concerns about opioid prescription restrictions set by pharmacies that sometimes conflict with physicians' lawful orders. Considers the balance between the mandate on pharmacists from the United States Drug Enforcement Administration [DEA] to assess the medical purpose of a prescription for a controlled substance, without the pharmacist crossing over to practicing medicine without a license.
  • "Rural residencies." By Sean Price. Texas Medicine, December 2018, pp. 32-34, 36-37.
    Describes rural residency programs and how they may help identify and recruit physicians who want to practice in rural areas, where there is a shortage of physicians. Notes that there are three such programs in Texas and the difficulty in securing funding for rural residencies, with legislation such as HB2996, 85th Legislature, R.S., not passing.
  • "Expecting care." By Rebecca Grant. Texas Observer, Dec/Jan 2018-19, pp. 20-24, 26.
    Examines the high rate of teen pregnancies in the foster care system in Texas. Report at:
  • "Give me shelter." By Maya Rhodan. Time, November 26, 2018, pp. 36-41.
    Discusses the complex challenges presented by refugees seeking asylum in the United States, including whether asylum can be granted. Focuses on Texas-Mexico border crossings.

The Legislative Reference Library compiles this weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. Professional librarians review and select articles from more than 300 periodicals, including public policy journals, specialized industry periodicals, news magazines, and state agency publications. Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles using our online form.