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

  • Explore the monthly state Revenue Watch. (Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, updated September 2019)
  • Read about the end of the Driver Responsibility Program. (Texas Department of Public Safety, August 27, 2019)
  • Get a list of party leaders in the Congress going back to 1789. (Congressional Research Service, September 4, 2019)
  • Review power-saving tips for homes. (Public Utility Commission of Texas, accessed September 12, 2019)

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

  • "Supreme Court report: Contentious cases." By Mark Walsh. ABA Journal: The Lawyer's Magazine, September-October 2019, pp. 18-19.
    Highlights high-profile issues the United States Supreme Court will consider during the term that begins on October 7, including LGBT rights, the future of DACA [Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals], and gun rights.
  • "Homeschooling and educational freedom: Why school choice is good for homeschoolers." By Kerry McDonald. CATO Briefing Papers, September 4, 2019, pp. 1-8.
    Presents an overview of homeschooling trends. Argues educational freedom creates momentum for families to seek alternatives to conventional mass schooling.
  • "Manufacturing in Texas: Factory of the future; How is DFW positioned for the industry's future; Incentives." By Evan Hoopfer. Dallas Business Journal, August 30, 2019, pp. 5-10, 12, 14-21.
    Questions whether Texas should be doing more to attract advanced manufacturing jobs. Mentions the state scored a "C" in manufacturing industry health.
  • "The American economy: Areas of concern." Economist, August 31st-September 6th, 2019, pp. 19-20.
    Points out weaknesses in several economic sectors, including manufacturing, construction, and energy industry employment. Mentions the present slowdown may prove politically consequential.
  • "Schools face Latino kids' fears after shootings." By Stephen Sawchuck, Denisa R. Superville, and Hector Alejandro Arzate. Education Week, August 21, 2018, pp. 5-6.
    Examines how school districts in Texas are responding to the mass shooting in El Paso, in which Hispanics were targeted. Discusses steps being taken by schools to alleviate the fears of Hispanic students and their families.
  • "Can Medicaid expansion prevent housing evictions?" By Heidi L. Allen, et al. Health Affairs, September 2019, pp. 1451-1457.
    Evaluates the possible correlation between expansion of Medicaid and lower rates of evictions. Concludes that health insurance coverage is associated with improved housing stability.
  • "Emergency department closures and openings: Spillover effects on patient outcomes in bystander hospitals." By Renee Y. Hsia and Yu-Chu Shen. Health Affairs, September 2019, pp. 1496-1504.
    Suggests high-occupancy hospitals are the most sensitive to nearby emergency department [ED] closures, while other hospitals absorb increased demand in emergency care without significant negative impact on patient outcomes. Observes that significant effects appear only when driving time to an ED changes by 30 minutes or more. Notes utilization as well as distance from neighboring EDs should be taken into account when deciding to open or close an ED.
  • "Campus sexual assault policies." By Molly Sarubbi. Internet Resource, August 26, 2019, pp. 1-6.
    Reviews 2019 state legislative activity relating to postsecondary campus sexual assault. Highlights legislation, including Texas bills, that address awareness and prevention, reporting guidelines and procedures, and assessment and accountability.
  • "Lessons learned from the opioid epidemic." By Joshua M. Sharfstein and Yngvild Olsen. JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), September 3, 2019, pp. 809-810.
    Summarizes missteps made by physicians, regulators, hospitals, and other entities, that made possible the significant scale of the opioid epidemic. Calls for reflection and accountability moving forward.
  • "The rush to restrict gun rights." By Charles C.W. Cooke. National Review, August 26, 2019, pp. 14-15.
    Argues that evidence does not support the effectiveness of proposed gun-control policies and that the First and Second Amendments should be defended. Advocates for surveillance of hate groups and prosecution when warranted and for technology companies to decline to provide technical assistance and support to them.
  • "Protecting elections from social media manipulation." By Sinan Aral and Dean Eckles. Science, August 30, 2019, pp. 858-861.
    Calls for more research into how social media can affect and influence elections. Explores some of the challenges of measuring the manipulation of social media, including consumer privacy concerns.
  • "It's a wrap! How nurses advocated for their profession in the 86th legislative session." By Cindy Zolnierek. Texas Nursing, Summer 2019, pp. 8-9.
    Summarizes passed and failed legislation of interest to nursing professionals.

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.