AUSTIN, Texas — The new year is here, and people may have different hopes for how we want 2021 to play out.
Here is what we know for sure, though, Texas’ 87th Legislative Session is scheduled for January 12, 2021, and there are a lot of bills to look out for this year.
Use of force by police was a big topic of conversation in 2020, and in 2021, Senate Bill 69 relates to prohibiting the use of certain techniques when using force to make an arrest or search.
Senate Bill 68 has to do with a duty for peace officers to intervene and make a report when a peace officer uses excessive force.
On the other side of the law, House Bill 99 would reduce possession of two ounces of marijuana to a Class C misdemeanor and prohibit arrest.
Senate Bill 250 has to do with the possession, use, cultivation, distribution, transportation and delivery of medical cannabis for medical use by patients when a physician determines medical use is the best available treatment for the patient’s medical condition or symptoms and the licensing of medical cannabis dispensing organizations; authorizing fees.
Then, there are some gun related bills taking effect.
House Bill 52 relates to the creation of certain criminal offenses concerning firearm sales at gun shows, authorizing a fee.
House Bill 55 has to do with carrying and possession of a concealed handgun by a school marshal.
House Bill 69 deals with abortion; specifically relating to prohibiting it at or after 12 weeks post fertilization.
Senate Joint Resolution 15 addresses Medicaid.
Proposing a constitutional amendment that would require the state to expand eligibility for Medicaid to certain people under the federal patient protection and Affordable Care Act.
Legislators are handling minimum wage with House Bill 60.
It relates to an increase of the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour.
Another conversation starter in 2020, acknowledging the Confederacy. House Bill 36 has to do with abolishing Confederate Heroes day.
If enacted, the legislation would take effect September 1, 2021.