UNITED METHODIST WOMEN
SOME OF THE LEGISLATION
THAT NEEDS OUR ATTENTION
1.Sen. John Whitmire (who has spoken in our Legislative Event) has put forth a Criminal Justice omnibus reform bill that addresses the current school-to-prison path inherent in our truancy laws.
Currently Texas hands the vast majority of its truancy cases as class C misdemeanors in ADULT CRIMINAL COURT! Convictions can carry a minimum fine of $500 and become part of a permanent, public ADULT CRIMINAL RECORD!
The Dallas Morning News put it well in the April 6 paper: “Texas needs its kids in classrooms, not courtrooms. Reforming Texas truancy laws is an important step toward that goal.”
The bill has been sent to the full Senate, so now is the time to contact your senator and urge support of the bill!
2.In-state tuition. We currently have a law that allows in-state tuition for some children in the U.S. illegally. This law sailed through the Legislature in 2001 with bipartisan support. However, the Senate may receive shortly a bill that would repeal the law. Although it isn’t on the Senate floor yet, you may want to contact your senator about this bill.
3.Campus carry. This bill would allow license holders to carry concealed weapons into university buildings and classrooms. Top university leaders statewide have spoken against the bill, and we’ve seen and heard a good bit about it this spring. The Senate has passed the bill; it cleared a House committee last week, and it could go to the floor soon. This is another issue you may want to bring to your representative’s attention right away.
CONTACTING YOUR STATE LEGISLATOR IS TRULY EASY!
Simply type “Texas legislature” in your browser window.
Select the blue link “Texas Legislature Online.”
This brings you LOTS of options with a great deal of really good information.
For purposes of contact:
Highlight the link for “Members” under the house you want.
That link will take you to an alphabetical listing of the names of all the representatives or senators.
Highlight the name you want in that list, and the link will take you to a page with phone numbers. It also has a link “Visit Home Page…” which offers an e-mail option.
It really is easy. And everytime you use it, you get better at it!
There are about 65 days left of the regular session, so we need to let our legislators know our thinking on the issues they are considering.