Texas Senators Will Debate ‘bathroom Bill' on Friday Morning

AUSTIN — The so-called "bathroom bill" will get its first public hearing during the special session on Friday. Texas senators are scheduled to debate legislation that morning at 9:00 a.m. Depending on whether the House takes up the bathroom bill this month, this could be the only time members of the public have to weigh in on the controversial legislation during the special session.Sen. Joan Huffman, a Houston Republican who chairs the State Affairs Committee, said she will allow members of the public to testify for two minutes each on the legislation. The bill has not been filed yet, so details of exactly what it might do are still a mystery.The bill's author, Brenham Republican Lois Kolkhorst, did not provide details on the bill when asked Wednesday afternoon. She unsuccessfully pushed a bathroom bill this year that would have undone local non-discrimination ordinances and limited the restrooms available for use by transgender public school students.The bill, if it had become law, would have barred trans kids from using restrooms at school that match their gender identity and would have rendered unenforceable city laws protecting the rights of all trans people to use the bathroom they want. Businesses, including IBM, AT&T and American Airlines, oppose the legislation, which they say hurts the economy and discriminates against the LGBT community.   Continue reading...

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