Last week, TX Rep. Dade Phelan (R-Beaumont) announced he had the votes from both parties, to become the next speaker of the Texas house.
"We will come together to face a budget deficit, COVID-19, redistricting, next session together,” said Phelan.
At the top of the agenda: A workgroup to look at, and make safety recommendations for the upcoming session, during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
TX Rep. John Turner (D-Dallas) is part of the 10-member bi-partisan group. He says they have not met yet.
“I certainly think questions of remote meetings for committees, possibly proxy voting on the floor of the house, testing for members and staff, all of that I assume is going to be discussed and is going to be on the table,” said Turner.
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Turner thinks there may not be full galleries for the public, or large groups coming to meet with representatives. But, they will work on access.
“We need to find a way to make sure that we are allowing public access and participation, as is required by law, but doing it safely,” added Turner.
TX Rep. Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth) talked about the upcoming session on Lone Star Politics. He agrees there needs to be precautions.
“I think we can put in protocols. I think we can be safe, and I think we can allow the public to continue to be part of the process. After all, it's the people's house. We work for them. They don’t work for us,” said Krause.
Legislators have about two months to work on recommendations. The 87th Legislative session begins on January 12, 2021.
Coronavirus Cases in Texas
Locations on the map are approximate county locations and are not intended to identify where any infected people live.
Case data pulled from a variety of sources including county health departments, Texas Department of State Health Services, KXAN-TV in Austin and KPRC-TV in Houston.