Today, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick identified five more legislative priorities for the upcoming 85th Legislative Session in addition to the twenty he has previously announced in two parts, seen here and here.
“These 5 pieces of legislation, along with the 20 bills previously announced, will be my top priorities in the 2017 legislative session,” said Patrick. “These bills reflect the agenda that a majority of Texans elected me to push forward. They reflect our Texas values including life, liberty and a principled conservative government. These tenets will maintain our strong economy and make us a strong global competitor.”
Patrick’s additional priorities are as follows:
SB 21 – Convention of States – I support the efforts of Governor Greg Abbott in adopting a call for an Article V “Convention of States” to limit the power of the federal government.
SB 22 – Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) – By targeting workforce-ready partnerships between K-12, higher education and industry, we will continue to improve our workforce and prepare students to be successful in today’s competitive and rapidly changing economy.
SB 23 – E-Verify – I will continue the efforts of the Texas Legislature in the electronic verification of employment authorization. This will ensure that individuals employed by state partners are also authorized for employment.
SB 24 – Religious Liberty – Sermon Safeguard – The Senate will continue to protect the most fundamental First Amendment religious liberty rights by protecting pastors from forced testimony and shielding sermons from government subpoena power.
SB 25 – Wrongful Birth – The Senate will continue to fight to protect and value the lives of children born with disabilities by prohibiting this cause of action in Texas.
Patrick made headlines earlier this fall by announcing his support for Convention of States, an initiative also supported by Gov. Greg Abbott. His prioritization of the legislation proves that his support is more than just talk.
Last session, Convention of States legislation was killed in the Texas Senate by State Sen. Craig Estes (R-Wichita Falls), but with Patrick’s official support and a strong grassroots movement supporting the measure, reform efforts should prove fruitful as long as citizens are vigilant.
Patrick will announce his five final additional priorities at a later date.