Left moldering through what some say are shenanigans by Republican leaders, Open Carry Texas has started a petition to get lawmakers to address the issue directly through a special session. Abbott specifically called for lawmakers to pass the House version of that bill, though, his official call for the special session doesn't explicitly note that.
Abbott said his ultimate goal is to pass legislation that makes the state run better with its citizens in mind. "Too many of our great teachers are underpaid", he said. The list includes some changes to rules regulating bathroom use, though Abbott left it to legislators to decide how restrictive they should be.
Calling a special session could cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on how long lawmakers take to reach an agreement.
The governor's call included one items that's historically been a tall order for the last few legislative sessions: a reform of the state's school finance system.
Mr. Abbott also called for bills to toughen penalties against voter fraud.
He is also reviving an effort stalled during the regular session, but has passed in other Republican-controlled states, that would end voluntary payroll deductions of union dues from state and public employee paychecks.
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By allowing a "bathroom bill" in the special session of the most powerful Republican-controlled state, Abbott has placed a focus on Texas on an issue that has been a flashpoint in USA culture wars, analysts said.
Abbott also included good topics that deserve consideration, such as a $27-a-week pay raise for teachers and a task force to study Texas' high maternal mortality rate.
"Our activists encourage Governor Abbott to convene a special session on giving ultimate local control for property taxes back to hard-working Texans, encouraging the creation of up to 130,000 jobs by eliminating the margins tax, and empowering parents with the decision rights to customize their kids' education". An overtime round, Abbott said, was "entirely avoidable".
Other lawmakers say it's unnecessary. He said before the legislative session ended that he didn't want lawmakers to return to the Capitol for overtime.
As governor, only Abbott has the authority to call a special session that is limited to the issues of his choosing. A broader pre-emption measure would impact dozens of cities - including Austin, San Antonio and El Paso - that now operate under stricter mobile regulations. "If the governor moves forward with this harmful legislation against trans students, LGBTQ people, businesses, and fair-minded Texans will respond in Texas style - Big".
Texting while driving will soon be illegal in Texas.