SESSION ENTERS FINAL WEEKS
(AUSTIN) — With only 13 days left until the end of the 83rd Session, lawmakers on both sides of the Capitol are scrambling to shepherd legislation through the process before the end on May 27. The House and Senate committees are focusing on passing bills from the opposite chamber, and any bill that has yet to clear its originating body has a slim chance of becoming law. Any amendments or controversy could slow a bill down and keep it from coming to a vote, effectively killing it.
The Senate passed a number of bills on Tuesday. One of these, SB 1218, by New Braunfels Senator Donna Campbell, would require that anyone seeking a marriage license present a valid government-issued photo ID. Current law allows 19 different forms of ID to obtain a marriage license, some of which don't have photos and may be as much as two years out of date.
Another measure that cleared the Senate Tuesday would permit certain seized firearms to be offered back up for sale to licensed firearm dealers. Today, any firearm seized by law enforcement must either be destroyed or given to the state for use by a law enforcement agency. HB 1421 by Senator Craig Estes of Wichita Falls would add a third option; sale to a federally licensed firearm dealer. Estes said this can be another source of revenue for local police and sheriff's departments. The bill doesn't require that a firearm be sold, it could still be destroyed or forfeited to the state under judicial order.
The Senate will reconvene Wednesday, May 15 at 11 a.m.