During the 86th Texas Legislature, the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD) published weekly updates on disability-related issues that were being considered at the Capitol. With the adjournment of the Legislature, TCDD will provide updates and summaries related to the status of disability-related bills and how people with disabilities and their families could be impacted.
Texas Legislature Adjourns Sine Die
Sine die is a Latin term meaning “without day” that is used to signify the final adjournment of a session of a legislative body. On Monday, May 27, the 86th Texas Legislature hit this mark when the 140-day Regular Session concluded. Barring any special session that may be called by the Governor, the full House and Senate will not meet again until January 12, 2021.
As anticipated, there was a burst of activity in the final days of session as legislators made a final push to wrap-up their business. With their work now done, all eyes will look toward the Governor as he decides whether to approve or reject the 1,000+ bills that were passed by lawmakers. The Governor’s final decisions must be made no later than June 16.
The Review Process Begins
Over the next few weeks, Capitol observers like TCDD will be reviewing the work of the Legislature to get a better idea of how everything shook out. This will include watching to see what disability-related measures are signed into law or vetoed, of course, but also checking to see if any important provisions snuck in under the radar or if any last-minute changes were made to bills that we were tracking. As the picture becomes clearer, TCDD will be providing summary information in emails and on our website.
Disability-Related Bills Advance at the Legislature
In the final week of the legislative session, a number of disability-related measures were finally passed by lawmakers. Below, grouped by issue area, is a sample of bills that are headed to the Governor’s desk for consideration:
- House Bill (HB) 3116: Relating to the establishment of a task force to conduct a comprehensive study on best practice standards for the detention of persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
- HB 3540: Relating to the authority of a peace officer to release in lieu of arrest certain persons with an intellectual or developmental disability.
- Senate Bill (SB) 562: Relating to criminal or juvenile procedures regarding persons who are or may be persons with a mental illness or intellectual disability and the operation and effects of successful completion of a mental health court program.
Long-Term Care & Medicaid
- HB 4533: Relating to the administration and operation of Medicaid, including Medicaid managed care and the delivery of Medicaid acute care services and long-term services and supports to certain persons.
- SB 1207: Relating to the operation and administration of Medicaid, including the Medicaid managed care program and the medically dependent children (MDCP) waiver program.
- SB 1519: Relating to establishing a council on long-term care facilities and to a dispute resolution process regarding those facilities.
Parking & Transportation
- HB 643: Relating to the location at which an application for a disabled parking placard may be made.
- HB 1576: Relating to the delivery of certain transportation services under Medicaid and certain other health and human services programs.
- HB 3163: Relating to parking for persons with disabilities.
- SB 976: Relating to the notification of a peace officer through an indication associated with vehicle registration that a person has a health condition or disability that may impede effective communication. (A former TCDD Bill of the Week)
Schools & Education
- HB 684: Relating to the care of students with seizure disorders and the training requirements for certain school personnel regarding seizure recognition and related first aid.
- HB 3165: Relating to an occupational and life skills associate degree program offered by the Lone Star College System District.
- SB 11: Relating to policies, procedures, and measures for school safety and mental health promotion in public schools and the creation of the Texas Child Mental Health Care Consortium.
- SB 54: Relating to a study regarding the appropriate methods and standards to evaluate certain students participating in regional day school programs for the deaf.
- SB 712: Relating to prohibiting the use of certain aversive techniques on students enrolled in public schools.
- SB 1017: Relating to the creation of the advisory council on postsecondary education for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities. (A former TCDD Bill of the Week)
- HB 1735: Relating to sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking at public and private postsecondary educational institutions; providing an administrative penalty.
- HB 4531: Relating to the rights and treatment of and services provided to certain adult sexual assault survivors. (A former TCDD Bill of the Week)
- HB 965: Relating to updating references to certain former health services state agencies and certain terms used to describe persons with intellectual or developmental disabilities in the Education Code.
- HB 3703: Relating to the prescription of low-THC cannabis for medical use by certain qualified physicians to patients with certain medical conditions. (A former TCDD Bill of the Week)
- SB 667: Relating to probate and guardianship matters and certain procedures for persons who are incapacitated or have a mental illness.
- SB 1184: Relating to eligible participants in the Texas Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Program.