Here are the most recent updates from Southwest Austin legislators

Sen. Kirk Watson

D-Austin • Elected: 2006

Recent Activity
Watson stands against HB 100: Gov. Greg Abbott signed House Bill 100, which creates blanket regulations for ride hailing companies and overrides local ordinances.

Sen. Judith Zaffirini

D-Laredo • Elected: 1987

Recent Activity
HB 62 moves to governor: Zaffirni, who co-sponsored HB 62 in the Senate, worked to pass a statewide ban on texting and driving. The bill is now waiting for action.

Sen. Donna Campbell

R-New Braunfels • Elected: 2012

Recent Activity
Campbell’s annexation bill dies: The bill would have allowed areas being annexed to vote on annexation prior to the process taking place. The bill died following a filibuster.

Rep. Jason Isaac

R-Dripping Springs • Elected: 2010

Recent Activity
Marijuana penalty bill dies: Isaac’s HB 81, which would lessen the penalty for possessing small amounts of marijuana, was not considered in the House on time and is now dead.

Rep. Paul Workman

R-Austin • Elected: 2010

Recent Activity
Construction fee bill becomes law: Workman’s bill will prohibit localities from adopting or enforcing fees on new construction to offset the cost of rent for residential housing.

Rep. Donna Howard

D-Austin • Elected: 2006

Recent Activity
Botanical garden recognized: The bill designates the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at UT Austin as the official state botanical garden and arboretum.

Rep. Gina Hinojosa

D-Austin • Elected: 2016

Recent Activity
Freshman legislator recognized: Hinojosa was named the Mexican American Legislative Caucus Freshman of the Year. Several of her bills were signed by the governor.

Rep. Eddie Rodriguez

D-Austin • Elected: 2002

Recent Activity
Preservation bill awaits signature: HB 3281 allows the city of Austin to create homestead preservation districts and reinvestment zones. The  bill was passed in both chambers.

steps to follow when state special-called session begins July 18

  1. Abbott said the special session will be limited until the Senate passes a sunset bill to extend the life of state agencies, including the Texas Medical Board, which licenses doctors. He said the Senate should be able to pass this bill in three or four days.

  2. After the sunset bill's passage, Abbott enabled legislators to address 19 additional bills. One proposal addresses property tax growth, which Abbott said can be fixed via reform bill SB 2, which some considered to also be the solution to school finance reform.

  3. Abbott also called to limit the local government powers by prohibiting tree regulations, capping new construction fees during projects and preventing slow permitting processes. Additionally, he asked legislators to consider enacting local spending caps.


Tents have become a common sight throughout Austin including along Cesar Chavez Street downtown, but with the passage of Proposition B the city may now consider moving unsheltered homeless individuals to designated sites. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin City Hall notebook: Designated campsites for the homeless are back on the table

City staff had previously dismissed developing official camping locations in 2019, but new directives from City Council this week could revive the concept in Austin.

Wag-A-Bag is headquartered in Round Rock. (Megan Cardona/Community Impact Newspaper)
Wag-A-Bag to operate under new ownership, name; Austin, TxDOT at odds over I-35 overhaul; and more top Central Texas news

Read the most popular business and community news from the past week from the Austin area.

Stephanie Hayden-Howard will become an assistant city manager in Austin on May 10. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Role changes coming for health officials leading Austin-Travis County COVID-19 efforts

Dr. Desmar Walkes will take over as Austin's next medical director and local health authority as Dr. Mark Escott and Stephanie Hayden-Howard transition to new roles with the city.

The brewery and kitchen‘s new spot will offer a larger indoor setting area than its original. (Courtesy Suds Monkey Brewing Co.)
Dripping Springs brewery relocates to new, expanded facility closer to Austin

Suds Monkey Brewing Co. opened in Dripping Springs in 2017.

A pilot Austin Police Department cadet class is now set to commence in June under an updated training regimen and with additional city and community oversight on the APD academy's culture and curriculum. (John Cox/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin City Council votes to restart APD cadet training in June, with framework for ongoing reviews of pilot academy

The Austin Police Department's 144th cadet class will now kick off training next month, with continued oversight of APD's instruction and culture throughout the 34-week academy process.

Marco's Pizza will open a South Austin location later this month. (Nicholas Cicale/Community Impact Newspaper)
Pizzeria opening later this month, a local animal shelter hits a milestone and more South Austin business news

Here are updates from The Bungalow, PAWS Shelter of Central Texas and more.

Holland Photo Imaging celebrates 40 years in business this year. (Courtesy Holland Photo Imaging)
The latest business news in South Central Austin

1. Holland Photo Imaging, located at 2125 Goodrich Ave., Ste. A, Austin, is celebrating its 40th anniversary in the community this year. Founded in 1981 by Pete Holland, the business has been owned by residents Brian and Morgan Morrison since 2006. Holland Photo Imaging offers film processing, printing, framing, photo restoration and archiving services. 512-442-4274.

A sign advertises a property for rent in Austin on May 6. Local eviction orders remain in place through August 1 protecting most tenants from eviction. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Local eviction moratoriums remain in effect despite federal judge’s decision

The May 5 ruling from a U.S. District Court judge striking down a federal moratorium does not affect orders in place in Austin or Travis County.

Q2 Stadium in North Austin
U.S. women’s national soccer team to debut Q2 Stadium next month

The USWNT takes on the Nigerian national team at Q2 Stadium ahead of the summer Olympic Games.

Juneau was adopted at Austin Animal Center in November 2019. (Amy Rae Dadamo/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin Animal Center reaches critical capacity, opens doors to all adopters for first time since May 2020

Austin and Travis County’s animal shelter, Austin Animal Center, reached negative kennel space May 4, meaning there are more dogs than available kennels, according to a release from the city of Austin.