Newly elected, re-elected and returning members of the Texas Legislature will convene the 86th legislative session Jan. 8 at the state Capitol in Austin.
Our state’s legislative schedule is somewhat unique among others in the U.S. as Texas is one of only four states that does not hold regular sessions every year. Under a biennial system, Texas’ 140-day regular sessions start at noon on the second Tuesday of January during odd-numbered years. Gov. Greg Abbott also can call and set agendas for subsequent special sessions that last up to 30 days.
In 2017, Abbott used that authority to keep the 85th legislative session in Austin through August. The state House and Senate advanced a school-finance compromise to Abbott’s desk but were unable to agree on reforms to the state’s property tax system, which was a top priority for the governor.
This post was adapted from the Ask the Editor section on Page 5 of the December 2018 print issue in Community Impact Newspaper’s Georgetown edition.