After wrapping up the 88th legislative session earlier this year, Rep. Greg Bonnen, R-Friendswood, and Rep. Dennis Paul, R-Houston, reflected on the accomplishments and fallout of the session.

The overview

During a Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon held Feb. 28, Bonnen and Paul spoke about what the Legislature accomplished and what they hoped to tackle on behalf of Texans in the future.

“I think some of the accomplishments we’ve done in the last two legislative sessions have just been remarkable,” Paul said.

Zooming in

Immigration loomed as one of the biggest topics at the luncheon.

“We as a state are doing things that no state has ever done in the history of our country to secure the border,” Bonnen said, speaking specifically to the state’s efforts to deter migrants.

The Texas Military Department acquired 80 acres of land in Eagle Pass to construct a Forward Operating Base that will house up to 1,800 Texas National Guard soldiers, with the ability to accommodate an additional 500, according to a Feb. 16 press release from Gov. Greg Abbott’s office.

Another topic discussed was the passage of a new bill that overhauled how community colleges in Texas are funded. Instead of being funded on total hours or students, they are now funded as part of an incentive program.

Some other things the legislators discussed included:
  • Creating university endowments
  • The $321.3 billion spending plan for 2024-25
  • The Texas Space Commission’s efforts to help Texas compete in commercial, civil and military space exploration
  • Attracting the semiconductor industry to do business in Texas