Update: State Senate unanimously passes disaster relief bill package

The 86th session of the Texas Legislature convened Jan. 8.n

The 86th session of the Texas Legislature convened Jan. 8.n

Senate Bill 7, authored by state Sen. Brandon Creighton, R-Conroe, passed unanimously March 20, along with SB 6 and SB 8 as part of a multibillion dollar package, which heads to the Texas House for consideration next.

State Sen. Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, filed SB 8 to create a statewide flood mitigation plan dividing Texas into regions based on river basins, allowing regional officials and stakeholders to make decisions on projects to protect local residents and property from flooding.

State Sen. Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham, filed SB 6, intended to create a model guide for what officials should do in the immediate aftermath of flooding based on studies showing Hurricane Harvey disaster recovery, rescue and relief efforts.

SB 7 would create the Texas Infrastructure Resiliency Fund, the funding mechanism for SB 6 and SB 8, according to Creighton's floor remarks. He said this bill will bring Texas tax dollars back to the state, maximizing federal recovery funds.

"Harvey was a storm of biblical proportions is not an everyday, expected occurrence. We didn't budget last year expecting to experience the largest storm in U.S. history. However, we have budgeted conservatively over that past years," Creighton said in his remarks. "We have saved money in our Rainy Day Fund, and it is at a historic balance. The Rainy Day Fund was created precisely for events like this—one-time expenditures to recover and rebuild."

The fund will be administered by the Texas Water Development Board and is the state's Texas-sized response for recovery from Harvey and mitigation in the future, according to Creighton.

"[SB] 7 is the next step of stepping up and taking care of each other," Creighton said in his remarks. "The next storm is 'when,' not 'if,' so let's take bold action today to prepare Texas."
By Jules Rogers
Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Jules Rogers has been covering community journalism and urban trade news since 2014. She moved to Houston in June 2018 to become an editor with Community Impact Newspaper after four years of reporting for various newspapers affiliated with the Portland Tribune in Oregon, including two years at the Portland Business Tribune. Before that, Jules spent time reporting for the Grants Pass Daily Courier in Southern Oregon. Her favorite beats to cover are business, economic development and urban planning.


MOST RECENT

A conceptual rendering shows what a high-speed rail station in Dallas could look like. A final design on the station has not yet been released. (Courtesy Texas Central)
Reversing course, Texas Supreme Court grants rehearing for high-speed rail eminent domain case

In the Oct. 15 order granting a rehearing, the Supreme Court set a date of Jan. 11 to hear oral arguments.

The amended version of the planned development unit will now go to the Austin Planning Commission for review. (Rendering courtesy Austin Environmental Commission)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Austin commission OKs development plan near Lady Bird Lake; shopping center coming to Porter and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 15.

Through most of 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, the majority of apartments were offering some kind of concession as a way to entice renters. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Rising apartment rent continues to be trend in Houston region

​​​​​​​According to data from ApartmentData.com, Houston has seen an average 12.8% rental rate growth in the past year.

The Houston-Harris County Emergency Rental Assistance Program has helped local families avoid eviction during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Courtesy Pixabay)
Harris County evictions trending up as federal moratorium ends

More than 1,200 eviction cases were filed in Harris County the week of Sept. 20—the highest weekly number since before the pandemic.

The Smoking Joint is now open under the umbrella of Click Click Chew virtual food hall in Cypress. (Courtesy Kirsten Gilliam)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: More restaurant, retail space could be coming to north Frisco development; Locatelli’s owners launch virtual food hall in Cypress, and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 14.

Jewish Federation of Greater Houston names new executive

The Jewish Federation of Greater Houston has a new leader at its head.

State law now requires each county to establish an adult sexual assault response team. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Harris County to establish state-mandated sexual abuse response team

State law now requires each county to establish an adult sexual assault response team.

Year-over-year single-family home sales remained strong in the Houston real estate market in September. (Courtesy Houston Association of Realtors)
HAR: Year over year, Houston single-family homes remain strong, on track for record year

Check out the October report for single-family home sales in September, provided by the Houston Association of Realtors.

A rendering is shown of a flexible space inside Panther Creek High School, which includes learning stairs and a collaboration board. The school's attendance zones are drawn to pull from Lone Star and Memorial high schools. (Courtesy Corgan)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Frisco ISD proposes attendance zone modifications; concerns are voiced over Grogan's Mill Village Center vacancies, plus more top stories

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 13.

The Smoking Joint is now open under the umbrella of Click Click Chew virtual food hall in Cypress. (Courtesy Kirsten Gilliam)
Virtual food hall opens in Cypress; Smoke Stack Bar-B-Q coming to Kingwood and more Houston-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Greater Houston area.

A close up of the middle of the mural. (Sierra Rozen/Community Impact Newspaper)
Hobby Airport unveils Houston-inspired mural in hopes of a 2026 World Cup bid

​​​​​​​Entitled “Gateway to the World,” the mural was painted by Mario Figueroa Jr., also known by his artist name GONZO247, and six other local artists.