By Victoria Whitehead, HPWD General Counsel
The 86th Texas Legislature convened in regular session on Jan. 8 in Austin. Rep. Dennis Bonnen (R-Angleton) was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives. In recent weeks, both Speaker Bonnen and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announced the membership of the House and Senate standing committees.
House Committee Assignments
Speaker Bonnen selected Representative Lyle Larson (R-San Antonio) to chair the House Natural Resources Committee once again. Speaker Bonnen also appointed Rep. Will Metcalf (R- Conroe) to serve as Vice Chairman. Rep. Walter “Four” Price (R-Amarillo) was reappointed to the committee.
Senate Water and Rural Affairs Committee:
Lt. Governor Patrick made some structural changes to the standing Senate Committees by splitting the Agriculture, Water, & Rural Affairs into two committees: 1) the Committee on Agriculture and 2) the Committee on Water & Rural Affairs. State Senator Charles Perry (R-Lubbock) maintained his Chairmanship of the Water & Rural Affairs Committee.
In a statement on his social media, Chairman Perry said, “I am looking forward to fight for West Texas this legislative session. I believe serving on these committees will give West Texas a strong voice as we look to keep Texas the best state in the nation to live, work, and raise a family. I want to thank Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick for trusting me with these important committee assignments.”
HPWD will provide legislative updates in the electronic and print versions of The Cross Section throughout the session.