How the 2021 Legislative Session Will Be Different From Every Other Year
The 2021 legislative session is a mere two months away, and the question that’s lingering on most people’s minds is — what will the upcoming legislative session look like for legislators and lobbyist groups alike? In Texas, it’s gonna be quite different.
Texas legislators recognize that it won’t be business as usual as they brace for what’s projected to be predominantly rough 140 days at the Capital. State leaders have said before that they anticipate the forthcoming session to be the toughest for Texas lawmakers.
But how different will the 87th Texas legislature be from every other year? Here are the three different things to expect:
1. Increased amount of legislation
According to the 2020 Legislative Session Draft Final Report, 3,517 bills were successfully filed during the 2020 Legislative Session. Out of all these bills, no more than 210 bills passed in both the House and Senate.
In 2021, it’s anticipated that there will be an increased amount of legislation. On November 9, 2020, the first day to pre-file legislation, a total of 549 bills were filed in both chambers. It’s expected that thousands more will have been filed by March 12.
2. Potentially competing legislation
With the elections over and the COVID-19 continuing to wreak havoc, it can only be expected that there will be potentially competing legislation in the next few months. Despite being of the same opinion that there’s a need for a COVID-19 relief package, Democrats in the House and Republicans in the Senate are promoting divergent approaches.
Legislators will most likely go head-to-head as they undertake the once-in-a-decade redistricting process. This is a process in which legislators are involved in restructuring the state’s political maps.
3. New Hot Topics
Unlike the previous years, when the country wasn’t battling a pandemic of this magnitude, legislators will have to address several hot new topics in the 2021 legislative session. Now that the pandemic has unearthed some faults in systems everywhere, legislators will have to address hot-button issues revolving around state funding, police reforms, social distancing measures, unemployment, public health, and education.
The Texas Legislative Session will run from January 12, 2021, to May 31, 2021.
Want to learn more about increasing engagement in the legislative process during this time? Talk to a team member about Engagifii LEGISLATION.