Capital Highlights

Week of Nov. 18-24, 2019

Federal funds to assist county in buying out flood-prone properties

AUSTIN — Land Commissioner George P. Bush on Nov. 14 announced the Texas General Land Office's approval of $21,155,575 in Hurricane Harvey funds for Fort Bend County to conduct a buyout program.

In the late summer of 2017, record-heavy rainfall brought by Hurricane Harvey catastrophically flooded streets and homes. Fort Bend County will use the funds to conduct a buyout program targeting approximately 100 homes most vulnerable to flooding.

Week of Nov. 11-17, 2019

Voters approve 9 of 10 proposed constitutional amendments

AUSTIN — Voters rejected only one of 10 proposed amendments to the Texas Constitution in the statewide election held Nov. 5.

The House and Senate, in the 86th Regular Session of the Texas Legislature that ended in May, approved the propositions for voters to decide. Results are as follows:

Prop. 1, permitting a person to hold more than one office as a municipal judge at a time, failed with 681,139 “yes” votes — or 34.56 percent of votes cast — to 1,970,765 “no” votes or 65.44 percent.

Week of Nov. 4-10, 2019

Voters to decide on proposed amendments to state constitution

AUSTIN — The state's 10-day early voting period ran from Oct. 21 to Nov. 1 with Election Day on Nov. 5.

On the ballot are 10 proposed constitutional amendments, special elections and local political subdivision elections, including those for mayor, city council, school board, municipal utility districts and other local entities.

Week of Oct. 28 - Nov. 3, 2019

Governor issues disaster declaration for storm-stricken counties

AUSTIN — After severe weather struck north and east Texas on Oct. 20, Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration naming a list of counties in that region.  

Among the counties named are: Cass, Collin, Dallas, Ellis, Erath, Hunt, Kaufman, Lamar, Panola, Rains, Rockwall, Rusk, Tarrant, Van Zandt and Wood.

Week of Oct. 21-27, 2019

Terrorism prevention programs across Texas to receive funding
AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on Oct. 15 announced $61.2 million in Homeland Security Grant Program funding to support state and local efforts to prevent terrorism and prepare for threats that pose the greatest risk to the security of Texans. 
The awards, released primarily to cities and counties across Texas, include 264 projects under the State Homeland Security Program and 136 projects through the Urban Area Security Initiative.

Week of Oct. 7-13, 2019

Abbott puts Bush in charge of disaster mitigation effort
AUSTIN — A plan is afoot for large-scale, regional projects to improve the state’s resilience to hurricanes and other natural disasters, Gov. Greg Abbott announced Oct. 4.
Abbott tapped Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush to lead the federally funded $4 billion-plus "comprehensive mitigation" effort. Funding will come from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development under a community development block grant.

Week of Sept. 30 - Oct. 6, 2019

Chief election officer encourages Texans to register before deadline
AUSTIN — Texas Secretary of State Ruth Hughs invited eligible Texans to celebrate and participate in National Voter Registration Day — the fourth Tuesday in September — by ensuring they are registered to vote before the Oct. 7 registration deadline.
Hughs, the state's chief election officer, issued a final call to action to voters, community leaders and elected officials to encourage their fellow Texans to register and prepare to vote in the upcoming Nov. 5 election.

Week of Sept. 23-29, 2019

Governor declares disaster in Imelda-affected counties 
AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on Sept. 19 declared a state of disaster in counties impacted by Tropical Storm Imelda, which first hit the upper Texas Gulf Coast on Sept. 15. 
Counties listed in the declaration include Brazoria, Chambers, Galveston, Hardin, Harris, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Matagorda, Montgomery, Newton, Orange and San Jacinto.
The declaration ensures that local officials have access to any state resources they may require to respond. 

Week of Sept. 16-22, 2019

Report provides details on what can be done to prevent shootings
AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on Sept. 12 released the Texas Safety Action Report, a document that details what Texas and Texans are doing to prevent mass shootings.
The report elaborates on executive orders Abbott issued a week earlier to coordinate state and local expertise and resources and "identify any shortcomings in our current systems and explore ways to prevent these horrific tragedies from taking place."