Senate Hijacks HB7 – The Time to Act is Now

HB7 has been hijacked and amended by the Senate.  This bill now prevents your city from protecting your home values and environment.  HB7 is on its way to the House.  0.4% of your day will make a difference.

Please take 5 minutes out of your day and make two quick phone calls.  Here is what you can do:

  1. Contact Representative Dade Phelan and ask him to refuse concurrence with the Senate’s amendments to his bill, HB 7. Calls to 512-463-0706 are preferable, but you can email Dade.Phelan@house.texas.gov.
  2. Contact The Honorable Joe Straus, Speaker of the House in opposition to CSHB 7. Calls to 512-463-1000 are preferable, but you can email at joe.straus@speaker.texas.gov
  3. Please forward this message, especially to friends in Joe Straus’s district.

How did we get here?
The Senate passed SB14 which stripped local control of your neighborhoods, allowing big business interests to develop large tracts of and clear cut trees with impunity.  You can see the public hearing witness list and analysis (see: Now, who’d you say this Senate Bill 14 serves?) then decide for yourself who’s interests are being represented by this bill.  This bill is so terrible the House companion bill, HB70, was never voted out of committee.

The House passed HB7 which addressed the concerns of home owners.  Then the Senate took HB7 and added amendments turning it into much of what SB14 was.  This amended bill is on its way to the House.  If Rep. Phelan concurs with the Senate amendments, the full House will vote. If Rep. Phelan doesn’t concur, a conference committee will be appointed by Speaker Straus and Lt. Gov. Patrick.

By | 2017-08-12T15:32:03+00:00 August 11th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments

Senate moves to amend HB7

The Senate Business & Commerce Committee is planning to add loopholes to HB7 that are designed to benefit developers of large tracks of land, not people living single family homes. The committee meets tomorrow Tuesday August 8th at 9:00 AM. The proposed amendments strip cities of local control & could lead to clear cutting damaging neighborhoods and property values.

We have setup a special HB7 page with links to committee members and information on how you can help.

The senate never even held a committee hearing on the companion bill to HB7.  Now they are attempting to turn HB7 into a version of SB14 which the House has been wise enough to leave in committee while continuing to work on the state’s pressing issues.

By | 2017-08-07T22:19:52+00:00 August 7th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments

Stop HB70 in Committee

HB70 remains in the House Urban Affairs Committee after Tuesday’s hearing. It’s time to let the committee members hear from their constituents. Contact everyone you know who resides in their districts. We make it easy for you. Go to the HB70 page. You will find the committee members contact information and a map of their district. Be sure to contact members Gary W. Elkins & Jason Isaac.

By | 2017-07-28T05:18:32+00:00 July 27th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments

Who’s really for and against SB14?

It would seem that the very individuals SB14 (and other anti-tree legislation) purport to serve think they’re better off without the bill. In a hearing of the Business and Commerce Committee July 22, 176 of the scheduled witnesses said they were against the bill. How many were for it? That would be 16.

Of the 176, 82 percent were individuals speaking for themselves. Of the 16, 7 represented organizations, including real estate, construction and apartment interests.

And yet, the bill cleared committee on a 6-3 vote. Individual rights, eh?

Witness List & Analysis

By | 2017-07-28T04:41:12+00:00 July 27th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments

SB14 Passed by the Senate

Senate Bill 14 was passed by the Senate Wednesday July 26, 2017. It is important to now focus on stopping its companion HB70 which is still in committee. A full breakdown of the Senate vote will be available on this page as soon as the state publishes the result.

By | 2017-07-28T04:01:45+00:00 July 26th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments

HB70 Committee Hearing Tuesday July 25

House Urban Affairs Committee will hold a public hearing on HB70 Tuesday July25, 2017 at 10:30AM. HB70 removes local control over neighborhoods and prohibits local governments from practicing good environmental stewardship by outlawing efficient management of the Texas’ urban tree canopy. ACT NOW. What can you do?

  • Come to the committee meeting and testify.
  • Contact the committee members and tell them to vote no on HB70.

You can find a listing of all members and their contact information on the HB70 page.

By | 2017-07-24T15:50:47+00:00 July 24th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments

SB14 Passed in Committee

SB14 was approved in Business & Commerce Committee Sunday July 23, 2017.  The bill was amended and we are waiting the new version to be posted.  We will update the SB14 page when it is available.  The newer version of the bill still removes local control over neighborhoods and prohibits local governments from practicing good environmental stewardship by outlawing efficient management of the Texas’ urban tree canopy. The current tally of where Senators stand on this bill can be found on this page. The 6-3 vote breaks down as follows:

Against (For the Trees): Larry Taylor Dist11, John Whitmire Dist15 and Judith Zaffirini Dist21.

For (Against the Trees): Donna Campbell Dist25, Brandon Creighton Dist4, Craig L. Estes Dist30, Kelly Hancock Dist9, Robert Nichols Dist3, Charles Schwertner Dist5.

By | 2017-07-24T19:09:29+00:00 July 24th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments

SB14 Committee Hearing Saturday July 22

Senate Business and Commerce Committee will hold a public hearing on SB14 Saturday July22, 2017.  SB14 removes local control over neighborhoods and prohibits local governments from practicing good environmental stewardship by outlawing efficient management of the Texas’ urban tree canopy.  ACT NOW.  Contact the committee members and tell them to vote no on SB14.  You can find a listing of all members and their contact information on the SB14 page.

By | 2017-07-20T19:13:23+00:00 July 20th, 2017|bill update|0 Comments