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The 88th regular session of the Texas Legislature adjourned on Monday, May 29, 2023. Governor Abbott called four special sessions subsequently. Below are some updates and recaps of legislation passed in the 88th Legislature.

Legislative Priorities Passed

Republican Legislative Priority

Related to K-12 Education

Related to Colleges, Universities & Career Readiness

Related to Fiscal Improvements, Savings, Tax Relief

Protecting Women & Children

Improving Economy, Workforce & Business Climate

Increasing Border Security & Community Safety, Reducing Crime

Related to Data Privacy, Internet Safety & Connectivity

Helping Consumers, Supporting Small Business

Directly Benefits Denton County Residents & Businesses

Improves Current Law, Protects Rights of Texans, or Promotes Liberty and Free Markets

Impact Legislation Passed in the 88th Regular Session

House Bill 4 by Rep. Giovanni Capriglione (Co-Author)

The Texas Data Privacy and Security Act amended statute to provide additional regulations and safeguards as it relates to the collection, use, processing, and treatment of consumers’ personal data by certain businesses. This legislation expands the rights of Texans to control how their personal data is collected and used online. With this legislation, consumers would be able to file a complaint either with the corporation that is misusing their data or the Attorney General.  The AG would be allowed to investigate companies that breach contracts with customers and would require companies to pay civil fines that do not exceed $7,500 for each violation.

House Bill 18 by Rep. Shelby Slawson (Co-Author)

Creates the Securing Children Online through Parental Empowerment (SCOPE) Act. This bill creates significant protections for minors and penalties for digital service providers who evade parental consent, or try to harvest children's personal information, when children use a digital service, platform or application.

Senate Bill 1893 by Sen. Brian Birdwell

This bill allows state agencies to forbid the use or installation of social media applications such as TikTok on state hardware, when the applications have been identified as dangerous or a threat to security.

House Bill 3 by Rep. Dustin Burrows (Co-Author)

Provides schools in Texas with a new standard of emergency preparedness and response for school safety. HB 3 requires an armed security officer to be at each school district during regular school hours, establishes Regional School Safety Review Teams in each region served by a regional education service center, and requires evidence-based mental health training for district employees who regularly interact with students, to help identify threats to school safety. The bill provides schools with $15,000 annually in base funding for school safety-related mitigation measures and $10 per student in the school safety allotment. 

Senate Bill 10 by Sen. Joan Huffman

Provides eligible participants of the Teacher Retirement System (TRS) a one-time cost of living adjustment (COLA) effective in January 2024 and an annual gain-sharing COLA adjustment beginning in September 2028. Additionally, provides a one time lump sum payment equal to $5,000 for eligible annuitants who are at least 70 years of age, and increases the active member contribution rate and the state contribution rate to 9%.

House Bill 8 by Rep. Gary VanDeaver (Co-Author)

Comprehensive support for community colleges in Texas, notably: HB 8 establishes Financial Aid for Swift Transfer (FAST) Program, to increase dual credit participation, and the Public Junior College State Finance Program designed to enhance workforce development.

House Bill 900 by Rep. Jared Patterson (Co-Author)

The Restricting Explicit and Adult-Designated Educational Resources (READER) Act, provides procedures for rating school library materials to identify content that is sexually relevant or sexually explicit, directs the Texas State Library and Archives Commission to adopt standards for school library collection development, and requires transparency and communication with parents regarding these books when they are in a school library catalog.

House Bill 1595 by Rep. (Dr.) Greg Bonnen

Creates the Texas University Fund and allocates billions of dollars for higher education research to certain Texas universities, including Texas State University, Texas Tech University, The University of Houston, and The University of North Texas.

Senate Bill 14 by Rep. (Dr.) Tom Oliverson (Co-Author)

Prohibits physicians and health care providers from performing surgeries that sterilize a child, as well as from providing any puberty suppression or blocking drugs. Prohibits state insurance plans from providing coverage for services intended to transition a child’s gender.   With this bill, the Texas Medical Board would be allowed to revoke a physician's license if they violate the statute, and refuse to issue a license or renewal to a person violating the section.

House Bill 6 by Rep. Craig Goldman (Joint Author)

Will now classify overdoses from fentanyl as “poisonings” and expand and increase penalties for offenses related to the manufacture and delivery of a controlled substance.

House Bill 4520 by Rep. Cody Harris (Co-Author)

Revokes an educator's certification and terminates their employment if they are found to have been convicted or placed on deferred adjudication community supervision for the offense of sale, distribution or display of harmful material to a minor.  Additionally, if the educator's certification is revoked under these circumstances, they would lose their pension and would be placed on the Do Not Hire Registry.

Senate Bill 15 by Sen. Mayes Middleton (Co-Sponsor)

With this bill, also known as the Save Women’s Sports Act, a collegiate athletic team sponsored or authorized by a public institution of higher education may not allow a student to compete on a team that is designated for the opposite biological sex.  Additionally, a male student would not be allowed to compete on a team in a co-ed intercollegiate athletic competition in a position that is designated for female students.

Senate Bill 1403 by Sen. Tan Parker (Co-Sponsor)

Allows the governor to develop and execute an interstate compact for border security among neighboring states, allowing them to share law enforcement intelligence and state resources in order to build a physical barrier, a comprehensive technological surveillance system, among other deterrents to illegal activity. 

Senate Bill 24 by Sen. Lois Kolkhorst (Co-Sponsor)

Consolidates the different support programs offered by several agencies to women and their families. The bill codifies the Alternatives to Abortion program, which is currently housed in a budget rider, and renames it the Thriving Texas Families program in order to fund services to families to promote healthy pregnancy, childbirth, and family formation and to help families achieve economic self-sufficiency. 

House Bill 9 by Rep. Trent Ashby (Co-Author)

Establishes the Texas Broadband Infrastructure Fund to support the growing connectivity needs of the State of Texas.  Texans will have the final say on this creation of this fund when they vote in November of this year either for or against the proposed constitutional amendment required to create this fund, which will expand access to broadband service in economically distressed communities to support increased connectivity needs in those areas.


House Bill 19 by Rep. Andrew Murr (Co-Author)

Creates a specialized business trial court, allocates the assignment of business court judges to align with the state’s Administrative Judicial Regions, and sets up specific jurisdictional parameters for the court, allowing business cases to be heard in a single specialized court.

House Bill 2127 by Rep. Dustin Burrows (Co-Author)

The Texas Regulatory Consistency Act, provides consistency and predictability by preempting local regulation of matters regulated by the state in certain codes. These include the Agriculture Code, Business & Commerce Code, Finance Code, Insurance Code, Labor Code, Natural Resources Code, Occupations Code, or Property Code.

Senate Bill 17 by Sen. Brandon Creighton

Prohibits public institutions of higher education from giving preference to an applicant for employment, an employee, or participant in any function of the institution based on their race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin.

House Bill 5 by Rep. Todd Hunter (Co-Author)

Allows property tax abatement agreements between a school district and a business interested in constructing an eligible, large-scale economic development project within the district.  Under an agreement, the district would temporarily limit the taxable value of eligible property for school district maintenance and operation property tax purposes when used as part of a proposed project in exchange for the investment and job creation associated with the project.


Senate Bill 1527 by Sen. Joan Huffman

Furthers the state’s efforts to end human trafficking in Texas. The bill provides additional tools for the investigation and prosecution of human trafficking crimes, including child grooming protections, increased penalties for traffickers that use excessive force, and the enhancement of child pornography sentences when multiple images are possessed or promoted.  Additionally, the bill adds protections for victims by flagging driver licenses of individuals convicted of human trafficking as well as adding protections for victims of trafficking with significant disabilities by eliminating the need to prove force, fraud, or coercion.

Rep. Thimesch's Legislation in the 88th Regular Session

House Bill 2444 (Companion Senate Bill 1639 – Effective 9/1/23)


Known as the Save Our Swifties Bill, HB 2444/SB 1639 prohibits a person from using or creating an automated workaround to engage in certain online ticket activity, known as a "bot". Using bots to over-purchase tickets, or other technical tricks such as using multiple IP addresses, multiple purchaser accounts, or multiple email addresses to over-purchase tickets, among other deceptive practices, is now forbidden, and the Attorney General can pursue and enforce penalties for those found guilty of this practice. We are pleased to have received great support from artists, the media, ticket industry, event and concert industry, venues, and other stakeholders for this bill to protect Texas consumers.

Kronda Legislation

House Bill 3372 (Effective 9/1/23)

Clarifies and streamlines the campaign reporting process for credit card processing fees, increasing transparency in donation reporitng and eliminating confusion for candidates and elected officials.

House Bill 1542 (Companion Senate Bill 926 – Effective 5/13/23)

Corrects an inadvertent removal during the sunset process of a bill allowing temporary event permits, which directly impacts Texas Motor Speedway and their ability to host large racing events which support Denton County tourism revenue.


House Bill 2336 (Companion Senate Bill 58 – Effective 9/1/23)

“Grinch bots” bill, prohibits individuals from using technology, devices, or software in the sale or resale of consumer goods, or a resale internet website, that functions as a bypass in the purchasing process of said goods.  Furthermore, the Attorney General would be authorized to take action against individuals who violate the stipulations outlined in this new law.

House Bill 4848 (Amended onto House Bill 5012 by Rep. Travis Clardy)

Amends the Tax Code to add The Colony to the list of cities eligible to receive tax revenue derived from a hotel and convention center project and to pledge certain tax revenue for the payment of obligations related to the project. 

House Bill 2134 (Amended onto House Bill 3579 by Rep. Ben Bumgarner – Effective 9/1/23)

Gives cities the ability to implement certain regulations on massage establishments where there have been three or more arrests, or a conviction, for certain human trafficking related offenses, organized crime, or money laundering that have occurred at their location. 

House Bill 3331 (Amended onto Senate Bill 1373 by Sen. Bryan Hughes – Effective 9/1/23)

Amends the Estate Code in order to qualify convicted felons who have paid their debt to society to serve as an executor to a decedent’s estate under certain circumstances -- if they are named in the will, the court approves it, and they are otherwise qualified.  The courts will still retain the right to approve or deny this exception, to protect the decedent if needed.

Rep. Thimesch Recognized at End of Session

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