Texas State & Local NEWS: 2021 March 18

Summary: In a surprise to no one after Wall St got its cut from ERCOT over-billing while 4,000,000 Texans lost power & 50+ died, Texas legis also looking at shifting liability in Truck crashes (often fatal) from companies to indiv drivers, & discriminating against large (Democratically-run) cities in access to safer, quality bldg materials.

May Elections

Q&A: See what Nassau Bay City Council candidates think of the issues https://communityimpact.com/houston/bay-area/election/2021/03/16/qa-see-what-nassau-bay-city-council-candidates-think-of-the-issues/

Texas Lawmakers Consider Bill Redirecting Liability Around Trucking Crash Lawsuits [from driving companies to the individual drivers themselves] https://spectrumlocalnews.com/share/tx/san-antonio/news/2021/03/11/texas-lawmakers-consider-bill-redirecting-liability-around-trucking-crash-lawsuits–?cid=share_twitter

Small cities support legislation exempting them from building material rules [the building code is a minimum standard & current state law apparently prevents local governments from going over the minimum–this bill discriminates against large, “coincidentally” Democratically-run, cities to improve on safety and reliability] https://communityimpact.com/houston/the-woodlands/government/2021/03/16/small-cities-support-legislation-exempting-them-from-building-material-rules/

“The [international building] code provisions are intended to protect public health and safety while avoiding both unnecessary costs and preferential treatment of specific materials or methods of construction. However, a 2019 New York Times story revealed a secret agreement with the National Association of Home Builders that allowed the industry group, which represents the construction industry, to limit improvements in the code that would make buildings more environmentally sustainable and resistant to natural disasters, prompting a congressional investigation.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Building_Code

City of Montgomery to consider grant program for more historical markers https://communityimpact.com/houston/conroe-montgomery/history/2021/03/16/city-of-montgomery-to-consider-grant-program-for-more-historical-markers/

Austin launches updated emergency rental assistance program for 2021 https://communityimpact.com/austin/central-austin/coronavirus/2021/03/16/austin-launches-updated-emergency-rental-assistance-program-for-2021/

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