Bill Text: TX HJR162 | 2021-2022 | 87th Legislature | Introduced


Bill Title: Proposing a constitutional amendment allowing the legislature to establish a special district to be the seat of state government.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Republican 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2021-03-29 - Referred to State Affairs [HJR162 Detail]

Download: Texas-2021-HJR162-Introduced.html
  87R673 JXC-D
 
  By: Cain H.J.R. No. 162
 
 
 
A JOINT RESOLUTION
  proposing a constitutional amendment allowing the legislature to
  establish a special district to be the seat of state government.
         BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 58, Article III, Texas Constitution, is
  amended to read as follows:
         Sec. 58.  (a)  The Legislature shall hold its sessions at the
  [City of Austin, which is hereby declared to be the] seat of
  government.
         (b)  Except as provided by Subsection (c) of this section,
  the seat of government is the City of Austin.
         (c)  If the Legislature creates a District of Austin under
  Section 58-a, Article III, the seat of government is the District of
  Austin.
         SECTION 2.  Article III, Texas Constitution, is amended by
  adding Section 58-a to read as follows:
         Sec. 58-a.  (a)  The legislature by local law may establish
  from all or part of Travis County a special district, to be known as
  the District of Austin, to be the seat of state government.
         (b)  The district shall be governed by a governing officer or
  governing body as provided by the legislature by local law.  The
  legislature may enact local laws to govern the operation of the
  district or to amend or repeal a law, ordinance, order, policy, or
  other measure adopted by the governing officer or governing body of
  the district.
         (c)  The legislature may provide that a governing officer of
  the district serves a term of office not to exceed four years.
         (d)  In apportioning the senate and house of
  representatives, the legislature shall consider the district to be
  part of Travis County.
         SECTION 3.  Section 28, Article III, Texas Constitution, is
  amended to read as follows:
         Sec. 28.  The Legislature shall, at its first regular
  session after the publication of each United States decennial
  census, apportion the state into senatorial and representative
  districts, agreeable to the provisions of Sections 25 and 26 of this
  Article.  In the event the Legislature shall at any such first
  regular session following the publication of a United States
  decennial census, fail to make such apportionment, same shall be
  done by the Legislative Redistricting Board of Texas, which is
  hereby created, and shall be composed of five (5) members, as
  follows: The Lieutenant Governor, the Speaker of the House of
  Representatives, the Attorney General, the Comptroller of Public
  Accounts and the Commissioner of the General Land Office, a
  majority of whom shall constitute a quorum. Said Board shall
  assemble at the seat of government [in the City of Austin] within
  ninety (90) days after the final adjournment of such regular
  session.  The Board shall, within sixty (60) days after assembling,
  apportion the state into senatorial and representative districts,
  or into senatorial or representative districts, as the failure of
  action of such Legislature may make necessary. Such apportionment
  shall be in writing and signed by three (3) or more of the members of
  the Board duly acknowledged as the act and deed of such Board, and,
  when so executed and filed with the Secretary of State, shall have
  force and effect of law. Such apportionment shall become effective
  at the next succeeding statewide general election.  The Supreme
  Court of Texas shall have jurisdiction to compel such Board to
  perform its duties in accordance with the provisions of this
  section by writ of mandamus or other extraordinary writs
  conformable to the usages of law.  The Legislature shall provide
  necessary funds for clerical and technical aid and for other
  expenses incidental to the work of the Board, and the Lieutenant
  Governor and the Speaker of the House of Representatives shall be
  entitled to receive per diem and travel expense during the Board's
  session in the same manner and amount as they would receive while
  attending a special session of the Legislature.
         SECTION 4.  This proposed constitutional amendment shall be
  submitted to the voters at an election to be held on November 2,
  2021. The ballot shall be printed to provide for voting for or
  against the proposition: "The constitutional amendment allowing
  the legislature to establish from all or part of Travis County the
  District of Austin to be the seat of state government."
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