Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

774 new laws go into effect after 88th Texas Legislative Session


On Sept. 1, various laws went into effect due to the 88th Texas Legislative Session conducted earlier this year. A total of 774 new laws regarding crime and law enforcement, diversity, equity and inclusion, fentanyl, finance, gender and sexuality, guns, health, infrastructure, schools, transportation, parks, climate and voting will be enforceable starting this past week.


Several new bills regarding education passed, including HB 3, which demands at least one armed officer on all public campuses during school hours. HB 900 bans sexually explicit material from public school libraries, SB 763 allows school districts to hire a chaplain to perform counseling duties and SB 798 removes a requirement for prospective school counselors to have prior teaching experience.

Firearm access

         Of the new laws going into effect, HB 3137 prevents any local government entity from requiring firearm owners to license possessed weapons. SB 728 requires courts to report, “mental health and intellectual disability information with respect to certain children for purposes of a federal firearm background check.”

Gender and sexuality

         SB 12 makes it illegal for someone to hold a sexually oriented performance in front of a minor. SB 14 bans procedures and treatments for gender transitioning, gender reassignment or gender dysphoria for children. SB 15, or the Save Women’s Sports Act, places restrictions on transgender athletes in college sports. The law now requires these individuals to compete based on their biological sex.

State spending

  HB 1, or the state budget, will go into effect on Sept.1 allocating $321.3 billion in total state spending for Texas’s two-year budget cycle.

Race and discrimination

The Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair Act, or CROWN Act, was also passed in this legislative session. This law, also known as HB 567, bans race-based discrimination regarding hair in housing, school and the workplace.

Criminal justice

Regarding the detrimental issue of drug-related deaths in this country, HB 6 will increase penalties for individuals who manufacture and sell fentanyl to a person if it results in their death. HB 17 allows state courts to remove district attorneys in counties for misconduct should they choose not to prosecute a certain crime. 

Also going into effect is SB 602, which gives Border Patrol agents policing power, including the authority to arrest and conduct searches and seizures under Texas or federal law. Another law from the 88th legislative session is SB 840, which increases the penalty for assaulting hospital personnel from a Class A misdemeanor to a third-degree felony.

Local government

         For those readers who have been paying attention to local government recently, the Death Star Bill goes into effect this month as well. The Death Star Bill, also titled HB 2127, requires regulation in industries of agriculture, business and commerce, finance, insurance, labor, local government, natural resources, occupations and property to be conducted by the state of Texas solely therefore removing local entities’ authority to enact policy regarding those codes.

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