Texas House Hears Testimony on Alternative Bathroom Bill

The original bill, which was proposed by Republican Rep. Chris Paddie was created to establish statewide regulations on the popular ride-hailing services that would require annual criminal background checks for drivers that are less strict than those some municipalities have adopted.

The survivor benefits bill is one of the few pieces of legislation the House and Senate have agreed should be considered now that session has passed 90-day deadline set by voters in 2009. One attendee posted a photo on Facebook showing that another 369 people registered their opposition of the bill that's being touted by its author Rep. Ron Simmons, R-Carrollton, as a more considerate version of SB 6.

"While our system is lawful, it is very bad", said Republican Representative Dan Huberty, who chairs the House Education Committee. But the UIL was later restricted to public schools. Committee members, as they often do after a first public hearing, left the bill pending.

"And that child suffered", Edwards says with her voice breaking, "like so numerous patients that we've heard from in committees over the years".

Catherine Baer, chairwoman of The Tea Party Network and a supporter of Flores' recess bill, complained about the amendment -- which ran more than 400 lines and was filed after the deadline for the committee meeting.

It would require school districts to begin testing later in the year, eliminate requirements that students take four end-of-course tests in high school and allow students who do well enough on college-entrance and other advanced national exams to skip some state tests.

Under the version of the bill that cleared the Senate, however, the mandate was absent and only state workers would be guaranteed to receive the benefit. That program sends extra money to some school districts that suffered after property tax cuts in 2006.

"We promised our taxpayers not to write a hot check for school finance", said Rep Matt Schaefer of Tyler.

Jerry Oleksiak, president of the Pennsylvania State Education Association, said his organization opposed the bill because they thought it would not make schools safer.

Texas has about 350,000 children who are home-schooled, according to state estimates.

The bill should pass Wednesday night, after lawmakers work their way through a parade of small changes that don't have the votes to pass — many backed by Democrats who have called for an even larger dose of extra school funding.

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