A comprehensive Texas plan that would reportedly strip cities of their jurisdiction cleared the state Senate on Tuesday and is currently on the governor’s desk.
House Bill 2127 transfers a significant amount of municipal governing authority from the state’s largely Democratic-run cities to its Republican-controlled legislature.
This authority includes laws pertaining to payday lending, construction worker rest breaks, and whether women can be discriminated against based on their hair.
Gov. Greg Abbott (R), according to the Austin American Statesman, has been an ardent proponent of the legislation.
Progressive critics claim the measure, which a Texas city attorney dubbed “the Death Star” for local authority, is a new step in the conservative state legislatures’ attempt to limit the influence of communities with a liberal political orientation.
Representatives from each of Texas’ main urban areas as well as a number of smaller ones, as well as civil society organizations like the AFL-CIO, are among the bill’s opponents.
They contend that the change in power it would bring about would limit cities’ ability to implement policies that suit their particular set of circumstances.
After clearing the House in April with the support of only eight out of 65 Democrats, the bill was approved by the state Senate 18-13 on a vote that was almost entirely along party lines.
If passed, the law would have a vast scope, thus “preempting” large portions of the state laws.
It would invalidate a number of current ordinances.
The Agriculture Code, Finance Code, Insurance Code, Labor Code, Natural Resources Code, and Occupations Code are other laws that the bill preempts for local and county regulations.