Public Safety & Border Security
Cracking down on rogue prosecutors unwilling to enforce the law and increasing criminal penalties for trafficking or manufacturing fentanyl, are just a few of the steps legislators took to ensure public safety across the state and bolster security at the border.
House Bill 6 (Goldman, et al. | SP: Huffman) updates state law to match the penalties for the trafficking of certain drugs with the seriousness of the violation. The bill primarily addresses fentanyl but also includes provisions related to other controlled substances.
House Bill 17 (Cook, et al. | SP: Huffman) introduces new grounds for the removal of a prosecuting attorney. The bill does this by including under the definition of official misconduct; the adoption or enforcement of a policy of refusing to prosecute a class or type of criminal offense under state law and instructing law enforcement to refuse to arrest individuals suspected of committing a class or type of offense under state law. This bill addresses the issue of “rogue” or “progressive prosecutors” as a number of large cities in the U.S., including some in Texas, have elected prosecutors who reject traditional law-and-order principles.
House Bill 718 (Goldman, et al. | SP: West) eliminates temporary paper license plates in favor of temporary metal plates issued by dealerships which they will obtain directly from the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV). This is necessary as criminals, drug cartels, and human traffickers have been producing fraudulent paper plates in order to evade law enforcement.
Senate Bill 224 (Alvarado, et al. | SP: Leach, et al.) increases criminal penalties relating to catalytic converter theft. The bill also permits law enforcement to presume that an individual in possession of one or more converters has stolen them, unless the possession is by the vehicle owner or person acting in the ordinary course of business.
Senate Bill 1403 (Parker | SP: Spiller, et al.) authorizes the governor to develop and execute an interstate compact for border security among interested states.
Senate Bill 1484 (Creighton | SP: Holland) establishes a training program for local law enforcement officers to prepare officers to interdict, investigate, and prosecute criminal activity along the Texas-Mexico border, including the trafficking of controlled substances and people.
Senate Bill 1849 (Kolkhorst | SP: Noble) requires the establishment of a machine-readable search engine for the purpose of ensuring that workers in schools, child-care facilities, juvenile justice facilities, and long-term care facilities, who have committed reportable conduct, cannot gain employment in another similar setting.