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Texas Cities And Towns May See Local Control Disappear If TX House Bill 2127 Passes


TEXAS BILLS LIMITING CITIES - Officials in cities and towns across Texas are tracking bills in the state legislature that could limit local governments, One in particular House Bill 2127, known as the Texas Regulatory Consistency Act if passed, would impact local regulation of things like city services, including labor and occupations, the environment and finance. Take payday lending as an example; these businesses provide loans at high rates of interest and target low-income residents and communities of color. Bill Kelly who works as director of government affairs for the Mayor of Houston is concerned about pending legislation that could remove local regulation of PayDay Lending.

“Really awful practices that you've seen us and over 30 cities in Texas, from very conservative Midland to our friends in Austin, everybody has got these local ordinances that regulate payday lending. Those would be wiped out,” Kelly said.

Local ordinances regulating "payday lending" would disappear if HB-2127 passes.
Local ordinances regulating "payday lending" would disappear if HB-2127 passes.

There are other areas of concern such as renters rights, local municipalities’ ability to respond to environmental disasters, and minimum wage protection for airport and county construction workers; all local regulation of those areas would disappear. So why is the Republican-dominated legislature focusing so much on reducing local government control?

State Representative Dustin Burrows of Lubbock is the author of the bill. He says local governments have a patchwork of regulations that increases the cost of doing business in Texas.

“We want those small business owners creating new jobs and providing for their families not trying to navigate a Byzantine array of local regulations that twist and turn every time they cross (a) city limits sign,” Burrows said.

HB 2127 will be brought before the Senate and is expected to pass no later than next week.

Chuck Smith brings more than 30 years' broadcast and media experience to Red River Radio. He began his career as a radio news reporter and transitioned to television journalism and newsmagazine production. Chuck studied mass communications at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and motion picture / television production at the University of California at Los Angeles. He has also taught writing for television at York Technical College in Rock Hill, South Carolina and video / film production at Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport.