SB 393

84(R) - 2015
Senate Criminal Justice
Senate Criminal Justice
Criminal Justice

Companion Bill

HB 1530

Vote Recommendation

  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Positive
  • Neutral


Konni Burton


Brandon Creighton
Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa
José Rodríguez

Bill Caption

Relating to the punishment for certain offenses against property or against public administration.

Fiscal Notes

The probable fiscal impact of implementing the bill is expected to be positive but it is indeterminate due to the unavailability of reliable data or information related to the exact amount of pecuniary loss for certain offenses against property or public administration. Depending upon the number of convictions that could be affected by the shifting punishment categories, there could also be an indeterminate revenue impact to the state.

Bill Analysis

SB 393 would decrease the penalties for crimes that have a minimal amount of pecuniary damages. To be charged with a Class B misdemeanor or higher under this legislation a person would have to cause more significant pecuniary damages. This would also remove the criminal penalty for writing a bad check if the item obtained cost less than $20. However, this bill would create additional more severe felonies for fraudulent transfer of a motor vehicle.

Vote Recommendation Notes

5/24/2015 update:

No changes were made in House committee. Second chamber sponsor is Rep. Richard Peña.

First chamber recommendation:

SB 393 would reduce the financial liability of the state by decreasing the penalties for petty theft in a way that mirrors inflation. The decrease in penalties would allow the state to not confine people in jail for petty crimes and rather subject them to a financial penalty. This bill would also create additional more severe felonies for fraudulent transfer of motor vehicle, which would be similar to the other theft statutes currently in existence. This bill would also remove the offense of writing bad personal checks from the criminal code if the check was written for an item that cost less than $20. This would allow this financial matter to be handled during civil trials or through other debt collecting procedures.

This bill takes a comprehensive approach to the theft statute that is currently in existence and updates the code with an eye toward understanding inflation and progressive sanctions. This is in line with our limited government principle.

Organizations Supporting

Texas Association of Business
Texas Association of Goodwills
Texas Association of Realtors
Texas Public Policy Foundation