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Proposing a constitutional amendment regarding the powers of the governor and the legislature following certain disaster or emergency declarations.
The provisions of the proposed Constitutional amendment requiring the Governor to convene the Legislature in a special session would result in an indeterminate cost to the state. The cost would be dependent upon whether a state of disaster is declared and a proposal from the Governor to renew an order or proclamation declaring a state of disaster or emergency.
The cost to the state for publication of the resolution is $178,333
SJR 45 would amend the constitution to require the governor to call a special legislative session when the governor wants to renew a state of disaster or emergency declaration or issue a new order to respond to the same disaster if the disaster exists in at least two-fifths of Texas counties, affects at least half of the population of Texas, or affects at least two-thirds of the counties in three or more trauma service areas in this state. The legislature would have the power to renew or terminate the state of disaster as well as pass any law needed to respond.
This bill would also grant members of the legislature standing in a suit against the governor for failure to call a special session and would give the supreme court of Texas jurisdiction over the case.
Texas Action supports SJR 45 as this bill limits the executive power of the government by providing legislative oversight.