Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of April 5, 2013. Give me your feedback below and tune in to The Chad Hasty Show for these and many more topics from 8:30 to 11am.

Cole Shooter,
Cole Shooter,

1. City Council (link)

The Lubbock City Council met yesterday and for those who thought it would be a short meeting, you were wrong. The council met for more than three hours behind closed doors to discuss complaints made against Councilman Victor Hernandez. Hernandez was involved in the talks in executive session.

When the council finally emerged, they voted to dismiss Cheryl Brock's complaint that she had recanted last week. The council also voted to dismiss Pam Moon's complaint against Councilman Hernandez. The council did vote to investigate Lee Ann Dumbald's complaint against Hernandez and to investigate Dumbald herself.

Mayor Glen Robertson will join The Chad Hasty Show at 9:05am today.

2. The House Did What?

It was budget day yesterday in the Texas House and two different amendments created a lot of buzz. One of those votes was on school choice. Yesterday, Reps. John Frullo and Charles Perry joined with Democrats and other some other Republicans as the House voted AGAINST school choice. According to AFP:

There are currently over 315,000 children trapped in over 500 failing schools in our state. Yet, today our Texas House voted 103-43 in support of Representative Abel Herrero’s anti-school choice amendment to Senate Bill 1 (State Budget).

Rep. Herrero’s Amendment 95 reads:

“Use of Appropriated Funds for School Vouchers or to Support Tax-Credit Scholarships Prohibited. Money appropriated to the Texas Education Agency by this Act may not be used to pay for or support school vouchers or scholarships for private primary or secondary education provided by non-profit entities using donations received from entities that receive tax credits as a result of the donations.”

You can see the full roll call here.

Then there was the amendment of confusion. Lawmakers in the House initially approved a plan that would have opened the door to expanding medicaid for ObamaCare in Texas. After more than an hour lawmakers came back and wanted to re-open the amendment because some lawmakers claimed they were confused about what they had voted for. In the end, the expansion of medicaid failed.

3. Shorter Course for CHL (link)

A Senate panel yesterday approved slashing the time it takes to get your CHL. According to the Dallas Morning News, supporters of the legislation say 10 hours of instructional time is too much.

Legislation that would shorten the instructional time required to obtain a concealed handgun license in Texas won unanimous approval Thursday from the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. The measure by Sen. Donna Campbell, R-New Braunfels, would trim the current minimum of 10 hours for the handgun proficiency course to at least four hours, with a maximum of six hours. The bill now goes to the full Senate.

Supporters of the measure said 10 hours is too long and usually leaves instructors looking for ways to fill the instructional time. An analysis of the bill pointed out that it “does not reduce course curriculum when reducing course hours and does not attempt to regulate the addition or subtraction of any course material currently approved for instruction.” Instructors are supposed to cover laws governing weapons and use of deadly force, handgun use, proficiency and safety, nonviolent dispute resolution and safe storage of guns.

The bill also gives the Texas Department of Public Safety authority to set up online classroom courses for current concealed handgun license holders seeking to renew their licenses. The state’s concealed handgun license law was passed in 1995, and the instructional requirements in the law have not changed since then. One bill filed in the House this year would eliminate the requirement that license holders take a refresher course in handgun proficiency before getting their license renewed. Another measure would reduce the fees to obtain a license. Nearly 600,000 Texans now have a concealed handgun license, according to DPS.


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