Member Login

Forgot Password?
Need Login?

You are here: Home > News & Events > News > Election over, focus…
Welcome, guest: Login to your account

Election over, focus shifts to lawmaking

 - TAB Legislative Day Conference set for Jan. 24

The cryin’ still ain’t over from last week’s election results, but state lawmakers on Monday nonetheless started filing bills for consideration in the 2017 legislative session that officially launches on Jan. 10. No one should focus too much on these early-bird bills as most of the really meaty or rancid stuff typically doesn’t get filed until early March when the bill filing deadline hits. Instead, newsrooms should be focusing more on the state’s tightening fiscal situation and lawmakers’ willingness to address massive challenges facing public schools and human services programs such as those involving endangered children needing foster homes or even basic care.

The problems in Texas government don’t stop there, of course, and most lawmakers who have served at least four years in the House or Senate can provide local journalists insight into the impact of these challenges locally. And while a lot of air and ink will be spent on guessing which lawmakers might win powerful committee assignments, the fact is that Senate decisions likely won’t be known until mid- to late January. Key leadership positions in the House – five times larger than the Senate – most likely will be settled a couple weeks later.

Texas broadcasters should already have started reaching out to their lawmakers and will have an opportunity to delve deeper into policy concerns on Tuesday, Jan. 24, at TAB’s biennial Legislative Day Conference. The event sets the stage for advancing TAB’s legislative agenda safeguarding broadcast journalists, fending off onerous advertising restrictions and protecting the extensive, hard-won tax policies and newsroom protections key to stations’ ability to inform, entertain and protect local communities.

The Jan. 24 conference features a deep-dive into major state policy issues and broadcast-specific concerns, concluding with the Lawmaker/Broadcaster Luncheon which is popular for what it doesn’t have – any speakers. Instead, lawmakers are seated with their local broadcasters so they can discuss issues important to their communities and briefly review TAB’s policy interests.

The program starts promptly at 10 a.m. and concludes by 2 p.m. at the Austin Sheraton at the Capitol, just blocks from the Capitol and TAB’s offices. A very small number of discounted hotel rooms are available for Monday night, Jan. 23.

Station owners, general managers and news directors should attend. TAB registration opened Nov. 1. Fees are $50, increasing to $75 on Dec. 19. There’s no charge for lawmakers to attend.

Broadcaster participation in this event is imperative to TAB’s success in the legislative session, whether advancing bills or fending off attacks. Lawmakers respond best to their constituents – especially when time is short, and the luncheon is a great venue to strengthen important relationships and showcase the breadth and depth of the Texas broadcast industry.

Key Legislative Calendar Dates

  • Nov. 14 – Pre-filing of Bills Commences
  • Jan. 10 – Legislature Convenes
  • May 29 – Legislature Adjourns

Questions? Contact TAB’s Oscar Rodriguez or call (512) 322-9944.

« Back to News Archive
« Back to Latest News