Gov. Rick Perry today announced that a special session of the Texas Legislature will begin on Wednesday, July 1, 2009, at 10 a.m.
The special session will consider the following issues:
*Legislation extending the existence of five state agencies that were subject to sunset review by the 81st Legislature that would otherwise be abolished without legislative action, and to change the review schedule for certain state agencies to balance the Sunset Advisory Commission’s workload. These agencies include the Texas Department of Transportation, Texas Department of Insurance, Texas Racing Commission, Office of Public Insurance Counsel and Texas State Affordable Housing Corporation.
*Legislation allowing the Texas Department of Transportation to issue general obligation bonds, which have already been approved by voters, for highway improvement projects, and for the creation, administration, financing and use of a Texas Transportation Revolving Fund to provide financial assistance for transportation projects.
*Legislation extending the authority of the Texas Department of Transportation and a regional mobility authority to use comprehensive development agreements to design, finance, build and maintain transportation infrastructure.
State Rep. Ellen Cohen responded to the announcement, “Now that the Governor has determined the dates for the special session, I look forward to addressing these five agencies under sunset review. My hope that the Governor will also respond to the request from a bipartisan group of legislators to add legislation expanding the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to the special session agenda. While I agree that we must focus on continuing the operations of these five critical agencies, we must not pass on this opportunity to address the long-term health of our state by extending coverage to 80,000 uninsured children.”