87th LegislatureState SenateERCOT Reform, Heartbeat Bill Among Lt. Governor Dan Patrick’s Priorities

Reforming the Texas grid topped Patrick's list, with the "Star Spangled Banner Protection Act" and statewide broadband following behind.
February 23, 2021
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Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick has released his priorities for the ongoing legislative session.

The list of 31 goals ranges from the hard policy of stabilizing the power grid to cultural pennants like the “Star Spangled Banner Protection Act.” At times, it overlaps with some of the stated priorities of Governor Greg Abbott, including action against cities that defund their police departments and expansion of broadband access.

Patrick divided his list into three sections, entitled “A Safe & Secure Texas Future,” “Life, Liberty and Conservative Texas Values,” and “Protecting Taxpayers and the Texas Economy.

The Texas Senate has already begun work on the budget, or Senate Bill (SB) 1. Initial bills for redrawing the Senate districts and reorganizing the court of appeals districts have also already been filed.

A few of Patrick’s priorities echo bills already filed in both his own chamber and the Texas House. State Rep. Valoree Swanson (R-Spring) and Sen. Charles Perry (R-Lubbock) have both filed bills to keep biological males from playing in women’s sports, a goal which Patrick has reserved for the yet-unfiled Senate Bill 29.

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The “Heartbeat Bill,” bail reform, and an abortion ban triggered by the overturning of Roe v. Wade all number among a few of the existing bills that share a target with Patrick’s priorities.

Sen. Drew Springer (R-Muenster) just filed a bill today that would require the leadership of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas to live in the state.

Here’s the complete list of Patrick’s priorities.

A Safe & Secure Texas Future

  • Senate Bill 2 – ERCOT Reform
  • Senate Bill 3 – Power Grid Stability
  • Senate Bill 5 – Statewide Broadband Access
  • Senate Bill 7 – Election & Ballot Security
  • Senate Bill 15 – Ban Sale of Personal Data from Certain State Agencies
  • Senate Bill 16 – Protect State-held Personal Data
  • Senate Bill 21 – Bail Reform
  • Senate Bill 22 – First Responders Pandemic Care Act
  • Senate Bill 23 – Stop Local Police Defunding
  • Senate Bill 24 – Law Enforcement Transparency Act
  • Senate Bill 27 – Expand Virtual Learning Options
  • Senate Bill 28 – Charter School Equity Act

Life, Liberty and Conservative Texas Values

  • Senate Bill 4 – Star Spangled Banner Protection Act
  • Senate Bill 8 – The Heartbeat Bill
  • Senate Bill 9 – Abortion Ban Trigger
  • Senate Bill 12 – Protect Free Speech on Social Media
  • Senate Bill 18 – Protect Second Amendment Businesses
  • Senate Bill 19 – Stop Corporate Gun Boycotts
  • Senate Bill 20 – Second Amendment Protections for Travelers
  • Senate Bill 25 – Family Nursing Home Visitation Rights
  • Senate Bill 26 – Protect Our Freedom to Worship
  • Senate Bill 29 – Fair Sports for Women & Girls
  • Senate Bill 30 – Removing Racist Restrictions from Real Estate Deeds

Protecting Taxpayers & the Texas Economy

  • Senate Bill 1 – State Budget
  • Senate Bill 6 – Pandemic Liability Protection Act
  • Senate Bill 10 – Stop Taxpayer Funded Lobbying
  • Senate Bill 13 – Oil and Gas Investment Protection
  • Senate Bill 14 – Business Freedom & Uniformity Act
  • Senate Bill 17 – Protect Texas Trucking

Two of Patrick’s priorities — reorganizing appellate courts and redistricting, a legally required task of the legislature — did not land in any of these three divisions.

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Isaiah Mitchell

Isaiah Mitchell

Isaiah Mitchell is a reporter for The Texan, a Texas native, and a huge Allman Brothers fan. He graduated cum laude from Trinity University in 2020 with a degree in English. Isaiah loves playing music and football with his family.