Blue Texas Cities Flip on State

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( – In Texas, new legislation is bringing tension in the longstanding cold war between Texas’ relatively progressive cities and the GOP legislature.

Local officials in Texas have expressed concerns about how the far-reaching state bills could potentially harm their efforts in helping ensure that construction workers in Texas would be allowed to have proper rest breaks, but also in ensuring that there are no-kill animal shelters and local water quality is maintained.

GOP sponsors and conservative groups have both claimed that companion bills HB2127 and SB814, would block local governments from passing and enforcing local rules in the state. This could potentially lead to business owners being protected against the state’s more progressive and blue cities. However, local officials and advocacy groups have argued that these legislations would effectively stop cities from being able to control and regulate environmental, labor, and safety concerns in their area.

The bills are only one part of a push by conservative groups to bring the conflicts they have with their progressive city officials in front of state legislators according to Bennett Sandlin, executive director of the Texas Municipal League. He added that this idea started arising from “national think tanks” last year and it essentially states that “You go straight to the state government and don’t have to go city by city.”

Last year, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) vetoed a similar far-reaching preemption bill that had passed through the GOP legislature in Florida. The bill could have led to local governments having to face a number of lawsuits.

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