Two dozen bills take effect, including some aimed at homeowner, tenant issues

January 3, 2020

 

Twenty-four Texas House and Senate bills from the 2019 legislative session went into effect with the new year, several of which impact property tax protests as well as some specific groups of homeowners.

 

The biggest change in new legislation is House Bill 1313, which states that homeowners who have their property values lowered one year can’t have them raised the following year without the appraisal district presenting “clear and convincing” evidence.

 

For homeowners with mortgages, HB 1885 ensures that if a mortgage lender pays a property owner’s taxes late, the property owner will not be fined.

 

HB 2441 allows people who are elderly and disabled to claim a disability exemption for one taxing entity and claim a disability exemption to another entity.

 

For renters, HB 69 impacts their survivors. If a sole tenant dies with an active lease agreement, survivors can terminate the lease immediately with a letter and is effective after 30 days. Additionally, HB 1002 states that landlords who issue parking permits must have the parking permit term match the term of the property lease.

 

Other bills of note include Senate Bill 943, which makes the basic information in government contracts public information. In recent years, government agencies have been able to shield the information after a 2015 court decision that let Boeing keep a lease agreement private.

 

HB 918 also went into effect, which aims to help people who were incarcerated have an easier time landing a job. The bill states that when released, prisoners will get documentation of their work experience, pre-release programs and job training they performed while serving their sentences. Also, if they do not have a copy of their birth certificate or Social Security card, officials will obtain them so people have the documents upon release.

 

 

 

The following bills have sections went into effect on January 1, 2020:

 

HB 3

Relating to public school finance and public education; creating a criminal offense; authorizing the imposition of a fee. 

This Act takes effect September 1, 2019, except Article 2 and Sections 1.026, 1.029, and 5.010 take effect immediately; Sections 1.001, 1.010, 1.065, 1A.008, 3.053, 3.057, and 3.080 take effect January 1, 2020; and Sections 1.004(b), 1.014, 1A.001-1A.007, and 2.011 take effect September 1, 2020.

HB 492

Relating to a temporary exemption from ad valorem taxation of a portion of the appraised value of certain property damaged by a disaster. 

This Act takes effect January 1, 2020, but only if HJR 34 is approved by the voters.

HB 914

Relating to the regulation of bingo games. 

This Act takes effect January 1, 2020, except Sections 2001.502(c) and 2001.507(a) and (a-1), Occupations Code, as added or amended by this Act, take effect September 1, 2019.

HB 1532

Relating to the regulation of certain health organizations certified by the Texas Medical Board; providing an administrative penalty; authorizing a fee. 

This Act takes effect September 1, 2019, except Section 162.005(b), Occupations Code, as added by this Act, takes effect January 1, 2020.

HB 1717

Relating to a person holding office as a municipal judge in more than one municipality at the same time. 

This Act takes effect January 1, 2020, but only if HJR 72 is approved by the voters.

HB 2329

Relating to the dissolution of the North Montague County Water Supply District. 

This Act takes effect September 1, 2019, except Section 2 takes effect January 1, 2020.

HB 2859

Relating to the exemption from ad valorem taxation of precious metal held in a precious metal depository located in this state. 

This Act takes effect January 1, 2020, but only if HJR 95 is approved by the voters.

HB 3522

Relating to assignment of certain death benefits payable by the Employees Retirement System of Texas. 

This Act takes effect September 1, 2019, except Sections 1 and 2 take effect January 1, 2020.

HB 4390

Relating to the privacy of personal identifying information and the creation of the Texas Privacy Protection Advisory Council. 

This Act takes effect September 1, 2019, except Section 1 takes effect January 1, 2020.

HB 4611

Relating to certain distributions to the available school fund. 

This Act takes effect January 1, 2020, but only if HJR 151 is approved by the voters.

SB 2

Relating to ad valorem taxation; authorizing fees. 

This Act takes effect January 1, 2020, except Sections 106 and 118 of this Act take effect August 26, 2019; Section 92 of this Act takes effect September 1, 2019; Sections 6.41(b), (b-1), (b-2), (d-9), and (d-10), 6.414(d), 6.425, 41.44(d), 41.45(d), (d-1), (d-2), and (d-3), and 41.66(k) and (k-1), Tax Code, as added or amended by this Act, take effect September 1, 2020; Sections 25.19(b-3) and (b-4), 26.04(d-1), (d-2), (d-3), (e-1), (e-5), and (g), and 26.05(e), Tax Code, as added or amended by this Act, take effect January 1, 2021; and Sections 25.19(b) and (i), Tax Code, as amended by this Act, take effect January 1, 2022.

SB 7

Relating to flood planning, mitigation, and infrastructure projects. 

This Act takes effect immediately; Article 2 takes effect January 1, 2020, but only if HJR 4 is approved by the voters.

SB 26

Relating to the allocation to and use by the Parks and Wildlife Department and Texas Historical Commission of certain proceeds from the imposition of state sales and use taxes on sporting goods. 

This Act takes effect September 1, 2021, except Section 1 takes effect January 1, 2020, but both take effect only if SJR 24 is approved by the voters.

SB 212

Relating to a reporting requirement for certain incidents of sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, or stalking at certain public and private institutions of higher education; creating a criminal offense; authorizing administrative penalties. 

This Act takes effect September 1, 2019, except Section 51.260, Education Code, as added by this Act, takes effect immediately and Section 51.255(a), Education Code, as added by this Act, takes effect January 1, 2020.

 

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