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May 22, 2023      1:16 PM

Updated -- HK: Two last minute potentially mischievous Texas Senate bills make it onto final late House Calendars

Some conservative groups believe SB896 could put them in the litigation cross hairs; SB 1117 would cost cities an undetermined amount of revenue potentially impacting basic functions such like drainage in Houston

While there is no shortage of mischief to make its way on to the last House Calendars, two Senate bills with broad tax and free speech implications languished for most of the session but are now making their way to the floor in the last minute. In the crush of legislation, members might not be paying close attention.

Senate Bill 896 appears to undermine the so called anti-Slapp statute which was intended to prevent expensive lawsuits against people or institutions availing themselves to the right of free speech. It is exceptionally important to the press and advocacy groups that frequently draw the ire of the rich and powerful for whom litigation is merely a cost of doing business.

By Harvey Kronberg

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