Busy Day At Texas State Capital On Variety Of Bills

Jack Fink reports.

Video Transcript

- Busy day at the state capital here in Texas, where the state senate is considering a number of bills involving issues that have made a lot of headlines. They do include improving the hiring process of police officers, social media censorship, and also girls' sports. Our political reporter Jack Fink with a deeper dive.

JACK FINK: The state senate passed a bill unanimously that's aimed at preventing bad law enforcement officers from jumping around from police department to police department. Under the legislation, police chiefs, sheriffs, and others in law enforcement who hire police officers must go through a set of steps to check the backgrounds into those who are applying for jobs.

The bill's authors said there were 2,800 law enforcement officers who were dishonorably discharged, but only nine of them lost their peace officers licenses. The bill has teeth. If chiefs, sheriffs, and others don't do a thorough background check of applicants, they could lose their licenses.

ROYCE WEST: We're taking steps in order to provide balance affecting citizens and law enforcement officers.

JOAN HUFFMAN: Those who are hiring police officers make every effort to ensure that they are hiring officers who are ethical, who are going to follow the law, who will respect every person's civil rights.

JACK FINK: Also up for consideration, final passage of a bill banning social media sites from censoring users and passing a bill that would require the National Anthem be played at all sporting events. The senate is also going to consider a bill that would require public school athletes participate on teams associated with their biological sex at birth, which is a change from current law.

Two other bills the state senate passed unanimously today include expanding broadband access to rural areas and removing all racist language that has remained in property records. Jack Fink, CBS11 News.

- Jack, thank you. And also of note, the Texas Senate also approved a group of abortion-related bills, including the heartbeat bill you may have heard about. They now go to the state house. One of the proposals, officially known as Senate Bill 8, would ban an abortion after a heartbeat is detected. It would make an exception for medical emergencies, but not an exception for rape or incest.