The 83rd Session of the Texas Legislature begins on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013, with adjournment set for Monday, May 27. Regular sessions last for 140 days in odd-numbered years, with the possibility of special sessions for up to 30 days, at the direction of the governor. With the start of bill filing approaching, advocates can learn about the legislative process and how to affect policy by reading the information provided here.
Key Dates for the 83rd Legislative Session
- Monday, Nov. 12, 2012 Prefiling of legislation begins
- Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013 83rd Session of Texas Legislature begins
- Monday, May 27, 2013 Sine Die (last day of legislative session)
- Sunday, June 16, 2013 Last day governor can sign or veto bills passed during regular session
How to Get Involved
Step 1: Educate Yourself
- Visit the Texas Legislature Online website to follow the action and create a list of bills to track.
- Learn how a bill becomes a law and how to follow a bill, see the “Guide to Texas Legislative Information (Revised)” PDF on the Texas Legislative Council Legislative Reference webpage.
- Learn how to read a bill, see “Reading Statutes and Bills” PDF on the Texas Legislative Council Legislative Reference webpage
- Familiarize yourself with legislative language and terminology, see the “Guide to Texas Legislative Information (Revised)” PDF Appendix: Legislative Glossary on the Texas Legislative Council Legislative Reference webpage.
- Follow the legislature on the go with your mobile device.
TCDD Can Help
TCDD staff will post news related to the Texas Legislature and other Public Policy issues in the monthly FYI advocacy publication and on our Texas Legislature page.
The TCDD Legislative Advocacy Tips page contains information and resources from various sources to assist individuals and organizations in their advocacy efforts. This information is designed to give an overview of the basic policymaking processes in Texas and how to influence policy.
Step 2: Stay in the Loop
Check emails from TCDD to learn about advocacy opportunities. Be sure that you are subscribed to receive updates on both Texas Legislature News, and State and Federal Input Opportunities. You can also receive updates through TCDD’s Twitter page and Facebook page.
Step 3: Take Action
- Find out who represents you in the Texas Legislature and contact them by phone, email or letter. You can also schedule an appointment to meet with your legislators and tell them how their decisions on the state budget and disability issues affect you and your family.
- Share your story at a committee hearing in person or in writing. View house meeting notices at and senate meeting notices to see which bills are scheduled to be considered at a particular committee meeting.