Introduction: The Texas State Legislature

Duties and Role

Learning Objectives

At the end of this section you’ll be able to:

  • Understand the duties and role of the Texas State Legislature

The Texas State Legislature meets at the Capitol in Austin. It is a powerful arm of the Texas government not only because of its power of the purse to control and direct the activities of state government and the strong constitutional connections between it and the Lieutenant Governor of Texas, but also due to Texas’s plural executive.

The duties of the Legislature include consideration of proposed laws and resolutions, consideration of proposed constitutional amendments for submission to the voters, and appropriation of all funds for the operation of state government. All bills for raising revenue considered by the Legislature must originate in the House of Representatives. The House alone can bring impeachment charges against a statewide officer, impeachment charges are tried by the Senate.

The Legislature is the constitutional successor of the Congress of the Republic of Texas since Texas’s 1845 entrance into the Union. The Legislature held its first regular session from February 16 to May 13, 1846.