The Senate Committee on International Relations and Trade has been authorized by Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst to include the following subject in its interim studies: “Review state and local policies relating to development and growth in rural and unincorporated regions of the state. Work with housing advocates, county organizations and appropriate officials to assess the proliferation of substandard housing in rural and unincorporated areas.” The Senate IRT committee is chaired by a former county commissioner, Senator Eddie Lucio. Other committee members include Senators Patrick, Estes, Fraser, Gallegos, Seliger and Uresti.
Chairman Lucio has indicated that the Committee will conduct a comprehensive analysis of the effect of unregulated growth in the unincorporated areas and the potential tools to enable counties to respond to local concerns. If you are aware of specific problems from lack of land use authority and building codes in the unincorporated areas, please send me this information. Incompatible development and shoddy construction practices often result from the current lack of county authority, but examples need to be documented in the Committee report.
The Committee will schedule a public hearing on this issue during the summer. If you or your constituents can provide testimony on this matter, please forward your contact information.
For more information, please call me at 1-800-733-0699.
Jim Allison, General Counsel