By Ashley Goudeau
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AUSTIN – The groups Texas Campaign for the Environment and Defend Texas Trees held an event outside the Capitol Wednesday to oppose bills filed in the Special Session related to trees.
Representatives Carol Alvarado (D-Houston) and Wayne Faircloth (R-Galveston) read Dr. Seuss’ “The Lorax” to a group of kids under one of the historic oak trees on the Capitol grounds. In the story, the Lorax speaks up for trees that are being cut down and advises against destroying the trees.
The event was held in opposition to Senate Bill 14 and House Bill 70 which prohibit cities from making ordinances regulating cutting down trees on private property.
Representatives Alvarado and Faircloth said on this issue, they support local control.
“We just feel like the people that live and work and invest their time and their talent to raise their families there, they know best of how to order their own lives and what’s important to them,” Faircloth said.
The House did approve House Bill 7 (HB7) which creates a tree planting credit to offset the fees cities charge for removing trees. Faircloth calls it a common sense bill that everyone can agree with.
The Senate Committee on Business & Commerce has scheduled a public hearing on HB7 for August 4 at 9:00 a.m.
The language of HB7 passed in the House and Senate during the regular session, but was vetoed by the Governor.
Senate Bill 14 has passed in the Senate and is awaiting a committee assignment in the House. A public hearing was held on House Bill 70 but it was left pending in committee.
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