“Best of the 86th”

Privately-Funded High-Speed Rail

A priority of the Frisco Chamber of Commerce is to promote innovative solutions to provide for 21st-century transportation needs. Recent efforts have been made to privately fund a high-speed rail connection between Dallas and Houston. However, this legislative session, there were many efforts made to hamper these efforts with burdensome red tape. As a part of a coalition effort, the Frisco Chamber was able to stop these efforts in Austin. How does this impact your business? When completed, this effort will provide a market-based solution that will offer Dallas-area customers another option to connect with the Houston market. Read More: Texas Tribune article

Senate Bill 37

Senate Bill 37 stops the practice of state agencies revoking occupational licenses due to student loan defaults. According to the Texas Tribune, more than 4,200 Texans — including teachers, security guards, cosmetologists, and pharmacists – were at risk of losing their license because of student loan default in 2017. How does this impact your business? As Governor Abbott said during the bill signing, "it protects your right to make a living" for you and your employees. Read More: Texas Tribune article

House Bill 2784

Creates the Texas Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs Grant Program - a grant program to reimburse some eligible businesses for up to $10,000 per apprentice to help cover training costs, excluding wages. Companies must guarantee employment for participants who successfully complete the program, pay trainees, and provide on-the-job training with an accredited curriculum. How does this impact your business? Once implemented, the grant program will provide reimbursements for businesses who chose to have paid apprenticeship positions. Read More: Houston Chronicle article

House Bill 2984

The bill adds computer programming, coding, computational thinking, and cybersecurity to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) in kindergarten through 8th grade. Additionally, Senator Nelson amended the bill to direct the Texas Education Agency to create a strategic plan for K-12 computer science that articulates the goals for computer science, strategies, and funding needed to accomplish the goals, and timelines for carrying out the strategies to make computer science a fundamental part of a state’s education system. In addition, her amendment requires the State Board of Education to update the K-8 technology applications standards to better address the computational thinking practices and skills that are foundational to further study of computer science and cybersecurity as well as the personal digital security practices that every user of technology should employ. How does this impact your business? The bill will ensure a strong pipeline of future workforce in Texas for one of the fastest growing pieces of the economy.

House Bill 234

House Bill 234 will prevent cities and counties from adopting ordinances that stop children from selling lemonade, or other non-alcoholic beverages, while on private property, as long as they have the permission of the property owner, or in public parks. How does this impact your business? Entrepreneurism is the lifeblood of Frisco and the Frisco Chamber of Commerce, and it's important to ensure that children are able to participate in this right of passage without government getting in the way. Read More: Dallas Business Journal article

State Plumbing Board

After the Legislature failed to re-authorize the Texas State Plumbing Board, Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order extending the life of the agency saying it was too important to go away while the state is still trying to recover from Hurricane Harvey. How does this impact your business? The regulatory environment appears to be remaining the same for the next two years, providing stability for the industry and consumers. Read More: Texas Public Radio article

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