Lobby Day, April 11, 2023 - Austin Capitol
Join Clean Water Action and The Alliance for a Clean Texas (ACT) for Lobby Day, with Texans from across the state coming together to call on the Legislature to strengthen environmental protections. We will schedule meetings with your state representative and senator and invite you to attend an issues briefing via zoom on Thursday, April 6th, 5-6 p.m. A recording will be available for those who can't attend.
- The state’s main environmental regulator, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), is currently going through “Sunset review,” which means the Legislature must vote to reauthorize the agency to continue its work. This provides a unique opportunity to reform the agency to improve public participation in the permitting process, raise penalties against polluters, and clean up our air, water, land and climate.
- Our air is polluted, with about half of Texas’s population living in areas that fail federal standards for smog pollution. About a third of our rivers, lakes and streams are unsafe for swimming and fishing. Pollution in Texas affects low income neighborhoods and communities of people of color at a greater rate than others; pollution is a justice issue.
- TCEQ is the largest statewide environmental agency in the country, but it is broken. Called a “reluctant regulator” by the Sunset Commission, the TCEQ too often rubber stamps pollution permits without properly giving the public a chance to weigh in. TCEQ rarely fines companies who violate the law; when they do, the fines are often just a slap on the wrist.
ACT and Clean Water Action are supporting a robust Sunset Bill that requires TCEQ to raise the maximum daily fines from $25,000 to $40,000 for lawbreakers, follow federal law on public participation in permitting and, consider cumulative impacts in all major permits.
If you are driving to the Capitol, please arrive 15 min early to give yourself time to find the room, which is in the extension.
We suggest parking at the Capitol Visitors Parking Garage at 1201 San Jacinto Blvd, Austin, TX 78701. From there it is a short walk to the Capitol building. Additional parking is available throughout the area.
After a day of visiting your representatives, we invite you to join your fellow ACT lobbyists at Sholtz Garten to discuss the results of your efforts, have a bite to eat, and relax before your drive home.
We hope to see you at the Capitol on April 11th! RSVP NOW
Tell TECQ to do its job - strengthen protections for our health and environment… the JOB of TCEQ.