One of the first steps in the legislative process is for a bill to be scheduled for a hearing before a Senate or House committee. A committee hearing is an opportunity for the public to provide input and feedback on the proposed law. Below is information to help make the committee hearing process easy to navigate.
WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT ATTENDING A COMMITTEE HEARING
Schedule: Hearings begin at the times indicated on the agenda. There is no set time that the hearing will end and no set time or order that bills will be heard. If you can’t make it when the hearing begins, follow us on Twitter @PPTXVotes for updates. If you can’t make it to the Capitol until later in the day, there is a good chance you will still have time to register your position on the bills and, if you choose to do so, make oral remarks to the committee.
When you arrive: There may be tablet kiosks outside of the room where the hearing is taking place. If so, use these tablets to sign-in and register your position (for or against) on the bills scheduled for the hearing.
If tablets are not available, find the Committee Clerk’s desk in the hearing room and request a witness registration form. You can indicate your position on the bills on this form and whether or not you would like to provide oral remarks.
Parking: The Capitol Visitors Parking lot is at 12th and San Jacinto, and the first two hours are free. Each additional hour is $1.
Attire: Wear orange to show solidarity for reproductive rights! We also encourage comfortable shoes for getting around the Capitol and layered clothing for staying warm.
Food/Drinks: There are no food or drinks allowed in the Senate Chamber, the Senate Gallery (viewing area on the third floor), or the hearing rooms. The Capitol Grill cafeteria is located in the Capitol Extension, E1.002.