What comes after the Texas roundtable discussions on school shootings?

Austin

After three emotional days of talking about how to prevent school shootings, Gov. Abbott is expected to announce recommendations next week. 

Santa Fe High School senior Aaron Chenoweth was one of many who wants lawmakers to increase armed security in their school, as well as more counselors and more mental health services. All of which could be expensive.

“I have faith in them and I have faith in the Lord. So good things will come,” said Chenoweth.

“Usually when politicians change a little bit it’s because the public has changed a little bit,” said Ross Ramsey,  the executive editor of the Texas Tribune.

He says Abbott now has three options: Abbott can issue grants through his office and direct day to day policy through his appointments, he can work with the top 10 lawmakers, known as the legislative budget board, and direct money around other parts of the budget.

But if new money, rainy day funds, or a change in law is required, he’ll have to call the entire legislature back for a special session. To successfully do that, he’ll need to have the votes to pass ideas into reality.

“If you had a special session and did nothing, that’s worse than no special session at all,” said Ramsey.

The next regular special session is in January 2019, halfway through the next school year. 

Other ideas from the roundtable discussions Abbott could take action on, include: a public awareness campaign for safe storage, requiring window and door barricades, implementing more technological security systems, such as a fire alarm, but for active shooters, overruling local control to allow any teacher to carry a gun and increasing the age of buying a firearm or requiring more liability of parents if their children commit crimes with weapons. 

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