Texas Bills Enacted Following the Regular Legislative Session

by Voting Rights Lab

June 22, 2021

The following bills were signed by Governor Abbott following the regular legislative session. Bills that share provisions from versions of the omnibus Senate Bill 7, as passed by either chamber, are noted:

Anti-Voter Bills

  • HB 574 – creates a 2nd degree felony offense for knowingly or intentionally making any effort to count votes the person knows are invalid or alter a report to include votes the person knows are invalid or failing to count valid votes that the person knows to be valid or alter a report to exclude valid votes that the person knows to be valid.
    • Similar provisions existed in the version of Senate Bill 7 passed by each chamber.
  • HB 2283 –  prohibits local election officials from accepting contributions of $1000 or more from a private individual, corporation, partnership, trust, or other third party without the consent of the Secretary of State, who must get the unanimous approval of the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Speaker of the House. Local election officials would need the written consent of the relevant political subdivision to accept a donation of less than $1000. The bill would make an exception for an in-kind contribution of food or beverage for election workers during the administration of an election or the contribution of a building for use as a polling location.
    • Similar provisions existed in the version of Senate Bill 7 passed by the Senate.
  • HB 3920 – requires the voter to affirm a disability that meets the statutory requirement for mail ballot eligibility on the mail ballot application. The bill also limits the applicability of childbirth as a reason to vote by mail to persons giving birth within three weeks before or after Election Day.
    • A similar disability affirmation provision existed in the version of Senate Bill 7 passed by the Senate. The Senate Bill 7 conference committee report contained more extensive requirements for voters with disabilities to apply for mail ballots.
    • This bill does slightly expand the eligibility window for pregnant voters to be eligible to vote by mail.
  • SB 1111– requires a voter who receives an address confirmation notice for an address that is a commercial post office or otherwise does not correspond to a residential address to provide documentation of their residence when returning the notice. The bill would allow a voter to use a driver’s license or state ID, a handgun license, an appraisal district document, a utility bill, or tax document to satisfy the documentation requirement.
    • Provisions requiring documentation of residence when voters return an address confirmation notice of this bill likely violate the National Voter Registration Act of 1993.
  • SB 1113 – allows the Secretary of State to withhold funds from any registrar who fails to perform statutory list maintenance duties.

Pro-Voter Bills

  • HB 1382 – requires the Secretary of State to develop and maintain an online tracking system to allow a voter to track the status of their early voting by mail application and ballot. 
    • Similar provisions existed in the version of Senate Bill 7 passed by each chamber, but were not included in the conference committee report.
  • SB 331 – expands the manner of assistance an interpreter can provide a voter to allow the interpreter to assist the voter in reading and marking their ballot and removes existing limitations on who a voter may choose to act as an interpreter.
  • SB 598 – requires voting machines to produce an auditable paper record of votes cast and requires counties to conduct certain risk-limiting audits.
    • Similar provisions existed in the Senate version of Senate Bill 7.

Mixed and Neutral Bills

  • HB 1264 – requires local registrars of death and probate court officials to provide information concerning deceased individuals to county voting registrars and the Secretary of State within seven days of the preparation of monthly data. Existing law requires transmission of the data within 10 days of preparation.
    • Similar provisions existed in the version of Senate Bill 7 passed by each chamber.
  • HB 3107 – makes numerous changes to voter registration and election procedures. Notably, the bill moves the deadline to apply for a mail ballot in person a week later to match the existing deadline to request a ballot by mail. The bill would also require mandatory training for election judges to include training related to service on an early voting ballot board and central counting station and allows mobile temporary early voting locations in counties with populations under 100,000.