Tuesday, May 26 on the floor of the Senate a proposed constitutional
amendment – HJR 102 by Sen. Juan Hinojosa (House sponsor:
Rep. Richard Raymond) – that would put into the Texas Constitution
the right of the public to access and use public beaches
(currently in statute as the “Open Beaches Act”) passed on “second
reading” by a vote of 20-11.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Texas Senate Votes 29-2 to Protect Public Access to State’s Beaches!
Thanks to everyone who contacted the offices of their Senators
Wednesday (May 27) to urge passage of HJR 102 – the proposed constitutional amendment to put the Texas Open Beaches Act protection of public access to beaches into the Texas Constitution. Tuesday HJR 102 fell one vote short of the 2/3 support that would be needed to pass the joint resolution on third reading (final passage).
Wednesday, thanks to calls and emails to Senate offices and some reflection by Senators on the long term importance of protecting public access to beaches, the Senate voted 29-2 to pass HJR 102 on third reading! This vote reflects a switch of nine Senators from against the joint resolution to for the resolution.
Since HJR 102 is a proposed constitutional amendment it does not have to go to the Governor for his approval or veto. The proposal will go directly to the voters and will be on the statewide ballot along with other proposed constitutional amendments this coming fall. The date of the election will be November 3, 2009. Please plan to go out and vote for this amendment at that time. Sierra Club will provide more information about the upcoming statewide vote as we draw closer to November.
Thanks again to everyone who contacted your Senate offices today! Your action made a big difference and moves us an important step closer to constitutional protection of public access to our state’s beaches.
Ken Kramer, Director
Lone Star Chapter, Sierra Club