ACT Lobby Day
Start: Tuesday, April 11, 2023• 9:00 AM
The Alliance for a Clean Texas (ACT) will hold a Lobby Day, with Texans from across the state coming together to call on the Legislature to strengthen environmental protections. We hope you can join us!
Sign up to attend and we'll schedule meetings with your state representative and senator and invite you to an issues briefing on April 6.
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.
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 is largely supportive of HB 1505, the TCEQ Sunset Bill, particularly the provision to raise the maximum daily fines from $25,000 to $40,000 for lawbreakers. We're asking the legislature to go further with provisions follow federal law on public participation in permitting and consider cumulative impacts in all major permits.