These Texas laws go into effect in 2023

The laws include changes to property taxes, building codes, and more

File Texas Capitol in Austin (Photo by Montinique Monroe/Getty Images) (Montinique Monroe, 2022 Getty Images)

Several Texas laws will go into effect in 2023. The laws were passed and signed during the 87th Texas Legislature, and include changes to property taxes, building codes, and more.

View the laws and their summaries below. Note that some of the laws listed below went into effect in 2021 but are included here because they have sections that will not take effect until 2023.

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*Editor’s Note: This story was originally published on

Changes to judicial branch of state government

HB 3774 is an omnibus bill relating to the operation and administration of courts in the judicial branch of state government.

House Bill 3774 amends the Civil Practice and Remedies Code, Code of Criminal Procedure, Estates Code, Family Code, Government Code, and Local Government Code. Among other provisions, the bill does the following:

  • creates 10 district courts, five statutory county courts, one statutory probate court, and one criminal law magistrate court;
  • revises the jurisdiction of certain statutory county courts;
  • grants the magistrates of certain counties jurisdiction in criminal actions;
  • establishes the duties of certain district and county attorneys;
  • makes certain changes applicable to proceedings in a justice or municipal court or in juvenile justice and family courts;
  • provides for public access to the state court document database, if authorized by the Texas Supreme Court;
  • revises procedures for the transfer of cases between courts and provides for the development of a standardized transfer certificate and an index of transferred documents form;
  • provides for a code of professional responsibility to regulate the conduct of entities regulated by the Texas Forensic Science Commission, revises the commission’s investigatory power, and authorizes the commission to use appropriated funds for the training and education of forensic analysts;
  • includes a veterans county service office among the causes to which a juror may donate their daily reimbursement;
  • provides for the appointment of a judge or magistrate of a district or statutory county court to preside over a regional specialty court program under certain conditions;
  • authorizes a defendant participating in a veterans treatment court program to be transferred to another such program in a county adjacent to the county where they work or reside;
  • requires the Texas Supreme Court to adopt rules regarding exemptions from seizure of a judgment debtor’s property;
  • provides for the protective order registry to include protective orders for victims of sexual assault or abuse, stalking, or trafficking and for the removal of certain vacated orders from the registry;
  • makes certain changes regarding the regulation of court reporters;
  • extends the deadline by which the state’s attorney must answer an application for a writ of habeas corpus filed after final conviction in a felony case without the death penalty and provides alternative methods for serving a copy of an application for such a writ on the state’s attorney in a community supervision case; and
  • authorizes a justice or judge to order the use of the uniform incident fingerprint card to take the fingerprints of an offender who is charged with a fine‑only misdemeanor involving family violence but was not placed under custodial arrest.

The bill took effect Sept. 1, 2021, except some sections which take effect Jan. 1, 2023.

Lowering property tax ceiling to reflect school district compressed rates

SB 12, 87th 2nd C.S. amends the Education Code, Government Code, and Tax Code to provide for the reduction of the amount of the limitation on the total amount of property taxes that may be imposed by a public school district on the residence homestead of an elderly or disabled individual to reflect any reduction from the preceding tax year in the district’s maximum compressed tax rate. Among other provisions, the bill entitles a district that is not fully compensated through state aid or the calculation of excess local revenue as part of the foundation school program based on the determination of the district’s taxable value of property to additional state aid in the amount necessary to fully compensate the district for the property tax revenue lost due to the reduction.

The bill takes effect Jan. 1, 2023.

Hydrofluorocarbon refrigerants

SB 1210 amends the Texas Clean Air Act, Health and Safety Code, to prohibit a building code or other requirement applicable to commercial or residential buildings or construction from prohibiting the use of a substitute refrigerant authorized pursuant to the federal Clean Air Act.

The bill takes effect Jan. 1, 2023.

Water and wastewater special districts

HB 3530, a continuation of the legislature’s ongoing statutory revision program, nonsubstantively codifies a number of session law special districts into the Special District Local Laws Code. The codified districts include one levee improvement district, one municipal utility district, two river authorities, and one water control and improvement district.

The bill takes effect April 1, 2023.

Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation

HB 1560 amends and repeals certain provisions of the Alcoholic Beverage Code, Code of Criminal Procedure, Education Code, Family Code, Government Code, Health and Safety Code, Human Resources Code, Occupations Code, and Transportation Code to provide for the continuation and functions of the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation (TCLR) and the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). The bill continues TCLR and TDLR until Sept. 1, 2033. The bill, among other provisions, postpones the sunset review of certain programs transferred to TDLR until the 2032‑2033 review cycle. The bill revises provisions relating to complaints received by TDLR and includes a provision requiring TDLR to post an additional statistical analysis of those complaints. The bill also requires TDLR to conduct risk‑based inspections. In addition, the bill transfers certain duties relating to continuing education programs from TCLR to TDLR.

House Bill 1560 requires TDLR to study the regulation of auctioneering and eliminates licensing requirements for polygraph examiners. The bill consolidates licenses and certificates that cover both barbers and cosmetologists and, in light of that consolidation, removes certain unnecessary regulations relating to those occupations. The bill eliminates the licensure requirement for persons issuing a residential service contract by repealing the Residential Service Company Act. The bill instead provides for the regulation of such contracts through the Service Contract Regulatory Act.

Except for the bill provisions repealing certain statutory provisions regarding driver training that take effect June 1, 2023, the bill takes effect Sept. 1, 2021.

Relating to a summary of a rule proposed by a state agency

HB 1322 amends the Government Code to require a state agency that files notice of a proposed rule with the secretary of state under the Administrative Procedure Act to publish on its website a summary of the proposed rule written in plain language in both English and Spanish.

The bill takes effect Sept. 1, 2023.

Public school finance system and public education

HB 1525 amends the Education Code and Government Code to revise aspects of the public school finance system and to provide for certain temporary funding allocations, among other provisions. Regarding the local share of funding, the bill revises the property value basis for calculating the maximum compressed tax rate, clarifies the 10 percent deviation rule, and requires the commissioner of education to reduce state aid or adjust the limit on a public school district’s local revenue level to offset any revenue generated by a district’s tax effort that does not comply with applicable law. The bill provides for the enforcement of the prohibition on levying a district maintenance tax at a rate intended to create a surplus for purposes of paying debt service. The bill excludes foundation school program (FSP) funding allocated to a district from the available school fund from being used to offset the district’s recapture amount but permits the use of the district’s other Tier 1 and Tier 2 funding for such an offset. The bill revises the basis on which certain consolidated districts are entitled to incentive aid.

This Act took effect Sept. 1, 2021, except Section 14, which takes effect Sept. 1, 2023.

Adult high school charter program

SB 1615 amends the Education Code to rename the adult high school diploma and industry certification charter school program as the adult high school charter school program and to expand the scope of the program from a sole charter granted to a single nonprofit entity charter holder to a regulatory framework for similar charters that may be granted to additional entities. The bill limits the number of adult high school charters that may be granted within a specified initial period and creates an initial enrollment limit for newly chartered programs.

Senate Bill 1615 revises the requirements for an adult education program’s instructional model and for associated training and services. The bill, in addition to revising specifications for the program’s accountability framework, requires the commissioner of education to adopt a separate accountability framework for an adult education program located in a correctional facility and provides for transitional performance measures for both frameworks. The bill authorizes the revocation of a charter for certain repeated failures to meet performance standards and revises applicable provisions relating to charter eligibility and expansion amendments, appropriate secondary exit‑level testing, and program accountability. The bill raises the age at which a program student becomes ineligible for foundation school program (FSP) funding from 26 to 50 years of age.

Effective Sept. 1, 2021, Senate Bill 1615 provides for transitional FSP funding for students in an applicable adult education program, including by removing a certain age distinction. Effective Sept. 1, 2023, the bill establishes program‑specific methods for calculating relevant FSP funding components, including average daily attendance; the compensatory education allotment; the college, career, or military readiness outcomes bonus; and an additional allotment based on weighted student outcomes.

About the Author

Briana Zamora-Nipper joined the KPRC 2 digital team in 2019. When she’s not hard at work in the KPRC 2 newsroom, you can find Bri drinking away her hard earned wages at JuiceLand, running around Hermann Park, listening to crime podcasts or ransacking the magazine stand at Barnes & Noble.

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