New Legislation Taking Effect This September


House Bill 19, provides resources to public schools to train their staff on mental health and substance use. This legislation allocates funding to pay professionals on mental health and substance use to train public school’s staff. This legislation does not implement a counselor or psychiatrist on campus. District participation is optional.


House Bill 98 clears up some of the vagueness from previous revenge porn legislation in 2015. The prior legislation provides grounds to press charges if intimate or sexual photos or videos of you, that were previously understood as private, are shared of you without your consent. The argument to this was that the wording was too vague and could justify pressing charges on someone you reposting the images without knowing that there was no consent. In this legislation, in order to press charges the plaintiff must have evidence that the images were reposted or shared with malicious intent.


Senate Bill 21 prohibits the sale consumption and distribution of tobacco products to individuals under the age of 21. This legislation excludes military and offers no grace period for 18-20 year olds who could previously purchase and use these products.


Senate Bill 38 provides grounds to press charges in the event of some of the most common hazing practices. Practices include any type of physical brutality, sleep deprivation, exposure to the elements, consumption of liquor or drug that has an unreasonable risk, or exposes an individual to ostracization or extreme mental stress shame or humiliation. A student commits an offense if they engage in hazing, solicits or aidshazing, 


Senate Bill 1217 approves the design and sale of “Keep Austin Weird” license plates.

By Tessa Stigler, Editor-in-Chief

Featured Photo by Marco Oriolesi on Unsplash

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