|How a bill originates
A legislator may draft legislation personally (see Texas Legislative Council
Drafting Manual) or obtain the services of professional
staff of the Texas Legislative Council or the engrossing and enrolling department of the senate. Legislation may also be prepared by organizations or individuals with a particular interest in certain
matters. The bill, the most common type of legislative document, is the only means by
which laws may be enacted, amended, or repealed. The Legislative Budget Board drafts the general appropriations bill. All bills except for general appropriations bills are limited to a single subject.
A bill may originate as the idea of a single legislator or may grow out
of the recommendations of a standing or special committee of the legislature that has
conducted interim studies on specific issues of legislative interest. The presiding
officers of the house and senate specify interim charges for
house committees and senate committees
and any additional authority and duties necessary to carry out the charges, and those
committees are required to submit interim reports on their charges before the next session.
Special interim study committees may consist entirely of legislators from one chamber or,
in the case of a joint committee, of legislators from both the house and senate. A presiding
officer also may appoint citizen members and other public officials of state and local
governments to a special interim committee to augment its legislative membership for the
purpose of conducting a special study. A special interim study committee usually expires on the
release of its final report or when the next legislature convenes, whichever occurs first.