Governor Abbott Vetoes HB 1342 (85R)
Pursuant to Article IV, Section 14, of the Texas Constitution, I, Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas, do hereby disapprove of and veto House Bill No. 1342 as passed by the Eighty-Fifth Texas Legislature, Regular Session, because of the following objections:
I have signed Senate Bill 2039, which directs the Texas Education Agency to develop an optional curriculum regarding sexual abuse prevention for use by school districts. While both Senate Bill 2039 and House Bill 1342 seek to achieve a good purpose, Senate Bill 2039 does so in a more suitable way. By recognizing both the importance of this topic and the right of parents to opt their children out of the instruction, Senate Bill 2039 strikes the correct balance. House Bill 1342 was well-intentioned, but it lacked a provision for parental opt-out. This is inconsistent with the longstanding rule in Texas schools that parents can remove their child from “any part of the district's human sexuality instruction.” Tex. Educ. Code § 28.004(i).
Since the Eighty-Fifth Texas Legislature, Regular Session, by its adjournment has prevented the return of this bill, I am filing these objections in the office of the Secretary of State and giving notice thereof by this public proclamation according to the aforementioned constitutional provision.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have signed my name officially and caused the Seal of the State to be affixed hereto at Austin, this 15th day of June, 2017.