Governor Abbott vetoes HB 1771 (86R)
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. 1771 as passed by the Eighty-Sixth Texas Legislature, Regular Session, because of the following objections:
Although House Bill 1771 is a well-intentioned tool to protect victims of human trafficking, it has unintended consequences. The bill takes away options that law enforcement and prosecutors can use to separate victims from their traffickers, and it may provide a perverse incentive for traffickers to use underage prostitutes, knowing they cannot be arrested for engaging in prostitution. Efforts to reduce trafficking are to be commended, and I have signed numerous laws this session cracking down on it. I look forward to working with the author on ways to separate victims from their traffickers, both physically and economically.
Since the Eighty-Sixth 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, 2019.