AUSTIN – The Texas House today approved legislation that allows journalists to continue accurately reporting on allegations of wrongdoing in matters of public importance.
The legislation by Rep. Todd Hunter, R-Corpus Christi, and Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, clarifies a recent Texas Supreme Court decision. The measure provides protection under libel law for reporting on third party allegations that shine light on matters such as contracting malfeasance, youth commission abuse and mistreatment of special education students.
The bill already won Senate approval. It now heads to Gov. Greg Abbott for his signature.
The Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas, Texas Press Association, Texas Association of Broadcasters and the Texas Trial Lawyers Association agreed upon the final language of the House and Senate bills, which were House Bill 1766 by Hunter and SB 627 by Huffman.
The House took up HB 1766 for consideration, then approved SB 627, which was eligible for House passage.