February 5, 2021 - State Representative Chris Paddie (R-Marshall) has been appointed as Chairman of the State Affairs Committee.
"I am excited to be working on issues that are vitally important to East Texas," said Rep. Paddie. "This committee chairmanship will allow our district to have influence on many of the important issues that will be addressed by this legislature. Now that we have committee assignments, I am looking forward to getting to work and tackling the many issues facing our state."
The State Affairs Committee has jurisdiction over all matters pertaining to questions of state policy and administration of state government; the operation, powers, and management of state departments, agencies, and institutions; except where jurisdiction is granted to some other committee; access of the state agencies to scientific and technological information; regulation and deregulation of electric utilities and the electric industry; regulation and deregulation of telecommunications utilities and the telecommunications industry; regulation of pipelines, pipeline companies, and all others operating as common carriers in the state; advances in science and technology, including telecommunications, electronic technology, or automated data processing, by state agencies, including institutions of higher education; cybersecurity; and the following organizations and state agencies: the Council of State Governments, the National Conference of State Legislatures, the Office of the Governor, the Texas Ethics Commission, the Texas Facilities Commission, the Department of Information Resources, the Inaugural Endowment Fund Committee, the Sunset Advisory Commission, the Public Utility Commission of Texas, and the Office of Public Utility Counsel.
"The State Affairs Committee has very broad jurisdiction and handles a wide range of issues that are important to East Texas. One of the most critical issues currently facing rural Texas is access to broadband internet. The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare the digital divide that exists in our state. This lack of access is one of the most important issues that will come before the State Affairs Committee and I look forward to leading the charge to bring broadband internet, and the economic development that comes with it, to East Texas."