August 19, 2022, Number 33

Download the full .pdf version here: TML Legislative Update Number 33

nlc launces program for small- to mid-sized cities to help access federal infrastructure dollars

The Local Infrastructure Hub, sponsored by NLC and the U.S. Conference of Mayors, among others, launched the Grant Application Bootcamp to help cities with populations of 150,000 or less take advantage of the grant opportunities available through the federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). There is no cost associated in participating in the bootcamps.

The Hub will offer at least 30 bootcamps in the next two years that are tied to a specific category of funding available. The first five bootcamps include:

  • Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities ($1 billion)
  • Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program ($550 million)
  • Flood Mitigation Assistance Grants ($3.5 billion)
  • Strengthening Mobility and Revolutionizing Transportation (SMART) Grant Program ($500 million)
  • Charging and Fueling Infrastructure Grants ($2.5 billion)

Registration for the bootcamps close on August 31, 2022. Spots are limited to the first several hundred cities that register, so cities are encouraged to register as soon as possible. Registration can be found here, and more information on the program can be found here. Cities that have additional questions can email

governor's office announces law enforcement grant opportunities

On August 17, Governor Abbott announced the availability of $3 million in funding for travel assistance to local law enforcement agencies to travel to take the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) training program, as well as $50 million for the Bullet-Resistant Shield Grant Program for fiscal year 2023.

According to the governor’s press release, ALERRT is designed to equip first responders with effective strategies to respond to active attack events. Local law enforcement agencies can apply for ALERRT travel assistance only after receiving confirmation of registration for an ALERRT training course. The deadline to submit and certify an application for travel assistance is August 31, 2023.

The deadline for local law enforcement agencies to apply for grant funding under the Bullet-Resistant Shield Grant Program is September 16, 2022. All peace officers provided with a grant-funded ballistic shield must have either attended 16 hours of ALERRT training within the past two years, or committed to attend the training in the next two years.

The funding announcements for both programs can be found here.  

comptroller to send $760m to cities in sales tax revenue

Last week, Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced that he will send cities, counties, transit systems, and special purpose taxing districts $1.2 billion in local sales tax allocations for August 2022. Of that, cities will receive $760.5 million – a 9.8 percent increase from August 2021. The allocations are based on sales made in June by businesses that report tax monthly and on sales made in April, May, and June by quarterly filers.

state energy conservation office programs for cities

The State Energy Conservation Office (SECO) in the comptroller’s office partners with local governments to reduce utility costs and maximize efficiency by offering programs to assist cities in those efforts. SECO provides a variety of programs to cities including a free preliminary energy assessment which details recommendations for cost-effective resource efficiency measures that could be implemented to reduce utility consumption or utility costs. The free assessment applies to public, indoor administrative or teaching facilities, and infrastructure owned and operated by the city requesting the service.

In addition, SECO administers the Texas LoanSTAR (Saving Taxes and Resources) Revolving Loan program which provides low-interest loans to cities by financing their energy-related, cost-reduction retrofit projects. The current LoneSTAR application period closes August 31, 2022. Loan sizes can range from $3 to $8 million per application. A new application period will open soon after the current one closes on August 31. More information on the program can be found here.

last call: resolutions due monday, august 22 for 2022 annual conference

Resolutions for consideration at the Annual Conference are due no later than 5:00 p.m. on August 22, 2022. The TML Constitution provides that resolutions must be submitted by any member city, TML region, or TML affiliate to the TML headquarters 45 calendar days prior to the first day of the Annual Conference. 

The League’s advocacy efforts are based on a legislative program that is developed by member city officials in two ways. 

First, a member city, TML region, or TML affiliate may submit a resolution for consideration at the business meeting of each year’s Annual Conference. Each city is asked to provide one delegate to serve as its liaison at the meeting. The representatives will be briefed on the content of the resolutions and given a chance to discuss and vote on whether they merit inclusion in the legislative program. The resolutions form the basis of a fixed legislative program, under which – each session – modifications to the program will be made only if needed. 

Second, member city officials can participate in the League’s Municipal Policy Summit during the summer of 2022. The report of the Summit takes the form of a resolution that is submitted to the Annual Conference in interim years. The summit participants have been appointed by the TML President based on volunteers and others chosen to balance the demographics of the TML membership at large. 

Details on the submission process can be found here.

mandated cybersecurity Training and reporting due august 31

Cybersecurity training is mandated by Texas Government Code Section 2054.5191 for city employees, elected officials, and appointed officials who have access to a local government computer system or database and use a computer to perform at least 25 percent of their duties. The training must be certified by the Texas Department of Information Resources (DIR). Cities must certify their compliance by August 31, 2022 by using the Cybersecurity Training Certification for State and Local Governments form.

The Texas Municipal League Intergovernmental Risk Pool (TMLIRP) has three DIR-certified options available free of charge. TMLIRP’s free cybersecurity training program can be assessed here. Other DIR-certified training programs are listed on the agency’s website.

DIR has developed an optional tool, Texas by Texas (TxT), for cities to track compliance of individual employees and officials training compliance. For any city using TxT, employees will report their training completion and DIR will send reporting from the TxT application to each city to verify training compliance. Interested cities must submit the Texas by Texas Self Reporting Form.

More information on training requirements can be found here.  

house and senate committee interim hearings

The Texas House and Senate Committees are underway studying interim charges outlined by Speaker Phelan and Lt. Governor Dan Patrick.

Below is a full list of committee hearings set to hear certain city-related charges. All hearings will be held at the Texas Capitol unless otherwise indicated. If a committee has a newly posted notice and was not included in last week’s edition of the Legislative Update, it is indicated as such.

House Committee on Natural Resources

The committee will meet on Tuesday, August 23 at 10:00 a.m. to hear the following interim charges:

Review the adequacy and efficiency of current mechanisms used to compensate water right holders when the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality temporarily transfers a water right under an emergency authorization. Make appropriate recommendations for the protection of private property rights of water right holders.

Information on the hearing, including how to register and submit electronic comment, can be found here.

House Committee on Natural Resources

The committee will meet on Wednesday, August 24 at 10:00 a.m. to hear the following interim charges:

Examine the condition of Texas’ water and flood mitigation infrastructure capabilities and consider future infrastructure needs. Evaluate sustainable funding sources to provide for water project development and infrastructure repair and replacement. Examine and make recommendations for cost-effective improvements that enhance the state’s available water supply.

Note: the desalination portion of this charge will be held at a later date. 

Examine the state’s groundwater management policy and regulatory framework. Include a review of large-scale water transfers and their impact on groundwater resources. Make appropriate recommendations for legislation or state agency action to:

  • Promote the achievement of planning goals under Chapter 36, Water Code, including those involving desired future conditions;
  • Provide adequate transparency to the permit application process;
  • Further the state’s groundwater quality protection efforts, including an assessment of risks posed to groundwater by abandoned and deteriorated water wells and orphan oil and gas wells; and
  • Promote conservation and waste prevention.

Information on the hearing, including how to register and submit electronic comment, can be found here.

House Committee on Pensions, Investments, and Financial Services

The committee will meet on Thursday, August 25 at 11:00 a.m. to hear the following interim charge:

Review the impact of investments by public retirement systems of their endowment and other trust funds in businesses and funds owned or controlled by the Russian government or Russian nationals, and determine the need for investment restrictions. Consider the impact of any proposed investment restrictions on fund performance.

Information on the hearing, including how to register and submit electronic comment, can be found here.


TML member cities may use the material herein for any purpose. No other person or entity may reproduce, duplicate, or distribute any part of this document without the written authorization of the Texas Municipal League.