Texas state legislative districts

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There are a total of 181 seats in the Texas State Legislature. Approximately one half of the 31 seats in the Texas State Senate are up for election every two years. All 150 seats in the Texas House of Representatives are up for election every two years.

Chambers

Senate

The Texas Senate is the upper house in the Texas State Legislature. It consists of 31 members. According to the Texas Constitution, Texas senators serve four-year terms without term limits. One-half of the Senate membership is elected every two years in even-numbered years, with the exception that all 31 Senate seats are up for election for the first legislature following the decennial census in order to reflect the newly redrawn districts. After the initial election, the Senate is divided by lot into two classes, with one class having a re-election after two years and the other having a re-election after four years.[1] Each member represents an average of 811,147 residents, as of the 2010 Census.[2]

House

The Texas House of Representatives is the lower house of the Texas Legislature, the state legislature of Texas. A total of 150 members serve in the lower house of the Texas Legislature and meet at the State Capitol in Austin. Each member represents an average of 167,637 residents, as of the 2010 Census.[2]

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Qualifications

To be eligible to serve in the Texas State Senate, a candidate must be:[3]

  • A U.S. citizen
  • 26 years old before the general election
  • A five-year resident of Texas before the general election
  • A district resident for 1 year prior to the general election

Vacancies

See also: How vacancies are filled in state legislatures
How Vacancies are filled in State Legislatures
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If there is a vacancy in the senate, the Governor must call a special election to fill the vacant seat.[4] A Governor's proclamation to a special election must be delivered to local elections authorities representing the vacant seat no later than 36 days before the scheduled election.[5]

The Secretary of State can declare a candidate duly elected in a special election if there is no opposition.[6]

Salaries

See also: Comparison of state legislative salaries

As of 2013, members of the Texas Legislature are paid $7,200/year. Legislators receive $150/day per diem which is set by the Ethics Commission.[7]

Pension

When calculating a legislators' pension, their normal salary is artificially inflated to $125,000. This goes back to 1981, when lawmakers linked their salaries to those of state judges. Since then, they raised judges' salaries while removing the caps on their own pensions, pushing the maximum benefit up to 100% of a judge's salary.

In 2011, this resulted in an average state employee pension of $17,526 annually. The maximum pension a legislator can earn is $125,000, of which Rep. Tom Craddick (R) will be the first to qualify for when he retires. [8]

Term limits

See also: State legislatures with term limits

According to the Texas Constitution, Texas senators serve four-year terms without term limits.

Districts

These are links to every district in the Texas State Senate.

Qualifications

To be eligible to serve in the Texas House of Representatives, a candidate must be:[9]

  • A U.S. citizen
  • 21 years old before the general election
  • A two-year resident of Texas before the general election
  • A district resident for 1 year prior to the general election

Vacancies

See also: How vacancies are filled in state legislatures

If there is a vacancy in the house, the Governor must call a special election to fill the vacant seat.[10] A Governor's proclamation to a special election must be delivered to local elections authorities representing the vacant seat no later than 36 days before the scheduled election.[11]

The Secretary of State can declare a candidate duly elected in a special election if there is no opposition.[12]

Salaries

See also: Comparison of state legislative salaries

As of 2013, members of the Texas Legislature are paid $7,200/year. Legislators receive $150/day per diem which is set by the Ethics Commission.[13]

Pension

When calculating a legislators' pension, their normal salary is artificially inflated to $125,000. This goes back to 1981, when lawmakers linked their salaries to those of state judges. Since then, they raised judges' salaries while removing the caps on their own pensions, pushing the maximum benefit up to 100% of a judge's salary.

In 2011, this resulted in an average state employee pension of $17,526 annually. The maximum pension a legislator can earn is $125,000, of which Rep. Tom Craddick (R) will be the first to qualify for when he retires. [14]

Term limits

See also: State legislatures with term limits

According to the Texas Constitution, Texas representatives serve two-year terms without term limits.

Districts

These are links to every district in the Texas House of Representatives.

See also

External links

References