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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Campus to host public hearing on free speech

The+office+of+the+State+Affairs+committee+in+the+Sam+Houston+building+by+the+Texas+Capitol.%0A%0APhoto+by+John+Hernandez+%7C+Special+to+The+Star
The office of the State Affairs committee in the Sam Houston building by the Texas Capitol. Photo by John Hernandez | Special to The Star

By John Hernandez
The Texas Senate’s Committee State Affairs will hold a public hearing on campus free speech at Texas State to assess restrictions on First Amendment rights at Texas colleges.
“Some college campuses across the nation have subjected their students to harsh penalties, free speech zones and other infringements of their right,” said state Sen. Dawn Buckingham, R-Lakeway, at an April 2017 public hearing on her campus free speech bill, SB 1151, during the last legislative session.
According to the state’s notice, the goal of the hearing at Texas State, scheduled for 10 a.m Jan. 31 in the ballroom of the LBJ Student Center, is to determine what restrictions on freedom of expression, press, religion or assembly college students in Texas are encountering on campus.
Written testimony can also be provided to the committee clerk at the hearing or ahead of time by contacting the clerk’s office. When bringing written testimony to the hearing, the public notice requests that 15 copies be made for distribution.
Brooks said she has no indication if another hearing on this topic will occur at Texas State or at other college campuses.
According to Brooks, the committee will typically only hold one hearing per interim charge but the chair of the committee, state Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, can hold other hearings at her discretion. Huffman’s chief of staff, Wroe Jackson, declined to comment on why Texas State was chosen as a venue or whether there would be any other hearings on the matter.

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