How far is law enforcement willing to go to protect Texas children?
That's the question being asked at a hearing Monday for the bill known as Colton's Law, written in memory of the two-year-old child whose remains were found last September.
The bill, if passed, would allow immediate law enforcement involvement in open cps cases where the parents are on the run.
Right now, in order to get law enforcement involved CPS workers must go to court, jumping through hoops before they can get help. It would seem that a law cutting out all of that red tape to better protect kids would be pretty easy to get passed. It also seemed like it was headed in that direction passing through the House 144-0.
State Senator Charles Schwerner is carrying the bill, unchanged, on the Senate side.
At the bill's Senate Committee hearing Monday, the debate over the bill at times grew heated. There were a lot of questions about how taxing it could be for law enforcement to take this on. In fact, there have been some questions about whether or not that state law enforcement was opposed to this bill.
"I'm in charge and I get to decide and I went over it this weekend and decided we aren't opposed to it, it's pretty simple," said Steve McCraw, the head of the State Law Enforcement.McCraw testified at this hearing. There had been some question about opposition from Texas DPS. That came up right before the bill was voted on in the House.
"The Senators really want to help find these unlocatable children but I don't think they are going about it the right way. They were very argumentative with CPS who has been very responsive and supportive to us so I was disappointed to see that," said Liz St. Clair with Colton's Law.
Ultimately though, the bill passed one 44-0