Patrick, Bonnen form committees to address mass violence, improve community safety

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Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Dennis Bonnen announced the formation of select committees on mass violence prevention and community safety.

The committees' formation comes after recent mass shootings in El Paso, Midland and Odessa.

According to a release from Patrick and Bonnen's officers, the committees will study and recommend effective legislative solutions to help prevent mass gun violence and improve community safety. 

“Speaker Bonnen and I had previously agreed to study ways to combat domestic terrorism during the interim, but following the recent mass shootings in El Paso and Midland — as well as Santa Fe and Dallas — we have decided to appoint Select Committees this week to address these challenges," said Patrick in the release. 

Both committees will be tasked with "examining a comprehensive cross section of policy-related charges" and committee jurisdiction, member lists and issue areas are expected to be announced this week.

“The heinous tragedies like those that occurred in El Paso, Midland, and Odessa have become all too common in our state, and such a serious epidemic of violence should be met with meaningful solutions,” Bonnen said. “These committees have difficult, important work before them, and the solutions they come up with will provide a roadmap for the Legislature’s work over the interim and in the next session.”

The committees will provide a final list of legislative recommendations to be translated into proposed statutory changes.