House Representative

Ortega, Evelina "Lina"


Representative Lina Ortega Celebrates Passage of First Bill

El Paso Lawmaker passes HB 2359 to encourage economic growth and promote public safety

Austin–Following last week’s vote by the Texas Senate to approve House Bill 2359, Rep. Lina Ortega released the following statement:

“As in other urban cities, one of the issues El Paso must address is abandoned buildings that threaten the safety and economic development of our community. House Bill 2359 will encourage landowners and law enforcement to work together and secure these buildings.”

House District 77 includes downtown El Paso. Rep. Ortega’s district is home to historical buildings, many of which have fallen into disrepair and become places for criminal activity. Under current law, unless specific crimes are committed in the buildings, local governments lack authority to effectively confront the issue. HB 2359 expands the scope of crimes under the common nuisance statute, giving authorized entities the ability to address dangerous buildings. The bill also extends the appointment of a receiver to a vacant lot or abandoned building in order to secure such properties, make them safe, and stop nuisance crimes from occurring there.

“Passing HB 2359 was a top priority for my first session and I am hopeful that it will make an impact not only in my district, but throughout the entire state.”

HB 2359 will now be sent to the Governor to be signed into law.

Brooke Bennett