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New & Noteworthy
August 2021 List
5. Rotten Boroughs, Political Thickets, and Legislative Donnybrooks: Redistricting in Texas
By Gary A. Keith
Presents legal, political, and historical aspects of redistricting in Texas. Brings together essays on the process of redistricting since 1965 from attorneys, political scientists, and practitioners. Includes an essay by former state legislator and U.S. Congressman Craig A. Washington
, on his experiences with redistricting in the Texas Legislature from the 1970s to the 1990s.
University of Texas Press, 2013. 202 pages.
328.3345 R748 2013
1. Just Algorithms: Using Science to Reduce Incarceration and Inform a Jurisprudence of Risk
By Christopher Slobogin
Comments on the use of risk assessment instruments in the criminal justice system – statistical formulas that predict the likelihood a person will commit a crime in the future. Explains how risk algorithms work, the types of legal questions they should answer, and the criteria for judging whether they do so in a way that minimizes bias and respects human dignity. Provides examples of a number of these instruments to illustrate their diversity and nuances. Points out the author's shorter related publication Primer on Risk Assessment Instruments for Legal Decision-Makers
Cambridge University Press, 2021. 182 pages.
345.73 SL634J 2021
3. Texas Supreme Court Justice Bob Gammage: A Jurisprudence of Rights and Liberties
By John C. Domino
Examines Justice Bob Gammage's service on the Texas Supreme Court during a tumultuous period of judicial history (1991-1995), including the debate on judicial campaigns and contributions, changes in the partisan and ideological composition of Texas courts, and the birth of the judicial reform movement. Discusses Gammage's terms
in the Texas Legislature from the 62nd through 64th Legislatures (1971-1976), particularly his role in the Constitutional Convention of 1974.
Lexington Books, 2020. 273 pages.
347.764 D671T 2020
2. When the Lone Star Froze Over - Winter Storm Uri and the Lived Experiences of Texas Low-Income Communities
By Texas Energy Poverty Research Institute
Details how Texans, particularly low-income individuals, were impacted by the February 2021 winter storm that caused 4.5 million households to lose electricity when temperatures fell below freezing. Discusses the failure of the electrical grid, the resulting increase in electricity market rates, and the unexpected consequences of the storm on low-income families, many who were already struggling with energy cost burdens. Addresses the 87th Legislature's actions following the storm, as well as regulatory actions taken by the Public Utility Commission of Texas.
Texas Energy Poverty Research Institute, 2021. 18 pages.
Online at: https://txenergypoverty.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/When-the-Lone-Star-Froze-Over.pdf
976.4 EN56W 2021
6. The Evolution of American Legislatures: Colonies, Territories, and States, 1619-2009
By Peverill Squire
Explores how state legislatures have evolved in the United States and speculates how they could change in the future. Addresses the establishment of colonial assemblies and territorial legislatures as well as the institutional history of state legislatures and their professionalization since 1900. Discusses the evolution of legislative procedures and rules, including quorum standards for conducting legislative business in Texas and other states.
University of Michigan Press, 2012. 440 pages.
328.73 SQ58E 2012
4. The Rise and Fall of the Voting Rights Act
By Charles S. Bullock III, Ronald Keith Gaddie, and Justin J. Wert
Traces the Voting Rights Act
from its inception in 1965 through the Supreme Court's 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder
, analyzing the evolving legislation and the future of voting rights in the United States. Discusses redistricting, preclearance review, voter identification laws, and voter participation and registration in Texas. Explores potential next steps after the Shelby County ruling, including proposals to restore the preclearance process.
University of Oklahoma Press, 2016. 240 pages.
342.73072 B876R 2016