On Tuesday, Gov. Greg Abbott is expected to sign sweeping legislation to prevent another weather disaster that crippled the state back in February.
Senate bills 2 and 3 passed in the House and Senate on Monday and are now expected to be signed into law. Both bills will head to Gov. Abbott’s desk for signing at 1 p.m.
The winter freeze in February wreaked havoc on the Texas infrastructure and left dozens of people dead. Many blame ERCOT, or the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, for not being prepared for such a massive weather event. Power was shut off to thousands of families during the coldest week of the year. ERCOT said to prevent a larger systemwide failure, and lawmakers say it should have been prevented.
Senate Bill 3 would require electricity providers operating on the grid manage by ERCOT to weatherize equipment. The bill would also create a state-wide power outage alert system.
Senate Bill 2 will shrink the number of seats on ERCOT’s board of directors from 16 to 11. It would also make the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the house more involved in selecting those board members.
A $2 billion plan to help our companies pay for the upgrades as part of a House bill, but that stalled in the Senate. There is nothing in SB-3 to create a fund.