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  By: Guillen H.B. No. 4555
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to a person running for office that has been convicted of a
  felony.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 141.001, Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 141.001.  ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS FOR PUBLIC OFFICE.
  (a) To be eligible to be a candidate for, or elected or appointed
  to, a public elective office in this state, a person must:
               (1)  be a United States citizen;
               (2)  be 18 years of age or older on the first day of the
  term to be filled at the election or on the date of appointment, as
  applicable;
               (3)  have not been determined by a final judgment of a
  court exercising probate jurisdiction to be:
                     (A)  totally mentally incapacitated; or
                     (B)  partially mentally incapacitated without the
  right to vote;
               (4)  have not been finally convicted of a felony from
  which the person has not been pardoned or otherwise released from
  the resulting disabilities, and before filing as a candidate must;
                     (A)  provide proof that they have been pardoned,
  or
                     (B)  been released from the resulting
  disabilities;
               (5)  have resided continuously in the state for 12
  months and in the territory from which the office is elected for six
  months immediately preceding the following date:
                     (A)  for a candidate whose name is to appear on a
  general primary election ballot, the date of the regular filing
  deadline for a candidate's application for a place on the ballot;
                     (B)  for an independent candidate, the date of the
  regular filing deadline for a candidate's application for a place
  on the ballot;
                     (C)  for a write-in candidate, the date of the
  election at which the candidate's name is written in;
                     (D)  for a party nominee who is nominated by any
  method other than by primary election, the date the nomination is
  made; and
                     (E)  for an appointee to an office, the date the
  appointment is made;
               (6)  on the date described by Subdivision (5), be
  registered to vote in the territory from which the office is
  elected; and
               (7)  satisfy any other eligibility requirements
  prescribed by law for the office.
         (a-1)  For purposes of satisfying the continuous residency
  requirement of Subsection (a)(5), a person who claims an intent to
  return to a residence after a temporary absence may establish that
  intent only if the person:
               (1)  has made a reasonable and substantive attempt to
  effectuate that intent; and
               (2)  has a legal right and the practical ability to
  return to the residence.
         (a-2)  Subsection (a-1) does not apply to a person displaced
  from the person's residence due to a declared local, state, or
  national disaster.
         (a-3)  The authority with whom an application for a place on
  a general primary election ballot is filed under Section 172.022
  shall, to the extent permitted by law, use Subsections (a) and (a-1)
  in determining whether a candidate meets the residency requirements
  for a public elective office.
         (b)  A statute outside this code supersedes Subsection (a) to
  the extent of any conflict.
         (c)  Subsection (a) does not apply to an office for which the
  federal or state constitution or a statute outside this code
  prescribes exclusive eligibility requirements.
         (d)  Subsection (a)(6) does not apply to a member of the
  governing body of a district created under Section 52(b)(1) or (2),
  Article III, or Section 59, Article XVI, Texas Constitution.
         (a-4)  A person filing as a candidate under subsection (a)
  that has been convicted of a felony and fails to acknowledge on any
  election filing form they were convicted of a felony is an offense
  punishable under Section 37.10 of the Penal Code. 
         SECTION 2.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2021.