Texas power grid missing from special legislative session agenda

As Texas lawmakers head back to Austin for a special legislative session on Thursday, one topic noticeably missing from the agenda is the reliability of the Texas power grid. One Houston family says they're concerned that fixing the grid isn’t a priority. 

For nearly three days without power during the winter storm, Lora Taylor says her special needs daughter could’ve died as she relies on three separate breathing machines to function. 
"This is not a third world country; this is the energy capital of the world and it's a little crazy that that the citizens are not protected," Taylor said.  


While violent crime, election integrity, and border security are listed as priorities this special legislative session, some are criticizing Governor Greg Abbott for not including the power grid in the discussion.  

"ERCOT and the reliability of our energy source is what is still on people's mind. It's not on the call. I personally believe we are no better prepared for the next freeze then we were the last one," said Texas State Senator John Whitmire. 

"The reality is if we get hit by a major power outage in the summer or especially in the winter that could cause real trouble for Greg Abbott in the Republican primary in the spring, because you are going to have millions of Texans who are going to be quite upset with him. And he's going to have only himself to blame," said Mark Jones, Rice University Political Analyst. 
"They would like for us to think that the problem is taken care of when in fact it is not," said Taylor. 

Taylor and her family live in Katy. During the February freeze, losing power for days at a time became a matter of life and death.  

Her daughter, Julie, has a rare form of epilepsy and relies on battery-operated machines for breathing and treatment. 

Their house is now equipped with a generator. 

"Peace of mind should not be a commodity that's bought. And peace of mind should come from knowing that you live in a state that takes care of its residents and that when you pay your electric bill, you actually have electricity. And you have it in the most dangerous times," Taylor said. 

Taylor wishes there was more consideration for those with chronic or critical needs, like her daughter Julie. 

"I understand, being a pro-business state. I am a pro-businessperson myself. My husband is in a small business. But don't be pro-business at the sacrifice of the residents that live in the state," Taylor said. 

Earlier this week, Governor Abbott issued a letter demanding the Public Utility Commission to take more aggressive action to shore up the grid.