Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan creates select committee on AI – Austin American-Statesman

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A new Texas House committee will study and recommend policy related to the “challenges and opportunities” that artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge technologies pose, such as data privacy and cybersecurity, Speaker Dade Phelan announced Tuesday.

“AI has the ability to change the world,” Phelan, R-Beaumont, said in a news release. “But we must first consider the consequences of its varied uses, including concerns over data privacy and cybersecurity.”

The House Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence and Emerging Technologies will review how public and private actors use AI and other tools as well as study their applications for sectors such as employment, health care, homeland and national security, and transportation, as per the proclamation establishing the panel.

The five-member panel will also formulate “recommendations for legislative, policy, regulatory and remedial actions” for the public and private sectors.

Phelan tapped Rep. Giovanni Capriglione, a House heavyweight with a background in information technology and finance, to chair the five-member committee. Its other members are Reps. Jeff Leach, R-Plano; Oscar Longoria, D-Mission; Angelia Orr, R-Itasca and Armando Walle, D-Houston, with three Republicans and two Democrats in total.

The committee’s first report is due May 16. The interim committee is set to dissolve at the start of the 89th Legislature in January.

In a social media post, Leach emphasized that the committee will look to identify ways to make Texas “a leader in AI technology while also ensuring its responsible use.”

“As the productive uses of AI continues to grow, so do the consequences,” Leach wrote in a post on X on Tuesday. “It’s time we truly weigh the benefits and drawbacks.”

The creation of the five-member panel reinforces Texas lawmakers’ stated commitment to spearheading state-level tech policy during the 2025 legislative session.

Capriglione, R-Southlake, is also at the helm of the AI Advisory Council, a separate panel tasked with studying how state government entities — not private companies — are using artificial intelligence.

Capriglione and Sen. Tan Parker, R-Flower Mound, established the seven-member council with the passage of House Bill 2060 in May. Its recommendations on potential policies and rules are due by December.

The committee’s new chairman and other Republican state lawmakers say they aim to make Texas’ tech policy into a model for other states — and other countries.

“I look forward to working with my colleagues to ensure Texas becomes the global leader in ethical AI development,” Capriglione wrote in a post on X on Tuesday.

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