Effective state representation is about relationships and cultivating trust.

The Jackson Walker Legislative team knows the key players under the dome, but more importantly, they know us. Our Legislative team’s reputation is unparalleled and the team has longstanding relationships with the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Speaker of the House, Comptroller, Agriculture Commissioner, the Railroad Commissioners, and key members of the Texas House and Senate. Jackson Walker knows the importance of maintaining current relationships and forming new ones to accomplish goals set by our clients. In short, this team knows state government and the people who make it work. Our experience and relationships protect and advance the interests of our clients in their business endeavors.

Our Legacy

Jackson Walker has been engaged in Texas politics since the early 1900s, and our involvement has continued throughout the firm’s history, with several of our partners and lobbyists regularly involved in legislative initiatives. In addition to the firm’s longstanding record of legislative success, Jackson Walker’s service to its clients is unparalleled among law firms in the state.

Our Legislative section is comprised of professionals with varied experience serving clients in diverse industries such as agriculture, energy, healthcare, and public utilities. These attorneys and lobbyists have significant experience representing clients before state and federal agencies and the Texas State Legislature regarding development of new legislation, responses to legislation that would disrupt or end current practices, and regulatory compliance.

Our current Legislative team has over 145 years of combined experience practicing before regulatory agencies and the Texas Legislature. We have a professional history of representing businesses and associations, and have coordinated efforts with private consultants, representatives of government agencies, elected officials and staff as a method of achieving goals and objectives for clients. We are skilled at building statewide coalitions of stakeholders to achieve consensus and make progress on complicated issues. Furthermore, we have been public servants and active members of our community.

Our relationships with members of the legislative and executive branches of state government are both personal and professional, and we have a solid reputation for implementing winning strategies, as well as thoroughly understanding the intricacies of the legislative process, working with leaders of both major political parties, and finding solutions where others only see problems.

Lawton P. Cummings

Senior Counsel, Austin

Ali Abazari

Partner, Austin

Kathy N. Hutto

Governmental Affairs Consultant, Austin

Denise Rose

Governmental Affairs Consultant, Austin

Eve M. Searls

Research Attorney, San Antonio

Benjamin R. Rhem

Partner, Austin

Wes Strickland

Partner, Austin

Daniel E. Vineyard

Partner, Houston

Dudley D. McCalla

Of Counsel, Austin

Alisha Mehta

Associate, Austin

Michael J. Nasi

Partner, Austin

Edward C. Small

Partner, Austin

Lindsey C. Moorhead

Associate, Houston

Environmental and Energy Policy

Attorneys and lobbyists throughout Jackson Walker’s statewide offices have significant experience serving the environmental needs of clients in a broad range of industries.

  • Power generation technology – Assisted in the drafting and passage of several pieces of legislation, the net result of which is the most comprehensive financial and regulatory incentive package in the nation for new electric power generation technology and related carbon dioxide storage projects, including enhanced oil recovery projects.
  • Steel manufacturing and recycling – Passed targeted legislative initiatives to ease the compliance costs for members of the steel manufacturing and recycling industries, as well as the mining and reclamation industries.
  • Advanced biofuels – Preserved key incentives and developed market protection mechanisms for the biodiesel industry and worked in concert with key statewide elected officials to establish the Texas Bioenergy Policy and Research Councils.
  • Renewable energy – Preserved and extended key incentive programs essential to the continued growth of the renewable energy industry in Texas. We also assisted in the drafting and passage of a first-of-its-kind grant program for electricity storage projects related to renewable energy that could pave the way for utility scale solar energy projects and further expansion of Texas wind energy.
  • Special utility districts – Drafted and assisted in the passage of legislation to create special utility districts, including one of the largest, geographically, in the state.

Healthcare

Jackson Walker’s healthcare lobbying team has over 40 years of experience dealing with an ever-changing healthcare landscape in Texas. Our experience includes:

  • Legislative and Regulatory Issues – Representing client interests on matters pending before the Texas Legislature and various state and federal regulatory agencies; resolving regulatory and legislative issues with the Texas Health and Human Services Enterprise agencies, and the Sunset Advisory Commission on behalf of healthcare providers, healthcare trade and professional associations, and higher education; providing guidance and counsel during an agency’s rulemaking process.
  • Medicare and Medicaid – Advising healthcare clients on Medicaid reimbursement and billing issues and hospital financing issues; assisted clients in contract negotiations and management.
  • State Appropriations Process – Advising clients on and during the interim legislative appropriations request process; guiding clients through the state’s biennial budget process during session, including drafting and submission of budget riders and agency funding requests.
  • Healthcare Workforce Issues – Representing client interests before the Legislature and various healthcare licensing bodies on issues related to clinical practice and education of healthcare professionals in Texas.

Public Utilities

The Legislative section’s experience includes service to public utilities such as electric, water, and wastewater.

  • Rulemaking – Evaluated rule proposals, drafted comments and reply comments, and coordinated meetings with Commissioners and Public Utility Commission (PUC) of Texas staff regarding rule proposals, and oral presentations on rulemaking matters.
  • Administrative Proceedings – Represented clients in administrative proceedings and consultations concerning creation and permitting of water and wastewater utilities, including transfers of permits and certificates issued by TCEQ, rate cases, defense of permit violations, and other enforcement proceedings before TCEQ.

Agriculture

Attorneys in the Legislative section have served the agricultural industry throughout Texas for decades. Examples of the areas in which Jackson Walker attorneys have assisted these clients are listed below:

  • Agriculture Product Container Disposal Task Force – Represented clients in evaluating regulation of hazardous waste residue in grain and other agriculture product containers for permit-exempt regulation.
  • Animal Health Regulatory Actions – Drafted statutory language and regulation language for Brucellosis and tick regulations.
  • Wastewater / Air Environmental Regulations – Represented clients before TCEQ and Texas Legislature relating to permit-exempt regulation
  • Endangered Species Regulation – Represented clients in negotiations with U.S. Fish & Wildlife Department concerning potential endangered species modification and actions necessary to avoid need for an incidental take permit.
  • Water Rights – Drafted legislation, served on committees to create language for legislation on water rights and other private property issues.
  • Taxation – Drafted and helped pass legislation for taxation based on value of agriculture land.
— Spotlight

Jackson Walker Expands Government Relations Group With Addition of Denise Rose

— Attorney News

Ben Rhem Speaks at 2016 Pipeline Safety Conference

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Team Leader in a Tough Field

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Mike Nasi to Square Off in Debate About Climate Change and EPA on Intelligence Squared

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Amy L. Baird recognized as one of Texas Lawyer's 2016 Women in Energy Honorees

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Jackson Walker Prepares for Changes Under the New Administration

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Jackson Walker Represents NuStar Energy L.P. in a $100+ Million Deal Involving NuStar’s Acquisition of Crude Oil and Refined Product Terminal Assets from Martin Midstream Partners

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EPA’s Reversal of Fracking Report Likely ‘Closes This Chapter,’ According to Leonard Dougal

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Mike Nasi on the Nomination of Rick Perry for Secretary of Energy

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Real Estate Council of Austin Honors Tim Taylor with Community Service Award

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John Holden Speaks on Ethical Constraints in Negotiation

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More "Rising Stars" in San Antonio Than Any Other Firm

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Six Jackson Walker Attorneys Named 'S.A. Scene Rising Stars' 2015

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Jackson Walker Congratulates Its 32 'Super Lawyers - Rising Stars'

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Leonard Dougal Quoted in 'Law360' on Recent Studies Alleging Link Between Earthquakes, Hydraulic Fracturing and Injection Wells

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Julia Mann, Scott Rose, Rick Garza Speak at ACC Luncheon on 'Opportunities and Obstacles in the Wake of Falling Oil Prices'

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Jackson Walker Congratulates Its 2015 Chambers-Ranked Partners and Practice Groups

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Julia Mann Quoted in 'San Antonio Business Journal' on Drilling Leases

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Leonard Dougal Speaks on Brackish Groundwater Regulatory and Policy Issues

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Jackson Walker Congratulates Its 2015 Best Lawyers in Dallas

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Ben Rhem Speaks on Greenhouse Gas Regulations

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Jackson Walker Helps Texas Broadcasters Association Defeat or Amend Adverse Bills During 2015 Texas Legislative Session

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Jackson Walker Congratulates Its Best Lawyers in America 2016

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Four Jackson Walker Attorneys Named 2016 Lawyers of the Year

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Jackson Walker Represents Mockingbird Midstream Gas Services in Purchase of Eagle Ford Shale Assets

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William Hornberger, Cale McDowell, Steve Moore and Tom Groves Speak at Texas Society of CPAs' 2015 Oil & Gas Institute

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Jackson Walker Lawyers Participate in the 2015 West Texas Legislative Summit

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Jackson Walker Represents Energy Spectrum Partners VII, LP in Equity Commitment

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Jackson Walker Represents Williams in Significant Natural Gas Gathering Deal

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Jackson Walker Congratulates Its 51 'Texas Super Lawyers'

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Jackson Walker Ranked Among Top Texas Lobbying Firms

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Five Jackson Walker Attorneys Selected to American City Business Journals' "Who's Who in Energy" List

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Suzan Kedron Named a Southwest Woman of Influence by 'Real Estate Forum'

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Jackson Walker Mourns the Passing of Fred Werkenthin

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Jesse S. Lotay Accepted to Leadership Lab Class of 2014

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John Holden Speaks on Energy Company and Landowner Rights

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Jackson Walker Congratulates Its 2014 Chambers-Ranked Partners and Practice Groups

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Pete Hosey Honored with Distinguished Alumni Graduate Award

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Suzan Kedron Receives LEED Green Associate Certification

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Mike Nasi Quoted in 'Law 360' Article on EPA's Proposed Carbon Regulations

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Jacob Arechiga Speaks at Texas Public Power Association's Annual Meeting

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Dudley McCalla and Steve Moore Speak on Administrative Law

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Jackson Walker Represents Owners of Knox Oil Field Supply in Acquisition by Applied Industrial Technologies

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Drew Darby and Mike Nasi Speak at West Texas Legislative Summit

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Sara Abbott McEown Selected to Participate in Leadership Dallas

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Jackson Walker Congratulates Its Best Lawyers in America 2015

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Jackson Walker Energy Transaction Featured as Texas Lawyer 'Deal of the Week'

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Richard Roth Speaks at Energy Joint Ventures Conference

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Jackson Walker Represents Startex Oil & Gas in Joint Development Agreement

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Dudley McCalla Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

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Mike Nasi Speaks on EPA Clean Air Regulations

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Join JW Attorneys For a Live Tweet-Up on 'Trends in Texas Energy'

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Tré Fischer, Danielle Mirabal, and Ben Rhem Edit Guide to Texas Oil & Gas

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Mike Pearson, Amy Baird Participate in 3rd Midstream Oil and Gas Law Conference

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Jay Dewald Speaks With WFAA on Complex Bribes That Led to Guilty Plea, Resignation of Longtime Dallas City Council Member Dwaine Caraway

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Best Lawyers in America Recognizes 98 Jackson Walker Attorneys

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Ben Rhem Joins Legal Roundtable for MIDSTREAM Texas Conference

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Union Pacific Begins Brazos Yard Construction in Texas

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Brad Anderson and Noah Galton Serve as Guest Lecturers in UT Law School Eminent Domain Course

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Leonard Dougal Speaks on Water Rate Issues and Agency Jurisdiction at Texas Water Conservation Association’s Fall Conference

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Alisha Mehta Honored as Girlstart Alumna at Game Changers Annual Luncheon

— Insights

EPA Proposes New Source Performance Standards for New Coal-Fired Power Plants