Sugey Mar and Valerie Vazquez proposed bills during the Texas Youth and Government State Conference at the State Capitol February 27 through March 1. In addition, Mar was recognized with the Distinguished Delegate Award for being an outstanding leader and role model for her community. She was selected based on her leadership, community service, research and organizational skills. Mar proposed a bill which requires a 30-minute period during the day as a break for both teachers and students. Vazquez lobbied to allow 15 year olds to have a driver’s license. Vazquez’s bill passed at the state level; however, Mar’s bill did not pass by a slim margin (7-8).
During their visit, the two worked in the House of Representatives. In committees, they presented and defended their bills as well as questioned and argued for and against bills presented by other students from across the state. Before attending the conference, the duo researched the topic of their choice, organized arguments and wrote a bill to enact changes in current Texas law. They learned and followed parliamentary procedure, utilized leadership skills in presiding over discussion and bill committees and utilized debate skills as they prepared to present their bills. Mar and Vazquez presented their bills at a district conference in Sachse in December and were then invited to attend the state conference in Austin.