Chairman Bettencourt and Members of the Committee, My name is James Quintero and I represent the Texas Public Policy Foundation. Thank you for theopportunity to present to the committee today and for investigating a matter of great importance to those who place a premium on property rights, public safety, and the rule of law. As you know, the interim charge before the committee this afternoon seeks to examine the following:
Secure Texas Against “Squatters”: Review current laws relating to “squatters” or those claiming adverse possession of property. Make recommendations to streamline the process for the immediate removal of “squatters” and to strengthen the rights of property owners.

In furtherance of this item, the written remarks below will provide an overview of the existing process to remove a squatter; provide examples of actual squatting incidents throughout the state; highlight legislative remedies in other large, populous states; briefly touch on the popularity of reform efforts; and provide recommendations to improve Texas’ policy landscape and bolster property owners’ fundamental rights.