Lauren McGaughy, Austin bureau
May 26, 2017
AUSTIN — Transgender student athletes like Euless Trinity wrestler Mack Beggs don’t have to worry about being disqualified for steroid use after a newly proposed law died this week in the Texas House.
The legislation would have let the University Interscholastic League, the state’s high school sports organization, declare athletes unfit to play if they’re taking the hormone. Athletes with a doctor’s prescription for a medical condition like gender dysphoria would still be at risk of disqualification under the bill.
The bill passed easily in the Senate but died unceremoniously in the House Public Education Committee after failing to be voted out before a key bill passage deadline. Committee Chairman Dan Huberty, R-Houston, said it failed because the House received the bill too late in the process.
“We got it late in the session,” Huberty said. “It was a timing issue.”
The bill’s author, Edgewood Republican Rep. Bob Hall, said Thursday he was “very disappointed” his proposal died.
Currently, UIL rules bar transgender athletes from competing against the gender with which they identify. So although Beggs identifies as male and is taking testosterone to aid his transition, he must continue to wrestle girls under state rules.