H.B. No. 1872
    1-1                                AN ACT
    1-2  relating to certain building projects in enterprise zones and the
    1-3  authority of neighborhood enterprise associations in those zones.
    1-5        SECTION 1.  Section 2(b), Texas Enterprise Zone Act (Article
    1-6  5190.7, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), is amended to read as
    1-7  follows:
    1-8        (b)  It is therefore the public policy of this state to
    1-9  provide the people of this state with the necessary means to assist
   1-10  communities, their residents, and the private sector to create the
   1-11  proper economic and social environment to induce the investment of
   1-12  private resources in productive business enterprises located in
   1-13  severely distressed areas and to provide employment to and create
   1-14  housing opportunities for residents of those areas.  In achieving
   1-15  this objective, through this Act the state seeks to provide
   1-16  appropriate investments, tax benefits, and regulatory relief to
   1-17  encourage the business community to commit its financial
   1-18  participation.  Accordingly, the legislature declares the
   1-19  revitalization of enterprise zones through the concerted efforts of
   1-20  government and the private sector to be a public purpose.
   1-21        SECTION 2.  Section 3(a)(11), Texas Enterprise Zone Act
   1-22  (Article 5190.7, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), is amended to read
   1-23  as follows:
   1-24              (11)  "Qualified business" means a person, including a
    2-1  corporation or other entity, that the department, for purposes of
    2-2  state benefits under this Act, and a governing body, for purposes
    2-3  of local benefits, certifies:
    2-4                    (A)  to have met the following criteria:
    2-5                          (i) <(A)>  the person is engaged in or has
    2-6  provided substantial commitment to initiate the active conduct of a
    2-7  trade or business in the zone; and
    2-8                          (ii) <(B)>  at least 25 percent of the
    2-9  business's new employees in the zone are residents of any zone
   2-10  within the governing body's or bodies' jurisdiction or economically
   2-11  disadvantaged individuals; or
   2-12                    (B)  as a builder that has demonstrated:
   2-13                          (i)  proficiency in residential
   2-14  construction in the state by providing five satisfactory homeowner
   2-15  references for properties constructed by the builder in the
   2-16  preceding three years that include the name of the property and the
   2-17  builder of the property, together with copies of inspection reports
   2-18  performed by code-certified residential inspectors or municipal
   2-19  inspectors on the residences, or other satisfactory evidence;
   2-20                          (ii)  financial stability by providing bank
   2-21  references, financial compilations, and copies of two years of tax
   2-22  returns, or other satisfactory evidence; and
   2-23                          (iii)  participation in a 10-year insured
   2-24  warranty program.
   2-25        SECTION 3.  Sections 10(b) and (i), Texas Enterprise Zone Act
   2-26  (Article 5190.7, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), are amended to
   2-27  read as follows:
    3-1        (b)  The application to the department must include:
    3-2              (1)  a complete description of the conditions in the
    3-3  zone that constitute pervasive poverty, unemployment, and economic
    3-4  distress for purposes of Subsection (b) of Section 4 of this Act;
    3-5              (2)  a description of each municipality's or county's
    3-6  procedures and efforts to facilitate and encourage participation by
    3-7  and negotiation between all affected entities in the zone in which
    3-8  the qualified business is located;
    3-9              (3)  an economic analysis of the plans of the qualified
   3-10  business for expansion, revitalization, or other activity in the
   3-11  zone, including the anticipated number of new permanent jobs it
   3-12  will create, the anticipated number of permanent jobs it will
   3-13  retain, the amount of investment to be made in the zone, and other
   3-14  information that the department requires; <and>
   3-15              (4)  a description of the local effort made by the
   3-16  municipality or county, the administrative authority, the qualified
   3-17  business, and other affected entities to achieve development and
   3-18  revitalization of the zone; and
   3-19              (5)  if the qualified business is a builder proposing a
   3-20  housing project, a complete description of the new residential
   3-21  housing to be constructed, including preliminary plans, number of
   3-22  units to be constructed, estimated sales price of homes, statement
   3-23  of affirmative action participation in employment practices,
   3-24  statement of coordinated use of other federal, state, or local
   3-25  funds to enhance the project, and other enhancements to the
   3-26  project.
   3-27        (i)  Factors to be considered in evaluating the local effort
    4-1  on the part of a public entity include:
    4-2              (1)  tax abatement, deferral, refunds, or other tax
    4-3  incentives;
    4-4              (2)  regulatory relief, including:
    4-5                    (A)  zoning changes or variances;
    4-6                    (B)  exemptions from unnecessary building code
    4-7  requirements, impact fees, or inspection fees; and
    4-8                    (C)  streamlined permitting;
    4-9              (3)  enhanced municipal services, including:
   4-10                    (A)  improved police and fire protection;
   4-11                    (B)  institution of community crime prevention
   4-12  programs; and
   4-13                    (C)  special public transit routes or reduced
   4-14  fares;
   4-15              (4)  improvements in community facilities, including:
   4-16                    (A)  capital improvements in water and sewer
   4-17  facilities;
   4-18                    (B)  road repair; and
   4-19                    (C)  creation or improvement of parks;
   4-20              (5)  improvements to housing, including:
   4-21                    (A)  low interest loans for housing
   4-22  rehabilitation, <or> improvement, or new construction; and
   4-23                    (B)  transfer of abandoned housing to individuals
   4-24  or community groups;
   4-25              (6)  business and industrial development services,
   4-26  including:
   4-27                    (A)  low interest loans for business;
    5-1                    (B)  use of surplus school buildings or other
    5-2  underutilized publicly owned facilities as small business
    5-3  incubators;
    5-4                    (C)  provision of publicly owned land for
    5-5  development purposes, including residential, commercial, or
    5-6  industrial development;
    5-7                    (D)  creation of special one-stop permitting and
    5-8  problem resolution centers or ombudsmen; and
    5-9                    (E)  promotion and marketing services; and
   5-10              (7)  job training and employment services, including:
   5-11                    (A)  retraining programs;
   5-12                    (B)  literacy and employment skills programs;
   5-13                    (C)  vocational education; and
   5-14                    (D)  customized job training.
   5-15        SECTION 4.  Section 21(o), Texas Enterprise Zone Act (Article
   5-16  5190.7, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), is amended to read as
   5-17  follows:
   5-18        (o)  The association has other powers as established by law
   5-19  or regulation, as well as all powers available to similar
   5-20  corporations under state law.  The association may enter into
   5-21  contracts and participate in joint ventures with the state or a
   5-22  state agency or institution.  The association may receive money
   5-23  without approval of the governing body.
   5-24        SECTION 5.  The importance of this legislation and the
   5-25  crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an
   5-26  emergency and an imperative public necessity that the
   5-27  constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several
    6-1  days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended,
    6-2  and that this Act take effect and be in force from and after its
    6-3  passage, and it is so enacted.