By:  Shapiro                                          S.B. No. 1704
                                 A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
                                        AN ACT
    1-1  relating to the review and approval of certain permits by the
    1-2  state, a municipality, or other local governmental agencies.
    1-4        SECTION 1.  Subchapter I, Chapter 481, Government Code, is
    1-5  amended to read as follows:
    1-6        Sec. 481.141.  Legislative Finding and Intent.  (a) The
    1-7  legislature finds that current administrative practices often
    1-8  result in unnecessary governmental regulatory delays that inhibit
    1-9  the economic development of the state.
   1-10        (b)  The legislature desires to establish requirements
   1-11  relating to the processing and issuance of permits and approvals by
   1-12  governmental regulatory agencies in order to alleviate bureaucratic
   1-13  obstacles to economic development.
   1-14        Sec. 481.142.  Definitions.  In this subchapter:
   1-15              (1)  "Political subdivision" means a political
   1-16  subdivision of the state, including a county, a school district, or
   1-17  a municipality.
   1-18              (2)  "Permit" means a license, certificate, approval,
   1-19  registration, consent, permit, or other form of authorization
   1-20  required by law, rule, regulation, or ordinance that must be
   1-21  obtained by a person in order to perform an action or initiate a
   1-22  project for which the permit is sought.
   1-23              (3)  "Project" means an endeavor over which a
    2-1  regulatory agency exerts its jurisdiction and for which one or more
    2-2  permits are <a permit is> required to initiate or continue <before
    2-3  initiation of> the endeavor.
    2-4              (4)  "Regulatory agency" means an agency, bureau,
    2-5  department, division, or commission of the state or any department,
    2-6  <or other> agency, board, commission or governing body of a
    2-7  political subdivision in its capacity of processing, approving, or
    2-8  issuing  <that processes and issues> permits.
    2-9        Sec. 481.143.  Uniformity of Requirements.  (a) The approval,
   2-10  disapproval, or conditional approval of an application for a permit
   2-11  shall be considered by each regulatory agency solely on the basis
   2-12  of any orders, regulations, ordinances, rules, expiration dates, or
   2-13  other duly adopted requirements in effect at the time the original
   2-14  application for the permit is filed.  If a series of permits is
   2-15  required for a project, the orders, regulations, ordinances, rules,
   2-16  expiration dates, or other duly adopted requirements in effect at
   2-17  the time the original application for the first permit in that
   2-18  series is filed shall be the sole basis for consideration of all
   2-19  subsequent permits required for the completion of the project, and
   2-20  all permits required for the project shall be considered to be a
   2-21  single series of permits.  Preliminary plans and related
   2-22  subdivision plats, site plans and all other development permits for
   2-23  land covered by such preliminary plans or subdivision plats are
   2-24  considered collectively to be one series of permits.  Once an
   2-25  application for a project has been filed, a regulatory agency shall
    3-1  not shorten the duration of any permit required for the project.
    3-2        (b)  This subchapter shall apply to all projects in progress
    3-3  on or commenced after the effective date of this subchapter of the
    3-4  Government Code as originally enacted by Acts 1987, 70th
    3-5  Legislature, Chapter 374, Section 1, and the duly adopted
    3-6  requirements in effect at the time the original application for the
    3-7  first permit for the project was filed shall control.  This
    3-8  subchapter shall be enforceable solely through declaratory,
    3-9  mandamus, or injunctive relief.
   3-10        (c) <(b)>  This section does not apply to:
   3-11              (1)  permits or licenses issued in connection with any
   3-12  form of gaming or gambling;
   3-13              (2)  permits or licenses issued under Title 2, Tax
   3-14  Code; <or>
   3-15              (3)  permits or orders issued under programs for which
   3-16  a state regulatory agency has received authorization, delegation,
   3-17  or approval from the federal government to implement an equivalent
   3-18  state program in lieu of or as part of the federal program;<.>
   3-19              (4)  permits for the construction of buildings or
   3-20  structures intended for human occupancy or habitation that are
   3-21  issued pursuant to laws, ordinances, procedures, rules or
   3-22  regulations adopting solely the provisions of uniform building,
   3-23  fire, electrical, plumbing or mechanical codes promulgated by a
   3-24  recognized national code organization, or local amendments to any
   3-25  such codes enacted solely to address imminent threats of
    4-1  destruction of property or injury to persons, unless such permits
    4-2  are less than two years old;
    4-3              (5)  municipal zoning regulations that do not affect
    4-4  lot size, lot dimensions, lot coverage, or building size;
    4-5              (6)  regulations for the location of adult-oriented
    4-6  businesses;
    4-7              (7)  regulations for colonias;
    4-8              (8)  fees lawfully imposed in conjunction with
    4-9  development permits;
   4-10              (9)  regulations for annexation;
   4-11              (10)  regulations for utility connections;
   4-12              (11)  regulations to prevent imminent destruction of
   4-13  property or injury to person; or
   4-14              (12)  construction standards for public works located
   4-15  on public lands and easements.
   4-16        (d)  Notwithstanding any provision of this section to the
   4-17  contrary, a permit holder shall have the right to take advantage of
   4-18  procedural changes to the laws, rules, regulations or ordinances of
   4-19  a regulatory agency which enhance or protect the project including,
   4-20  without limitation, changes which lengthen the effective life of
   4-21  the permit after the date on which application for the permit was
   4-22  made, without otherwise forfeiting any rights under this section.
   4-23        SECTION 2.  Nothing in this Act shall be construed to:  (1)
   4-24  limit or otherwise affect the authority of a state agency with
   4-25  respect to the enforcement of rules or implementation of programs
    5-1  or plans which are funded or mandated by the federal government
    5-2  under the federal Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972 (16 U.S.C.
    5-3  Section 1451 et seq.) and its subsequent amendments; (2) limit or
    5-4  otherwise affect the authority of a state or local regulatory
    5-5  agency to implement or enforce statutory standards or state agency
    5-6  rules applicable to the coastal zone; or (3) apply to permits,
    5-7  orders, rules, regulations, or other actions issued or undertaken
    5-8  by a state regulatory agency in connection with federal funding or
    5-9  federal programs relating to the coastal zone.
   5-10        SECTION 3.  Nothing in this Act shall be construed to
   5-11  diminish or impair the rights or remedies of any person or entity
   5-12  under a final judgment rendered by, or in any pending litigation
   5-13  brought in, any court concerning an interpretation of the
   5-14  provisions of Subchapter I, Chapter 481, Government Code.
   5-15        SECTION 4.  The importance of this legislation and the
   5-16  crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an
   5-17  emergency and an imperative public necessity that the
   5-18  constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several
   5-19  days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended,
   5-20  and that this Act take effect and be in force from and after its
   5-21  passage, and it is so enacted.