By: Armbrister S.B. No. 1265 Line and page numbers may not match official copy. Bill not drafted by TLC or Senate E&E. A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT 1-1 relating to the abolition of the Texas Department of Commerce, and 1-2 the consolidation of economic development and tourism activities 1-3 from the Texas Department of Commerce and other agencies into the 1-4 Office of Economic Development and Tourism and a public-private 1-5 effort called "Partnership Texas." 1-6 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS: 1-7 SECTION 1. Title 4, Government Code, is amended by adding 1-8 Subtitle F to read as follows: 1-9 SUBTITLE F. ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND TOURISM 1-10 CHAPTER 481. OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND TOURISM 1-11 SUBCHAPTER A. GENERAL PROVISIONS 1-12 Sec. 481.001. Definitions. In this subtitle: 1-13 (1) "Board" means the governing board of Partnership 1-14 Texas. 1-15 (2) "Bond" includes a note, draft, bill, warrant, 1-16 debenture, certificate, or other evidence of indebtedness. 1-17 (3) "Border region" means the area composed of the 1-18 counties of Brewster, Cameron, Culberson, Dimmit, El Paso, Hidalgo, 1-19 Hudspeth, Jeff Davis, Kinney, La Salle, Maverick, Presidio, Starr, 1-20 Terrell, Val Verde, Webb, Willacy, Zapata, and Zavala. 1-21 (4) "Office" means the Office of Economic Development 2-1 and Tourism. 2-2 (5) "Partnership" means Partnership Texas, a nonprofit 2-3 corporation. 2-4 Sec. 481.002. Establishment. The Office of Economic 2-5 Development and Tourism is established in the office of the 2-6 governor. 2-7 Sec. 481.003. Director. The governor shall appoint a 2-8 director of the Office of Economic Development and Tourism with the 2-9 advice and consent of the senate. The director may employ other 2-10 employees necessary to carry out the Office's duties. 2-11 Sec. 481.004. Purpose. The purpose of the Office is to 2-12 negotiate, execute and monitor performance contracts between the 2-13 state and the Partnership, or other appropriate state agencies or 2-14 entities, to fulfill the legislative intent of this subtitle in 2-15 support of economic and tourism development in Texas. 2-16 Sec. 481.005. Gifts and Grants. The Office may accept 2-17 gifts, grants, and other funds specifically designated by the donor 2-18 for the economic development of Texas. 2-19 Sec. 481.006. Audit; Report. The financial transactions of 2-20 the Office and the Partnership are subject to audit by the state 2-21 auditor in accordance with Chapter 321, Government Code. The 2-22 auditor shall include in the audit report a list of statutory 2-23 provisions authorizing financial transactions by the Office and the 2-24 Partnership under which transactions were made during the period 2-25 covered by the audit. 3-1 Sec. 481.007. Review of Bonds. (a) Bonds may not be issued 3-2 under this subtitle and proceeds of bonds issued under this 3-3 subtitle may not be used to finance a project, unless the issuance 3-4 has been reviewed and approved by the Bond Review. 3-5 (b) A member of the Bond Review Board may not be held liable 3-6 for damages resulting from the performance of the member's 3-7 functions under this section. 3-8 Sec. 481.008. Foreign Offices. (a) The office may contract 3-9 with the Partnership to maintain and operate offices in foreign 3-10 countries for the purposes of promoting investment that generates 3-11 jobs in Texas, exporting of Texas products, tourism, and 3-12 international relations for Texas. Notwithstanding any other 3-13 provision, the offices shall be named "The State of Texas" offices. 3-14 SUBCHAPTER B. GENERAL POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE OFFICE 3-15 Sec. 481.009. General Powers. (a) The Office may: 3-16 (1) adopt and enforce rules necessary to carry out 3-17 this subtitle; 3-18 (2) adopt and use an official seal; 3-19 (3) accept gifts, grants, or loans from and contract 3-20 with any entity; 3-21 (4) sue and be sued; 3-22 (5) acquire and convey property or an interest in 3-23 property; 3-24 (6) procure insurance and pay premiums on insurance of 3-25 any type, in accounts, and from insurers as the Office considers 4-1 necessary and advisable to accomplish any of the Office's purposes; 4-2 (7) hold patents, copyrights, trademarks, or other 4-3 evidence of protection or exclusively issued under the laws of the 4-4 United States, any state, or any nation and may enter into license 4-5 agreements with the Partnership and any third parties for the 4-6 receipt of fees, royalties, or other monetary or nonmonetary value; 4-7 (8) sell advertisements in any medium; and 4-8 (9) exercise any other power necessary to carry out 4-9 this subtitle. 4-10 (b) Except as otherwise provided by this subtitle, money 4-11 paid to the Office under this subtitle shall be deposited in 4-12 separate accounts in the general revenue fund. 4-13 (c) The Office shall deposit gifts, grants, and private 4-14 contributions in a separate account in the general revenue fund. 4-15 The money contributed shall be used to carry out the purposes of 4-16 the Office and, to the extent possible, the purposes specified by 4-17 the donors. The comptroller may invest and reinvest the money, 4-18 pending its use, in investments authorized by law for state funds 4-19 that the comptroller considers appropriate. Income and interest 4-20 earned shall be credited to the account. 4-21 Sec. 481.010. General Duties. (a) The Office shall: 4-22 (1) contract with the Partnership to perform the 4-23 Office's duties and implement and administer the programs under 4-24 this subtitle to the fullest extent allowed by the Texas 4-25 Constitution, to guide, stimulate, and promote the economic and 5-1 trade development of the state, and to guide, stimulate, and 5-2 promote the travel and leisure development of the state; 5-3 (2) monitor the activities of the Partnership and 5-4 other state agencies in order to avoid duplication and promote 5-5 coordinated and consistent implementation of programs in areas 5-6 including, but not limited to: 5-7 (A) tourism; 5-8 (B) international trade and investment; 5-9 (C) minority and small business development; 5-10 (D) rural and community development; and 5-11 (E) business recruitment, creation, retention, 5-12 and expansion; 5-13 (3) facilitate the direct involvement of the governor 5-14 and lieutenant governor in economic development projects designed 5-15 to create, expand, and retain Texas businesses and recruit 5-16 worldwide business; 5-17 (4) assist the governor, in cooperation with the 5-18 Partnership, in preparing a biennial report to the legislature on 5-19 the state of economic development in Texas which shall include the 5-20 identification of problems and the recommendation of solutions and 5-21 which shall be submitted to the lieutenant governor and the speaker 5-22 by December 31 of each even-numbered year; 5-23 (5) serve as the contract administrator for the state 5-24 with respect to contracts with the Partnership and any 5-25 direct-support organizations under this subtitle; 6-1 (6) enter into specific contracts with the Partnership 6-2 and other appropriate direct-support organizations to accomplish 6-3 the provisions of this subtitle and to carry out its duties; and 6-4 (7) prepare and submit as a separate budget entity a 6-5 unified budget request for tourism, trade, and economic development 6-6 for, and in conjunction with the Partnership and its board. 6-7 (b) To carry out its duties, the Office shall: 6-8 (1) promote this state as a location for business 6-9 activity and an attraction for tourism; 6-10 (2) prepare and administer a statewide business 6-11 development program designed to create job opportunities and 6-12 increase personal income throughout this state; 6-13 (3) prepare and administer a program of encouragement, 6-14 support, and development of small and minority business ownership 6-15 throughout this state; 6-16 (4) stimulate the expansion of international markets 6-17 for products and services from this state and encourage foreign 6-18 business development in this state; 6-19 (5) assist local governments with advisory and 6-20 technical services in matters relating to community and economic 6-21 development; 6-22 (6) provide financial aid to local governments for 6-23 programs authorized by law to receive the assistance; 6-24 (7) act as an information center and referral agency 6-25 for information of state and federal programs affecting business 7-1 and local government; 7-2 (8) conduct research on problems relating to community 7-3 and economic development of in this state; 7-4 (9) collect, publish, and disseminate information 7-5 useful to local governments and businesses, including data on 7-6 employment, housing, population characteristics, and land use 7-7 patterns in the state; 7-8 (10) encourage cooperation between local governments, 7-9 businesses, and the public if appropriate; 7-10 (11) advise and inform the governor and the 7-11 legislature concerning matters relating to community and economic 7-12 development and make recommendations for necessary action; 7-13 (12) coordinate the development of training programs 7-14 between appropriate state agencies and education institutions to 7-15 prepare this state's labor force to meet changing economic 7-16 circumstances; 7-17 (13) work with local governments, local economic 7-18 development organizations, and small business development centers 7-19 to develop a referral system to promote community and economic 7-20 development throughout this state; 7-21 (14) plan and implement a concerted, targeted effort 7-22 to more effectively address pressing economic problems and to 7-23 maximize the potential of the border region for the benefit of the 7-24 entire state; 7-25 (15) work with local community efforts to use federal 8-1 funds to meet community needs, particularly in providing social and 8-2 emergency services to residents of this state having low incomes; 8-3 and 8-4 (16) encourage maquiladora projects. 8-5 Sec. 481.011. Performance Standards. The Office shall 8-6 develop performance measures, standards, and sanctions for each 8-7 program for which it contracts with another entity under this 8-8 subtitle. The approved performance measures, standards, and 8-9 sanctions shall be included and made a part of each contract 8-10 entered into for delivery of programs authorized by this subtitle. 8-11 Sec. 481.012. Administration of Other Statutes. (a) The 8-12 Office shall perform the administrative duties formerly assigned to 8-13 the Texas Economic Development Commission, and more recently to the 8-14 Texas Department of Commerce, including duties prescribed under: 8-15 (1) the Act for Development of Employment, Industrial 8-16 and Health Resources of 1971 (Article 5190.1, Vernon's Texas Civil 8-17 Statutes); 8-18 (2) Chapter 696, Acts of the 69th Legislature, Regular 8-19 Session, 1985 (Article 5190.4a, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), 8-20 relating to industrial training programs; and 8-21 (3) the Development Corporation Act of 1979 (Article 8-22 5190.6, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes). 8-23 (b) The Office shall perform the administrative duties 8-24 formerly assigned to the Texas Economic Development Commission and 8-25 the Enterprise Zone Board, and more recently to the Texas 9-1 Department of Commerce, under Chapter 2303. 9-2 (c) The Office shall perform the administrative duties 9-3 formerly assigned to the Texas Department of Housing and Community 9-4 Affairs, and more recently to the Texas Department of Commerce, 9-5 under Chapter 301, Labor Code, and the community development block 9-6 grant program. 9-7 (d) Any business or industry seeking employee training, 9-8 retraining, or manpower development services at public expense may 9-9 request assistance from the Office. The Office shall seek advice 9-10 from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in identifying 9-11 the appropriate institution of higher education to provide such 9-12 services. The rules of the coordinating board concerning 9-13 out-of-district and off-campus courses developed to assist 9-14 industrial start-up and employee upgrading apply in providing those 9-15 services. The Office and the coordinating board shall ensure that 9-16 appropriate rules are developed to apply to any entities involved 9-17 in the delivery of education and training for industrial start-up 9-18 and employee upgrading that are not currently covered. 9-19 CHAPTER 482. PARTNERSHIP TEXAS 9-20 SUBCHAPTER A. GENERAL PROVISIONS 9-21 Sec. 482.001. Open Meetings. (a) The Partnership is 9-22 subject to Chapter 551, Government Code. 9-23 (b) The board shall file notice of each meeting of the board 9-24 in the same manner and in the same location as is required of a 9-25 state governmental body under Chapter 551, Government Code. 10-1 Sec. 482.002. Open Records. The board is subject to Chapter 10-2 552, Government Code. 10-3 Sec. 482.003. Application of Texas Non-profit Corporation 10-4 Act. The Texas Non-Profit Corporation Act (Article 1396-1.01 et 10-5 seq., Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes) applies to the Partnership to 10-6 the extent that the provisions of that Act are not inconsistent 10-7 with this subtitle. 10-8 SUBCHAPTER B. CREATION OF PARTNERSHIP 10-9 Sec. 482.004. Purpose of the Partnership. The purpose of 10-10 the Partnership is to carry out the public purposes of this 10-11 subtitle and is limited to the economic development of and the 10-12 promotion of tourism for Texas. 10-13 Sec. 482.005. Form of Partnership. (a) The Partnership is 10-14 a nonmember, nonstock corporation. 10-15 (b) The Partnership is nonprofit, and no part of its net 10-16 earnings remaining after payment of its expenses may inure to any 10-17 individual, firm, or corporation, except that if the board 10-18 determines that sufficient provision has been made for the full 10-19 payment of the expenses, bonds and other obligations of the 10-20 partnership, the additional net earnings of the Partnership shall 10-21 be deposited to the credit of the general revenue fund. 10-22 (c) The Partnership shall be created as a perpetual 10-23 corporation. 10-24 (d) Notwithstanding any provision of the Texas Non-profit 10-25 Corporation Act and the Texas Business Corporation Act, the 11-1 Partnership shall not be dissolved by a vote of the board. 11-2 (e) The Partnership shall not have any provision for the 11-3 regulation of the internal affairs of the corporation in its 11-4 articles of incorporation unless provided for by this chapter. 11-5 Sec. 482.006. Articles of Incorporation. The articles of 11-6 incorporation must state: 11-7 (1) that the name of the Partnership is Partnership 11-8 Texas, Inc.; 11-9 (2) that the Partnership is a nonprofit corporation; 11-10 (3) the duration of the Partnership is perpetual; 11-11 (4) that the specific purpose for which the 11-12 Partnership is organized is for the economic development of and the 11-13 promotion of tourism for the State of Texas and to carry out the 11-14 provisions of Subtitle F, Title 4, Government Code, on behalf of 11-15 the Office of Economic Development and Tourism in the Office of the 11-16 Governor; 11-17 (5) that the Partnership does not have any members and 11-18 is a nonstock corporation; 11-19 (6) the street address and name of the Secretary of 11-20 State of Texas as the Partnership's initial registered office and 11-21 its initial registered agent; 11-22 (7) the number of directors of the initial board as 11-23 provided for by this chapter and the name and address of each 11-24 director; and 11-25 (8) the name and street address of the Office of the 12-1 Governor as incorporator. 12-2 Sec. 482.007. Indemnification. The Partnership may 12-3 indemnify a director or officer of the Partnership for necessary 12-4 expenses and costs, including attorney's fees, incurred by the 12-5 director or officer in connection with any claim asserted against 12-6 the director or officer in a court action or otherwise for 12-7 negligence or misconduct. 12-8 Sec. 482.008. Exemption From Taxation. The Partnership may 12-9 engage exclusively in the performance of public charitable 12-10 functions and is exempt from all taxation by this state or a 12-11 municipality or other political subdivision of the state. 12-12 SUBCHAPTER C. GENERAL POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE PARTNERSHIP 12-13 Sec. 482.009. GENERAL POWERS. (a) The Partnership has the 12-14 powers provided by this subtitle to promote economic development 12-15 and tourism for Texas on behalf of the office and powers incidental 12-16 to or necessary for the performance of that purpose. 12-17 (b) The Partnership may contract with the Office, 12-18 legal counsel, financial advisors, or underwriters as its board 12-19 considers necessary. 12-20 Sec. 482.010. Bonds and Notes. (a) The Partnership may 12-21 issue bonds and notes to carry out its purpose. 12-22 (b) The bonds and notes may be issued under any power or 12-23 authority available to the Partnership, including the Bond 12-24 Procedures Act of 1981 (Article 717k-6, Vernon's Texas Civil 12-25 Statutes). 13-1 (c) A bond or note must state on its face that it is not an 13-2 obligation of the State of Texas. 13-3 Sec. 482.011. Approval of Bonds and Notes by Attorney 13-4 General. 13-5 (a) The Partnership shall submit a bond or note authorized 13-6 under Section 482.010 and a contract supporting its issuance to the 13-7 attorney general for examination. 13-8 (b) If the attorney general finds that the bond or note, and 13-9 any supporting contract are authorized under this subtitle, the 13-10 attorney general shall approve them. 13-11 (c) After approval by the attorney general, a bond, note, or 13-12 contract may not be contested for any reason. 13-13 Sec. 482.012. Assets on Dissolution. 13-14 On dissolution or liquidation of the Partnership, the title 13-15 to all assets, including funds and property, shall be transferred 13-16 to the Office. 13-17 Sec. 482.013. Report. 13-18 The Partnership shall file an annual report of the financial 13-19 activity of the Partnership with the Office, the governor, 13-20 lieutenant governor and speaker of the house. The annual report 13-21 shall be filed consistent with the date specified in the General 13-22 Appropriations Act and shall be prepared in accordance with 13-23 generally accepted accounting principles. The report must include 13-24 a statement of support, revenue, and expenses and change in fund 13-25 balances, a statement of functional expenses, and balance sheets 14-1 for all funds. 14-2 Sec. 482.014. Performance Measures. The board will develop 14-3 key performance measures to be broadly communicated and monitored 14-4 by the governor and the legislature. Such performance measures 14-5 could include jobs created and attracted, levels of wages, 14-6 attraction of new investments, exports, and other measures. One 14-7 key performance measure for the Partnership and its employees shall 14-8 be the ability to raise new private funds in support of economic 14-9 development. Contributions of in-kind services and material would 14-10 be an important component of this private funding. 14-11 Sec. 482.015. Funds. (a) Money paid to the Partnership 14-12 under this subtitle shall be deposited with the comptroller of 14-13 public accounts in the Texas Safekeeping Trust Company kept and 14-14 held in escrow and in trust by the comptroller for and on behalf of 14-15 the Partnership as funds held outside the treasury under Section 14-16 404.073, and the money contributed shall be used to carry out the 14-17 purposes of the Partnership and, to the extent possible, the 14-18 purposes specified by the donors. The comptroller may invest and 14-19 reinvest the money, in the fund pending its use, in investments 14-20 authorized by law for state funds that the comptroller considers 14-21 important. 14-22 SUBCHAPTER D. BOARD OF DIRECTORS AND STAFF 14-23 Sec. 482.016. Board. (a) The voting members of the board 14-24 consist of: 14-25 (1) the governor; 15-1 (2) the lieutenant governor; 15-2 (3) the comptroller; 15-3 (4) the commissioner of the General Land Office; 15-4 (5) the commissioner of the Department of Agriculture; 15-5 (6) the executive director of the Office of Housing 15-6 and Community Affairs; 15-7 (7) executive director of the Texas Workforce 15-8 Commission; 15-9 (8) the commissioner of the Texas Higher Education 15-10 Coordinating Board; 15-11 (9) the commissioner of the Texas Education Agency; 15-12 (10) the executive director of the Texas Department of 15-13 Transportation; and 15-14 (11) the executive director of Texas Parks and 15-15 Wildlife. 15-16 (b) The private-sector, appointed members of the board 15-17 consist of 12 members selected from a pool of nominees provided by 15-18 a nominating committee and are appointed as follows: 15-19 (1) Six members shall be appointed by the governor 15-20 with the advice and consent of the senate, at least three of whom 15-21 shall be appointed from a list of persons recommended by the 15-22 speaker of the house of representatives. 15-23 (2) Three members shall be appointed by the lieutenant 15-24 governor. 15-25 (3) Three members shall be appointed jointly by the 16-1 governor and the lieutenant governor with the advice and consent of 16-2 the senate and shall serve as vice chairs. 16-3 (4) The nominating committee is composed of one 16-4 representative from each of the following organizations: 16-5 (A) the Texas Economic Development Council; 16-6 (B) the Texas Association of Regional Councils; 16-7 (C) the Texas Association of Business and 16-8 Chambers of Commerce; 16-9 (D) the Texas Hotel/Motel Association; 16-10 (E) the Texas Convention and Visitors Bureaus 16-11 Association; 16-12 (F) the Texas Travel Industry Association; 16-13 (G) the Texas Farm Bureau; and 16-14 (H) the Texas AFL-CIO. 16-15 (5) For the initial board, each representative shall 16-16 nominate one person to the governor, lieutenant governor and 16-17 speaker for each board member position. For vacancies occurring 16-18 after the initial board, each representative shall nominate one 16-19 person per vacancy to the appropriate public officeholder. 16-20 (6) The governor and lieutenant governor shall make 16-21 their appointments so as to ensure that the private-sector board 16-22 includes at least three members with a background in business 16-23 development and at least three members with experience in the 16-24 tourism industry. 16-25 (7) Appointed members of the board serve for six-year 17-1 terms. The terms of one-third of the members expire on February 1 17-2 of each odd-numbered year. 17-3 (8) Appointments of the members of the board shall be 17-4 made without regard to the race, color, handicap, sex, religion, 17-5 age, or national origin of the appointees. 17-6 (c) The speaker of the Texas House of Representatives shall 17-7 serve on the board in an ex officio, nonvoting capacity. 17-8 Sec. 482.017. Board Officers. (a) The chairman of the 17-9 board is the governor. 17-10 (b) All the vice-chairs shall be appointed jointly by the 17-11 governor and the lieutenant governor in the positions as follows: 17-12 (1) one for business development; 17-13 (2) one for tourism; and 17-14 (3) one for funding and finance. 17-15 (c) All vice-chairs shall have the necessary skills 17-16 appropriate with their selected positions. 17-17 Sec. 482.018. Conflict of Interest. (a) A person may not 17-18 serve as a private-sector member of the board or be the executive 17-19 director or an employee of the Partnership if the person: 17-20 (1) is employed by, participates in the management of, 17-21 or is a paid consultant of a business entity that contracts with 17-22 the Partnership; 17-23 (2) owns or controls, directly or indirectly, more 17-24 than a 10 percent interest in a business entity or other 17-25 organization that contracts with the Partnership; 18-1 (3) uses or receives a substantial amount of tangible 18-2 goods, services, or funds from the Partnership, other than 18-3 compensation or reimbursement authorized by law for employee 18-4 salaries and benefits or for board membership, attendance, and 18-5 expenses; or 18-6 (4) is an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a 18-7 trade association of businesses that contracts with the 18-8 Partnership. 18-9 (b) A person may not serve as a private-sector member of the 18-10 board or be the executive director or an employee of the 18-11 Partnership if the person's spouse: 18-12 (1) participates in the management of or is a paid 18-13 consultant of a business entity that contracts with the 18-14 Partnership; 18-15 (2) owns or controls, directly or indirectly, more 18-16 than a 10 percent interest in a business entity or other 18-17 organization that contracts with the Partnership; 18-18 (3) uses or receives a substantial amount of tangible 18-19 goods, services, or funds from the Partnership; or 18-20 (4) is an officer, manager, or paid consultant of a 18-21 trade association of businesses that contracts with the 18-22 Partnership. 18-23 (c) For the purposes of this section, a trade association is 18-24 a nonprofit, cooperative, and voluntarily joined association of 18-25 business or professional competitors designed to assist its members 19-1 and its industry or profession in dealing with mutual business or 19-2 professional problems and in promoting their common interest. 19-3 (d) For the purposes of this section, a business entity is a 19-4 sole proprietorship, Partnership, firm, corporation, holding 19-5 company, joint stock company, receivership, trust, or any other 19-6 entity recognized in law through which business for profit is 19-7 conducted. 19-8 (e) A person may not be a member of the board or the 19-9 executive director or an employee of the Partnership if the person 19-10 is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government 19-11 Code, because of the person's activities for compensation on behalf 19-12 of a business entity that has an interest in a contract with the 19-13 Partnership or a profession related to the operation of the 19-14 Partnership. 19-15 Sec. 482.019. Officers; Compensation; Meetings. (a) The 19-16 board shall elect from among its members a secretary. 19-17 (b) The board shall meet at least quarterly. 19-18 (c) A member of the board may not receive compensation for 19-19 service on the board. A member is entitled to receive 19-20 reimbursement, subject to any applicable limitation on 19-21 reimbursement provided by the General Appropriations Act, for 19-22 actual and necessary expenses incurred in performing services as a 19-23 member of the board. 19-24 (d) The board shall develop and implement policies that 19-25 provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before 20-1 the board and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of the 20-2 board. 20-3 Sec. 482.020. Executive Director. The board shall employ an 20-4 executive director to be chosen by a majority of the board members 20-5 who shall manage the day-to-day operations and employ other 20-6 employees necessary to carry out the board's duties. 20-7 Sec. 482.021. Economic Development Practitioners Advisory 20-8 Group. The board shall establish an economic development 20-9 practitioners advisory group to advise the executive director of 20-10 the Partnership on matters related to the office's duties and the 20-11 programs under this subtitle. 20-12 Sec. 482.022. Administration. The executive director shall 20-13 establish the following functions within the Partnership: 20-14 (a) media relations; 20-15 (b) research and program evaluation; and 20-16 (c) regional planning and local government liaison to act as 20-17 a liaison with local governments responsible for developing 20-18 regional economic development plans. 20-19 SUBCHAPTER E. BUSINESS OMBUDSMAN 20-20 Sec. 482.023. Business Ombudsman. (a) The executive 20-21 director shall employ a business ombudsman approved by the board. 20-22 (b) The business ombudsman shall report directly to the 20-23 executive director. 20-24 (c) The business ombudsman shall recommend changes in state 20-25 regulation affecting business development and tourism and 21-1 recommending changes to improve the Texas business climate. 21-2 (d) The business ombudsman shall consider the impact of 21-3 agency rules on businesses, provide one-stop permit information and 21-4 assistance, and shall assist businesses, particularly small 21-5 businesses, in their dealings with state agencies. 21-6 SUBCHAPTER F. BUSINESS PERMIT OFFICE 21-7 Sec. 482.024. DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter: 21-8 (1) "Applicant" means a person acting for himself or 21-9 authorized to act on behalf of another person to obtain a permit. 21-10 (2) "Permit Office" means the Office of Economic 21-11 Development's business permit office. 21-12 (3) "Permit" means any license, certificate, 21-13 registration, permit, or other form of authorization required by 21-14 law or by state agency rules to be obtained by a person in order to 21-15 engage in a particular business but does not include a permit or 21-16 license issued under Title 2, Tax Code, or issued in connection 21-17 with any form of gaming or gambling. 21-18 Sec. 482.025. Creation. The Permit Office is an office 21-19 within the Office of Economic Development and Tourism. The Office 21-20 shall contract with the Partnership to perform the duties of the 21-21 Office and the Permit Office, and exercise its powers and implement 21-22 and administer the programs under this subchapter to the fullest 21-23 extent permitted by the Texas Constitution. 21-24 Sec. 482.026. Duties. The Permit Office shall: 21-25 (1) provide comprehensive information on permits 22-1 required for business enterprises in the state and make that 22-2 information available to applicants and other persons; 22-3 (2) assist applicants in obtaining timely and 22-4 efficient permit review and in resolving issues arising from the 22-5 review; 22-6 (3) facilitate contacts between applicants and state 22-7 agencies responsible for processing and reviewing permit 22-8 applications; 22-9 (4) assist applicants in the resolution of outstanding 22-10 issues identified by state agencies, including delays experienced 22-11 in permit review; 22-12 (5) develop comprehensive application procedures to 22-13 expedite the permit process; 22-14 (6) compile a comprehensive list of all permits 22-15 required of a person desiring to establish, operate, or expand a 22-16 business enterprise in the state; 22-17 (7) encourage and facilitate the participation of 22-18 federal and local government agencies in permit coordination; 22-19 (8) make recommendations for eliminating, 22-20 consolidating, simplifying, expediting, or otherwise improving 22-21 permit procedures affecting business enterprises by requesting that 22-22 the state auditor, with the advice and support of the office, 22-23 initiate a business permit reengineering review process involving 22-24 all state agencies; 22-25 (9) develop and implement an outreach program to 23-1 publicize and make small business entrepreneurs and others aware of 23-2 services provided by the Permit Office; and 23-3 (10) adopt rules, procedures, instructions, and forms 23-4 required to carry out the functions, powers, and duties of the 23-5 Office under this subchapter. 23-6 Sec. 482.027. Comprehensive Permit Application Procedure. 23-7 (a) The Permit Office shall develop a comprehensive application 23-8 procedure to expedite the identification and processing of required 23-9 permits. The Permit Office shall specify the permits to which the 23-10 comprehensive application procedure applies. A comprehensive 23-11 application must be made on a form prescribed by the Permit Office. 23-12 The Permit Office shall consult with affected agencies in designing 23-13 the form to ensure that the form provides the necessary information 23-14 to allow agencies to identify which permits may be needed by the 23-15 applicant. The form must be designed primarily for the convenience 23-16 of an applicant who is required to obtain multiple permits and must 23-17 provide for concise and specific information necessary to determine 23-18 which permits are or may be required of the particular applicant. 23-19 (b) Use of the comprehensive application procedure by the 23-20 applicant is optional. On request the Permit Office shall assist 23-21 an applicant in preparing a comprehensive application, describe the 23-22 procedures involved, and provide other appropriate information from 23-23 the comprehensive permit information file. 23-24 (c) On receipt of a comprehensive application from an 23-25 applicant, the Permit Office shall immediately notify in writing 24-1 each state agency having a possible interest in the proposed 24-2 business undertaking, project, or activity with respect to permits 24-3 that are or may be required. 24-4 (d) Not later than the 25th day after the date of receipt of 24-5 the notice, the state agency shall specify to the Permit Office 24-6 each permit under its jurisdiction that is or may be required for 24-7 the business undertaking, project, or activity described in the 24-8 comprehensive application and shall indicate each permit fee to be 24-9 charged. 24-10 (e) If a notified state agency responds that it does not 24-11 have an interest in the permit requirements of the business 24-12 undertaking, project, or activity described in the comprehensive 24-13 application or does not respond within the period specified by 24-14 Subsection (d), no permit under the jurisdiction of that agency is 24-15 required for the undertaking, project, or activity described in the 24-16 comprehensive application. This subsection does not apply if the 24-17 comprehensive application contains false, misleading, or deceptive 24-18 information or fails to include pertinent information, the lack of 24-19 which could reasonably lead a state agency to misjudge whether a 24-20 permit under its jurisdiction is required. 24-21 (f) The Permit Office shall promptly provide the applicant 24-22 with application forms and related information for all permits 24-23 specified by the interested state agencies and shall advise the 24-24 applicant that the forms are to be completed and submitted to the 24-25 appropriate state agencies. 25-1 (g) An applicant may withdraw a comprehensive application at 25-2 any time without forfeiture of any permit approval applied for or 25-3 obtained under the comprehensive application procedures. 25-4 (h) Each state agency having jurisdiction over a permit to 25-5 which the comprehensive application procedure applies shall 25-6 designate an officer or employee to act as permit liaison officer 25-7 to cooperate with the Permit Office in carrying out this 25-8 subchapter. 25-9 (i) This section does not apply to a permit or license 25-10 issued under Title 2, Tax Code, and does not exempt any person from 25-11 liability for a tax under that title. 25-12 Sec. 482.028. Comprehensive Permit Handbook. (a) The 25-13 Permit Office shall compile a comprehensive list of all state 25-14 permits required of a person desiring to operate a business 25-15 enterprise in the state. 25-16 (b) To the extent possible, the Permit Office shall organize 25-17 the list according to the types of businesses affected and shall 25-18 publish the list in a comprehensive permit handbook. 25-19 (c) The handbook must include: 25-20 (1) the name of each state agency required to review, 25-21 approve, or grant a permit on the list; 25-22 (2) the address of the agency to which the license, 25-23 permit, or registration materials must be sent; and 25-24 (3) the telephone number of the agency. 25-25 (d) The Permit Office shall periodically update the 26-1 handbook. 26-2 (e) The Permit Office shall make the handbook available to 26-3 persons interested in establishing a business enterprise, public 26-4 libraries, educational institutions, and the state agencies listed 26-5 in the handbook. 26-6 482.029. Assistance of Other State Agencies. Each state 26-7 agency, on request of the Permit Office, shall provide assistance, 26-8 services, facilities, and data to enable the Permit Office to carry 26-9 out its duties. An agency is not required to provide information 26-10 made confidential by a constitution, statute, or judicial decision. 26-11 Sec. 482.030. Comprehensive Permit Information. (a) Each 26-12 state agency required to review, approve, or grant permits for 26-13 business undertakings, projects, or activities shall report to the 26-14 permit office in a form prescribed by the Permit Office on each 26-15 type of review, approval, or permit administered by the agency. 26-16 (b) The agency's report must include application forms, 26-17 applicable agency rules, and the estimated period necessary to 26-18 process permit applications. 26-19 (c) The Permit Office shall prepare an information file on 26-20 state agency permit requirements and shall develop methods for 26-21 maintenance, revision, update, and ready access. The Permit Office 26-22 shall provide comprehensive permit information based on that file. 26-23 (d) The Permit Office may prepare and distribute 26-24 publications, guides, and other materials to serve the convenience 26-25 of permit applicants and explain permit requirements affecting 27-1 business, including requirements involving multiple permits or 27-2 regulation by more than one state agency. 27-3 Sec. 482.031. No Charges For Services. The Permit Office 27-4 shall provide its services without charge. 27-5 Sec. 482.032. Environmental Permits. The Permit Office 27-6 shall consult and cooperate with the Natural Resource Conservation 27-7 Commission in conducting any studies on permits issued by the 27-8 Natural Resource Conservation Commission. The Natural Resource 27-9 Conservation Commission shall cooperate fully in the study and 27-10 analysis of the procedures involving the issuance of permits by 27-11 that commission and shall, in any report issued, evaluate all 27-12 alternatives for improving the process pursuant to the Permit 27-13 Office's responsibilities under Section 482.026. The Permit Office 27-14 and the Natural Resource Conservation Commission shall jointly 27-15 submit any report required under Section 482.026. 27-16 SUBCHAPTER G. STATE AND LOCAL PERMITS 27-17 Sec. 482.033. Legislative Finding and Intent. (a) The 27-18 legislature finds that current administrative practices often 27-19 result in unnecessary governmental regulatory delays that inhibit 27-20 the economic development of the state. 27-21 (b) The legislature desires to establish requirements 27-22 relating to the processing and issuance of permits and approvals by 27-23 governmental regulatory agencies in order to alleviate bureaucratic 27-24 obstacles to economic development. 27-25 Sec. 482.034. Definitions. In this subchapter: 28-1 (1) "Political subdivision" means a political 28-2 subdivision of the state, including a county, a school district, or 28-3 a municipality. 28-4 (2) "Permit" means a license, certificate, approval, 28-5 registration, consent, permit, or other form of authorization 28-6 required by law, rule, regulation, or ordinance that must be 28-7 obtained by a person in order to perform an action or initiate a 28-8 project for which the permit is sought. 28-9 (3) "Project" means an endeavor over which a 28-10 regulatory agency exerts its jurisdiction and for which one or more 28-11 permits are required to initiate or continue the endeavor. 28-12 (4) "Regulatory agency" means an agency, bureau, 28-13 department, division, or commission of the state or any department, 28-14 agency, board, commission, or governing body of a political 28-15 subdivision in its capacity of processing, approving, or issuing 28-16 permits. 28-17 Sec. 482.035. Uniformity of Requirements. (a) The 28-18 approval, disapproval, or conditional approval of an application 28-19 for a permit shall be considered by each regulatory agency solely 28-20 on the basis of any orders, regulations, ordinances, rules, 28-21 expiration dates, or other duly adopted requirements in effect at 28-22 the time the original application for the permit is filed. If a 28-23 series of permits is required for a project, the orders, 28-24 regulations, ordinances, rules, expiration dates, or other duly 28-25 adopted requirements in effect at the time the original application 29-1 for the first permit in that series is filed shall be the sole 29-2 basis for consideration of all subsequent permits required for the 29-3 completion of the project, and all permits required for the project 29-4 shall be considered to be a single series of permits. Preliminary 29-5 plans and related subdivisions plats, site plans, and all other 29-6 development permits for land covered by such preliminary plans or 29-7 subdivision plats are considered collectively to be one series of 29-8 permits. Once an application for a project has been filed, a 29-9 regulatory agency shall not shorten the duration of any permit 29-10 required for the project. 29-11 (b) This subchapter shall apply to all projects in progress 29-12 on or commenced after the effective date of this subchapter as 29-13 originally enacted by Section 1, Chapter 374, Acts of the 70th 29-14 Legislature, Regular Session, 1987, and the duly adopted 29-15 requirements in effect at the time the original application for the 29-16 first permit for the project was filed shall control. This 29-17 subchapter shall be enforceable solely through declaratory, 29-18 mandamus, or injunctive relief. 29-19 (c) This section does not apply to: 29-20 (1) permits or licenses issued in connection with any 29-21 form of gaming or gambling; 29-22 (2) permits or licenses issued under Title 2, Tax 29-23 Code; 29-24 (3) permits or orders issued under programs for which 29-25 a state regulatory agency has received authorization, delegation, 30-1 or approval from the federal government to implement an equivalent 30-2 state program in lieu of or as part of the federal program; 30-3 (4) permits for the construction of buildings or 30-4 structures intended for human occupancy or habitation that are 30-5 issued pursuant to laws, ordinances, procedures, rules, or 30-6 regulations adopting solely the provisions of uniform building, 30-7 fire, electrical, plumbing, or mechanical codes promulgated by a 30-8 recognized national code organization or local amendments to any 30-9 such codes enacted solely to address imminent threats of 30-10 destruction of property or injury to persons, unless such permits 30-11 are less than two years old; 30-12 (5) municipal zoning regulations that do not affect 30-13 lot size, lot dimensions, lot coverage, or building size; 30-14 (6) regulations for the location of adult-oriented 30-15 businesses; 30-16 (7) state or local laws, including city or county 30-17 ordinances, rules, regulations, or other requirements, affecting 30-18 colonies; 30-19 (8) fees lawfully imposed in conjunction with 30-20 development permits; 30-21 (9) regulations for annexation; 30-22 (10) regulations for utility connections; 30-23 (11) regulations to prevent imminent destruction of 30-24 property or injury to persons; or 30-25 (12) construction standards for public works located 31-1 on public lands and easements. 31-2 (d) Notwithstanding any provision of this section to the 31-3 contrary, a permit holder shall have the right to take advantage of 31-4 procedural changes to the laws, rules, regulations, or ordinances 31-5 of a regulatory agency which enhance or protect the project 31-6 including, without limitation, changes which lengthen the effective 31-7 life of the permit after the date on which application for the 31-8 permit was made, without otherwise forfeiting any rights under this 31-9 section. 31-10 (e) The provisions of this section relating to the 31-11 expiration date of a permit or to the duration of a permit do not 31-12 apply in the case of a permit issued by the Railroad Commission of 31-13 Texas which did not have an expiration date or a specific duration 31-14 when originally issued. 31-15 SUBCHAPTER H. STRATEGIC BUSINESS UNITS 31-16 Sec. 482.036. Strategic Business Units. The board shall 31-17 create strategic business units, including the following: 31-18 (a) entrepreneurial and capital development; 31-19 (b) technology and crucial industry development; 31-20 (c) rural and community development; 31-21 (d) direct business services; 31-22 (e) industry recruitment; 31-23 (f) international trade and export development and promotion 31-24 programs; and 31-25 (g) tourism and travel industry development. 32-1 SUBCHAPTER I. PRIVATE FUNDING 32-2 Sec. 482.037. Private Foundations. (a) The Partnership 32-3 shall initiate the establishment of private foundations as 32-4 depositories for private contributions, including as follows: 32-5 (1) the Texas 21st Century Foundation to support 32-6 business and economic development programs; and 32-7 (2) the Texas Tourism Foundation to support tourism 32-8 development programs. 32-9 (b) Funds received pursuant to Subsection (a) shall be held 32-10 in a local bank outside the state treasury. 32-11 CHAPTER 483. INTERNATIONAL TRADE DEVELOPMENT 32-12 SUBCHAPTER A. POWERS AND DUTIES RELATED TO 32-13 INTERNATIONAL TRADE DEVELOPMENT 32-14 Sec. 483.001. Legislative Findings. The legislature finds 32-15 that: 32-16 (1) the development and expansion of international 32-17 trade and the export of products and services from this state to 32-18 foreign purchasers are essential to the economic growth of the 32-19 state and to the full employment, welfare, and prosperity of its 32-20 citizens; and 32-21 (2) the measures authorized and the assistance 32-22 provided by this subchapter, especially with respect to financing, 32-23 are in the public interest and serve a public purpose of the state 32-24 in promoting the welfare of the citizens of the state economically 32-25 by stimulating the expansion of international markets for products 33-1 and services from this state. 33-2 Sec. 483.002. Definitions. In this subchapter: 33-3 (1) "Export business" means a person engaged in the 33-4 export of a Texas product. 33-5 (2) "Lender" means a lending institution, including a 33-6 bank, trust company, banking association, savings and loan 33-7 association, mortgage company, investment bank, credit union, life 33-8 insurance company, governmental agency that customarily provides 33-9 financing, or an affiliate of any of those entities. 33-10 (3) "Texas product" means: 33-11 (A) a manufactured good or a service at least 25 33-12 percent of the total value of which is represented by Texas source 33-13 components, labor, or intellectual property; or 33-14 (B) the export or preexport preparation of a 33-15 Texas agricultural product or livestock. 33-16 Sec. 483.003. Powers to be Interpreted Broadly. The powers 33-17 of the Office provided by this subchapter shall be interpreted 33-18 broadly to effect the purposes of this subchapter. The grant of 33-19 powers under this subchapter is not a limitation of other powers of 33-20 the Office. 33-21 Sec. 483.004. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 33-22 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 33-23 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 33-24 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 33-25 Constitution. 34-1 Sec. 483.005. International Trade and Export Development and 34-2 Promotion Programs. (a) The Office shall: 34-3 (1) assist, promote, encourage, develop, and advance 34-4 economic prosperity and employment throughout this state by 34-5 fostering the expansion of exports of manufactured goods and 34-6 services to foreign purchasers; 34-7 (2) cooperate and act in conjunction with other public 34-8 and private organizations to promote and advance export trade 34-9 activities in the state; 34-10 (3) design and implement programs to provide financial 34-11 assistance, particularly to small and medium-sized businesses, to 34-12 support export development; 34-13 (4) formulate and develop programs to stimulate and 34-14 encourage increased international trade along the entire border 34-15 region; and 34-16 (5) provide financial counseling to potential and 34-17 existing exporters. 34-18 (b) In carrying out its duties, the Office may: 34-19 (1) conduct research and analysis relating to: 34-20 (A) foreign commerce; 34-21 (B) the manner in which business is conducted in 34-22 foreign marketplaces; 34-23 (C) methods of stimulating reverse investments; 34-24 (D) international tourism; and 34-25 (E) governmental incentives and disincentives to 35-1 foreign trade activity in this state; 35-2 (2) accept inquiries from foreign businesses and 35-3 governments and introduce the inquiring businesses or governments 35-4 to the appropriate association or state businesses; 35-5 (3) cooperate with other persons in developing 35-6 marketing programs and disseminating information about the state 35-7 economy and the opportunities for and advantages of doing business 35-8 in this state; 35-9 (4) represent the interests of state businesses 35-10 engaged in foreign trade and aid others representing those 35-11 interests through trade delegations, missions, marts, seminars, and 35-12 other promotional methods; 35-13 (5) recruit foreign capital investment and encourage 35-14 foreign business development in the state; 35-15 (6) encourage travel from foreign countries; 35-16 (7) seek funding of Office programs and activities 35-17 from federal, state, local, and private sources; 35-18 (8) periodically study and report to the board on the 35-19 effect of state tax laws on international trade activity in this 35-20 state; 35-21 (9) encourage the development of programs by which 35-22 experienced executives from private business volunteer their 35-23 services to the state to aid the development of foreign commerce; 35-24 (10) collect and distribute to foreign commercial 35-25 libraries directories, catalogs, brochures, and other information 36-1 of value to foreign businesses considering doing business in this 36-2 state; 36-3 (11) provide speakers bureau services for civic 36-4 organizations and other private groups in the state; 36-5 (12) develop programs of mutual assistance between 36-6 banks, shipping agents, combination export managers, freight 36-7 forwarders, international consultants, ports, and other trade 36-8 intermediaries of this state; 36-9 (13) encourage and assist expansion of international 36-10 trade activities of chambers of commerce, development commissions, 36-11 trade associations, ports, and similar organizations in the state; 36-12 (14) establish an export finance awareness program to 36-13 provide information to banking organizations about methods used by 36-14 banks to provide financing for businesses engaged in exporting and 36-15 about other state and federal programs to promote and expedite 36-16 export financing; 36-17 (15) provide business with counseling and management 36-18 programs, technical assistance, advice, and information relating to 36-19 development of export opportunities and programs; 36-20 (16) promote export trading companies; 36-21 (17) provide for, in cooperation with the Partnership, 36-22 trade associations, chambers of commerce, or other appropriate 36-23 private entities, the establishment of state offices in Asia, 36-24 Europe, and Central and South America to identify export markets 36-25 for Texas services and products, identify sources of investment 37-1 capital, and otherwise represent the interests of the state; and 37-2 (c) In carrying out its duties and powers, the Office shall 37-3 give emphasis and priority to matters relating to trade with 37-4 Mexico. 37-5 Sec. 483.006. Powers and Duties Relating to Financing. 37-6 (a) The Office shall design and implement programs to provide 37-7 financial assistance to enable export businesses to finance or 37-8 refinance costs incurred in connection with the international 37-9 export or preexport of Texas products, including programs for: 37-10 (1) making or acquiring loans to export businesses; 37-11 (2) making or acquiring loans to lenders to enable the 37-12 lenders to make loans to export businesses; 37-13 (3) guaranteeing in whole or in part loans to export 37-14 businesses; 37-15 (4) insuring, co-insuring, and reinsuring in whole or 37-16 in part loans to export businesses; and 37-17 (5) administering or participating in programs 37-18 established by another entity to provide financial assistance to 37-19 export businesses. 37-20 (b) The Office has the powers that are necessary and 37-21 convenient to accomplish the purposes of this subchapter, including 37-22 the power to: 37-23 (1) borrow money and otherwise incur debt and to issue 37-24 bonds, and provide for the rights of the owners of the bonds, in 37-25 the manner and to the extent permitted by this subtitle and the 38-1 Texas Constitution and to purchase, hold, cancel, or resell or 38-2 otherwise dispose of its bonds, subject to the restrictions in a 38-3 resolution authorizing the issuance of its bonds; 38-4 (2) purchase, discount, sell, and negotiate with or 38-5 without guaranty notes, bonds, debentures, and other evidences of 38-6 indebtedness of export businesses or portions or portfolios of or 38-7 participation in those evidences of indebtedness; 38-8 (3) sell securities as the Office considers necessary 38-9 and advisable to accomplish any of the purposes of this subchapter; 38-10 (4) procure and pay premiums on insurance of any type 38-11 in amounts and from insurers that the Office considers necessary 38-12 and advisable to accomplish any of the purposes of this subchapter; 38-13 (5) provide financial counseling services to export 38-14 businesses; 38-15 (6) make secured or unsecured loans for export 38-16 businesses to provide financing or refinancing of the costs 38-17 incurred in connection with the international export or preexport 38-18 of Texas products authorized by this subchapter, including the 38-19 refunding of outstanding obligations, mortgages, or advances issued 38-20 for those purposes, and charge and collect, on terms and conditions 38-21 that the Office considers advisable and not in conflict with this 38-22 subchapter, interest on those loans for loan payments; 38-23 (7) secure the payment by the Office on guarantees and 38-24 pay claims from money in the Office's funds under any guarantee or 38-25 insurance program implemented by the Office; and 39-1 (8) acquire, hold, invest, use, and dispose of the 39-2 receipts, funds, and money, subject only to the Texas Constitution, 39-3 this subchapter, and any covenants relating to the Office's bonds 39-4 in classes of investments that the Office determines. 39-5 Sec. 483.007. Tax Exemption; Exempt Securities. (a) The 39-6 Office and the Partnership are exempt from franchise, corporate, 39-7 business, and all other taxes levied by this state. This section 39-8 does not exempt from any taxes an export business participating in 39-9 a program implemented under this subchapter. 39-10 (b) Any bonds issued by the Office under this subchapter and 39-11 coupons, if any, representing interest on the bonds are exempt 39-12 securities under The Securities Act (Article 581-1 et seq., 39-13 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes). If, however, bonds issued by the 39-14 Office under this subchapter are secured by an agreement by a 39-15 person to pay amounts sufficient to pay the principal of, 39-16 redemption premium, if any, and interest on those bonds, 39-17 notwithstanding that the bonds are exempt securities, that 39-18 agreement is considered to be a separate security issued by the 39-19 person and not by the Office or the Partnership to the purchasers 39-20 of the bonds for purposes of The Securities Act and is exempt from 39-21 that Act only if: 39-22 (1) the security is an exempt security under the terms 39-23 of that Act; or 39-24 (2) the bonds or the payments to be made under the 39-25 agreement are guaranteed by any person and the guarantee is an 40-1 exempt security under the terms of that Act. 40-2 (c) The Office may perform any act it considers necessary to 40-3 qualify the bonds for offer and sale under the securities laws and 40-4 regulations of the United States and of the states and other 40-5 jurisdictions in the United States. 40-6 Sec. 483.008. Conflicts of Interest. (a) The director of 40-7 the Office, an agent or employee of the Office, member of the 40-8 board, the executive director, or an agent or employee of the 40-9 Partnership, in the person's own name or in the name of a nominee, 40-10 may not hold an ownership interest of more than the following 40-11 amount in an association, trust, corporation, Partnership, or other 40-12 entity that is, in its own name or in the name of a nominee, a 40-13 party to a contract or agreement under this subchapter on which the 40-14 director of the Office, an agent or employee of the Office, member 40-15 of the board, executive director, or an agent or employee of the 40-16 Partnership may be called on to act or vote: 40-17 (1) 7-1/2 percent of the fair market value of the 40-18 entity; or 40-19 (2) $50,000. 40-20 (b) With respect to a direct or indirect interest, other 40-21 than an interest prohibited by Subsection (a), in a contract or 40-22 agreement under this subchapter on which the director of the 40-23 Office, agent or employee of the Office, member of the board, 40-24 executive director, or agent or employee of the Partnership may be 40-25 called on to act or vote, the director of the Office, agent or 41-1 employee of the Office, member of the board, executive director, or 41-2 agent or employee of the Partnership shall disclose the interest to 41-3 the Office before the Office takes final action concerning the 41-4 contract or agreement and shall disclose the nature and extent of 41-5 the interest and the person's acquisition of it. The Office shall 41-6 publicly acknowledge this disclosure and enter it in its minutes. 41-7 The director of the Office, agent or employee of the Office, member 41-8 of the board, executive director, or agent or employee of the 41-9 Partnership who holds such an interest may not be officially 41-10 involved in regard to the contract or agreement, may not vote on a 41-11 matter relating to the contract or agreement, and may not 41-12 communicate with any other person who is a director of the Office, 41-13 agent or employee of the Office executive director, members of the 41-14 board, or agents or employees of the Partnership concerning the 41-15 contract or agreement. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, 41-16 a contract or agreement entered into in conformity with this 41-17 subsection is not invalid because of an interest described by this 41-18 subsection nor is a person who complies with this subsection guilty 41-19 of an offense, and the person may not be removed from Office or be 41-20 subjected to other penalty because of the interest. 41-21 (c) A contract or agreement made in violation of this 41-22 section is void and does not create an action against the Office or 41-23 the Partnership. 41-24 Sec. 483.009. Personal Liability of Members or Persons 41-25 Acting on Behalf of the Office or the Partnership. (a) The 42-1 director of the Office, an agent or employee of the Office, a 42-2 member of the board, the executive director, or any other person 42-3 acting on behalf of the Partnership in executing a contract, 42-4 commitment, or agreement under this subchapter is not personally 42-5 liable on the contract, commitment, or agreement. 42-6 (b) The director of the Office, an agent or employee of the 42-7 Office, a member of the board, the executive director, or any other 42-8 person acting on behalf of the Partnership is not personally liable 42-9 for damage or injury resulting from the performance of duties under 42-10 this subchapter. 42-11 Sec. 483.010. Revenue Bonds. (a) The Office may issue, 42-12 sell, and provide for the retirement of bonds to provide funds to 42-13 implement the financial assistance programs authorized by this 42-14 subchapter. The bonds must be special obligations of the Office, 42-15 the principal of and interest on which must be payable solely from 42-16 the revenues derived by the Office. The bonds may not constitute 42-17 an indebtedness of this state, the Office or the Partnership within 42-18 the meaning of any state constitutional provision or statutory 42-19 limitation, but the bonds must be an indebtedness payable solely 42-20 from a revenue-producing source or from a special source that does 42-21 not include revenues from a tax or license. The bonds may not 42-22 constitute or give rise to a pecuniary liability of the state, the 42-23 Office, or the Partnership or a charge against the general credit 42-24 of the Office, the Partnership, or the state or taxing powers of 42-25 the state. The limitations set out in this subsection must be 43-1 plainly stated on the face of each bond. 43-2 (b) In the resolution authorizing the bonds the Office may 43-3 provide for the bonds to: 43-4 (1) be executed and delivered at any time as a single 43-5 issue or from time to time as several issues; 43-6 (2) be in any denomination and form, including 43-7 registered uncertificated obligations not represented by written 43-8 instruments and commonly known as book-entry obligations, the 43-9 registration of ownership and transfer of which the Office shall 43-10 provide for under a system of books and records maintained by a 43-11 bank serving as trustee, paying agent, or bond registrar; 43-12 (3) be of a tenor; 43-13 (4) be in coupon or registered form; 43-14 (5) be payable in installments and at a time or times 43-15 not exceeding five years from their date; 43-16 (6) be subject to terms of redemption; 43-17 (7) be payable at a place or places; 43-18 (8) bear no interest or bear interest at any rate or 43-19 rates, fixed, variable, floating, or otherwise determined by the 43-20 Office or determined under a contractual arrangement approved by 43-21 the Office, except that the maximum net effective interest rate, 43-22 computed in accordance with Chapter 3, Acts of the 61st 43-23 Legislature, Regular Session, 1969 (Article 717k-2, Vernon's Texas 43-24 Civil Statutes), on the bonds may not exceed a rate equal to the 43-25 maximum annual interest rate established for business loans of 44-1 $250,000 or more in this state, payable at the place or places and 44-2 evidenced in the manner; and 44-3 (9) contain provisions not inconsistent with this 44-4 subchapter. 44-5 (c) All bonds issued by the Office are subject to review and 44-6 approval by the attorney general in the same manner and with the 44-7 same effect as is provided by Chapter 656, Acts of the 68th 44-8 Legislature, Regular Session, 1983 (Article 717q, Vernon's Texas 44-9 Civil Statutes). 44-10 (d) The state pledges to and agrees with the owners of any 44-11 bonds issued in accordance with this subchapter that the state will 44-12 not limit or alter the rights vested in the Office or the 44-13 Partnership to fulfill the terms of any agreements made with an 44-14 owner or in any way impair the rights and remedies of an owner 44-15 until the bonds, together with any premium and the interest on the 44-16 bonds, with interest on any unpaid premium or installments of 44-17 interest, and all costs and expenses in connection with any action 44-18 or proceeding by or on behalf of the owners, are fully met and 44-19 discharged. The Partnership and the Office may provide for the 44-20 inclusion of this pledge and agreement of the state in any 44-21 agreement with the owners of bonds. 44-22 Sec. 483.011. Bond Sale and Issuance. (a) The bonds may be 44-23 sold at public or private sale at a price and in a manner and from 44-24 time to time as the Office provides. 44-25 (b) From the proceeds of the sale of the bonds, the Office 45-1 may pay expenses, premiums, and insurance premiums that the Office 45-2 considers necessary or advantageous in connection with the 45-3 authorization, sale, and issuance of the bonds. 45-4 (c) In connection with the issuance of its bonds, the Office 45-5 may exercise the powers granted to the governing body of an issuer 45-6 in connection with the issuance of obligations under Chapter 656, 45-7 Acts of the 68th Legislature, Regular Session, 1983 (Article 717q, 45-8 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), except to the extent inconsistent 45-9 with this subchapter. 45-10 Sec. 483.012. Agreements in Bonds. (a) A security 45-11 agreement, including a related indenture or trust indenture, may 45-12 contain any agreements and provisions customarily contained in 45-13 instruments securing bonds, including provisions respecting the 45-14 fixing and collection of obligations, the creation and maintenance 45-15 of special funds, and the rights and remedies available, in the 45-16 event of default to the bondholders or to the trustee under the 45-17 security agreement, all as the Office considers advisable and 45-18 consistent with this subchapter. However, in making such an 45-19 agreement or provision, the Office may not incur a pecuniary 45-20 liability or a charge on the general credit of the Office, the 45-21 Partnership, this state or against the taxing powers of this state. 45-22 (b) A security agreement securing the bonds may provide 45-23 that, in the event of default in payment of the principal of or 45-24 interest on the bonds or in the performance of an agreement 45-25 contained in the proceedings or security agreement, the payment and 46-1 performance may be enforced by mandamus or by the appointment of a 46-2 receiver in equity with power to charge and collect obligations and 46-3 to apply revenues pledged according to the proceedings or the 46-4 provisions of the security agreement. A security agreement may 46-5 provide that in the event of default in payment or the violation of 46-6 an agreement contained in the security agreement it may be 46-7 foreclosed by proceedings at law or in equity and that a trustee 46-8 under the security agreement or the holder of a bond it secures may 46-9 become the purchaser at a foreclosure sale, if the trustee or 46-10 holder is the highest bidder. 46-11 (c) A breach of a security agreement does not impose 46-12 pecuniary liability on the state, the Office or the Partnership or 46-13 any charge on the general credit of the Office, the Partnership, or 46-14 the state or against the taxing power of the state. 46-15 (d) The trustee or trustees under a security agreement or a 46-16 depository specified by the security agreement may be any person 46-17 that the Office designates, regardless of whether the person is a 46-18 resident of this state or incorporated under the laws of the United 46-19 States or any state. 46-20 Sec. 483.013. Refunding Bonds. (a) The bonds may be 46-21 refunded by the Office by the issuance of its refunding bonds in 46-22 the amount that the Office considers necessary to refund the 46-23 principal of the refunded bonds, together with any unpaid interest, 46-24 premiums, expenses, and commissions required to be paid in 46-25 connection with the refunded bonds. Refunding may be effected 47-1 whether the refunded bonds have matured or are to mature later 47-2 either by sale of the refunding bonds or by exchange of the 47-3 refunding bonds for the refunded bonds. 47-4 (b) A holder of refunded bonds may not be compelled without 47-5 the holder's consent to surrender the bonds for payment or exchange 47-6 before the date on which the bonds are payable, or, if the bonds 47-7 are called for redemption, before the date on which they are by 47-8 their terms subject to redemption. 47-9 (c) Refunding bonds having a final maturity not to exceed 47-10 that permitted for other bonds issued under this subchapter may be 47-11 issued under the same terms and conditions provided by this 47-12 subchapter for the issuance of bonds or may be issued in the manner 47-13 provided by any other applicable statute, including Chapter 503, 47-14 Acts of the 54th Legislature, Regular Session, 1955 (Article 717k, 47-15 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), and Chapter 784, Acts of the 61st 47-16 Legislature, Regular Session, 1969 (Article 717k-3, Vernon's Texas 47-17 Civil Statutes). 47-18 Sec. 483.014. Bond Proceeds; Funds. (a) The proceeds from 47-19 the sale of bonds issued under Section 483.011 may be applied only 47-20 for the purpose for which the bonds were issued, except that any 47-21 premium or secured interest received in the sale shall be applied 47-22 to the payment of the principal of or interest on the bonds sold 47-23 and, if a portion of the proceeds is not needed for the purpose for 47-24 which the bonds were issued, that portion shall be applied to the 47-25 payment of the principal of or interest on the bonds. 48-1 (b) The Office shall establish and maintain a separate fund 48-2 into which the proceeds from the sale of the bonds shall be 48-3 deposited. The Office may provide for the establishment and 48-4 maintenance of separate accounts within the fund, including 48-5 interest and sinking accounts, reserve accounts, program accounts, 48-6 and other accounts. Pending use, the comptroller may invest and 48-7 reinvest the money in the fund in investments authorized by law for 48-8 state funds that the comptroller, with the approval of the board 48-9 and consistent with resolutions authorizing the bonds, considers 48-10 appropriate. Earnings on those investments shall be deposited in 48-11 the fund. The Office is authorized to use money deposited in the 48-12 fund for the purposes specified in and according to the procedures 48-13 established by this subchapter, and the state may not take any 48-14 action with respect to the fund other than as specified by this 48-15 subchapter or the Office. All other money received by the Office 48-16 under this subchapter, except money required to be deposited in the 48-17 Texas exporters loan fund, shall be deposited in a separate account 48-18 in the general revenue fund. 48-19 Sec. 483.015. Tax Exemption. The bonds and the income from 48-20 the bonds are exempt from taxation in this state, except for 48-21 inheritance, estate, or transfer taxes. 48-22 Sec. 483.016. Obligations as Legal Investments for 48-23 Fiduciaries. (a) Bonds, debentures, notes, or other evidences of 48-24 indebtedness of the Office are securities in which all public 48-25 officers and bodies of this state; municipalities; municipal 49-1 subdivisions; insurance companies and associations and other 49-2 persons carrying on an insurance business; banks, bankers, trust 49-3 companies, savings and loan associations, investment companies, and 49-4 other persons carrying on a banking business; administrators, 49-5 guardians, executors, trustees, and other fiduciaries; and other 49-6 persons authorized to invest in bonds or other obligations of the 49-7 state may invest funds, including capital, in their control or 49-8 belonging to them. 49-9 (b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the bonds, 49-10 debentures, notes, or other evidences of indebtedness of the Office 49-11 are also securities that may be deposited with and received by 49-12 public officers and bodies of the state and municipalities and 49-13 municipal subdivisions for any purpose for which the deposit of 49-14 bonds or other obligations of the state are authorized. 49-15 Sec. 483.017. Program Guidelines. (a) The Office shall 49-16 establish rules for determining which export businesses may 49-17 participate in programs established by the Office. The rules must 49-18 state that the Office's policy is to provide programs for providing 49-19 to export businesses financial assistance that: 49-20 (1) otherwise would not be made; 49-21 (2) the Office considers to present a reasonable risk 49-22 and have a sufficient likelihood of repayment; and 49-23 (3) will create or maintain employment in the state. 49-24 (b) The Office shall adopt collateral or security 49-25 requirements to ensure the full repayment of financial assistance 50-1 and the solvency of any program implemented under this subchapter. 50-2 (c) Financial assistance under this subchapter must be 50-3 approved by the Office. 50-4 (d) The Office shall establish criteria for lenders that may 50-5 participate in the programs established under this subchapter. As 50-6 a condition of participation, a lender must agree to conduct an 50-7 investigation as it considers necessary to determine the export 50-8 business's viability, the economic benefits to be derived, the 50-9 prospects for repayment, and other facts that it considers 50-10 necessary to determine whether participation by the export business 50-11 is consistent with the purposes of this subchapter. 50-12 (e) Export businesses or lenders participating in the 50-13 programs established under this subchapter shall pay the costs of 50-14 applying for, participating in, administering, and servicing the 50-15 program in amounts that the Office considers reasonable and 50-16 necessary. 50-17 (f) The Office shall establish a procedure to ensure prompt 50-18 review of applications for financial assistance and shall establish 50-19 conditions under which review and approval of those transactions 50-20 may be delegated to participating lenders or to insurers or 50-21 guarantors of the Office's bonds, programs, or loans. 50-22 Sec. 483.018. Texas Exporters Loan Fund. (a) The Texas 50-23 exporters loan fund is an account in the general revenue fund to be 50-24 administered by the Office. The Office shall contract with the 50-25 Partnership to administer the Texas exporters loan fund program. 51-1 The fund consists of appropriations or transfers made to the fund, 51-2 guarantee fees, other money received from operation of the program 51-3 established by this section, and interest paid on money in the 51-4 fund. Notwithstanding Section 483.014, the Office may deposit the 51-5 proceeds of bonds issued under this subchapter in the fund. Money 51-6 in the fund may be used to establish a reserve fund in an amount 51-7 determined by the Office and to carry out the purposes of this 51-8 section. 51-9 (b) The Office may guarantee loans or make loans with a term 51-10 of one year or less made by private lenders to Texas businesses to 51-11 finance activities of those businesses entering or expanding into 51-12 export markets, including activities related to the purchase of 51-13 inventory, equipment, and raw materials, manufacture, and 51-14 marketing. 51-15 (c) In making guarantees or loans under this section, the 51-16 Office shall give preference to Texas products having the highest 51-17 percentage of their total value represented by Texas source 51-18 components, labor, or intellectual property. 51-19 (d) A loan guarantee or loan under this section may not be 51-20 for less than $10,000 or more than $1 million. The Office may not 51-21 guarantee more than 90 percent of a loan by a private lender from 51-22 funds available under the program. The Office may not provide a 51-23 guarantee or make a loan for a project unless the business involved 51-24 provides at least 10 percent of the total cost of the project. The 51-25 Office shall require each loan guaranteed under this section to be 52-1 secured by appropriate collateral and may require the acquisition 52-2 of insurance from the Export-Import Bank of the United States. 52-3 (e) The Office shall assist Texas businesses in determining 52-4 eligibility for participation in the program established by this 52-5 section, preparing necessary paperwork, identifying potential 52-6 lenders, and explaining the program to lenders. 52-7 (f) The Office shall provide training to persons in small 52-8 business development centers and export assistance centers to 52-9 disseminate information concerning the program established by this 52-10 section throughout the state. 52-11 (g) The costs of administering the program must be paid by 52-12 interest earned on money in the fund and by fees collected in 52-13 connection with the program. 52-14 SUBCHAPTER B. ELECTRONIC DATA BASE 52-15 Sec. 483.019. Electronic Data Base. (a) In cooperation 52-16 with other state agencies, the Office shall develop an electronic 52-17 data base to compile international trade information, including 52-18 information on economic, educational, and other opportunities in 52-19 the public and private sectors. The Office shall contract with the 52-20 Partnership to perform the Office's duties and exercise its powers 52-21 and implement and administer the program under this subchapter to 52-22 the fullest extent permitted by the Texas Constitution. The Office 52-23 shall connect that data base with appropriate state, federal, and 52-24 international communication networks. 52-25 (b) The electronic data base advisory committee is composed 53-1 of: 53-2 (1) a representative from the center for border 53-3 economic and enterprise development at The University of Texas at 53-4 El Paso, appointed by the president of the university; 53-5 (2) a representative from the University of North 53-6 Texas Institute for Regional Industrialization and Manufacturing 53-7 Technology, appointed by the president of the university; 53-8 (3) a representative from the Bureau of Business 53-9 Research at The University of Texas at Austin, appointed by the 53-10 president of the university; 53-11 (4) a representative from the Texas Agriculture Market 53-12 and Research Center, appointed by the president of Texas A&M 53-13 University; 53-14 (5) a representative from The University of Texas at 53-15 San Antonio, College of Business, division of management and 53-16 marketing, appointed by the president of the university; 53-17 (6) a representative from The University of Texas-Pan 53-18 American, appointed by the president of the university; 53-19 (7) a representative from Texas A&M International 53-20 University, appointed by the president of the university; 53-21 (8) a representative from Texas Tech University, 53-22 appointed by the president of the university; 53-23 (9) a representative from the University of Houston, 53-24 appointed by the president of the university; 53-25 (10) a representative from Lamar University, appointed 54-1 by the president of the university; 54-2 (11) a representative from Sul Ross State University, 54-3 appointed by the president of the university; and 54-4 (12) the executive director of the Partnership. 54-5 (c) If a member of the advisory committee who represents a 54-6 university ceases to be employed by the university, the member's 54-7 position on the advisory committee becomes vacant on the day 54-8 employment ceases. A vacancy shall be filled by the president of 54-9 the university that the member represents. 54-10 (d) The advisory committee shall recommend to the Office 54-11 procedures for the dissemination of the data base. 54-12 (e) The Office may accept gifts, grants, and donations from 54-13 any source for the operation of the data base. 54-14 SUBCHAPTER C. SHARED FOREIGN SALES CORPORATIONS 54-15 Sec. 483.020. Definition. In this subchapter, "shared 54-16 foreign sales corporation" means a corporation that satisfies the 54-17 requirements of Section 922, Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (26 54-18 U.S.C. Section 922) and is operated for the direct benefit of more 54-19 than one business in this state. 54-20 Sec. 483.021. Creation and Operation of Shared Foreign Sales 54-21 Corporations. To stimulate international trade, produce more jobs, 54-22 create economic diversity and sources of additional tax revenue, 54-23 allow small and medium-sized businesses to take advantage of 54-24 opportunities formerly practically available only to larger 54-25 businesses, and allow businesses in this state to compete with 55-1 businesses in other states, the Office shall encourage and assist 55-2 in creation and operation of shared foreign sales corporations to 55-3 benefit businesses in this state. The Office shall contract with 55-4 the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and exercise its 55-5 powers and implement and administer the program under this 55-6 subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 55-7 Constitution. In carrying out this duty the Office may: 55-8 (1) develop model shared foreign sales corporations, 55-9 including model articles of incorporation, bylaws, operation 55-10 manuals, form contracts, and other appropriate aids that businesses 55-11 may use in creating and operating shared foreign sales 55-12 corporations; 55-13 (2) provide information and counseling to businesses 55-14 relating to state, federal, and international law governing shared 55-15 foreign sales corporations; 55-16 (3) provide accounting information and counseling to 55-17 businesses in connection with creation and operation of shared 55-18 foreign sales corporations; and 55-19 (4) provide other information and assistance necessary 55-20 to the creation and operation of shared foreign sales corporations 55-21 to benefit businesses in the state. 55-22 Sec. 483.022. Fees. The Office and the Partnership may 55-23 collect fees for services provided under this subchapter in amounts 55-24 determined by the Office and the Partnership to be necessary to 55-25 cover the costs of administering this subchapter. 56-1 SUBCHAPTER D. TEXAS-MEXICO AUTHORITY 56-2 Sec. 483.023. Advisory Board. (a) An advisory board named 56-3 the Texas-Mexico Authority is created to study all Texas-Mexico 56-4 issues and problems, including health and environment. 56-5 (b) The advisory board consists of six members appointed by 56-6 the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. 56-7 (c) Members of the advisory board serve staggered six-year 56-8 terms with the terms of two members expiring February 1 of each 56-9 odd-numbered year. 56-10 (d) Before the advisory board's first meeting after the 56-11 regular appointment of a member, the governor shall select a 56-12 presiding officer from the board's members. 56-13 (e) The advisory board shall provide information and advice 56-14 to the Office, the governor, the legislature, and the Partnership 56-15 regarding the free-trade agreement between the United Mexican 56-16 States and the United States of America and the impact of 56-17 free-trade agreement on the state. 56-18 (f) The advisory board shall report annually on all aspects 56-19 of the state's relations with Mexico to: 56-20 (1) the governor; 56-21 (2) the lieutenant governor; 56-22 (3) the speaker of the house of representatives; 56-23 (4) the chairman of the Senate State Affairs 56-24 Committee; 56-25 (5) the chairman of the House of Representatives 57-1 State, Federal, and International Relations Committee; 57-2 (6) the Partnership; and 57-3 (7) the Office. 57-4 Sec. 483.024. Compact Exploration With the United Mexican 57-5 States. (a) The Texas-Mexico Authority established under Section 57-6 483.023, shall explore, develop, and negotiate interstate compacts 57-7 relating to trade, infrastructure, and other matters with the 57-8 appropriate officials of the United Mexican States or any of its 57-9 political subdivisions or any other foreign trading partners and 57-10 shall present any negotiated compacts to the Texas Legislature and 57-11 the governing body of the appropriate foreign governmental entity. 57-12 (b) A member of the authority may not receive compensation 57-13 for services under this section and may not be reimbursed for 57-14 actual and necessary expenses incurred in performing services under 57-15 this section. 57-16 (c) The Office shall contract with the Partnership to 57-17 provide office space, needed supplies, expertise, the lead staff, 57-18 and other necessities for the authority's work under this section. 57-19 The authority may receive assistance, expertise, and staffing from 57-20 other state agencies as appropriate, including the Texas foreign 57-21 trade offices in Mexico. 57-22 (d) The governor may make any initial inquiries and 57-23 invitations that are necessary on behalf of the authority to 57-24 officials of the government of the United Mexican States, a 57-25 political subdivision of the United Mexican States, a foreign 58-1 government, and the government of the United States. It is the 58-2 intent of the legislature that the governor invite the officials to 58-3 appoint a body to explore, develop, and negotiate compacts with the 58-4 authority that may be presented to the appropriate governmental 58-5 bodies for consideration, adoption, or approval. 58-6 (e) The authority may develop issues related to trade, 58-7 infrastructure, and other matters that are appropriate subjects for 58-8 a compact and present those issues to its counterparts of foreign 58-9 governmental entities for their consideration and for negotiation. 58-10 The authority may consider, negotiate, and report on issues 58-11 proposed by its counterparts, the governor, and concurrent 58-12 resolution of the legislature. 58-13 (f) The authority may make inquiries, gather information, 58-14 and seek legal advice as necessary to ensure that its activities 58-15 and any proposed compact conform to the laws of the United States. 58-16 (g) The authority may give a written biennial report of its 58-17 activities to the governor; the presiding officer of each house of 58-18 the legislature; the chairman of the Committee on State, Federal, 58-19 and International Relations of the house of representatives; the 58-20 Office; the Partnership; and the chairman of the Committee on State 58-21 Affairs of the senate during December of each even-numbered year. 58-22 (h) The authority shall present to the legislature for 58-23 consideration and possible adoption each proposed compact that has 58-24 been agreed to by the authority and one of its counterparts. 58-25 (i) This section does not affect any right of an agency or 59-1 officer of the state to enter into discussions or any form of 59-2 agreement with other states or nations under other law. 59-3 SUBCHAPTER E. MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS 59-4 Sec. 483.025. Honorary Commercial Attache Program. The 59-5 Partnership may develop a network of foreign nationals to serve as 59-6 contacts between state and foreign businesses and investors. 59-7 Sec. 483.026. Confidentiality. Information collected by the 59-8 Partnership concerning the identity, background, finance, marketing 59-9 plans, trade secrets, or other commercially sensitive information 59-10 of a lender or export business is confidential unless the lender or 59-11 export business consents to disclosure of the information. 59-12 CHAPTER 484. INDUSTRY RECRUITMENT 59-13 Sec. 484.001. Major Employer Development Programs. (a) The 59-14 Office may develop and plan programs for the purpose of promoting 59-15 and encouraging the location and expansion of major industrial, 59-16 manufacturing, and recycling enterprises within this state and may 59-17 coordinate, with the consent of local governments, the activities 59-18 of the local governments related to the programs, including 59-19 financing options available under existing law and this section for 59-20 that purpose. The Office shall contract with the Partnership to 59-21 perform the Office's duties and exercise its powers and implement 59-22 and administer the program under this subchapter to the fullest 59-23 extent permitted by the Texas Constitution. 59-24 (b) To assist the Office in exercising its powers under 59-25 Subsection (a), the Texas Major Employer Development Corporation is 60-1 created to assist the Office and act on behalf of the Office for 60-2 purposes of this section. The corporation shall be incorporated 60-3 under this chapter by filing articles of incorporation approved by 60-4 resolution of the board with the secretary of state. The 60-5 corporation shall be governed by a board of directors appointed by 60-6 the board of the Partnership. 60-7 (c) The corporation has: 60-8 (1) all powers granted to a development corporation 60-9 under the Development Corporation Act of 1979 (Article 5190.6, 60-10 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), except those powers described by 60-11 Sections 4A and 4B of that Act; 60-12 (2) all powers of the Office granted under this 60-13 section; and 60-14 (3) all powers of a nonprofit corporation granted 60-15 under the Texas Non-Profit Corporation Act (Article 1396-1.01 et 60-16 seq., Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), except as limited by this 60-17 section. 60-18 (d) All revenue bonds issued by the corporation must state 60-19 on their face that the bonds are payable solely from the revenues 60-20 pledged for that purpose and that the bonds do not and shall not 60-21 constitute a legal or moral obligation of the state, the Office, 60-22 the Partnership, or any other agency of the state. 60-23 (e) Bonds of the corporation may not be issued unless 60-24 approved by the Office, by the bond review board, and, as to 60-25 legality, by the attorney general. 61-1 (f) The corporation shall make a good faith effort to assist 61-2 disadvantaged businesses to receive at least 10 percent of the 61-3 total value of each construction contract award for construction 61-4 and the purchase of supplies, materials, services, and equipment 61-5 that the corporation expects to make in connection with the 61-6 issuance of bonds and any lease, sale, and loan agreement made 61-7 under this section by the corporation. The corporation shall 61-8 annually report to the legislature and the governor on the level of 61-9 disadvantaged business participation as it pertains to the 61-10 corporation's contracts. This report shall include recommendations 61-11 for the improvement of disadvantaged business opportunities with 61-12 the corporation. "Disadvantaged business" means a disadvantaged 61-13 business as defined by Section 1.02, State Purchasing and General 61-14 Services Act (Article 601b, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes). 61-15 CHAPTER 485. RURAL AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT 61-16 SUBCHAPTER A. TEXAS RURAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM 61-17 Sec. 485.001. Short Title. This subchapter may be cited as 61-18 the Texas Rural Economic Development Act. 61-19 Sec. 485.002. Purpose. (a) The legislature finds that: 61-20 (1) the health, safety, right to gainful employment, 61-21 and general welfare of the people of this state require as a public 61-22 purpose the promotion and development of new and expanded 61-23 enterprises; and 61-24 (2) communities in this state are at a critical 61-25 disadvantage in competing with communities in other states for 62-1 location or expansion of enterprises because of the availability in 62-2 all other states of financing and other special incentives. 62-3 (b) The purpose of this subchapter is to promote economic 62-4 development and employment, which is a public purpose. 62-5 (c) In administering this subchapter the Office shall give 62-6 first preference to assistance to the food and fiber processing 62-7 industries. 62-8 Sec. 485.003. Definitions. In this subchapter: 62-9 (1) "Equity" means the user's contribution to a 62-10 project in the form of cash, land, or depreciable property. 62-11 (2) "Federal agency" means the United States, the 62-12 president or a department of the United States, or a corporation, 62-13 agency, or instrumentality designated or established by the United 62-14 States. 62-15 (3) "Fund" means the Texas rural economic development 62-16 account in the general revenue fund. 62-17 (4) "Private lender" means a bank, savings bank, 62-18 savings and loan association, trust company, municipal corporation, 62-19 or insurance company, or an individual that the Office determines 62-20 is an experienced and sophisticated investor. 62-21 (5) "Project" means land, equipment, or a building, 62-22 facility, or improvement and working capital determined by the 62-23 Office to be required or suitable for the promotion of and for use 62-24 by enterprise, regardless of whether the land, equipment, building, 62-25 facility, or improvement existed before the Office's determination 63-1 or was acquired or constructed after that determination. 63-2 (6) "Qualified application" means a completed 63-3 application, including all documents and information required by 63-4 the Office and submitted by a user or private lender for a project. 63-5 (7) "Rural area" means an area that is predominantly 63-6 rural in character and designated by the Office as a rural area. 63-7 (8) "User" means an individual, a business 63-8 Partnership, corporation, or any other private entity found by the 63-9 Office to be financially responsible to assume the obligation in 63-10 connection with a project. 63-11 (9) "Institution of higher education" means any public 63-12 technical institute, public junior college, public senior college 63-13 or university, medical or dental unit, or other agency of higher 63-14 education. 63-15 (10) "Private institution of higher education" means a 63-16 private institution of higher education located in this state that 63-17 issues degrees in the state and is accredited by a recognized 63-18 accrediting agency as defined by Section 61.003, Education Code. 63-19 Sec. 485.004. Rural Affairs. The Office shall contract with 63-20 the Partnership to maintain a business unit for rural and community 63-21 development to perform the Office's duties and exercise its powers 63-22 and implement and administer the programs under this subchapter to 63-23 the fullest extent permitted by the Texas Constitution. The rural 63-24 and community development business unit shall address the special 63-25 needs of rural communities and businesses and assist those 64-1 communities and businesses. 64-2 Sec. 485.005. Loan Guarantees. (a) The Office may 64-3 guarantee not more than 90 percent of a loan made by a private 64-4 lender or to make loans to fund a project. For each guarantee the 64-5 Office shall determine: 64-6 (1) that the project is located in a rural area; 64-7 (2) the amount of equity the user must pledge or apply 64-8 to the establishment of the project; 64-9 (3) the fees charged by the Office, including 64-10 guarantee or loan fees, application fees, annual fees, and any 64-11 other costs associated with the loan guarantee or loan, as 64-12 necessary to fund the administration of this subchapter; 64-13 (4) the maximum and minimum guarantee or loan amounts, 64-14 if applicable; 64-15 (5) the permissible interest rates and amortization 64-16 requirements for a guaranteed loan or loan, as agreed on by the 64-17 private lender, the user, and the Office; 64-18 (6) the acceptable security for the Office's 64-19 participation in a project; and 64-20 (7) any other terms or conditions relating to a 64-21 guarantee or loan. 64-22 (b) The Office may not make a loan guarantee or loan, except 64-23 on approval of a qualified application submitted by a user or 64-24 private lender for a project. 64-25 (c) On approval of a qualified application and the Office's 65-1 determination that the establishment of a project has accomplished 65-2 or will accomplish the public purposes of this subchapter, the 65-3 Office may provide a loan guarantee or make a loan of not more than 65-4 90 percent of the cost of the project to a participating lender, if 65-5 the user holds funds or property in an amount or value equal to not 65-6 less than 10 percent of the cost of the project and those funds or 65-7 property are then available for and are pledged to be applied to 65-8 the establishment of the project. 65-9 (d) Before making a loan guarantee or loan, the Office must 65-10 have determined that the user has obtained from other independent 65-11 and responsible financial sources a firm commitment for all other 65-12 funds in excess of the loan guaranteed or loan made by the Office, 65-13 and that the sum of those funds and the equity to be provided by 65-14 the user are adequate for the completion and operation of the 65-15 project. 65-16 (e) This subchapter does not prohibit the use of money in 65-17 the Texas rural economic development fund in conjunction with any 65-18 other money available for the purposes of this subchapter. 65-19 (f) The Office shall report to the comptroller the name of 65-20 any user who is in default on a loan guaranteed or loan made under 65-21 this subchapter and with respect to which the Office has been 65-22 required to honor a guarantee. The comptroller may not issue a 65-23 warrant to the user while the user is in default. 65-24 Sec. 485.006. Payments not to be Made to Defaulting Users. 65-25 (a) The Office shall report to the comptroller the name of any 66-1 user who is in default on a loan guaranteed under this subchapter 66-2 and with respect to which the Office has been required to honor a 66-3 guarantee. The comptroller may not issue a warrant or initiate an 66-4 electronic funds transfer to the user while the user is in default. 66-5 (b) The comptroller may issue a warrant to the assignee of a 66-6 user who is in default only if the assignment became effective 66-7 before the user defaulted. 66-8 (c) This section does not prohibit the comptroller from 66-9 issuing a warrant or initiating an electronic funds transfer to pay 66-10 the compensation of a state officer or employee. 66-11 (d) This subsection applies when a payment is made to a user 66-12 other than through the comptroller's issuance of a warrant or the 66-13 comptroller's use of an electronic funds transfer system. 66-14 (e) A state agency may not use funds inside or outside the 66-15 state treasury to pay a user if the agency knows that the user is 66-16 in default on a loan guaranteed under this subchapter and with 66-17 respect to which the Office has been required to honor a guarantee. 66-18 (f) This subsection does not prohibit a state agency from 66-19 paying the assignee of a user who is in default if the assignment 66-20 became effective before the user defaulted. 66-21 (g) This subsection does not prohibit a state agency from 66-22 paying the compensation of a state officer or employee. 66-23 (h) The comptroller may not reimburse a state agency for a 66-24 payment that is made in violation of this subsection. 66-25 (i) In this section: 67-1 (1) "Compensation" includes wages, salaries, longevity 67-2 pay, hazardous duty pay, and emoluments that are provided in lieu 67-3 of wages or salaries. The term does not include expense 67-4 reimbursements. 67-5 (2) "State agency" means a board, commission, council, 67-6 committee, department, office, agency, or other governmental entity 67-7 in the executive, legislative, or judicial branch of state 67-8 government. The term includes an institution of higher education 67-9 as defined by Section 61.003, Education Code. 67-10 (3) "State officer or employee" means an officer or 67-11 employee of a state agency. 67-12 Sec. 485.007. Guarantee-to-Reserve Ratio. (a) The Office 67-13 may guarantee loans as provided by Section 485.005 in an amount 67-14 that exceeds the amount available in the fund. Loan guarantees may 67-15 not exceed the guarantee-to-reserve ratio set by the Office under 67-16 Subsection (b). 67-17 (b) The Office shall adopt a guarantee-to-reserve ratio that 67-18 determines the amount of loan guarantees that may be made that 67-19 exceed the amount available in the fund. The ratio of guarantees 67-20 to the amount of money available in the fund may not exceed two to 67-21 one. 67-22 (c) The Office shall review the guarantee-to-reserve ratio 67-23 annually and adjust the ratio as appropriate. In reviewing the 67-24 guarantee-to-reserve ratio, the Office shall consider the payment 67-25 experience of the loans and any recommendations of the state 68-1 auditor as provided by Subsection (d). 68-2 (d) The state auditor shall review the loan guarantee 68-3 program and payment activity and make recommendations based on that 68-4 review to the Office about the program and the guarantee-to-reserve 68-5 ratio. A recommendation to the Office shall be made not later than 68-6 September 1 of each year. 68-7 Sec. 485.008. Penalty for False Information on Application. 68-8 An applicant who knowingly provides false information in an 68-9 application under this subchapter: 68-10 (1) may not submit an application under this 68-11 subchapter before two years after the date that the application 68-12 containing the false information was submitted; and 68-13 (2) is liable to the state and any private lender 68-14 involved for any expense incurred by the state or private lender 68-15 that would have not been incurred if the applicant had not provided 68-16 the false information. 68-17 Sec. 485.009. Additional Powers and Duties. (a) The Office 68-18 shall: 68-19 (1) cooperate with industrial and economic development 68-20 agencies, users, and private lenders to promote development 68-21 activity in rural areas of this state; 68-22 (2) determine, on proper request by a user or private 68-23 lender, whether the public purpose of this subchapter has been 68-24 accomplished or will be accomplished by the establishment of a 68-25 project; 69-1 (3) accept grants from and enter into contracts with a 69-2 federal agency to accomplish the purposes of this subchapter; and 69-3 (4) contract with the Partnership to provide staff to 69-4 carry out this subchapter. The staff shall act as liaison among 69-5 the Partnership, the Office, users, private lenders, and industrial 69-6 and economic development agencies, organizations related to 69-7 industrial development agencies, and other state agencies whose 69-8 facilities and services are useful to the Partnership in carrying 69-9 out its functions under this subchapter. 69-10 (b) The Office may employ counsel, and engineering, 69-11 financial, or other consultants as required in carrying out its 69-12 functions under this subchapter. The Office may obtain 69-13 professional services in cooperation with state agencies or 69-14 independently. 69-15 (c) The Office and the Partnership may not borrow money, 69-16 incur financial obligations, or pledge the credit or taxing power 69-17 of the state, a municipality, or political subdivision of the state 69-18 in the administration of this subchapter. 69-19 Sec. 485.010. Fund. (a) The Texas rural economic 69-20 development fund is an account in the general revenue fund. The 69-21 fund consists of appropriations for interest, investment earnings, 69-22 and fees. The Office may also deposit funds issued under Chapter 69-23 488, Subchapter A in the fund. 69-24 (b) The Office may use money in the fund to establish a 69-25 reserve fund, in an amount determined by the Office as appropriate, 70-1 for bonds issued under this chapter for projects which are also 70-2 eligible under this subchapter or to insure and guarantee the bonds 70-3 in any other manner. Reserve funds for the issuance of bonds under 70-4 Chapter 488 may only be created on approval of the Product 70-5 Development Advisory Board or the Product Commercialization 70-6 Advisory Board, as applicable. Appropriated money in the fund may 70-7 be used and reused for the purposes of this subchapter. Available 70-8 funds in an amount not to exceed $700,000 may be used for the 70-9 Texas-Mexico Development Fund program or the electronic data base 70-10 established under Chapter 483. 70-11 Sec. 485.011. Directive. (a) The Office shall conduct a 70-12 detailed, comprehensive analysis of the availability of federal, 70-13 state, and local government and private sector rural economic 70-14 development business outreach and data services in Texas. The 70-15 analysis must specifically examine the availability of: 70-16 (1) integrated computerized rural economic development 70-17 data banks that provide comprehensive economic data for existing 70-18 and prospective businesses in Texas; and 70-19 (2) business information outreach service offices or 70-20 centers that provide comprehensive technical assistance, research, 70-21 consulting services, training, and other business services to small 70-22 rural communities to help businesses prepare and implement economic 70-23 development business plans and assist new business start-up 70-24 projects in Texas. 70-25 (b) In conducting the analysis required by this section, the 71-1 Office shall contract with the Partnership and shall consult with 71-2 the governor, economic development officials, economic development 71-3 experts in the private sector, and the academic community in Texas. 71-4 (c) The cost of the analysis and establishment of the rural 71-5 economic development data base required by this section may be paid 71-6 from available funds in the fund in an amount not to exceed 71-7 $300,000. 71-8 Sec. 485.012. Criteria. (a) In assessing the availability 71-9 of rural economic development data services in Texas, the Office 71-10 shall determine the capability of the data banks to provide a 71-11 socioeconomic profile of each trade area, region, or sector that 71-12 includes an inventory of the area's resource base, the area's 71-13 barriers to economic development, and an assessment of the area's 71-14 competitive position in the industrial marketplace particularly in 71-15 the area of production sharing. 71-16 (b) The Office shall determine the ability of a data bank to 71-17 compile: 71-18 (1) population data for each community and county in 71-19 Texas; 71-20 (2) data on all retail businesses by locality, county, 71-21 and community, including information on sales, types of products 71-22 and services, employees, organizational forms, and affiliations; 71-23 (3) information on all components of the health care 71-24 delivery system by community and county, including information on 71-25 physicians, hospitals, laboratories, specialized health care 72-1 providers, and institutions; 72-2 (4) information on all aspects of the transportation 72-3 system in Texas, including data on streets and highways, airline 72-4 and other air access and airports, freight lines, railroad access, 72-5 and limitations imposed through regulation, restrictions on 72-6 transportation of hazardous materials, bridges, landing facilities, 72-7 and the current condition of existing transportation facilities; 72-8 (5) a current inventory of all available industrial 72-9 facilities for lease or sale, including information regarding age, 72-10 type of construction, zoning, availability, cost, ability to 72-11 renovate, utilities, incentives, and similar data; 72-12 (6) information on all public and private utilities 72-13 available by community, area, and county, including information on 72-14 extension of public utilities into rural and nonmetropolitan areas, 72-15 and the ability of systems to support economic growth; 72-16 (7) information on police, fire, hazardous material 72-17 safety, and rescue services, including information on crime rates; 72-18 (8) information on all community, county, regional, 72-19 and state agencies and organizations, and information on what these 72-20 agencies and organizations can provide to existing and prospective 72-21 businesses in Texas; 72-22 (9) information on all primary and secondary education 72-23 programs and programs offered by institutions of higher education 72-24 by community, rural area, and county, including information on 72-25 vocational educational resources and general demographic 73-1 information on the student population; 73-2 (10) information on manufacturing facilities, 73-3 including information by community, county, and type of 73-4 manufacturer; 73-5 (11) information on financial institutions, including 73-6 size, amounts of deposits, loan policies, names of officers, and 73-7 other pertinent information to assist existing and prospective 73-8 economic development in rural areas of Texas; 73-9 (12) information weighing the relative strengths and 73-10 weaknesses of communities, counties, and other locations within 73-11 Texas regarding rural economic development opportunities; 73-12 (13) information regarding technology transfer between 73-13 federal, state, and local governments and private industry in 73-14 Texas; 73-15 (14) information regarding the flow of trade across 73-16 the border of the United States of America and the United Mexican 73-17 States and business opportunities for maquiladora operations and 73-18 other production-sharing enterprises in Texas derived from the 73-19 border trade; and 73-20 (15) information on the development of special 73-21 economic models for regional economic forecasts for Texas. 73-22 Sec. 485.013. Business Service Outreach Study. In assessing 73-23 the availability of business information outreach service offices 73-24 in Texas, the Office shall determine the capability of federal, 73-25 state, and local government and private sector programs in Texas, 74-1 including programs, that: 74-2 (1) provide a comprehensive array of data-gathering, 74-3 consulting, and training business services to existing and 74-4 prospective businesses and industries with interest in locating 74-5 operations in Texas; 74-6 (2) serve as a liaison among existing small business 74-7 development centers, state agencies, vocational educational 74-8 agencies, other community economic development organizations, and 74-9 both existing and prospective new business interests; 74-10 (3) conduct studies, including target industry 74-11 studies, for determining the benefits and costs incurred by 74-12 locating a business or industry in Texas; 74-13 (4) develop special economic models for regional 74-14 economic forecasts for Texas; 74-15 (5) analyze, develop, and disseminate to the business 74-16 community new technologies in community infrastructure development, 74-17 including water conservation and purification systems, recycling 74-18 and waste treatment systems, solar and geothermal energy sources, 74-19 disposal technologies for industrial and medical hazardous 74-20 materials and waste, and landfill operations; 74-21 (6) share with the business community information on 74-22 new product and material developments available from institutions 74-23 of higher education and government research laboratories and 74-24 agencies of the federal government; 74-25 (7) facilitate industry and community production 75-1 networks that include cottage industries in manufacturing, 75-2 industrial machining, and injection molding and that include 75-3 community industrial manufacturing cooperatives involving multiple 75-4 businesses and communities; and 75-5 (8) interface with the rural economic development data 75-6 banks, the electronic data base maintained by the Partnership, and 75-7 any other appropriate data bases and make the data available to 75-8 existing and prospective businesses in Texas. 75-9 Sec. 485.014. Review. The comptroller shall review the 75-10 implementation of 485.011-485.013 of this chapter and assist in the 75-11 carrying out the assessment of programs and activities authorized 75-12 in those sections. The comptroller shall make periodic written 75-13 reports to the appropriate committees of the legislature regarding 75-14 the studies and analyses to be prepared by the Partnership under a 75-15 contract with the Office. 75-16 Sec. 485.015. Gifts and Grants. The Office and the 75-17 Partnership may accept gifts, grants, and donations from any source 75-18 for the purposes of this subchapter. 75-19 SUBCHAPTER B. AGRICULTURE MARKET EXPANSION 75-20 Sec. 485.016. Definitions. In this subchapter: 75-21 (1) "Small business incubator" means a nonprofit 75-22 development agency that provides concentrated business assistance 75-23 services to new small agricultural enterprises. 75-24 (2) "Eligible lending institution" means a financial 75-25 institution that makes commercial loans, is a depository of state 76-1 funds, and agrees to participate in the linked deposit program and 76-2 to provide collateral equal to the amount of linked deposits placed 76-3 with it. 76-4 (3) "Eligible borrower" means a person who is in the 76-5 business or entering the business of: 76-6 (A) processing and marketing agricultural crops 76-7 in this state; 76-8 (B) producing alternative agricultural crops in 76-9 this state; 76-10 (C) producing agricultural crops in this state 76-11 the production of which has declined markedly because of natural 76-12 disasters; or 76-13 (D) producing agricultural crops in this state 76-14 using water conservation equipment for agricultural production 76-15 purposes. 76-16 (4) "Alternative agricultural crops" means crops not 76-17 customarily grown in this state but that could feasibly be produced 76-18 in this state. 76-19 (5) "Linked deposit" means a time deposit governed by 76-20 a written deposit agreement between the state and an eligible 76-21 lending institution that provides: 76-22 (A) that the eligible lending institution pay 76-23 interest on the deposit at a rate that is not less than the greater 76-24 of: 76-25 (i) the current market rate of a United 77-1 States treasury bill or note of comparable maturity minus two 77-2 percent; or 77-3 (ii) 1.5 percent; 77-4 (B) that the state not withdraw any part of the 77-5 deposit before the expiration of a period set by a written advance 77-6 notice of the intention to withdraw; and 77-7 (C) that the eligible lending institution agree 77-8 to lend the value of the deposit to an eligible borrower at a 77-9 maximum rate that is the current market rate of a United States 77-10 treasury bill or note of comparable maturity plus four percent. 77-11 (6) "Microenterprise" means a small business located 77-12 in a rural area in which the owner and the owner's family provide 77-13 the bulk of the management and a significant amount of the labor 77-14 required to operate the enterprise. Priority under this subchapter 77-15 shall be given to microenterprises which demonstrate significant 77-16 potential for expansion that will provide jobs in economically 77-17 depressed rural communities or to currently unemployed rural 77-18 residents. 77-19 (7) "Rural area" means an area which is predominantly 77-20 rural in character, being one which the Office defines and declares 77-21 to be a rural area. 77-22 Sec. 485.017. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 77-23 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 77-24 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 77-25 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 78-1 Constitution. 78-2 Sec. 485.018. Creation of Programs. (a) The Office shall 78-3 create an agricultural diversification program to: 78-4 (1) support commercial use of agricultural research 78-5 and innovation; 78-6 (2) increase the capabilities of community and 78-7 regional organizations to train and assist new or expanding 78-8 agricultural-based businesses; 78-9 (3) start small business incubators; and 78-10 (4) encourage private commercial loans for enhanced 78-11 production, processing, and marketing of certain agricultural 78-12 crops. 78-13 (b) The Office shall create a microenterprise support 78-14 program to provide financial assistance to microenterprises in 78-15 rural areas. 78-16 Sec. 485.019. Research and Innovation. (a) The Office 78-17 shall administer an agricultural diversification grant program 78-18 supporting research and innovation leading to organizational or 78-19 marketing improvement in business based on agriculture or to the 78-20 commercialization of new crops, new agricultural products, or new 78-21 production processes. 78-22 (b) A recipient of a grant under this section must be a 78-23 nonprofit organization such as a university, community college, or 78-24 other institution affiliated with a small business in a project 78-25 meeting the requirements of Subsection (a) of this section. 79-1 (c) A grant recipient under this section must match the 79-2 amount of the state grant with an equal amount of other money, with 79-3 at least one-half of the matching money coming from the private 79-4 sector. 79-5 (d) The Office shall review and evaluate each grant 79-6 application submitted under this section and award the grants. 79-7 (e) A grant under this section may not exceed $50,000. 79-8 Sec. 485.020. Microenterprise Support Program Loans. 79-9 (a) The Office may administer a loan program supporting 79-10 established and proposed microenterprises in rural areas by 79-11 providing loans to expand, modernize, or otherwise improve 79-12 established microenterprises and to begin operation of proposed 79-13 microenterprises. 79-14 (b) A proposed microenterprise loan applicant may receive a 79-15 loan of up to $15,000 to begin operation of the microenterprise. 79-16 (c) An established microenterprise loan applicant may 79-17 receive a loan of up to $30,000 to expand, modernize, or otherwise 79-18 improve an established microenterprise. 79-19 (d) The Office may reserve a portion of the total fund for 79-20 use in cooperative loan programs established with the participation 79-21 of other public or private lenders. 79-22 (e) Financial assistance in the form of a loan may not be 79-23 used to refinance an existing debt of a proposed or existing 79-24 microenterprise. 79-25 Sec. 485.021. Business Assistance. (a) The Office shall 80-1 create an agricultural diversification grant program to increase 80-2 the capabilities of community and regional organizations to provide 80-3 training and assistance to new and expanding businesses based on 80-4 agriculture. 80-5 (b) A recipient of a grant under this section must be a 80-6 nonprofit community or regional organization such as a community 80-7 college or council of government. 80-8 (c) A grant recipient under this section must match the 80-9 amount of the state grant with an equal amount of other money. 80-10 (d) The Office shall evaluate each grant application 80-11 submitted under this section and award the grants. 80-12 (e) A grant under this section may not exceed $50,000. 80-13 Sec. 485.022. Small Business Incubators. (a) The Office 80-14 shall create an agricultural diversification grant program to 80-15 provide seed money for self-financing small business incubators. 80-16 These incubators shall provide business services to small 80-17 enterprises that process or market agricultural crops in this state 80-18 or that produce alternative agricultural crops in this state. 80-19 (b) A recipient of a grant under this section must be a 80-20 local nonprofit organization such as a community college or council 80-21 of government. 80-22 (c) A grant recipient under this section must match the 80-23 amount of the state grant with assets valued at $3 for every $1 of 80-24 the state grant. The state grant must be used primarily for 80-25 professional services. The local matching share may be in the form 81-1 of land, buildings, business assistance, and dedicated loan pools 81-2 as well as cash contributions. 81-3 (d) The Office shall evaluate each grant application under 81-4 this section and award the grants. 81-5 (e) A grant under this section may not exceed $100,000. 81-6 Sec. 485.023. Linked Deposit Program. (a) The Office may 81-7 establish a linked deposit program to encourage commercial lending 81-8 for the enhanced production, processing, and marketing of certain 81-9 agricultural crops and for the purchase of water conservation 81-10 equipment for agricultural production purposes. 81-11 (b) The Office shall promulgate rules for the loan portion 81-12 of the linked deposit program. The rules must include: 81-13 (1) a list of the categories of crops customarily 81-14 grown in Texas; 81-15 (2) a list of crops that are alternative agricultural 81-16 crops; 81-17 (3) a list of crops the production of which has 81-18 declined markedly because of natural disasters; and 81-19 (4) identification of the types of equipment 81-20 considered as water conservation equipment for agricultural 81-21 production purposes. 81-22 (c) In order to participate in the linked deposit program, 81-23 an eligible lending institution may solicit loan applications from 81-24 eligible borrowers. 81-25 (d) After reviewing an application and determining that the 82-1 applicant is eligible and creditworthy, the eligible lending 82-2 institution shall send the application for a linked deposit loan to 82-3 the Office. 82-4 (e) The eligible lending institution shall certify the 82-5 interest rate applicable to the specific eligible borrower and 82-6 attach it to the application sent to the Office. 82-7 (f) After reviewing each linked deposit loan application, 82-8 the Office shall recommend to the state the acceptance or rejection 82-9 of the application. 82-10 (g) After acceptance of the application, the comptroller 82-11 shall place a linked deposit with the applicable eligible lending 82-12 institution for the period the comptroller considers appropriate. 82-13 The comptroller may not place a deposit for a period extending 82-14 beyond the state fiscal biennium in which it is placed. Subject to 82-15 the limitation described by Section 485.026 of this subchapter, the 82-16 comptroller may place time deposits at an interest rate described 82-17 by Section 485.016(5)(A) of this subchapter, notwithstanding any 82-18 order of the State Depository Board to the contrary. 82-19 (h) Before the placing of a linked deposit, the eligible 82-20 lending institution and the state, represented by the comptroller 82-21 and the Office, shall enter into a written deposit agreement 82-22 containing the conditions on which the linked deposit is made. 82-23 (i) If a lending institution holding linked deposits ceases 82-24 to be a state depository, the comptroller may withdraw the linked 82-25 deposits. 83-1 (j) The Office may adopt rules that create a procedure for 83-2 determining priorities for loans granted under this subchapter. 83-3 Each rule adopted must state the policy objective of the rule. The 83-4 policy objectives of the rules may include preferences to: 83-5 (1) achieve adequate geographic distribution of loans; 83-6 (2) assist certain industries; 83-7 (3) encourage certain practices including water 83-8 conservation; and 83-9 (4) encourage value-added processing of agricultural 83-10 products. 83-11 Sec. 485.024. Compliance. (a) On accepting a linked 83-12 deposit, an eligible lending institution must loan money to 83-13 eligible borrowers in accordance with the deposit agreement and 83-14 this subchapter. The eligible lending institution shall forward a 83-15 compliance report to the Office. 83-16 (b) The Office shall monitor compliance with this subchapter 83-17 and inform the comptroller of noncompliance on the part of an 83-18 eligible lending institution. 83-19 Sec. 485.025. State Liability Prohibited. The state is not 83-20 liable to an eligible lending institution for payment of a 83-21 principal, interest, or any late charges on a loan made to an 83-22 eligible borrower. A delay in payment or default on a loan by an 83-23 eligible borrower does not affect the validity of the deposit 83-24 agreement. Linked deposits are not an extension of the state's 83-25 credit within the meaning of any state constitutional prohibition. 84-1 Sec. 485.026. Limitations in Program. (a) At any one time, 84-2 not more than $5 million may be placed in linked deposits under 84-3 this subchapter. 84-4 (b) The maximum amount of a loan under this subchapter to 84-5 process and market Texas agricultural crops is $500,000. The 84-6 maximum amount of a loan under this subchapter to produce 84-7 alternative agricultural crops in this state is $250,000. The 84-8 maximum amount of a loan under this subchapter to purchase water 84-9 conservation equipment for agricultural production purposes is 84-10 $250,000. 84-11 (c) A loan granted pursuant to this subchapter must be 84-12 applied to the purchase or lease of land, equipment, seed, 84-13 fertilizer, direct marketing facilities, or processing facilities, 84-14 or to payment for professional services. 84-15 Sec. 485.027. Criteria for all Grants. In evaluating 84-16 applications for grants under this subchapter, the Office shall 84-17 consider: 84-18 (1) the scientific and technical merit of the 84-19 application; 84-20 (2) the anticipated benefits arising from a grant to 84-21 the applicant, including both potential job creation and commercial 84-22 benefits to the agricultural industry; 84-23 (3) the market value of the assets of the applicant; 84-24 (4) the qualifications of the applicant; 84-25 (5) the reasonableness of the applicant's proposed 85-1 budget; 85-2 (6) the extent and level of other funding sources for 85-3 the applicant; 85-4 (7) the funding commitments needed for continued 85-5 development; and 85-6 (8) the present involvement and support of local 85-7 organizations, including educational organizations. 85-8 Sec. 485.028. Money for Grants and Loans. The Office may 85-9 accept gifts and grants of money from the federal government, local 85-10 governments, or private corporations or other persons for use in 85-11 making grants and loans under the agricultural diversification 85-12 program and the rural microenterprise support program. The 85-13 legislature may appropriate money for grants and loans under the 85-14 programs. 85-15 Sec. 485.029. Rural Microenterprise Development Fund. The 85-16 rural microenterprise development fund is an account in the general 85-17 revenue fund. Money appropriated to the Office for use in making 85-18 loans under the rural microenterprise support program, other 85-19 amounts received by the state for loans made under the program, and 85-20 other money received by the Office for the program and required by 85-21 the Office to be deposited in the fund shall be deposited to the 85-22 credit of the fund. The fund shall operate as a revolving fund, 85-23 the contents of which shall be applied and reapplied for the 85-24 purposes of the rural microenterprise support program. 86-1 SUBCHAPTER C. FOOD AND FIBERS COMMISSION 86-2 Sec. 485.030. Policy. The purpose of the Texas Food and 86-3 Fibers Commission is to contract with universities engaged in 86-4 agricultural research in the state to conduct surveys, research, 86-5 and investigations relating to the production and increased use of 86-6 cotton, oilseed products, wool, mohair, and other textile products. 86-7 Sec. 485.031. Organization. The Texas Food and Fibers 86-8 Commission is composed of: 86-9 (1) the chancellor of The Texas A&M University System; 86-10 (2) the president of The University of Texas at 86-11 Austin; 86-12 (3) the president of Texas Tech University; 86-13 (4) the president of Texas Woman's University; and 86-14 (5) a designee of the board. 86-15 Sec. 485.032. Administration. (a) Each member of the 86-16 commission shall serve a two-year term as chairman, rotating the 86-17 service in the order in which the members are listed in Section 86-18 485.031. A person may not serve as a member of the commission or 86-19 act as the general counsel to the commission if the person is 86-20 required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government 86-21 Code, because of the person's activities for compensation on behalf 86-22 of a profession related to the operation of the commission. 86-23 (b) The commission shall meet at least once each year at a 86-24 time designated by the chairman. 86-25 (c) Each member of the commission shall designate a person 87-1 on his or her staff as a liaison officer to work with commission 87-2 committees, commission staff, and agencies contracting or 87-3 consulting with the commission. 87-4 (d) The executive director of the commission shall 87-5 coordinate the operations of the committees and staff personnel and 87-6 shall oversee the work done for the commission by contracting or 87-7 consulting agencies. 87-8 (e) The commission shall adopt rules for commission and 87-9 committee proceedings, including rules that prescribe the policies 87-10 and procedures to be followed in awarding contracts. 87-11 Sec. 485.033. Powers and Duties. (a) The commission shall 87-12 conduct surveys, research, and investigations relating to the use 87-13 of cotton fiber, cottonseed, oilseed products, other products of 87-14 the cotton plant, wool, mohair, and other textile products. 87-15 (b) Rules adopted by the commission must require the 87-16 submission of summaries of research being conducted or previously 87-17 conducted at institutions of The Texas A&M University System or at 87-18 The University of Texas at Austin, Texas Tech University, or Texas 87-19 Woman's University that are similar to proposals submitted to the 87-20 commission for research funding. The rules must also require the 87-21 submission of reports of marketing activities of the Office, the 87-22 Partnership, and the department of agriculture that are related to 87-23 proposals submitted to the commission for research funding. To 87-24 improve coordination and prevent duplication of research, the 87-25 commission shall consider the summaries and reports before awarding 88-1 a contract for research. 88-2 (c) In performing its functions, the commission may contract 88-3 with the Partnership, any state educational institution, state 88-4 agency, or federal agricultural agency to perform services for the 88-5 commission or for the use of facilities. The commission may 88-6 compensate the contracting agency or other entity from money 88-7 appropriated for the purposes of this subchapter. 88-8 (d) The awarding of contracts by the commission is 88-9 restricted to contracts for surveys, research, or investigations of 88-10 cotton, cottonseed oil or other related oilseed products, wool, 88-11 mohair, or other related textile products. 88-12 (e) The commission shall give priority in the awarding of 88-13 contracts under this subchapter to contracts for production 88-14 research, but the commission may award a research contract for 88-15 marketing processes. The commission may not award a contract for a 88-16 direct marketing or other promotional program. 88-17 (f) The commission shall develop and implement policies that 88-18 provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before 88-19 the commission and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of 88-20 the commission. 88-21 Sec. 485.034. Natural Fibers Committee. (a) The chairman 88-22 of the commission, with the approval of the commission, shall 88-23 appoint not more than 25 persons to a natural fibers committee. 88-24 Persons appointed to the committee must be representative of the 88-25 interests of persons in the natural fibers industry. 89-1 (b) Members of the committee serve for terms of two years 89-2 expiring on the last day of the state fiscal year in odd-numbered 89-3 calendar years. 89-4 (c) The committee shall elect a chairman annually. 89-5 (d) The committee shall meet at least once each year at a 89-6 time specified by the committee chairman for the purpose of: 89-7 (1) reviewing the research done for the commission in 89-8 areas involving natural fibers; and 89-9 (2) making annual recommendations to the commission 89-10 for implementation of programs and further research. 89-11 Sec. 485.035. Food Protein Committee. (a) The chairman of 89-12 the commission, with the approval of the commission, shall appoint 89-13 not more than 25 persons to a food protein committee. Persons 89-14 appointed to the committee must be representative of the interests 89-15 of persons in the food protein industry. 89-16 (b) Members of the committee serve for terms of two years 89-17 expiring on the last day of the state fiscal year in odd-numbered 89-18 calendar years. 89-19 (c) The committee shall elect a chairman annually. 89-20 (d) The committee shall meet at least once each year at a 89-21 time specified by the committee chairman for the purpose of: 89-22 (1) reviewing the research done for the commission in 89-23 areas involving food protein; and 89-24 (2) making annual recommendations to the commission 89-25 for implementation of programs and further research. 90-1 Sec. 485.036. Executive Advisory Committee. (a) The 90-2 executive advisory committee of the commission is composed of: 90-3 (1) The chairman of the natural fibers committee; 90-4 (2) the chairman of the food protein committee; 90-5 (3) five persons selected from the members of either 90-6 of the industry advisory committees, appointed by the chairman of 90-7 the commission with approval of the commission; 90-8 (4) a representative of the Department of Agriculture 90-9 appointed by the commissioner of agriculture; and 90-10 (5) a representative of the Partnership. 90-11 (b) In making appointments to the executive advisory 90-12 committee from the industry advisory committees, the chairman of 90-13 the commission shall appoint one representative of the wool 90-14 industry, one representative of the mohair industry, two 90-15 representatives of the cotton industry, and one representative of 90-16 the food protein industry. 90-17 (c) Members of the executive advisory committee appointed by 90-18 the chairman of the commission serve for terms of two years 90-19 expiring on the last day of the state fiscal year in odd-numbered 90-20 calendar years. A member of the executive advisory committee 90-21 appointed as a representative of the Department of Agriculture or 90-22 the Partnership serves at the pleasure of the appointing officer. 90-23 (d) The executive advisory committee shall elect a chairman 90-24 annually. 90-25 (e) The executive advisory committee shall meet semiannually 91-1 at times specified by the committee chairman. The chairman of the 91-2 commission may call or authorize special meetings of the executive 91-3 advisory committee. 91-4 (f) At its meetings, the executive advisory committee shall 91-5 review the work of the commission and advise the commission on 91-6 matters relating to the programs and budgets of the commission. 91-7 Sec. 485.037. Finances. (a) The commission may accept, for 91-8 the purposes of this subchapter, gifts and grants from the United 91-9 States and from private sources, subject only to limitations 91-10 contained in the gift or grant. 91-11 (b) The commission shall prepare annually a complete and 91-12 detailed written report accounting for all funds received and 91-13 disbursed by the commission during the preceding fiscal year. The 91-14 annual report must meet the reporting requirements applicable to 91-15 financial reporting provided in the General Appropriations Act. 91-16 (c) Funds appropriated for the purposes of this subchapter 91-17 shall be expended at the direction of the commission on claims 91-18 approved by a majority of the commission. 91-19 (d) The total amount of appropriations, exclusive of 91-20 legislative appropriations of gifts from private sources, expended 91-21 or encumbered by the commission for purposes of research during a 91-22 fiscal biennium may not exceed the amount of private gifts or 91-23 grants to the commission expended or encumbered for research during 91-24 the same period. 91-25 (e) All money paid to the commission under this subchapter 92-1 is subject to Subchapter F, Chapter 404, Government Code. 92-2 Sec. 485.038. Staff; Administration. (a) The commission 92-3 shall contract with the Partnership to provide necessary staffing 92-4 and to administer the functions under this subchapter. 92-5 Sec. 485.039. Restrictions on Employment. (a) An officer, 92-6 employee, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the 92-7 field of food or fiber marketing or research may not be a member of 92-8 the commission. 92-9 (b) A person who is the spouse of an officer, manager, or 92-10 paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of food 92-11 or fiber marketing or research may not be a member of the 92-12 commission. 92-13 (c) For the purposes of this section, a Texas trade 92-14 association is a nonprofit, cooperative, and voluntarily joined 92-15 association of business or professional competitors in this state 92-16 designed to assist its members and its industry or profession in 92-17 dealing with mutual business or professional problems and in 92-18 promoting their common interest. 92-19 Sec. 485.040. Public Interest Information and Complaints. 92-20 (a) The commission shall prepare information of public interest 92-21 describing the functions of the commission and the procedures by 92-22 which complaints are filed with and resolved by the commission. 92-23 The commission shall make the information available to the public 92-24 and appropriate state agencies. 92-25 (b) The commission by rule shall establish methods by which 93-1 consumers and service recipients are notified of the name, mailing 93-2 address, and telephone number of the commission for the purpose of 93-3 directing complaints to the commission. The commission may provide 93-4 for that notification on each registration form, application, or 93-5 written contract for services of an individual or entity regulated 93-6 under this chapter. 93-7 (c) The commission shall keep a file about each written 93-8 complaint filed with the commission that it has authority to 93-9 resolve. The commission shall provide to the person filing the 93-10 complaint and the persons or entities complained about the 93-11 commission's policies and procedures pertaining to complaint 93-12 investigation and resolution. 93-13 (d) The commission, at least quarterly and until final 93-14 disposition of the complaint, shall notify the person filing the 93-15 complaint and the persons or entities complained about of the 93-16 status of the complaint unless the notice would jeopardize an 93-17 undercover investigation. 93-18 (e) The commission shall keep information about each 93-19 complaint filed with the commission. The information must include: 93-20 (1) the date the complaint is received; 93-21 (2) the name of the complainant; 93-22 (3) the subject matter of the complaint; 93-23 (4) a record of all persons contacted in relation to 93-24 the complaint; 93-25 (5) a summary of the results of the review or 94-1 investigation of the complaint; and 94-2 (6) for complaints in which the commission took no 94-3 action, an explanation of the reason the complaint was closed 94-4 without action. 94-5 (f) The commission is subject to the open meetings law, 94-6 Chapter 551, Government Code, and the administrative procedure law, 94-7 Chapter 2001, Government Code. 94-8 CHAPTER 486. DIRECT BUSINESS SERVICES 94-9 SUBCHAPTER A. SMALL BUSINESS ASSISTANCE 94-10 Sec. 486.001. Definitions. In this chapter: 94-11 (1) "Historically underutilized business" means: 94-12 (A) a corporation formed for the purpose of 94-13 making a profit in which at least 51 percent of all classes of the 94-14 shares of stock or other equitable securities is owned by one or 94-15 more persons who are socially disadvantaged because of their 94-16 identification as members of certain groups, including black 94-17 Americans, Hispanic Americans, women, Asian Pacific Americans, and 94-18 American Indians, who have suffered the effects of discriminatory 94-19 practices or similar insidious circumstances over which they have 94-20 no control; 94-21 (B) a sole proprietorship formed for the purpose 94-22 of making a profit that is 100 percent owned, operated, and 94-23 controlled by a person described by Paragraph (A); 94-24 (C) a business Partnership formed for the 94-25 purpose of making a profit in which 51 percent of the assets and 95-1 interest in the business Partnership is owned by one or more 95-2 persons described by Paragraph (A). Those persons must have 95-3 proportionate interest in the control, operation, and management of 95-4 the business Partnership's affairs; 95-5 (D) a joint venture in which each entity in the 95-6 joint venture is a historically underutilized business under this 95-7 subdivision; or 95-8 (E) a supplier contract between a historically 95-9 underutilized business under this subdivision and a prime 95-10 contractor under which the historically underutilized business is 95-11 directly involved in the manufacture or distribution of the 95-12 supplies or materials or otherwise warehouses and ships the 95-13 supplies. 95-14 (2) "SBA Office" means the Office of Small Business 95-15 Assistance. 95-16 (3) "Small business" means a corporation, business 95-17 Partnership, sole proprietorship, or other legal entity that: 95-18 (A) is formed for the purpose of making a 95-19 profit; 95-20 (B) is independently owned and operated; and 95-21 (C) has fewer than 100 employees or less than $1 95-22 million in annual gross receipts. 95-23 Sec. 486.002. Office of Small Business Assistance; Contract 95-24 with Partnership. The Office of Small Business Assistance is 95-25 within the Office. The SBA office shall contract with the 96-1 Partnership to perform the SBA office's duties and exercise its 96-2 powers and implement and administer the programs under this 96-3 subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 96-4 Constitution. 96-5 Sec. 486.003. Duties. (a) The SBA office shall: 96-6 (1) examine the role of small and historically 96-7 underutilized businesses in the state's economy and the 96-8 contribution of small and historically underutilized businesses in 96-9 generating economic activity, expanding employment opportunities, 96-10 promoting exports, stimulating innovation and entrepreneurship, and 96-11 bringing new and untested products and services to the marketplace; 96-12 (2) serve as the principal advocate in the state on 96-13 behalf of small and historically underutilized businesses and 96-14 provide advice in the consideration of administrative requirements 96-15 and legislation that affect small and historically underutilized 96-16 businesses; 96-17 (3) evaluate the effectiveness of efforts of state 96-18 agencies and other entities to assist small and historically 96-19 underutilized businesses and make appropriate recommendations to 96-20 assist the development and strengthening of small and historically 96-21 underutilized businesses; 96-22 (4) identify specific instances in which regulations 96-23 inhibit small and historically underutilized business development 96-24 and to the extent possible identify conflicting state policy goals; 96-25 (5) determine the availability of financial and other 97-1 resources to small and historically underutilized businesses and 97-2 recommend methods for: 97-3 (A) increasing the availability of equity 97-4 capital and other forms of financial assistance to small and 97-5 historically underutilized businesses; 97-6 (B) generating markets for the goods and 97-7 services of small and historically underutilized businesses; 97-8 (C) providing more effective education, 97-9 training, and management and technical assistance to small and 97-10 historically underutilized businesses; and 97-11 (D) providing assistance to small and 97-12 historically underutilized businesses in complying with federal, 97-13 state, and local laws; 97-14 (6) describe the reasons for small and historically 97-15 underutilized business successes and failures, ascertain the 97-16 related factors that are particularly important in this state, and 97-17 recommend actions for increasing the success rate of small and 97-18 historically underutilized businesses; 97-19 (7) serve as a focal point for receiving complaints 97-20 and suggestions concerning state government policies and activities 97-21 that affect small and historically underutilized businesses; 97-22 (8) assist with the resolution of problems among state 97-23 agencies and small and historically underutilized businesses; 97-24 (9) develop and advocate proposals for changes in 97-25 state policies and activities that adversely affect small and 98-1 historically underutilized businesses; 98-2 (10) provide to legislative committees and state 98-3 agencies information on the effects of proposed policies or actions 98-4 that affect small and historically underutilized businesses; 98-5 (11) enlist the assistance of public and private 98-6 agencies, businesses, and other organizations in disseminating 98-7 information about state programs and services that benefit small 98-8 and historically underutilized businesses and information regarding 98-9 means by which small and historically underutilized businesses can 98-10 use those programs and services; 98-11 (12) provide information and assistance relating to 98-12 establishing, operating, or expanding small and historically 98-13 underutilized businesses; 98-14 (13) establish and operate a statewide toll-free 98-15 telephone service providing small and historically underutilized 98-16 businesses with ready access to the services offered by the SBA 98-17 office; 98-18 (14) assist small and historically underutilized 98-19 businesses by: 98-20 (A) identifying: 98-21 (i) sources of financial assistance for 98-22 those businesses; and 98-23 (ii) financial barriers to those 98-24 businesses; 98-25 (B) establishing financing programs for those 99-1 businesses that aid in overcoming financial barriers; 99-2 (C) matching those businesses with sources of 99-3 financial assistance; and 99-4 (D) assisting those businesses with the 99-5 preparation of applications for loans from governmental or private 99-6 sources; 99-7 (15) sponsor meetings, to the extent practicable in 99-8 cooperation with public and private educational institutions, to 99-9 provide training and disseminate information beneficial to small 99-10 and historically underutilized businesses; 99-11 (16) assist small and historically underutilized 99-12 businesses in their dealings with federal, state, and local 99-13 governmental agencies and provide information regarding 99-14 governmental requirements affecting small and historically 99-15 underutilized businesses; 99-16 (17) perform research, studies, and analyses of 99-17 matters affecting the interests of small and historically 99-18 underutilized businesses; 99-19 (18) develop and implement programs to encourage 99-20 governmental agencies, public sector business associations, and 99-21 other organizations to provide useful services to small and 99-22 historically underutilized businesses; 99-23 (19) use available resources within the state, such as 99-24 small business development centers, educational institutions, and 99-25 nonprofit associations, to coordinate the provision of management 100-1 and technical assistance to small and historically underutilized 100-2 businesses in a systematic manner; 100-3 (20) publish newsletters, brochures, and other 100-4 documents containing information useful to small and historically 100-5 underutilized businesses; 100-6 (21) identify successful small and historically 100-7 underutilized business assistance programs provided by other states 100-8 and determine the feasibility of adapting those programs for 100-9 implementation in this state; 100-10 (22) establish an outreach program to make the 100-11 existence of the Office known to small and historically 100-12 underutilized businesses and potential clients throughout the 100-13 state; 100-14 (23) adopt rules necessary to carry out this 100-15 subchapter; 100-16 (24) identify potential business opportunities for 100-17 small and historically underutilized businesses in the border 100-18 region and develop programs to maximize those opportunities; 100-19 (25) identify potential business opportunities for 100-20 small and historically underutilized businesses in rural areas of 100-21 this state and develop programs to maximize those opportunities; 100-22 and 100-23 (26) perform any other functions necessary to carry 100-24 out the purposes of this subchapter. 100-25 (b) The SBA office may provide community-based services to 101-1 carry out its duties under this subtitle, including the creation of 101-2 a pilot program to evaluate the merits of locating full-time 101-3 personnel outside the Austin headquarters. This pilot program will 101-4 give first preference to serving economically distressed areas, 101-5 rural areas, or disadvantaged businesses or assisting development 101-6 of specific industries. The SBA office may require areas served by 101-7 these personnel to provide in-kind or cash contributions as 101-8 necessary to support these personnel. A report will be submitted 101-9 to the legislature describing the effectiveness of this method for 101-10 delivering services from the SBA office to address specific 101-11 economic needs. 101-12 Sec. 486.004. Rules Affecting Small Businesses. (a) On 101-13 receiving notice of a proposed state agency rule affecting small 101-14 businesses, the SBA office shall notify affected small businesses 101-15 of the proposed rule through business or trade organizations. The 101-16 notice must include the substance of the proposed rule and the 101-17 time, place, and manner in which interested parties may present 101-18 their views and comments on the proposed rule. 101-19 (b) The SBA office may coordinate with the business 101-20 ombudsman of the Partnership agencies to consolidate and simplify 101-21 rules, compliance requirements, and reporting requirements that 101-22 affect small businesses. 101-23 (c) The SBA office may recommend the elimination, 101-24 consolidation, or amendment of existing rules or laws that have a 101-25 disproportionately adverse effect on small businesses. 102-1 Sec. 486.005. Assistance From Other Agencies. (a) The SBA 102-2 office shall obtain from the agencies of this state appropriate 102-3 information needed by the SBA office to carry out its duties under 102-4 this subchapter, and those agencies shall assist the Office in 102-5 furthering the purposes of this subchapter. 102-6 (b) The comptroller may assist the SBA office in furthering 102-7 the purposes of this subtitle by entering into interagency 102-8 agreements with the SBA office, other agencies or the Partnership 102-9 to: 102-10 (1) establish an outreach program to make businesses, 102-11 local governments, and nonprofit organizations in this state aware 102-12 of the services available from state and federal agencies; 102-13 (2) establish and operate a statewide toll-free 102-14 telephone service to provide Texans, especially those in rural 102-15 areas, with a single point of access to economic development 102-16 information specifically related to industrial expansion and 102-17 recruitment, small business assistance, community economic 102-18 development assistance, travel and tourism, education and training, 102-19 leadership development, and grant and loan information. 102-20 (3) use field offices and personnel of the comptroller 102-21 to disseminate brochures, documents, and other information useful 102-22 to businesses in this state; 102-23 (4) collect and compile data about business 102-24 opportunities in this state, in cooperation with the data 102-25 depository defined in Chapter 487 of this subtitle, and provide 103-1 timely information to persons and organizations seeking this 103-2 information. 103-3 Sec. 486.006. Contracts Awarded to Small or Historically 103-4 Underutilized Businesses. Each state agency shall keep statistical 103-5 data and other records on the number of contracts awarded by the 103-6 agency to small or historically underutilized businesses. 103-7 Sec. 486.007. Loans to Economically Distressed Communities. 103-8 (a) The SBA office may create innovative loan programs to aid 103-9 small businesses in communities experiencing defense-related 103-10 layoffs or other severe economic problems, as designated by the 103-11 Office. 103-12 (b) These programs may be established in cooperation with 103-13 community-based organizations and other private or public lenders. 103-14 They may include loans or loan guarantees to businesses that do not 103-15 qualify for other sources of public or private credit. 103-16 SUBCHAPTER B. SMALL BUSINESS LINKED DEPOSIT PROGRAM 103-17 Sec. 486.008. Definitions. In this subchapter: 103-18 (1) "Eligible borrower" means a person who proposes to 103-19 begin operating a small business in a distressed community or a 103-20 historically underutilized business. 103-21 (2) "Eligible lending institution" means a financial 103-22 institution that makes commercial loans, is a depository of state 103-23 funds, and agrees to participate in the linked deposit program 103-24 established by this subchapter and to provide collateral equal to 103-25 the amount of linked deposits placed with it. 104-1 Sec. 486.009. Linked Deposit. A linked deposit is a time 104-2 deposit governed by a written deposit agreement between the state 104-3 and an eligible lending institution that provides: 104-4 (1) that the eligible lending institution pay interest 104-5 on the deposit at a rate that is not less than the greater of: 104-6 (A) the current market rate of a United States 104-7 treasury bill or note of comparable maturity minus two percent; or 104-8 (B) 1.5 percent; and 104-9 (2) that the eligible lending institution agree to 104-10 lend the value of the deposit to an eligible borrower at a maximum 104-11 rate that is the current market rate of a United States treasury 104-12 bill or note of comparable maturity plus four percent. 104-13 Sec. 486.010. Linked Deposit Program. (a) The Office may 104-14 contract with the Partnership to establish a linked deposit program 104-15 to encourage commercial lending for the development of small 104-16 businesses in distressed communities and historically underutilized 104-17 businesses and to perform the Office's duties and exercise its 104-18 powers and implement and administer the program under this 104-19 subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 104-20 Constitution. 104-21 (b) The Office shall adopt rules for the loan portion of the 104-22 linked deposit program. 104-23 (c) In order to participate in the linked deposit program, 104-24 an eligible lending institution may solicit loan applications from 104-25 eligible borrowers. 105-1 (d) After reviewing an application and determining that the 105-2 applicant is an eligible borrower and is creditworthy, the eligible 105-3 lending institution shall send the application for a linked deposit 105-4 loan to the Office. 105-5 (e) The eligible lending institution shall certify the 105-6 interest rate applicable to the specific eligible borrower and 105-7 attach it to the application sent to the Office. 105-8 (f) After reviewing each linked deposit loan application, 105-9 the Office shall recommend to the comptroller the acceptance or 105-10 rejection of the application. 105-11 (g) After the comptroller's acceptance of the application 105-12 and the lending institution originates a loan to an eligible 105-13 borrower, the comptroller shall place a linked deposit with the 105-14 applicable eligible lending institution for the period the 105-15 comptroller considers appropriate. The comptroller may not place a 105-16 deposit for a period extending beyond the state fiscal biennium in 105-17 which it is placed. Subject to the limitation described by Section 105-18 486.014, the comptroller may place time deposits at an interest 105-19 rate described by Section 486.009, notwithstanding any order of the 105-20 State Depository Board to the contrary. 105-21 (h) Before the placing of a linked deposit, the eligible 105-22 lending institution and the state, represented by the comptroller 105-23 and the Office, shall enter into a written deposit agreement 105-24 containing the conditions on which the linked deposit is made. The 105-25 deposit agreement must provide that: 106-1 (1) the lending institution notify the comptroller if 106-2 the borrower to which the deposit is linked defaults on the loan; 106-3 and 106-4 (2) in the event of a default the comptroller may 106-5 withdraw the linked deposit. 106-6 (i) If a lending institution holding linked deposits ceases 106-7 to be a state depository, the comptroller may withdraw the linked 106-8 deposits. 106-9 Sec. 486.011. Compliance. (a) On acceptance of its 106-10 application to receive linked deposits, an eligible lending 106-11 institution shall loan money to an eligible borrower in accordance 106-12 with the deposit agreement and this subchapter. The eligible 106-13 lending institution shall forward a compliance report to the 106-14 Office. 106-15 (b) The Office shall monitor compliance with this subchapter 106-16 and inform the state comptroller of noncompliance on the part of an 106-17 eligible lending institution. 106-18 Sec. 486.012. Designation as Distressed Community. (a) A 106-19 municipality may apply to the Office for designation of a subarea 106-20 of the municipality as a distressed community. 106-21 (b) The application must: 106-22 (1) provide evidence that the subarea of a 106-23 municipality for which the application is being made has been 106-24 traditionally recognized by custom or by previous governmental 106-25 designation as a subarea and certify that: 107-1 (A) the per capita income in the subarea is 80 107-2 percent or less of the median income of the entire municipality 107-3 filing the application; 107-4 (B) the unemployment rate in the subarea is 1.5 107-5 times higher than the average unemployment rate of the entire 107-6 municipality; and 107-7 (C) 10 percent or more of all individuals and 107-8 families in the subarea are in poverty; or 107-9 (2) certify that the subarea is part of an enterprise 107-10 zone designated under Chapter 2303. 107-11 (c) The Office shall designate the subarea for which an 107-12 application is filed as a distressed community if it determines 107-13 that the requirements of Subsection (b) have been satisfied and 107-14 that the evidence required under Subsection (b)(1), if applicable, 107-15 is sufficient. 107-16 Sec. 486.013. State and Partnership Liability Prohibited. 107-17 The state, the Office and the Partnership are not liable to an 107-18 eligible lending institution for payment of the principal, 107-19 interest, or any late charges on a loan made to an eligible 107-20 borrower. Linked deposits are not an extension of the state's 107-21 credit within the meaning of any state constitutional prohibition. 107-22 Sec. 486.014. Limitations in Program. (a) At any one time, 107-23 not more than $3 million may be placed in linked deposits under 107-24 this subchapter. 107-25 (b) The maximum amount of a loan under the linked deposit 108-1 program is $100,000. 108-2 (c) The borrower shall apply a loan granted under this 108-3 subchapter to working capital or to the purchase, construction, or 108-4 lease of capital assets, including land, buildings, and equipment. 108-5 SUBCHAPTER C. SMART JOBS FUND PROGRAM 108-6 Sec. 486.027. Definitions. In this subchapter: 108-7 (1) "Business development" includes relocation, 108-8 expansion, turnover, diversification, or technological change. 108-9 (2) "Demand occupation" means an occupation in which, 108-10 as a result of business development, there are or will be positive 108-11 growth-to-replacement ratios within the next 12 to 24 months, 108-12 according to the best available sources of state and local labor 108-13 market information. 108-14 (3) "Employee" means an individual who performs 108-15 services for another under a contract of hire, whether express or 108-16 implied, or oral or written. 108-17 (4) "Employer" means a person that employs one or more 108-18 employees. 108-19 (5) "Existing employer" means an employer that: 108-20 (A) has been liable to pay contributions under 108-21 the Texas Workforce Compensation Act (Article 5221b-1 et seq., 108-22 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes) for more than one year; 108-23 (B) has employees; and 108-24 (C) is in compliance with the reporting and 108-25 payment requirements of that Act, as determined by the Texas 109-1 Workforce Commission. 109-2 (6) "Family wage job" means a job that offers: 109-3 (A) wages equal to or greater than the state 109-4 average weekly wage; 109-5 (B) benefits, such as vacation leave, sick 109-6 leave, and insurance coverage; 109-7 (C) reasonable opportunities for continued skill 109-8 development and career path advancement; and 109-9 (D) a substantial likelihood of long-term job 109-10 security. 109-11 (7) "In-kind contribution" means a noncash 109-12 contribution of goods and services provided by an employer as all 109-13 or part of the employer's matching share of a grant or project. 109-14 (8) "Job" means employment on a basis customarily 109-15 considered full-time for the applicable occupation and industry. 109-16 (9) "Minority employer" means a business entity at 109-17 least 51 percent of which is owned by minority group members or, in 109-18 the case of a corporation, at least 51 percent of the shares of 109-19 which are owned by minority group members and that: 109-20 (A) is managed and, in daily operations, is 109-21 controlled by minority group members; and 109-22 (B) is a domestic business entity with a home or 109-23 branch office located in this state and is not a branch or 109-24 subsidiary of a foreign corporation or other foreign business 109-25 entity. 110-1 (10) "Minority group members" include: 110-2 (A) African-Americans; 110-3 (B) American Indians; 110-4 (C) Asian-Americans; and 110-5 (D) Mexican-Americans and other Americans of 110-6 Hispanic origin. 110-7 (11) "Program" means the smart jobs fund program 110-8 created under this subchapter. 110-9 (12) "Project" means a specific employment training 110-10 project developed and implemented under this subchapter. 110-11 (13) "Provider" means a person that provides 110-12 employment-related training. The term includes employers, employer 110-13 associations, labor organizations, community-based organizations, 110-14 training consultants, public and private schools, technical 110-15 institutes, junior or community colleges, senior colleges, 110-16 universities, and proprietary schools, as defined by Section 110-17 132.001, Education Code. 110-18 (14) "State average weekly wage" means the annual 110-19 average of the average weekly wage of manufacturing production 110-20 workers in this state as of September 1 of each year, as determined 110-21 by the Texas Workforce Commission under Section 3(b), Texas 110-22 Unemployment Compensation Act (Title 4, Subtitle A, Labor Code, 110-23 V.T.C.S.), adjusted for regional variances. 110-24 (15) "Targeted industry" means an industry that 110-25 promotes high-skill, high-wage jobs using Texas-available material 111-1 and human resources, as determined by the Office. 111-2 (16) "Trainee" means a participant in a project funded 111-3 under this subchapter. 111-4 (17) "Wages" means all forms of compensation or 111-5 remuneration, excluding benefits, payable for a specific period to 111-6 an employee for personal services rendered by that employee. 111-7 Sec. 486.028. Smart Jobs Fund Program; Administration. 111-8 (a) The smart jobs fund program is created in the Office as a work 111-9 force development incentive program to enhance employment 111-10 opportunities and to meet the needs of existing and new industries 111-11 in this state. The Office shall contract with the Partnership to 111-12 perform the Office's duties and exercise its powers and implement 111-13 and administer the smart jobs fund program under this subchapter to 111-14 the fullest extent permitted by the Texas Constitution. 111-15 (b) The program shall give priority to the creation and 111-16 retention of family wage jobs and focus on employers in industries 111-17 that promote high-skill, high-wage jobs in high-technology areas 111-18 and on demand occupations that provide those jobs. At least 60 111-19 percent of the money spent under the program shall be used for 111-20 projects that assist existing employers. 111-21 Sec. 486.029. Rules. The Office shall adopt rules as 111-22 necessary to implement the program. 111-23 Sec. 486.030. Funding. (a) The smart jobs fund is 111-24 established as a special trust fund in the custody of the state 111-25 comptroller separate and apart from all public money or funds of 112-1 this state. The fund is composed of: 112-2 (1) money transferred into the fund under Section 9e, 112-3 Texas Unemployment Compensation Act (Section 204.123, Labor Code, 112-4 V.T.C.S.); 112-5 (2) gifts, grants, and other donations received by the 112-6 Office or the Partnership for the fund; and 112-7 (3) any amounts appropriated by the legislature for 112-8 the program. 112-9 (b) The program is funded through the smart jobs fund. 112-10 (c) Money in the smart jobs fund may be used for program 112-11 administration, marketing expenses, and evaluation of the program. 112-12 These costs in any fiscal year may not exceed five percent of the 112-13 total funds appropriated to the smart jobs fund in that year. 112-14 (d) If, during any three consecutive months, the balance in 112-15 the smart jobs fund exceeds 0.15 percent of the total taxable wages 112-16 for the four calendar quarters ending the preceding June 30, as 112-17 computed under Section 7(c)(8), Texas Unemployment Compensation Act 112-18 (Section 204.062(c), Labor Code, V.T.C.S.), the Office shall 112-19 immediately transfer the excess to the Unemployment Compensation 112-20 Fund created under Section 9(a), Texas Unemployment Compensation 112-21 Act (Section 203.021, Labor Code, V.T.C.S.). 112-22 Sec. 486.031. Grants. (a) The Office may award grants from 112-23 the smart jobs fund for projects that meet the requirements of this 112-24 subchapter. The Office shall attempt to ensure that at least 20 112-25 percent of the total dollar amount of grants awarded under the 113-1 program are awarded to minority employers. 113-2 (b) The program is job-driven. A grant may not be awarded 113-3 unless each employer participating in the project certifies that: 113-4 (1) a job or job opening exists or will exist at the 113-5 end of the project for which the grant is sought; and 113-6 (2) the job or job opening will be filled by a 113-7 participant in the project. 113-8 (c) A grant may not be awarded for a project under this 113-9 section unless each employer participating in the project certifies 113-10 that the starting wage for a new job created through the project 113-11 will be greater than 66 2/3 percent of the state average weekly 113-12 wage and that the wage for a job existing on the date that the 113-13 project is scheduled to begin will be increased to the greater of: 113-14 (1) 10 percent over the wage in effect on the day 113-15 before the date on which the project is scheduled to begin for that 113-16 job; or 113-17 (2) 75 percent of the state average weekly wage. 113-18 (d) An employer may apply for a grant under this subchapter 113-19 if the employer is required to reduce or eliminate the employer's 113-20 work force because of reductions in overall employment within an 113-21 industry or a substantial change in the skills required to continue 113-22 the employer's business because of technological changes or other 113-23 factors. In awarding a grant under this subsection, the Office may 113-24 modify the requirements of Subsection (c). Grants awarded under 113-25 this subsection for which the Office has modified the requirements 114-1 of Subsection (c) may not, in any fiscal year, exceed 10 percent of 114-2 the total dollar amount of grants awarded under the program in that 114-3 year. 114-4 (e) Unless modified by the Office under rules adopted by the 114-5 Office, a grant may not be awarded for a project unless each 114-6 employer participating in the project certifies that it will 114-7 continue to spend on nonmanagerial training an amount from private 114-8 sources equal to the average amount spent by that employer on such 114-9 training for the most recent two-year period. 114-10 (f) A grant may not be awarded for a project if the project 114-11 will impair existing contracts for services or collective 114-12 bargaining agreements, except that a project inconsistent with the 114-13 terms of a collective bargaining agreement may be undertaken with 114-14 the written concurrence of the collective bargaining unit and the 114-15 employer or employers who are parties to the agreement. 114-16 (g) During each state fiscal year the Office shall attempt 114-17 to ensure that at least 50 percent of the total dollar amount of 114-18 grants awarded under this section is awarded to small businesses, 114-19 as defined by Section 486.001. 114-20 (h) In awarding a grant under this section, the Office shall 114-21 give priority to a project that is located in an enterprise zone as 114-22 defined by Section 2303.003. 114-23 Sec. 486.032. Grant Application. (a) The following may 114-24 apply for a grant under this subchapter: 114-25 (1) one or more employers to secure training for 115-1 demand occupations in a particular industry; 115-2 (2) one or more employers acting together with an 115-3 employer organization, labor organization, or community-based 115-4 organization to secure training for demand occupations in a 115-5 particular industry; or 115-6 (3) one or more employers acting in together with a 115-7 consortium composed of one or more providers to secure training for 115-8 demand occupations in a particular industry. 115-9 (b) A grant application must be filed with the Office in a 115-10 form approved by the Office and must include a complete business 115-11 and training plan, including: 115-12 (1) the number and kind of jobs available; 115-13 (2) the skills and competencies required for the 115-14 identified jobs; 115-15 (3) the wages to be paid to trainees on successful 115-16 completion of the project; 115-17 (4) the goals, objectives, and outcome measures for 115-18 the project; 115-19 (5) the proposed curriculum for the project; and 115-20 (6) the projected cost per person enrolled, trained, 115-21 hired, and retained in employment. 115-22 (c) The Office may provide assistance to applicants in 115-23 formulating the business and training plan required under 115-24 Subsection (b). 115-25 (d) The Office shall minimize the length of the application 116-1 form. 116-2 (e) The Office shall act on a completed application not 116-3 later than the 30th day after the date on which the application is 116-4 filed with the Office. 116-5 Sec. 486.033. Matching Requirements; Exemptions. (a) Money 116-6 provided under a grant for a project must be matched by private 116-7 funds provided by the employer benefiting from the project in an 116-8 amount at least equal to the amount provided by the grant. 116-9 (b) The Office may adopt rules modifying the requirements of 116-10 Subsection (a) for employers with fewer than 50 employees and may 116-11 also adopt rules modifying the requirements of Subsection (a) for 116-12 projects that provide significant economic benefits to an entire 116-13 region of the state. 116-14 (c) Employer matches may include documented in-kind 116-15 contributions as well as wages paid to trainees during the training 116-16 period. 116-17 Sec. 486.034. Trainees. The program shall give priority to 116-18 residents of this state, including residents formerly sentenced to 116-19 the institutional division or the state jail division of the Texas 116-20 Department of Criminal Justice. 116-21 Sec. 486.035. Contracts. (a) The Office may approve any 116-22 project that meets the requirements of this subchapter. If the 116-23 Office approves a project and funds are available, the Office shall 116-24 enter into a contract with the grant applicant and with each 116-25 employer participating in the project. The contract must specify 117-1 those skills and competencies to be gained as a result of the 117-2 project. 117-3 (b) Reimbursable costs in the contract may include only 117-4 those expenses related to direct training in job-related basic 117-5 skills, including literacy skills, job-related vocational skills, 117-6 and administrative costs. Total administrative costs for any 117-7 particular project may not exceed 10 percent of the project's 117-8 expenditures. 117-9 (c) Each contract must provide a schedule for payment of 117-10 smart jobs fund money. Twenty-five percent of the grant award 117-11 shall be withheld by the Office for 90 days after the date of 117-12 completion of the project. If all of the trainees in the project 117-13 have been retained in employment for that 90-day period, the amount 117-14 of the grant award withheld shall be remitted to the employer. For 117-15 each trainee who is not retained in employment for that 90-day 117-16 period, the amount withheld shall be reduced by the amount of the 117-17 training costs for that trainee that is derived from grant money, 117-18 and any balance shall be remitted to the employer. If there is a 117-19 negative balance, the employer is liable for the amount of the 117-20 negative balance and shall remit that amount to the Office not 117-21 later than the 30th day after the date on which the employer is 117-22 notified of the negative balance by the Office. 117-23 Sec. 486.036. Annual Report. (a) The Office and the 117-24 Partnership shall report to the governor and the legislature at the 117-25 end of each fiscal year on the status of the program. 118-1 (b) The annual report must include for that fiscal year: 118-2 (1) the number of employers receiving grants under the 118-3 program; 118-4 (2) the total amount of grants awarded; 118-5 (3) the value, expressed in dollars and as a 118-6 percentage of total training expenditures, of matching 118-7 contributions made by employers; 118-8 (4) the number of small businesses, as defined by 118-9 Section 486.001, that receive grants under the program and the 118-10 total amount of the grants awarded to those businesses; 118-11 (5) the number of businesses located in enterprise 118-12 zones, as that term is defined by Chapter 2303, that receive grants 118-13 under the program and the total amount of the grants awarded to 118-14 those businesses; 118-15 (6) the geographical distribution of employers 118-16 receiving grants under the program; 118-17 (7) the total number of jobs created, enhanced, or 118-18 retained under the program, reported by region of the state and by 118-19 occupation; 118-20 (8) the wage levels of trainees entering or returning 118-21 to the work force, broken down by current employees undergoing 118-22 retraining and new hires, at three months, one year, and three 118-23 years after the conclusion of their training; 118-24 (9) the number and percentage of participating 118-25 employers that provide workers' compensation insurance coverage and 119-1 the number and percentage of employees covered; 119-2 (10) the number and percentage of participating 119-3 employers that offer health care insurance coverage and the number 119-4 and percentage of employees covered; 119-5 (11) the number and percentage of women employers and 119-6 minority employers receiving grants under the program and the total 119-7 amount of the grants awarded, broken out by group; 119-8 (12) the number and percentage of women, minority 119-9 group members, and disabled individuals participating as trainees 119-10 in training projects, broken out by group; and 119-11 (13) the number and percentage of women private 119-12 providers and private providers who are minority group members 119-13 utilized by employers in training projects, broken out by group. 119-14 Sec. 486.037. Expiration. This subchapter expires 119-15 December 31, 1999. 119-16 CHAPTER 487. TOURISM AND TRAVEL INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENT 119-17 SUBCHAPTER A. TOURISM 119-18 Sec. 487.001. Legislative Findings. The legislature finds 119-19 that: 119-20 (1) tourism development and the marketing of this 119-21 state as a travel destination is essential to the economic 119-22 well-being and growth of this state and to the full employment, 119-23 welfare, and prosperity of its citizens; and 119-24 (2) the measures authorized by this subchapter in 119-25 promoting tourism are in the public interest and serve a public 120-1 purpose of the state in promoting the welfare of the citizens of 120-2 this state economically. 120-3 Sec. 487.002. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 120-4 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 120-5 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 120-6 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 120-7 Constitution. 120-8 Sec. 487.003. Duties. The Office shall: 120-9 (1) promote and advertise within the United States and 120-10 in foreign countries, by radio, television, newspapers, and other 120-11 means considered appropriate, tourism in this state by non-Texans, 120-12 including persons from foreign countries, and distribute 120-13 promotional materials through appropriate agencies, including the 120-14 United States Travel and Tourism Agency; 120-15 (2) encourage travel by Texans to this state's scenic, 120-16 historical, natural, agricultural, educational, recreational, and 120-17 other attractions; 120-18 (3) coordinate and stimulate orderly and accelerated 120-19 development of tourist attractions throughout this state; 120-20 (4) conduct a public relations campaign to create a 120-21 responsible and accurate national and international image of this 120-22 state; and 120-23 (5) administer, with the cooperation of the Texas 120-24 Department of Transportation, highway map distribution and the 120-25 operation of travel information bureaus; 121-1 (6) administer, with the cooperation of the Texas 121-2 Department of Transportation, the publication of Texas Highways 121-3 Magazine; 121-4 (7) administer, with the cooperation of the Texas 121-5 Historical Commission, the promotion of historic sites; 121-6 (8) administer, with the cooperation of Texas Parks 121-7 and Wildlife Department the publication Texas Parks and Wildlife 121-8 magazine; 121-9 (9) encourage communities, organizations and 121-10 individuals in this state to cooperate with its program by their 121-11 activities and use of their own funds and collaborate with those 121-12 organizations and other governmental entities in the pursuit of the 121-13 objectives of this subchapter. 121-14 Sec. 487.004. Name and Picture of Living State Official. 121-15 The name or the picture of a living state official may not be used 121-16 for advertising purposes under this subchapter. 121-17 Sec. 487.005. Advertisements in Tourism Promotions. 121-18 (a) The Office may sell advertisements in travel promotions in any 121-19 medium. 121-20 (b) Proceeds from the sale of advertisements shall be 121-21 deposited in the general revenue fund and may be used for 121-22 advertising and marketing activities of the Office as provided by 121-23 Section 156.251, Tax Code. 121-24 SUBCHAPTER B. DATA DEPOSITORY 121-25 Sec. 487.006. Definition. In this subchapter "state agency" 122-1 means: 122-2 (1) a department, commission, board, or other agency 122-3 that is created by the state constitution or a state statute and is 122-4 part of any branch of state government; and 122-5 (2) a governing board and an institution of higher 122-6 education, as defined by Section 61.003, Education Code. 122-7 Sec. 487.007. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 122-8 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 122-9 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 122-10 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 122-11 Constitution. 122-12 Sec. 487.008. Duties. The Office: 122-13 (1) establish and maintain a central depository of 122-14 information, including computer retrievable files, concerning the 122-15 significant characteristics of the state and its people, economy, 122-16 land, and physical characteristics, including information 122-17 concerning employment opportunities in the state; 122-18 (2) analyze the information collected under 122-19 Subdivision (1) as well as other information and disseminate the 122-20 information and analyses to state, federal, and local agencies and 122-21 the public; 122-22 (3) collect information and compile data on the border 122-23 region for the preparation of specific plans and programs for the 122-24 border region; 122-25 (4) adopt procedures to ensure the greatest use by and 123-1 exchange among state agencies of data bases and statistical and 123-2 analytical models created by or belonging to the state; 123-3 (5) assist institutions of elementary, secondary, and 123-4 higher education to develop and expand programs of education in 123-5 international commerce, geography, and language; 123-6 (6) establish and operate a comprehensive 123-7 clearinghouse of information relating to small and historically 123-8 underutilized businesses; and 123-9 (7) develop and maintain a master file of information 123-10 on small and historically underutilized business assistance 123-11 programs provided by federal, state, and local agencies, 123-12 educational institutions, chambers of commerce, civic 123-13 organizations, community development groups, private industry 123-14 associations, and other organizations and provide comprehensive, 123-15 timely information to persons seeking that information. 123-16 Sec. 487.009. Agency Cooperation. Each state agency that 123-17 provides, collects, analyzes, or disseminates information of any 123-18 type shall execute a written agreement with the Partnership 123-19 providing for coordination of those activities with the 123-20 Partnership's activities under this subchapter. However, an agency 123-21 is not required to supply information made confidential or the 123-22 distribution of which is otherwise restricted by state law. 123-23 Sec. 487.010. Fees. The Office shall charge fees for 123-24 services provided under this subchapter. Each fee must be in the 123-25 amount necessary to cover the cost of providing the service. 124-1 CHAPTER 488. ENTREPRENEURIAL AND CAPITAL DEVELOPMENT 124-2 SUBCHAPTER A. DEVELOPMENT OF PRODUCTS 124-3 Sec. 488.001. Definitions. In this subchapter: 124-4 (1) "Director" means the director of the Office or the 124-5 director's designee. 124-6 (2) "Fund" means the product development fund. 124-7 (3) "Product" means an invention, product, device, 124-8 technique, or process, without regard to whether a patent has or 124-9 could be granted, that is or may be exploitable commercially. The 124-10 term does not refer to pure research but includes products, 124-11 devices, techniques, or processes that have advanced beyond the 124-12 theoretical stage and have or are readily capable of having a 124-13 commercial application. 124-14 (4) "Venture financing" means a revolving loan, loan 124-15 guarantee, or equity investment from the Texas product development 124-16 fund to a person for use in the development of new or improved 124-17 products. 124-18 Sec. 488.002. Texas Product Development Fund; Venture 124-19 Financing. (a) The Texas product development fund is a revolving 124-20 fund in the state treasury. The fund consists of money 124-21 appropriated to the Office, interest paid on money in the fund, 124-22 proceeds of bonds issued under this chapter, application fees, loan 124-23 repayments, guarantee fees, royalty receipts, dividend income, and 124-24 other amounts received by the state from loans, loan guarantees, 124-25 and equity investments made under this subchapter, other amounts 125-1 received by the state for loans or grants made under this 125-2 subchapter, and money acquired from federal grants or other 125-3 sources. The fund contains a program account, an interest and 125-4 sinking account, and other accounts that the Office authorizes to 125-5 be created and maintained. Money in the fund is available for use 125-6 by the Office under this subchapter. 125-7 (b) Money in the program account, minus the costs of 125-8 issuance of bonds under this subchapter and necessary costs of 125-9 administering the fund, may be used only to provide venture 125-10 financing to aid in the development and for the commercialization 125-11 of new or improved products. The Office may provide venture 125-12 financing from the fund for the purposes of designing and 125-13 constructing new facilities, rehabilitating existing facilities, 125-14 acquiring any interest in real or personal property, and providing 125-15 initial working capital to pay the cost of salaries, rents, 125-16 supplies, inventories, mortgage payments, legal services, and 125-17 utilities and telephone, travel, and other incidental costs 125-18 normally classified as working capital according to standard 125-19 accounting principles. The Office shall provide venture financing 125-20 from the fund on the terms and conditions that the Office 125-21 determines to be reasonable, appropriate, and consistent with the 125-22 purposes and objectives of the fund and this subchapter for the 125-23 purpose of financing a new or improved product that is or may be 125-24 exploitable commercially. The Office may provide venture financing 125-25 only if financing for the product being developed is not otherwise 126-1 available on reasonable terms. 126-2 (c) Before approving the provision of venture financing to a 126-3 person, the Office shall enter into an agreement with the person 126-4 under which the Office will obtain an appropriate portion of 126-5 royalties, patent rights, equitable interests, or a combination of 126-6 those royalties, rights, and interests from or in the product or 126-7 proceeds of the product for which venture financing is requested. 126-8 Contracts executed under this subchapter must include agreements to 126-9 ensure proper use of funds and the receipt of royalties, patent 126-10 rights, or equity interest, as appropriate. 126-11 Sec. 488.003. Powers and Duties. (a) The Office shall 126-12 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 126-13 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 126-14 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 126-15 Constitution. 126-16 (b) The Office may: 126-17 (1) provide venture financing to acquire, construct, 126-18 enlarge, improve, equip, sell, lease, exchange, and otherwise 126-19 dispose of property, structures, equipment, and facilities within 126-20 the state; 126-21 (2) enter into venture agreements with persons, on 126-22 terms and conditions consistent with the purposes of this 126-23 subchapter, for the advancement of venture financing to the persons 126-24 for the development of specific products; 126-25 (3) enter into agreements necessary or incidental to 127-1 the performance of its duties and the execution of its powers under 127-2 this subchapter; 127-3 (4) hold patents, copyrights, trademarks, or other 127-4 evidences of protection or exclusivity issued under the laws of the 127-5 United States, any state, or any nation; 127-6 (5) receive, hold, sell, and transfer shares of 127-7 corporate stock in a corporation formed to market, produce, 127-8 manufacture, or promote a product for which venture financing has 127-9 been provided; 127-10 (6) consent to termination, modification, forgiveness, 127-11 or other change of a term of a contractual right, payment, royalty, 127-12 contract, or agreement to which the Office is a party; 127-13 (7) accept funds from any source to carry out the 127-14 purposes of this subchapter; 127-15 (8) assist persons with obtaining alternative forms of 127-16 governmental or commercial financing for development of new or 127-17 improved products; 127-18 (9) encourage financial institutions to participate in 127-19 consortiums for investment in the development of new or improved 127-20 products; 127-21 (10) provide and pay for advisory and technical 127-22 assistance consistent with the purposes of this subchapter; 127-23 (11) engage in special programs to enhance the 127-24 development of new or improved products; and 127-25 (12) perform other functions to carry out the purposes 128-1 and requirements of this subchapter. 128-2 Sec. 488.004. Application. (a) An application for venture 128-3 financing must be delivered to the Office, together with a 128-4 reasonable application fee prescribed by the Office. The 128-5 application shall contain a business plan, containing such 128-6 information as required by the Office, including at a minimum: 128-7 (1) information regarding the history and financial 128-8 condition of the applicant, including the applicant's income 128-9 statement, and information about the applicant's present markets 128-10 and market prospects and about the integrity of the applicant's 128-11 management; 128-12 (2) a statement of the feasibility of the product for 128-13 which financing is requested, including the state of development of 128-14 the product and the likelihood of its commercialization; and 128-15 (3) a description of attempts to obtain private 128-16 financing, including documentation verifying such efforts and a 128-17 clear description of the reasons such financing was denied. 128-18 (b) The Office shall determine the following with respect to 128-19 each application for venture financing: 128-20 (1) whether the product for which financing is 128-21 requested is economically sound, and whether there is a reasonable 128-22 expectation that the product will be successful; 128-23 (2) whether the product will create or preserve jobs 128-24 and otherwise benefit the economy of the state; 128-25 (3) whether the applicant lacks the financial 129-1 resources to complete the project, and whether venture financing is 129-2 necessary because financing is unavailable in traditional capital 129-3 markets or credit has been offered on terms that would preclude the 129-4 success of the project; and 129-5 (4) whether there is reasonable assurance that the 129-6 potential revenues to be derived from the sale of the product will 129-7 be sufficient to repay any venture financing approved by the 129-8 Office. 129-9 (c) After considering the report, together with other 129-10 information that the Office considers appropriate, the Office shall 129-11 approve or deny the application for venture financing and promptly 129-12 notify the applicant of its decision. 129-13 Sec. 488.005. Information Confidential. Information 129-14 relating to a product, and the application or use of a product, and 129-15 technological and scientific information, including computer 129-16 programs, developed in whole or part by an applicant for or a 129-17 recipient of venture financing, is confidential and is not subject 129-18 to disclosure under state law or otherwise, regardless of whether 129-19 the product is patentable or capable of being registered under 129-20 copyright or trademark laws, or has a potential for being sold, 129-21 traded, or licensed for a fee; however, nothing in this subchapter 129-22 shall prevent or restrict the Office or the Partnership from 129-23 obtaining information relating to a product or process from an 129-24 applicant or recipient of a loan under this subchapter. 129-25 Sec. 488.006. Bonds. (a) The Office may issue up to $25 130-1 million of general obligation bonds authorized by Texas 130-2 Constitution, article 16, section 71, and may use the proceeds of 130-3 the bonds to provide venture financing under this subchapter. The 130-4 Office shall deposit the proceeds of the bonds in the Texas product 130-5 development fund and apply them in accordance with the resolution 130-6 authorizing the bonds. The fund and any accounts established in 130-7 the fund shall be held in trust by the comptroller for and on 130-8 behalf of the Office and the owners of the general obligation bonds 130-9 issued in accordance with this section, and may be used only as 130-10 provided by this section. Pending use, the comptroller may invest 130-11 and reinvest money in the fund in investments authorized by law for 130-12 state funds that the comptroller, consistent with the Office's 130-13 authorization of the bonds, considers appropriate. Repayments of 130-14 financial assistance provided under this subchapter, together with 130-15 earnings received on investments of the product development funds, 130-16 shall be deposited first, in the interest and sinking account as 130-17 prescribed by the Office under this subchapter and second, in any 130-18 reserve account established by the Office until that account is 130-19 fully funded as prescribed by the resolutions. If, during the time 130-20 any general obligation bonds are payable from the interest and 130-21 sinking account, the Office determines that there will not be 130-22 sufficient money in the interest and sinking account during the 130-23 following fiscal year to pay the principal of or interest on the 130-24 general obligation bonds or both the principal and interest that 130-25 are to come due during the following fiscal year, the comptroller 131-1 of public accounts shall transfer to the fund the first money 131-2 coming into the state treasury not otherwise appropriated by the 131-3 constitution in an amount sufficient to pay the obligations. 131-4 (b) The bonds may be issued from time to time in one or more 131-5 series or issues, in bearer, registered, or any other form, which 131-6 may include registered uncertificated obligations not represented 131-7 by written instruments and commonly known as book-entry 131-8 obligations, the registration of ownership and transfer of which 131-9 shall be provided for by the Office under a system of books and 131-10 records maintained by the Office or by an agent. Bonds may mature 131-11 serially or otherwise not more than 40 years from their date. 131-12 Bonds may bear no interest or may bear interest at any rate or 131-13 rates, fixed, variable, floating, or otherwise, determined by the 131-14 Office or determined pursuant to any contractual arrangements, not 131-15 to exceed the maximum net effective interest rate allowed by 131-16 Chapter 3, Acts of the 61st Legislature, Regular Session, 1969 131-17 (Article 717k-2, Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes). Interest on the 131-18 bonds may be payable at any time and the rate of interest on the 131-19 bonds may be adjusted at any time as determined by the Office or as 131-20 determined pursuant to any contractual arrangement approved by the 131-21 Office. In connection with the issuance of its bonds, the Office 131-22 may exercise the powers granted to the governing body of an issuer 131-23 in connection with the issuance of obligations under Chapter 656, 131-24 Acts of the 68th Legislature, Regular Session, 1983 (Article 717q, 131-25 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), to the extent not inconsistent with 132-1 this section. The bonds may be issued in the form and 132-2 denominations and executed in the manner and under the terms, 132-3 conditions, and details determined by the Office. If any officer 132-4 whose manual or facsimile signature appears on the bonds ceases to 132-5 be an officer, the signature remains valid and sufficient for all 132-6 purposes as if the officer had remained in office. 132-7 (c) All bonds issued by the Office under this section are 132-8 subject to review and approval by the attorney general in the same 132-9 manner and with the same effect as is provided by Chapter 656, Acts 132-10 of the 68th Legislature, Regular Session, 1983 (Article 717q, 132-11 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes). 132-12 (d) The bonds are a legal and authorized investment for a 132-13 bank, trust company, savings and loan association, insurance 132-14 company, fiduciary, trustee, or guardian or a sinking fund of a 132-15 municipality, county, school district, or political subdivision of 132-16 the state. The bonds may secure deposits of public funds of the 132-17 state, a municipality, a county, a school district, or another 132-18 political corporation or subdivision of the state. The Office may 132-19 issue bonds to refund all or part of its outstanding bonds, 132-20 including accrued but unpaid interest. The bonds, a transaction 132-21 relating to the bonds, or a profit made in the sale of the bonds is 132-22 exempt from taxation by the state, an agency or subdivision of the 132-23 state, a municipality, or a special district. 132-24 Sec. 488.007. Eligible Projects and Borrowers. (a) A loan 132-25 may be made under this subchapter only to finance a project 133-1 approved by the Office. 133-2 (b) In determining eligible projects, the Office shall give 133-3 special preference to projects that have the greatest likelihood of 133-4 commercial success and have the greatest effect on job creation and 133-5 retention in the state, specifically including but not limited to 133-6 projects in the areas of biotechnology, biomedicine, energy, 133-7 materials science, microelectronics, aerospace, marine science, 133-8 aquaculture, telecommunications, manufacturing science, and other 133-9 priority research areas as provided in Section 143.003, Education 133-10 Code. The priority research area of agriculture will be funded 133-11 according to the provisions of Subchapter D, Chapter 58, 133-12 Agriculture Code. The Office further shall give consideration to: 133-13 (1) grantees under the small business innovation 133-14 research program established under 15 U.S.C. Section 638; 133-15 (2) Texas companies formed to commercialize research 133-16 funded at least in part with state funds; and 133-17 (3) Texas companies receiving assistance from 133-18 designated state small business development centers. 133-19 Sec. 488.008. Consideration in Financing. In determining 133-20 whether to provide financing under this subchapter, the Office 133-21 shall give preference to applicants who are Texas residents doing 133-22 business in the state and performing financed activities 133-23 predominantly in the state, and then to applicants who can 133-24 demonstrate that the financed activities will take place 133-25 predominantly in this state. 134-1 Sec. 488.009. Program Coordination. The Office may 134-2 coordinate the administration and funding of the programs 134-3 established pursuant to Subchapter C and this subchapter. 134-4 Sec. 488.010. Rules; Immunity from Liability. (a) The 134-5 Office shall adopt rules establishing limits on the amount of each 134-6 loan and otherwise governing the terms and conditions of the loans, 134-7 specifically including requirements for appropriate security or 134-8 collateral and the rights and remedies of the Office in the event 134-9 of a default on the loan. 134-10 (b) The director of the Office, the executive director, a 134-11 member of the board, or other person acting on behalf of the 134-12 Partnership or the Office in executing a contract, commitment, or 134-13 agreement under this subchapter is not personally liable on the 134-14 contract, commitment, or agreement. The director of the Office, 134-15 the executive director, a member of the board, or other person 134-16 acting on behalf of the Partnership or the Office is not personally 134-17 liable for damage or injury resulting from the performance of 134-18 duties under this subchapter. 134-19 SUBCHAPTER B. SMALL BUSINESS INCUBATORS 134-20 Sec. 488.011. Definitions. In this subchapter: 134-21 (1) "Local sponsor" means an organization or entity, 134-22 including a municipality, a junior college, an institution of 134-23 higher education as defined by Section 61.003, Education Code, a 134-24 private college or university, a development corporation created 134-25 under state law, or a private organization, that enters into a 135-1 written agreement with the Office or the Partnership to establish, 135-2 operate, and administer a small business incubator or that 135-3 contracts with another organization or entity to operate or 135-4 administer a small business incubator. 135-5 (2) "Small business" means a corporation, business 135-6 Partnership, sole proprietorship, or other legal entity that: 135-7 (A) is domiciled in this state; 135-8 (B) is formed to make a profit; 135-9 (C) is independently owned and operated; and 135-10 (D) employs fewer than 25 full-time employees. 135-11 (3) "Small business incubator" means a facility or a 135-12 portion thereof within which small businesses share space, 135-13 equipment, and support personnel and have access to professional 135-14 consultants for advice related to the technical and management 135-15 aspects of conducting a commercial enterprise. 135-16 (4) "Tenant" means an entity that leases space in a 135-17 small business incubator and that is: 135-18 (A) a small business other than a retail 135-19 enterprise; or 135-20 (B) a nonprofit organization that contributes to 135-21 the economic development of the community. 135-22 Sec. 488.012. Creation of Program. The small business 135-23 incubator program is established to foster and stimulate the 135-24 development of new small businesses by providing low-interest loans 135-25 and grants to local sponsors for the establishment and operation of 136-1 small business incubators. 136-2 Sec. 488.013. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 136-3 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 136-4 exercise its powers and implement and administer the program under 136-5 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 136-6 Constitution. 136-7 Sec. 488.014. Powers and Duties. (a) The Office shall: 136-8 (1) establish guidelines regarding loan procedures, 136-9 repayment terms, security requirements, and default and remedy 136-10 provisions; 136-11 (2) make loans and grants to local sponsors; 136-12 (3) ensure that local sponsors comply with the 136-13 requirements of this subchapter; and 136-14 (4) receive and evaluate annual reports from each 136-15 local sponsor, including a financial statement for the small 136-16 business incubator operated by the sponsor, evidence that all 136-17 tenants in the facility are eligible under this subchapter, and a 136-18 list of the tenants located in the small business incubator. 136-19 (b) The Office, if it finds that a local sponsor of a small 136-20 business incubator is not complying with this subchapter, may 136-21 withdraw financial support from the incubator. 136-22 (c) The Office and the Partnership staff shall work closely 136-23 with designated local sponsors, offer advice and assistance, and 136-24 promote through advertising and other appropriate means the 136-25 concept, benefits, and availability of small business incubators. 137-1 Sec. 488.015. Duties of Local Sponsor. Each local sponsor 137-2 shall: 137-3 (1) pay, from funds other than loans or grants 137-4 provided through the small business incubator fund, not less than 137-5 50 percent of the cost of purchasing, leasing, or renovating the 137-6 small business incubator and not less than 50 percent of the cost 137-7 of operating and maintaining the small business incubator; 137-8 (2) if applicable, secure title to the small business 137-9 incubator or execute a lease for the term of the loan; 137-10 (3) market the small business incubator and secure 137-11 eligible tenants; 137-12 (4) establish policies governing the acceptance of 137-13 tenants into the small business incubator and the termination of 137-14 occupancy of tenants; 137-15 (5) establish rental and service fees; 137-16 (6) manage the physical development of the small 137-17 business incubator; 137-18 (7) provide physical space for tenants and furnish and 137-19 equip the small business incubator to provide business development 137-20 services to the tenants; 137-21 (8) provide or arrange for the provision to tenants of 137-22 bookkeeping, accounting, or other consulting services; legal 137-23 services; assistance with product development, commercialization, 137-24 and marketing; assistance in gaining access to private financial 137-25 markets; and other business development and management services; 138-1 (9) provide or arrange for the provision of 138-2 professional counseling services and information relating to 138-3 government regulations applicable to small businesses, basic 138-4 management skills, advertising, promotion, marketing, sales, 138-5 inventory controls, personnel administration, and labor relations 138-6 and provide financial counseling in areas such as venture capital, 138-7 risk management, and taxes; 138-8 (10) provide or arrange for the provision of: 138-9 (A) facility services within the small business 138-10 incubator, including secretarial services, cleaning, and building 138-11 security; 138-12 (B) conference, laboratory, and library 138-13 facilities; and 138-14 (C) duplicating machines, computers, and other 138-15 electronic equipment; 138-16 (11) encourage the sharing of information and ideas 138-17 among tenants and otherwise aid tenants; 138-18 (12) establish a local advisory committee to assist in 138-19 the performance of the duties and responsibilities provided by this 138-20 section; and 138-21 (13) submit an annual report to the Office which 138-22 includes a financial statement for the small business incubator 138-23 operated by the local sponsor, evidence that all tenants in the 138-24 facility are eligible under this subchapter, a list of tenants 138-25 located in the small business incubator, the number of jobs 139-1 provided by the small business incubator and by each tenant located 139-2 therein, the number of businesses that have left the incubator and 139-3 are still operating in the state, the number of jobs created by 139-4 these tenants, and other information requested by the Office. 139-5 Sec. 488.016. Application for Loan or Grant. (a) A local 139-6 sponsor may submit an application to the Office to obtain a loan or 139-7 grant to acquire, construct, or renovate real property to be used 139-8 as a small business incubator or to acquire equipment to be used in 139-9 the operations of a small business incubator. The application must 139-10 include: 139-11 (1) a description of the location, size, and other 139-12 physical characteristics of the building to be used as the small 139-13 business incubator; 139-14 (2) a statement of the cost of leasing, purchasing, 139-15 renovating, or constructing the building; 139-16 (3) a detailed itemization of all estimated annual 139-17 operating and maintenance costs for the operation of the small 139-18 business incubator; 139-19 (4) a statement of the amount of the loan or grant 139-20 requested; 139-21 (5) an estimate of the annual income that will be 139-22 generated by the operation of the small business incubator from 139-23 tenant fees and other sources; 139-24 (6) a statement of the value of cash contributions and 139-25 services to be provided by the local sponsor and other sources; 140-1 (7) a demonstration, through a market study or other 140-2 means, of the prospects for attracting suitable businesses to the 140-3 small business incubator and the potential for sustained use of the 140-4 small business incubator by eligible tenants; 140-5 (8) a demonstration of the ability of the local 140-6 sponsor to comply with the requirements of Section 488.015; 140-7 (9) a demonstration that the small business incubator 140-8 tenants will generate a significant number of new jobs; 140-9 (10) a demonstration that establishment of the small 140-10 business incubator is supported by local representatives of 140-11 business, labor, educational, and governmental entities; and 140-12 (11) other information the Partnership requires. 140-13 (b) The Office shall review and approve or deny each 140-14 application based on: 140-15 (1) the ability of the local sponsor to carry out the 140-16 requirements and purposes of this subchapter; 140-17 (2) the potential economic effect of the small 140-18 business incubator on the state and on the community in which the 140-19 small business incubator would be located; 140-20 (3) whether the small business incubator proposal 140-21 conforms to existing areawide and local economic development plans; 140-22 (4) the location of the small business incubator, to 140-23 encourage geographic distribution of small business incubators 140-24 across the state; and 140-25 (5) other criteria established by the Office. 141-1 Sec. 488.017. Application to Become Tenant. (a) An 141-2 application must be submitted to a local sponsor in a form approved 141-3 by the Office and must include: 141-4 (1) a description of the type of business the 141-5 applicant wishes to establish or expand; 141-6 (2) an estimate of the number of employees the 141-7 applicant will need to establish or expand the business, and a 141-8 two-year projection of future employment needs; 141-9 (3) a description of the skill and educational level 141-10 of the employees the applicant plans to hire and the ability of the 141-11 applicant to establish and operate a successful business; 141-12 (4) a general statement of the reason the applicant 141-13 wishes to be accepted into the small business incubator; and 141-14 (5) a signed acknowledgment by the applicant that the 141-15 applicant understands and accepts the obligations imposed by 141-16 Section 488.018. 141-17 (b) The local sponsor shall evaluate each applicant based on 141-18 but not limited to the following: 141-19 (1) the likelihood that the business will be 141-20 profitable or that the nonprofit tenant will be able to pay rent; 141-21 (2) whether the product to be manufactured or the 141-22 service to be rendered will be new or improved; 141-23 (3) whether the potential market for the product or 141-24 service is regional, statewide, or national; 141-25 (4) the likelihood that the business will generate a 142-1 significant number of new jobs and not eliminate existing jobs in 142-2 the community or area of the small business incubator; 142-3 (5) certification that the business is a new plant 142-4 start-up or new venture opportunity and is not an area or regional 142-5 relocation of an existing business or that it is a relocation that 142-6 will result in substantial growth of the business; and 142-7 (6) the likelihood that the business will be 142-8 substantially aided by its location in the small business 142-9 incubator. 142-10 (c) The local sponsor shall notify each applicant for small 142-11 business incubator space whose application it accepts of its 142-12 decision to accept the applicant and whether space for the 142-13 applicant in the small business incubator exists. The local 142-14 sponsor shall notify each applicant it rejects of the rejection and 142-15 shall provide the reasons for the rejection. 142-16 Sec. 488.018. Duties of Tenant. A tenant within a small 142-17 business incubator shall: 142-18 (1) pay rent determined by the local sponsor, who may 142-19 agree to defer payment of rent for a predetermined number of months 142-20 until a date by which the business is expected to have received 142-21 committed starting capital; 142-22 (2) pay utilities and other costs determined by the 142-23 local sponsor; 142-24 (3) relocate to a permanent location not later than 24 142-25 months after the date of entering the small business incubator, 143-1 except that a tenant may request suspension of this requirement for 143-2 one or more six-month periods and the local sponsor may grant such 143-3 a request on a determination that the tenant still requires the 143-4 services of the small business incubator; and 143-5 (4) provide an annual report to the local sponsor for 143-6 three years after leaving the small business incubator which 143-7 includes the number of jobs as of the end of each year and any 143-8 other information requested. 143-9 Sec. 488.019. Loans and Grants. (a) A loan or grant 143-10 provided to a local sponsor may be used only for the acquisition or 143-11 lease of land and existing buildings, the construction or 143-12 rehabilitation of buildings or other facilities, or the purchase of 143-13 equipment and furnishings necessary for the establishment and 143-14 operation of the small business incubator. 143-15 (b) A loan or grant to a local sponsor may not exceed the 143-16 lesser of $250,000 or 50 percent of total eligible project costs. 143-17 (c) A loan or grant for a facility that is currently leased 143-18 for a small business incubator may be made only if the local 143-19 sponsor has a lease for the term of the loan. 143-20 (d) Each loan must be adequately secured by a lien on 143-21 collateral of the local sponsor or guaranteed in a manner that 143-22 adequately secures the loan. 143-23 (e) The Office shall determine the rate of interest on loans 143-24 made under this subchapter. Payment of interest and principal on a 143-25 loan may be deferred at the discretion of the Office. 144-1 (f) The term of a loan may not exceed the longer of 10 144-2 years, the useful life of the property, as determined in the manner 144-3 established by the United States Department of the Treasury, or the 144-4 term of the bond issue. 144-5 Sec. 488.020. Challenge Grants. (a) The Office may award a 144-6 challenge grant to provide seed capital to a tenant to assist 144-7 development of the business. Each application for a challenge 144-8 grant must: 144-9 (1) describe the purposes for which the proposed grant 144-10 will be used, including a detailed description of the businesses 144-11 that would be assisted by the grant; 144-12 (2) explain the need for the challenge grant in 144-13 attracting private investment to the business; 144-14 (3) present a detailed plan for use of the grant, 144-15 including the amount of private investment sought, and the strategy 144-16 for obtaining those investments; and 144-17 (4) describe private investment commitments already 144-18 obtained. 144-19 (b) The Office may not deliver funds awarded as a challenge 144-20 grant unless it finds that at least $3 of private investment has 144-21 been committed for each $1 of the grant. If a recipient of a 144-22 challenge grant cannot demonstrate the commitment of those private 144-23 investments before a deadline established by the Office, the Office 144-24 shall rescind the grant or the part of the grant for which adequate 144-25 commitment has not been demonstrated. 145-1 Sec. 488.021. Confidential Information. A local sponsor, 145-2 the Partnership, the Office, or any other person may not disclose 145-3 matters of a proprietary nature, such as commercial or financial 145-4 information, trade secrets, or confidential personal information 145-5 submitted by a person or business under this subchapter without the 145-6 consent of the person or business submitting the information. 145-7 Sec. 488.022. Office Report. (a) On or before January 1 of 145-8 each year, the Office shall submit to the governor and legislature 145-9 a report showing: 145-10 (1) the number of applications submitted to the Office 145-11 for loans or grants for small business incubators; 145-12 (2) the number of applications for small business 145-13 incubators approved by the Office; 145-14 (3) the number of small business incubators created 145-15 under this subchapter; 145-16 (4) the number of tenants occupying each small 145-17 business incubator; 145-18 (5) the number of jobs provided by each small business 145-19 incubator and by each tenant; 145-20 (6) the occupancy rate of each small business 145-21 incubator; 145-22 (7) the number of businesses that have left small 145-23 business incubators and are still operating in the state and the 145-24 number of jobs those businesses have provided; 145-25 (8) the amount of funds awarded as challenge grants; 146-1 (9) the amount of private investment committed as 146-2 required by Section 488.020; and 146-3 (10) the number, types, and amounts of investments in 146-4 small businesses made with funds under Section 488.020. 146-5 (b) The Office in the report shall attempt to identify the 146-6 reasons that any businesses have left the state after starting in a 146-7 small business incubator. 146-8 Sec. 488.023. Small Business Incubator Fund. (a) The small 146-9 business incubator fund is a revolving fund in the state treasury. 146-10 (b) Money appropriated to the Office, interest paid on money 146-11 in the fund, proceeds of bonds issued under this subchapter, 146-12 pursuant to Texas Constitution, article 16, section 71, application 146-13 fees, guarantee fees, royalty receipts, dividend income, loan 146-14 repayments, and other amounts received by the state for loans, loan 146-15 guarantees, equity in investments, or grants made under this 146-16 subchapter, and any other money received by the Partnership or 146-17 Office under this chapter including federal funds and the proceeds 146-18 of any investment pools operated by the comptroller shall be 146-19 deposited to the credit of the fund. Appropriated money in the 146-20 fund may be applied and reapplied to the purposes of this 146-21 subchapter. 146-22 Sec. 488.024. Nonprofit Status. The operation of the small 146-23 business incubator for which a loan or grant is made under this 146-24 subchapter must be conducted by a public or private nonprofit 146-25 entity, and no part of its net earnings remaining after payment of 147-1 its expenses may benefit any individual, firm, or corporation. 147-2 Sec. 488.025. Bonds. (a) The Office may issue up to $20 147-3 million of general obligation bonds and may use the proceeds, less 147-4 the costs of issuance of the bonds, to carry out the small business 147-5 incubator program in accordance with the resolution authorizing the 147-6 bonds. The Office shall deposit the proceeds of the bonds in the 147-7 small business incubator fund and apply them in accordance with the 147-8 resolution authorizing the bonds. The fund and any accounts 147-9 established in the fund shall be held in trust by the state 147-10 comptroller for and on behalf of the Office and the owners of the 147-11 general obligation bonds issued in accordance with this section, 147-12 and may be used only as provided by this subchapter. Pending use, 147-13 the comptroller may invest and reinvest money in the fund in 147-14 investments authorized by law for state funds that the comptroller, 147-15 consistent with the Office's authorization of the bonds, considers 147-16 appropriate. Repayments of financial assistance provided under 147-17 this subchapter, together with earnings received on investments of 147-18 the fund, shall be deposited first, in the interest and sinking 147-19 account as prescribed by Office and second, in any reserve account 147-20 established by the Office until that account is fully funded as 147-21 prescribed by the Office. If, during the time any general 147-22 obligation bonds are payable from the interest and sinking account, 147-23 the Office determines that there will not be sufficient money in 147-24 the interest and sinking account during the following fiscal year 147-25 to pay the principal of or interest on the general obligation bonds 148-1 or both the principal and interest that are to come due during the 148-2 following fiscal year, the comptroller of public accounts shall 148-3 transfer to the fund the first money coming into the state treasury 148-4 not otherwise appropriated by the constitution in an amount 148-5 sufficient to pay the obligations. 148-6 (b) The bonds may be issued from time to time in one or more 148-7 series or issues, in bearer, registered, or any other form, which 148-8 may include registered uncertificated obligations not represented 148-9 by written instruments and commonly known as book-entry 148-10 obligations, the registration of ownership and transfer of which 148-11 shall be provided for by the Office under a system of books and 148-12 records maintained by the Office or by an agent of the Office. 148-13 Bonds may mature serially or otherwise not more than 40 years from 148-14 their date. Bonds may bear no interest or may bear interest at any 148-15 rate or rates, fixed, variable, floating, or otherwise, determined 148-16 by the Office or determined pursuant to any contractual 148-17 arrangements with the Office, not to exceed the maximum net 148-18 effective interest rate allowed by Chapter 3, Acts of the 61st 148-19 Legislature, Regular Session, 1969 (Article 717k-2, Vernon's Texas 148-20 Civil Statutes). Interest on the bonds may be payable at any time 148-21 and the rate of interest on the bonds may be adjusted at any time 148-22 determined by the Office or determined pursuant to any contractual 148-23 arrangement with the Office. In connection with the issuance of 148-24 its bonds, the Office may exercise the powers granted to the 148-25 governing body of an issuer in connection with the issuance of 149-1 obligations under Chapter 656, Acts of the 68th Legislature, 149-2 Regular Session, 1983 (Article 717q, Vernon's Texas Civil 149-3 Statutes), to the extent not inconsistent with this section. The 149-4 bonds may be issued in the form and denominations and executed in 149-5 the manner and under the terms, conditions, and details determined 149-6 by the Office. If any officer whose manual or facsimile signature 149-7 appears on the bonds ceases to be an officer, the signature remains 149-8 valid and sufficient for all purposes as if the officer had 149-9 remained in office. 149-10 (c) All bonds issued by the Office under this section are 149-11 subject to review and approval by the attorney general in the same 149-12 manner and with the same effect as is provided by Chapter 656, Acts 149-13 of the 68th Legislature, Regular Session, 1983 (Article 717q, 149-14 Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes). 149-15 (d) The bonds are a legal and authorized investment for a 149-16 bank, trust company, savings and loan association, insurance 149-17 company, fiduciary, trustee, or guardian or a sinking fund of a 149-18 municipality, county, school district, or political subdivision of 149-19 the state. The bonds may secure deposits of public funds of the 149-20 state, a municipality, a county, a school district, or another 149-21 political corporation or subdivision of the state. The Office may 149-22 issue bonds to refund all or part of its outstanding bonds, 149-23 including accrued but unpaid interest. The bonds, a transaction 149-24 relating to the bonds, or a profit made in the sale of the bonds is 149-25 exempt from taxation by the state, an agency or subdivision of the 150-1 state, a municipality, or a special district. 150-2 Sec. 488.026. Investment Pools. The Office may develop 150-3 programs encouraging the creation of local investment pools to 150-4 assist with the financing of businesses emerging from the 150-5 incubator. 150-6 Sec. 488.027. Considerations in Financing. In determining 150-7 whether to provide financing under this subchapter, the Office 150-8 shall consider the likelihood of success of the applicant and the 150-9 effect of the financing on job creation and retention in the state. 150-10 The Office shall give preference to applicants who are Texas 150-11 residents doing business in the state, and then to applicants who 150-12 can demonstrate that the financed activities will take place in 150-13 this state. 150-14 SUBCHAPTER C. PRODUCT COMMERCIALIZATION 150-15 Sec. 488.028. Definitions. In this subchapter: 150-16 (1) "Advisory board" means the Product 150-17 Commercialization Advisory Board. 150-18 (2) "Fund" means the product commercialization fund. 150-19 Sec. 488.029. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 150-20 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 150-21 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 150-22 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 150-23 Constitution. 150-24 Sec. 488.030. Fund. (a) The product commercialization fund 150-25 is an account in the general revenue fund. The fund consists of 151-1 appropriations, transfers, loan payments, and interest received on 151-2 loans made under this subchapter, gifts, donations, fees, grants, 151-3 and any other money received under this subtitle. The Office may 151-4 accept funds from any source to carry out the purposes of this 151-5 subchapter. 151-6 (b) Money in the fund may be used for making loans or loan 151-7 guarantees under this subchapter and for administrative expenses 151-8 relating to the fund. The Office may use money in the fund to 151-9 establish a reserve fund, in an amount determined by the Office as 151-10 appropriate, for bonds issued under Subchapter A for projects which 151-11 are also eligible under this subchapter or to insure and guarantee 151-12 the bonds in any other manner. Reserve funds for the issuance of 151-13 bonds under this subchapter and Subchapter A may only be created on 151-14 approval of the Product Commercialization Advisory Board or the 151-15 Product Development Advisory Board, as applicable. 151-16 Sec. 488.031. Loans. (a) The Office may make loans or loan 151-17 guarantees to finance the commercialization of new or improved 151-18 products or processes for which financing is not reasonably 151-19 available from private sources. 151-20 (b) On recommendation of the advisory board, the Office 151-21 shall adopt rules establishing limits on the amount of each loan or 151-22 loan guarantee and otherwise governing the terms and conditions of 151-23 the loans and loan guarantees, specifically including requirements 151-24 for appropriate security or collateral and the rights and remedies 151-25 of the Office in the event of a default on an obligation under the 152-1 loan or loan guarantee. Such rules shall include a requirement 152-2 that borrowers shall report to the Office and the advisory board on 152-3 the use of money distributed through this fund. 152-4 (c) An application for a loan or loan guarantee must be in 152-5 the form prescribed by the Office based on the recommendations of 152-6 the advisory board. 152-7 (d) In connection with any loan or loan guarantee made 152-8 subject to this subchapter, the Office may enter into an agreement 152-9 with the applicant under which the Office obtains royalties, patent 152-10 rights, equitable interests, or a combination of these royalties, 152-11 rights, and interests, from or in the product or proceeds of the 152-12 product for which a loan or loan guarantee is requested. Such 152-13 agreements must include provisions to ensure proper use of funds 152-14 and the receipt of royalties, patent rights, or equity interest, as 152-15 appropriate. 152-16 Sec. 488.032. Eligible Projects and Borrowers. (a) A loan 152-17 or loan guarantee may be made under this subchapter only to finance 152-18 a project approved by the advisory board and the Office. 152-19 (b) In determining eligible projects, the Office and the 152-20 advisory board shall give special preference to projects that have 152-21 the greatest likelihood of commercial success, specifically 152-22 including but not limited to projects in the areas of agriculture, 152-23 biotechnology, biomedicine, energy, materials science, 152-24 microelectronics, aerospace, marine science, aquaculture, 152-25 telecommunications, manufacturing science, recycling, and other 153-1 priority research areas as provided in Section 143.003, Education 153-2 Code. The Office and the advisory board further shall give 153-3 consideration to grantees under the small business innovation 153-4 research program established under 15 U.S.C. Section 638 as well as 153-5 to Texas companies formed to commercialize research funded at least 153-6 in part with state funds. 153-7 (c) The Office and the advisory board may make a loan or a 153-8 loan guarantee to the governing body of an enterprise zone 153-9 designated as a recycling market development zone under Chapter 489 153-10 to fund an activity that sustains or increases recycling efforts. 153-11 Sec. 488.033. Information Confidential. Information 153-12 relating to a product or process and the application or use of a 153-13 product or process, and technological and scientific information, 153-14 including computer programs, developed in whole or part by an 153-15 applicant for or recipient of a loan, is confidential and is not 153-16 subject to disclosure under state law or otherwise, regardless of 153-17 whether the product is patentable or capable of being registered 153-18 under copyright or trademark laws, or has a potential for being 153-19 sold, traded, or licensed for a fee. However, nothing in this 153-20 subchapter shall prevent or restrict the Office or the advisory 153-21 board from obtaining information relating to a product or process 153-22 from an applicant or recipient of a loan under this subchapter. 153-23 The Product Commercialization Advisory Board is not required to 153-24 deliberate in an open meeting regarding matters made confidential 153-25 under this section. Decisions or other actions as a result of the 154-1 board's deliberations are not confidential and shall be made in an 154-2 open meeting. 154-3 Sec. 488.034. Advisory Board. (a) The Product 154-4 Commercialization Advisory Board is composed of: 154-5 (1) one representative of the Texas Higher Education 154-6 Coordinating Board selected by the Texas Higher Education 154-7 Coordinating Board; and 154-8 (2) six persons appointed by the governor with the 154-9 advice and consent of the senate. 154-10 (b) In appointing members of the advisory board, the 154-11 governor may appoint persons having significant business leadership 154-12 experience with emerging technologies, particularly experience with 154-13 the transfer of research results into commercial application. 154-14 (c) Members of the advisory board serve two-year staggered 154-15 terms with the terms of four members expiring February 1 of each 154-16 odd-numbered year and the terms of three members expiring 154-17 February 1 of each even-numbered year. 154-18 (d) The governor shall appoint the advisory board's chairman 154-19 from among its members. 154-20 (e) A member of the board, advisory board, or other person 154-21 acting on behalf of the Partnership or the Office in executing a 154-22 contract, commitment, or agreement under this subchapter is not 154-23 personally liable on the contract, commitment, or agreement. 154-24 Sec. 488.035. Program Coordination. The Office may 154-25 coordinate the administration and funding of the programs 155-1 established pursuant to Subchapter A and this subchapter. 155-2 SUBCHAPTER D. SMALL BUSINESS INNOVATION RESEARCH 155-3 Sec. 488.036. Definitions. In this subchapter: 155-4 (1) "Small business" means a corporation, business 155-5 partnership, sole proprietorship, joint venture, or other business 155-6 entity operating as a for-profit concern, having not more than 500 155-7 employees, including employees employed by any subsidiary or 155-8 affiliated business entity, that otherwise meets the requirements 155-9 of the federal small business innovation research program. 155-10 (2) "Small business innovation research program" or 155-11 "SBIR" means the program established as provided by the Small 155-12 Business Innovation Development Act of 1982 (Pub. L. No. 97-219, 15 155-13 U.S.C. 638), which provides funds to small business to conduct 155-14 innovative research having commercial application. 155-15 Sec. 488.037. Notices Relating to Participation. Within 30 155-16 days after the date of the public announcement of the small 155-17 business innovation research program Phase I award winners by the 155-18 appropriate federal agency, the Office shall contact all known 155-19 Phase I award recipients whose principal place of business is 155-20 located in this state, provide them with information concerning the 155-21 program authorized by this subchapter, and advise them of the 155-22 requirements relating to the program. The recipient, at least 30 155-23 days before completion of its SBIR Phase I award period, may submit 155-24 to the Office a notice of its desire to secure research funding 155-25 under this subchapter, along with a copy of its original federal 156-1 SBIR proposal and additional information the Office requires to 156-2 assist it in determining the eligibility of the recipient for this 156-3 program. 156-4 Sec. 488.038. Eligibility. In addition to receipt of an 156-5 SBIR award, to be eligible for a state SBIR bridge award under this 156-6 subchapter a small business must: 156-7 (1) have its principal place of business in this 156-8 state; and 156-9 (2) certify that the research to be conducted will be 156-10 performed solely in this state. 156-11 Sec. 488.039. State SBIR Bridge Award. On a finding by the 156-12 Office that a Phase I award recipient whose principal place of 156-13 business is in this state has satisfactorily met all the 156-14 requirements of this subchapter, the Office shall notify the small 156-15 business that it will award the business a state SBIR bridge award. 156-16 The conditions of the state SBIR bridge award must be compatible 156-17 with and a continuation of the research to be performed under the 156-18 SBIR contract awarded by the federal agency involved and may not 156-19 exceed the amount of the federal SBIR award or $50,000, whichever 156-20 is less. The total amount of state SBIR bridge awards made by the 156-21 Office may not exceed the amount appropriated for that purpose. 156-22 Sec. 488.040. Delivery of State SBIR Bridge Award. (a) The 156-23 Office may not disburse money under this subchapter to a small 156-24 business until: 156-25 (1) the small business has completed its SBIR Phase I 157-1 research; 157-2 (2) its final Phase I report concerning the research 157-3 has been accepted by the federal agency involved; 157-4 (3) its final Phase II research proposal has been 157-5 properly submitted to the federal agency involved; and 157-6 (4) it has submitted copies of its final Phase I 157-7 report, its Phase II proposal, and a plan for commercialization to 157-8 the Office. 157-9 (b) The Office has the right to refuse to make a state SBIR 157-10 bridge award if: 157-11 (1) the commercialization plan is unacceptable; 157-12 (2) the federal funding agency has indicated that the 157-13 applicant is not being considered for a Phase II award; or 157-14 (3) the state SBIR bridge award fund is depleted. 157-15 Sec. 488.041. Prohibited Uses. This money may not be 157-16 expended for travel, equipment, or facilities. Not more than 157-17 one-third of the money awarded to a business under this subchapter 157-18 may be used to contract for research or other related services. 157-19 Sec. 488.042. Proprietary Information. Consistent with 157-20 Federal SBIR procedures, the office and the Partnership may not 157-21 disclose proprietary information if confidentiality is requested by 157-22 participants in this program. 157-23 Sec. 488.043. Report. The Office annually shall submit a 157-24 report to the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the 157-25 house of representatives detailing the results of the program, 158-1 including: 158-2 (1) the number of Texas small businesses applying for 158-3 SBIR awards; 158-4 (2) the number receiving Phase I awards; 158-5 (3) the number receiving Phase II awards; 158-6 (4) any products or processes developed as a result of 158-7 the SBIR research involved; 158-8 (5) any patents applied for or licenses granted based 158-9 on the SBIR research involved; 158-10 (6) an abstract of the SBIR Phase I and II work 158-11 performed by Texas firms; and 158-12 (7) any other information pertinent in evaluating the 158-13 program. 158-14 Sec. 488.044. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 158-15 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 158-16 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 158-17 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 158-18 Constitution. 158-19 Sec. 488.045. Funding. In addition to other funds provided 158-20 for purposes of this subchapter, the Office may utilize royalties 158-21 and equity interests derived under the provisions of Subchapter A 158-22 to carry out the program established under this section. 158-23 SUBCHAPTER E. CAPITAL DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION 158-24 Sec. 488.046. Legislative Findings. The legislature finds 158-25 that: 159-1 (1) the development and expansion of business, 159-2 commerce, and industry are essential to the economic growth of the 159-3 state and to the full employment, welfare, and prosperity of its 159-4 citizens; and 159-5 (2) the measures authorized by this subchapter and the 159-6 assistance provided by this subchapter, especially with respect to 159-7 financing, are in the public interest and serve a public purpose of 159-8 the state economically by the securing and retaining of private 159-9 business enterprises and the resulting maintenance of a higher 159-10 level of employment, economic activity, and stability. 159-11 Sec. 488.047. Definitions. In this subchapter: 159-12 (1) "Cost" has the meaning assigned that term by the 159-13 Development Corporation Act. 159-14 (2) "Development Corporation Act" means the 159-15 Development Corporation Act of 1979 (Article 5190.6, Vernon's Texas 159-16 Civil Statutes). 159-17 (3) "Project" has the meaning assigned that term by 159-18 the Development Corporation Act. 159-19 (4) "User" includes any person. 159-20 Sec. 488.048. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 159-21 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 159-22 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 159-23 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 159-24 Constitution. 159-25 Sec. 488.049. Powers and Duties Relating to Financing. 160-1 (a) The Office shall act on behalf of the state to carry out the 160-2 public purposes of this subchapter and of the Development 160-3 Corporation Act. The Office may issue bonds to finance the cost of 160-4 projects. The bonds may be secured as provided by Section 25(e) of 160-5 the Development Corporation Act. 160-6 (b) The Office has the powers that are necessary to 160-7 accomplish the purposes of this subchapter, including the powers 160-8 granted to industrial development corporations by Section 23 of the 160-9 Development Corporation Act, except those provided by Subsections 160-10 (a)(7), (8), (9), and (10) of that section, and Sections 26, 27, 160-11 and 29 of that Act. 160-12 (c) The Office may: 160-13 (1) purchase, discount, sell, assign, negotiate, and 160-14 otherwise dispose of notes, bonds, and other evidences of 160-15 indebtedness incurred to finance or refinance projects whether 160-16 secured or unsecured; 160-17 (2) administer or participate in programs established 160-18 by another person to finance or refinance projects; and 160-19 (3) acquire, hold, invest, use, and dispose of the 160-20 Office's revenues, funds, and money received from any source under 160-21 this subchapter and the proceedings authorizing the bonds issued 160-22 under this subchapter, subject only to the provisions of the Texas 160-23 Constitution, this subchapter, and any covenants relating to the 160-24 Office's bonds in classes of investments that the Office 160-25 determines. 161-1 Sec. 488.050. Bonds. Sections 483.007, 483.008, 483.009, 161-2 483.010, 483.011, 483.012, 483.013, 483.014, 483.015, and 483.016 161-3 apply to the Office's bonds issued under this subchapter to the 161-4 extent not inconsistent with this subchapter. However, bonds 161-5 issued under this subchapter may mature serially or otherwise not 161-6 more than 40 years after their date. 161-7 Sec. 488.051. Program Criteria. (a) The Office shall 161-8 establish criteria for determining which users may participate in 161-9 programs established by the Office under this subchapter. The 161-10 Office shall adopt collateral or security requirements to ensure 161-11 the full repayment of any loan, lease, or installment sale and the 161-12 solvency of any program implemented under this subchapter. The 161-13 Office must approve all leases and sale and loan agreements made 161-14 under this subchapter. 161-15 (b) Users participating in the programs established under 161-16 this subchapter shall pay the costs of applying for, participating 161-17 in, and administering and servicing the program in amounts that the 161-18 Office considers reasonable and necessary. 161-19 Sec. 488.052. Statewide Certified Development Corporation. 161-20 (a) The Office shall create a statewide certified development 161-21 corporation to carry out the purposes of the Small Business 161-22 Investment Act of 1958 (15 U.S.C. Section 697). The corporation 161-23 has the rights and powers of a nonprofit corporation incorporated 161-24 under the Texas Non-Profit Corporation Act (Article 1396-1.01 et 161-25 seq., Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes), except to the extent 162-1 inconsistent with this section. The corporation may contract with 162-2 the Office, Partnership, counsel, and other advisors its board of 162-3 directors considers necessary. 162-4 (b) The revenues and funds of the corporation shall be 162-5 deposited with one or more financial institutions chosen for that 162-6 purpose by the board of directors of the corporation. Expenses 162-7 incurred by the corporation in the operation and administration of 162-8 its programs and affairs, including expenditures for professional, 162-9 management, and legal services, shall be paid out of the fees 162-10 collected or revenues generated under this subtitle. The 162-11 corporation shall enter into a written agreement with the 162-12 Partnership for the provision of professional and management 162-13 services. 162-14 (c) A director, officer, or employee of the Office or the 162-15 Partnership is not personally liable for damage, loss, or injury 162-16 resulting from the performance of the person's services to the 162-17 statewide certified development corporation under this section or 162-18 under any contract, commitment, or agreement executed with the 162-19 corporation. 162-20 SUBCHAPTER F. CAPITAL ACCESS PROGRAM 162-21 Sec. 488.0530. Capital Access Program. The Office may 162-22 contract with the Partnership to develop, implement, and administer 162-23 a capital access fund, "the fund" to provide a loan loss reserve 162-24 for small business development. 162-25 Sec. 488.0531. Definitions. 163-1 (1) "Capital Access Loan" means a loan that is 163-2 entitled to be secured by the fund. 163-3 (2) "Financial institution" includes a bank, trust 163-4 company, banking association, savings and loan association, 163-5 mortgage company, investment bank, credit union or nontraditional 163-6 financial institution. 163-7 (3) "Fund" means the capital access account in the 163-8 general revenue fund. 163-9 (4) "Loan" includes a line of credit. 163-10 (5) "Nonprofit organization" means a private, 163-11 nonprofit, tax-exempt corporation, association or organization that 163-12 is domiciled in this state or has at least 51 percent of its 163-13 members located in this state. 163-14 (6) "Participating financial institution" means a 163-15 financial institution participating in the program. 163-16 (7) "Program" means the capital access program. 163-17 (8) "Reserve account" means an account established in 163-18 a participating financial institution on approval of the Office in 163-19 which money is deposited to serve as a source of additional revenue 163-20 to reimburse the financial institution for losses on loans enrolled 163-21 in the program. 163-22 (9) "Small business" means a corporation, Partnership, 163-23 sole proprietorship, or other legal entity that: 163-24 (A) is domiciled in this state or has at least 163-25 51 percent of its employees located in this state; 164-1 (B) is formed to make a profit; 164-2 (C) is independently owned and operated; and 164-3 (D) employs fewer than 350 full-time employees. 164-4 Sec. 488.0532. Capital Access Fund. (a) The capital access 164-5 fund is a special account in the general revenue fund. 164-6 (b) Appropriations for the implementation and administration 164-7 of this subchapter, investment earnings, fees charged under this 164-8 subchapter, and any other amounts received by the state under this 164-9 subchapter shall be deposited in the fund. 164-10 (c) Money in the fund may be appropriated only to the Office 164-11 for use in carrying out the purposes of this subchapter. 164-12 Sec. 488.0533. Transfer of Money from other Funds to the 164-13 Capital Access Fund. (a) At the beginning of each fiscal year, 164-14 the Office shall compute for the Texas exporters loan fund 164-15 established under Chapter 483, and the Texas rural economic 164-16 development fund: 164-17 (1) the amount sufficient for that fiscal year to 164-18 cover loan guarantees made under Subchapter D or F, as applicable 164-19 to each fund; 164-20 (2) the amount sufficient for the fiscal year to repay 164-21 bonds issued under Subchapter D, to carry out the purposes of 164-22 Section 481.059, or for projects that are eligible under Subchapter 164-23 F, as applicable to each fund; and 164-24 (3) the amount of loan repayments for loans made under 164-25 Subchapter D or F that will be expected to be received during the 165-1 fiscal year, as applicable to each fund. 165-2 (b) At the beginning of each fiscal year, the comptroller 165-3 for each fund described by Subsection (a) shall subtract the sum of 165-4 the amount computed by the Office under Subsection (a)(1) and 165-5 (a)(2) for the respective fund from the amount in the fund at the 165-6 beginning of the fiscal year. 165-7 (c) If a positive amount results from a computation made 165-8 under Subsection (b), the comptroller shall transfer an amount 165-9 equal to the computed amount from the fund to which the computation 165-10 relates to the capital access fund. 165-11 (d) As loan repayments are received for each fund described 165-12 by Subsection (a), the comptroller shall transfer the payments to 165-13 the capital access fund. 165-14 Sec. 488.0534. Powers of the Office in Administering the 165-15 Capital Access Fund. The Office shall have the powers necessary to 165-16 carry out the purposes of this subchapter, including the power to: 165-17 (1) make, execute, and deliver contracts, conveyances, 165-18 and other instruments necessary to the exercise of its powers; 165-19 (2) invest money at the Office's discretion in 165-20 obligations determined proper by the Office, and select and use 165-21 depositories for its money; 165-22 (3) employ personnel and counsel and pay the persons 165-23 from money in the fund legally available for this purpose; and 165-24 (4) impose and collect fees and charges in connection 165-25 with any transaction and provide for reasonable penalties for 166-1 delinquent payment of fees or charges. 166-2 Sec. 488.0535. Capital Access Program. (a) The Office 166-3 shall establish a capital access program to assist a participating 166-4 financial institution in making loans to small businesses and 166-5 nonprofit organizations that face barriers in accessing capital. 166-6 (b) The Office shall use money in the fund to make a deposit 166-7 in a participating financial institution's reserve account in an 166-8 amount specified by this subchapter to be a source of money the 166-9 institution may receive as reimbursement for losses attributable to 166-10 loans in the program. 166-11 (c) The Office shall determine the eligibility of a 166-12 financial institution to participate in the program and may set a 166-13 limit on the number of eligible financial institutions that may 166-14 participate in the program. 166-15 (d) To participate in the program, an eligible financial 166-16 institution must enter into a participation agreement with the 166-17 Office that sets out the terms and conditions under which the 166-18 Office will make contributions to the institution's reserve account 166-19 and specifies the criteria for a loan to qualify as a capital 166-20 access loan. 166-21 (e) To qualify as a capital access loan, a loan: 166-22 (1) must be made to a small business or a nonprofit 166-23 organization; 166-24 (2) must be used by the business or nonprofit 166-25 organization for any project, activity, or enterprise in this state 167-1 that fosters economic development in this state; and 167-2 (3) must meet any other criteria provided by this 167-3 subchapter. 167-4 Sec. 488.0536. Rulemaking Authority. (a) The Office shall 167-5 adopt rules relating to the implementation of the capital access 167-6 loan program and any other rules necessary to accomplish the 167-7 purposes of this subchapter. The rules may: 167-8 (1) provide for criteria under which a certain line of 167-9 credit issued by an eligible financial institution to a small 167-10 business or nonprofit organization qualifies to participate in the 167-11 program; and 167-12 (2) authorize a consortium of financial institutions 167-13 to participate in the program subject to common underwriting 167-14 guidelines. 167-15 (b) To qualify for participation in the program, a line of 167-16 credit must: 167-17 (1) be an account at a financial institution under 167-18 which the financial institution agrees to lend money to a person 167-19 from time to time to finance one or more projects, activities, or 167-20 enterprises that are authorized by this subchapter; and 167-21 (2) contain the same restrictions, to the extent 167-22 possible, that are placed on a capital access loan that is not a 167-23 line of credit. 167-24 Sec. 488.0538. Provisions Relating to Capital Access Loan. 167-25 (a) Except as otherwise provided by this subchapter, the Office 168-1 may not determine the recipient, amount, or interest rate of a 168-2 capital access loan or the fees or other requirements related to 168-3 the loan. 168-4 (b) A loan is not eligible to be enrolled under this 168-5 subchapter if the loan is for: 168-6 (1) construction or purchase of residential housing; 168-7 (2) simple real estate investments, excluding the 168-8 development or improvement of commercial real estate occupied by 168-9 the borrower's business or organization; 168-10 (3) refinancing of existing loans not originally 168-11 enrolled under this subchapter; or 168-12 (4) inside blank transactions, as defined by the 168-13 Office. 168-14 (c) The borrower of a capital access loan must apply the 168-15 loan to working capital or to the purchase, construction or lease 168-16 of capital assets, including buildings and equipment used by the 168-17 business or nonprofit organization. Working capital uses include 168-18 the cost of exporting, accounts receivable, payroll, inventory, and 168-19 other financing needs of the business or organization. 168-20 (d) A capital access loan may be sold on the secondary 168-21 market under conditions as may be determined by the Office. 168-22 Sec. 488.0539. Reserve Account. (a) On approval by the 168-23 Office and after entering into a participation agreement with the 168-24 Office, a participating financial institution making a capital 168-25 access loan shall establish a reserve account. The reserve account 169-1 shall be used by the institution only to cover any losses arising 169-2 from a default of a capital access loan made by the institution 169-3 under this subchapter or as otherwise provided by this subchapter. 169-4 (b) When a participating financial institution makes a loan 169-5 enrolled in the program, the institution shall require the borrower 169-6 to pay the institution a fee in an amount that is not less than two 169-7 percent but not more than three percent of the principal amount of 169-8 the loan, which the financial institution shall deposit in the 169-9 reserve account. The institution shall also deposit in the reserve 169-10 account an amount equal to the amount of the fee received by the 169-11 institution from the borrower under this subsection. 169-12 (c) For each capital access loan made by a financial 169-13 institution, the institution shall certify to the Office, within 169-14 the period prescribed by the Office, that the institution has made 169-15 a capital access loan, the amount the institution has deposited in 169-16 the reserve account, including the amount of fees received from the 169-17 borrower, and, if applicable, that the borrower is located in or 169-18 financing a project, activity, or enterprise in an area designated 169-19 as an enterprise zone under Chapter 2303. 169-20 (d) On receipt of a certification made under Subsection (c) 169-21 and subject to Section 488.0540, the Office shall deposit into the 169-22 institution's reserve account for each capital access loan made by 169-23 the institution: 169-24 (1) an amount equal to the amount deposited by the 169-25 institution for each loan if the institution: 170-1 (A) has assets of more than $1 billion; or 170-2 (B) has previously enrolled loans in the program 170-3 that in the aggregate are more than $2 million; 170-4 (2) an amount equal to 150 percent of the total amount 170-5 deposited under Subsection (b) for each loan if the institution is 170-6 not described by Subdivision (1); or 170-7 (3) notwithstanding Subdivisions (1) and (2), an 170-8 amount equal to 200 percent of the amount deposited under 170-9 Subsection (b) for each loan if the borrower is located in or 170-10 financing a project, activity or enterprise in an area designated 170-11 as an enterprise zone under Chapter 2303. 170-12 Sec. 488.0540. Limitations on State Contribution to Reserve 170-13 Account. (a) The amount deposited by the Office into a 170-14 participating financial institution's reserve account for any 170-15 single loan recipient may not exceed $150,000 during a three-year 170-16 period. 170-17 (b) The maximum amount the Office may deposit into a reserve 170-18 account for each capital access loan made under this subchapter is 170-19 the lesser of $35,000 or an amount equal to: 170-20 (1) eight percent of the loan amount if the borrower 170-21 is located in or financing a project, activity, or enterprise in an 170-22 area designated as an enterprise zone under Chapter 2303. 170-23 (2) six percent of the loan amount for any other 170-24 borrower. 170-25 Sec. 488.0541. Rights of State with Respect to Reserve 171-1 Account. (a) All of the money in a reserve account established 171-2 under this subchapter is the property of the state. 171-3 (b) The state is entitled to earn interest on the amount of 171-4 contributions made by the Office, borrower and institution to a 171-5 reserve account under this subchapter. The Office shall withdraw 171-6 monthly or quarterly from a reserve account the amount of the 171-7 interest earned by the state. The Office shall deposit the amount 171-8 withdrawn under this subsection into the fund. 171-9 (c) If the amount in a reserve account exceeds an amount 171-10 equal to 33 percent of the balance of the financial institution's 171-11 outstanding capital access loans, the Office may withdraw the 171-12 excess amount and deposit the amount in the fund. A withdrawal of 171-13 money authorized under this subsection may not reduce an active 171-14 reserve account to an amount that is less than $200,000. 171-15 (d) The Office shall withdraw from the institution's reserve 171-16 account the total amount in the account and any interest earned on 171-17 the account and deposit the amount in the fund when: 171-18 (1) a financial institution is no longer eligible to 171-19 participate in the program, or a participation agreement entered 171-20 into under this subchapter expires without renewal by the Office or 171-21 institution; 171-22 (2) the financial institution has no outstanding 171-23 capital access loans; and 171-24 (3) the financial institution has not made a capital 171-25 access loan within the preceding 24 months. 172-1 Sec. 488.0542. Annual Report. A participating financial 172-2 institution shall submit an annual report to the Office. The 172-3 report must: 172-4 (1) provide information regarding outstanding capital 172-5 access loans, capital access loan losses and any other information 172-6 on capital access loans the Office considers appropriate; 172-7 (2) state the total amount of loans for which the 172-8 Office has made a contribution from the fund under this subchapter; 172-9 (3) include a copy of the institution's most recent 172-10 financial statement; and 172-11 (4) include information regarding the type and size of 172-12 businesses and nonprofit organizations with capital access loans. 172-13 Sec. 488.0543. Reports and Audits. (a) The Office shall 172-14 submit to the legislature an annual status report on the activities 172-15 of the program. 172-16 (b) The financial transactions of the fund are subject to 172-17 audit by the state auditor as provided by Chapter 321. 172-18 Sec. 488.0544. State Liability Prohibited. The state is not 172-19 liable to a participating financial institution for payment of the 172-20 principal, interest, or any late charges on a capital access loan 172-21 made under this subchapter. 172-22 Sec. 488.0545. Gifts and Grants. The Office may accept 172-23 gifts, grants, and donations from any source for the purposes of 172-24 this subchapter. 173-1 SUBCHAPTER G. TEXAS LEVERAGE PROGRAM 173-2 Sec. 488.054. Definitions. In this subchapter: 173-3 (1) "Fund" means the Texas business enhancement 173-4 account in the general revenue fund. 173-5 (2) "Loan recipient" means a corporation, business 173-6 Partnership, joint venture, retail business, sole proprietorship, 173-7 cooperative, or other entity, profit or nonprofit, that is 173-8 authorized to conduct business in this state and organized for 173-9 agricultural, commercial, or industrial purposes. 173-10 (3) "Program" means the Texas business enhancement 173-11 program. 173-12 Sec. 488.055. Texas Business Enhancement Fund; Creation and 173-13 Administration. (a) The fund shall be created as a special 173-14 account in the general revenue fund and shall operate as a 173-15 guaranteed loan fund. Appropriations and other deposits to the 173-16 fund, including investment earnings and fees, shall be deposited in 173-17 the fund. The Office shall use money in the fund to make deposits 173-18 in a participating financial institution's reserve account in an 173-19 amount specified by this subchapter for each guaranteed loan made 173-20 by the institution. Money in the fund may be used only to carry 173-21 out the purposes of this subchapter. 173-22 (b) The Office shall contract with the Partnership to 173-23 perform the Office's duties and exercise its powers and implement 173-24 and administer the fund under this subchapter to the fullest extent 173-25 permitted by the Texas Constitution. 174-1 Sec. 488.056. Powers of Office. In administering the fund, 174-2 the Office has the powers necessary or convenient to carry out the 174-3 purposes of this subchapter and the fund, including any power 174-4 granted the Office under this subtitle and the power to: 174-5 (1) make, execute, and deliver contracts, conveyances, 174-6 and other instruments necessary or convenient to the exercise of 174-7 its powers; 174-8 (2) acquire insurance against loss in connection with 174-9 the Office's property, assets, or activities; 174-10 (3) invest money at the Office's discretion inn 174-11 obligations determined proper by the Office, and select and use 174-12 depositories for its money; 174-13 (4) employ personnel, private consultants, managers, 174-14 counsel, auditors, engineers, and scientists and pay them from 174-15 money in the fund legally available for this purpose; and 174-16 (5) charge, impose, and collect fees and charges in 174-17 connection with any transaction and provide for reasonable 174-18 penalties for delinquent payment of fees or charges. 174-19 Sec. 488.057. Support to Office by Other State Departments 174-20 and Agencies. Each agency of state government shall provide full 174-21 cooperation to the Office in the performance of its powers, duties, 174-22 and responsibilities. 174-23 Sec. 488.058. Provisions Relating to Loan Guarantees. 174-24 (a) The Office shall determine eligibility of a financial 174-25 institution to make guaranteed loans under this subchapter and 175-1 establish general policies governing those loans. Except as 175-2 provided by this section or by rules adopted under Subsection (f), 175-3 the Office may not determine the recipient, amount, type, or 175-4 interest rate of a loan or the fees or other requirements related 175-5 to a loan. The Office shall require a financial institution to 175-6 enter a participatory agreement with the Office before the 175-7 financial institution makes guaranteed loans under this subchapter. 175-8 (b) A financial institution making a loan guaranteed under 175-9 this subchapter shall establish a reserve account. The institution 175-10 shall collect a fee from each guaranteed loan recipient in an 175-11 amount not less than three percent nor more than five percent of 175-12 the amount of the loan and shall deposit the fee in the reserve 175-13 account. 175-14 (c) Until the first anniversary of the date a bank executes 175-15 a participatory agreement or until the time the total amount of 175-16 loans made by an institution guaranteed under this subchapter first 175-17 exceeds $1 million, whichever occurs first, the Office shall 175-18 deposit in the institution's reserve account for each guaranteed 175-19 loan made by the institution an amount equal to twice the amount of 175-20 the fee deposited by the institution for that loan. Thereafter, 175-21 the Office shall deposit in the reserve account an amount equal to 175-22 the amount deposited by the institution for each loan. 175-23 (d) The reserve account shall be used to cover any losses 175-24 arising from a loan guaranteed under this subchapter. 175-25 (e) If a loss arises from a loan that is guaranteed using 176-1 money appropriated by the General Appropriations Act, Acts of the 176-2 71st Legislature, Regular Session, 1989, and if the reserve account 176-3 then does not contain sufficient funds to cover the loss, the bank 176-4 may recover the loss later by a one-time payment when the Office 176-5 determines the reserve account contains sufficient funds. If the 176-6 amount in the reserve account equals or exceeds 33 percent of the 176-7 total amount of the institution's loans guaranteed under this 176-8 subchapter, the institution shall use the fee collected from a 176-9 guaranteed loan recipient to repay the Office's contribution to the 176-10 reserve account. Half of any interest earned on the reserve 176-11 account shall be deposited in the reserve account and the remainder 176-12 shall be used to repay the Office's contribution to the reserve 176-13 account. 176-14 (f) The Office shall adopt rules governing the length of 176-15 time within which loans guaranteed under this subchapter must be 176-16 repaid. The rules must provide for preference of loans with longer 176-17 terms. 176-18 (g) A loan guaranteed under this subchapter shall be used 176-19 for a business purpose within this state. 176-20 (h) A loan is not eligible for a guarantee under this 176-21 subchapter if it is for: 176-22 (1) construction or purchase of residential housing; 176-23 (2) simple real estate investments, excluding the 176-24 development or improvement of commercial real estate or real estate 176-25 business operations; 177-1 (3) refinancing of existing loans not originally 177-2 guaranteed under this subchapter; or 177-3 (4) inside bank transactions, as defined by the 177-4 Office. 177-5 (i) The amount deposited by the Office into a financial 177-6 institution's reserve account for any single loan recipient may not 177-7 exceed $150,000 during a three-year period. 177-8 Sec. 488.059. Reports; Audits. (a) The Office shall submit 177-9 to the legislature an annual status report on the program's 177-10 activities. 177-11 (b) The financial transactions of the fund are subject to 177-12 audit by the state auditor as provided by Chapter 321. 177-13 SUBCHAPTER H. OFFICE POWERS AND DUTIES RELATING TO ZONES 177-14 Sec. 488.060. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 177-15 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 177-16 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 177-17 Chapter 2303 to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 177-18 Constitution. 177-19 CHAPTER 489. TECHNOLOGY AND CRUCIAL INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENT 177-20 SUBCHAPTER A. SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY COUNCIL 177-21 Sec. 489.001. Purpose. The Office shall contract with the 177-22 Partnership to form The Council on Science and Technology, "the 177-23 Council", for the purpose of researching, reporting and advising 177-24 the Office on issues relating to the development of high technology 177-25 industry in the state. The goal of the Council shall be to develop 178-1 strategies for the Office which will make Texas the national leader 178-2 in science and technology cooperation, development and research. 178-3 (a) Composition of Council. The Council shall consist of 21 178-4 members appointed by the governor. The governor shall designate 178-5 the chair of the Council. The Council shall meet at the call of 178-6 the chair. 178-7 (b) Duties. The Council shall perform the duties of the 178-8 Office under this Chapter. The Office shall: 178-9 (1) review and recommend policies that will increase 178-10 the amount of basic and applied research conducted by state and 178-11 private institutions of higher education; 178-12 (2) propose policies that promote technology 178-13 development and transfer in the state, including the creation of 178-14 Partnerships that result in the establishment of new technology 178-15 industries; 178-16 (3) analyze and propose state policies that will 178-17 encourage availability and accessibility of venture capital and 178-18 commercial lending; 178-19 (4) study and make recommendations on issues that 178-20 relate directly to the improvement of the state's competitive 178-21 position in the fields of science, research and development, and 178-22 development of advanced technologies; 178-23 (5) explore methods for increasing trade and 178-24 encouraging initiatives for cooperation with trade partners for the 178-25 benefit of technology and telecommunications industries based in 179-1 this state; and 179-2 (6) identify methods and propose strategies to attract 179-3 new industry to the state. 179-4 SUBCHAPTER B. TEXAS MANUFACTURING INSTITUTE 179-5 Sec. 489.002. Establishment. The Texas Manufacturing 179-6 Institute consists of governmental agencies, educational 179-7 institutions, and other entities, involved in the promotion of 179-8 manufacturing, that join as members of the institute. 179-9 Sec. 489.003. Duties. The Office shall contract with the 179-10 Partnership to manage and administer the Texas Manufacturing 179-11 Institute. The institute shall perform the duties of the Office 179-12 under this subchapter. The Office shall: 179-13 (1) identify needs within Texas' manufacturing 179-14 infrastructure, work to meet those needs, promote Texas' 179-15 manufacturing strengths and capabilities, and communicate the 179-16 importance of manufacturing to the state's economic future; 179-17 (2) develop a program of activities that will improve 179-18 Texas' manufacturing capabilities by enhancing existing research, 179-19 educational, and technical training programs aimed at developing 179-20 and transferring new manufacturing technologies and at increasing 179-21 the skilled work force in manufacturing; 179-22 (3) take all opportunities for cooperation among 179-23 manufacturing programs of its member institutions; 179-24 (4) encourage the development of the statewide 179-25 manufacturing program among its member institutions, including the 180-1 areas of microelectronics, electronics assembly, automation and 180-2 robotics, concurrent engineering, computer integrated 180-3 manufacturing, artificial intelligence applications, and flexible 180-4 manufacturing systems; and 180-5 (5) seek opportunities to facilitate cooperative 180-6 efforts among members of the institute, other educational 180-7 institutions of this state, private research organizations, 180-8 industry, and federal laboratories. 180-9 Sec. 489.004. Policy Board. The institute is governed by a 180-10 policy board composed of one member appointed by each member 180-11 institution. The policy board shall elect the chairman from among 180-12 the policy board's members. The chairman serves a two-year term. 180-13 A person who has been chairman is not eligible to be elected 180-14 chairman. The policy board shall establish policies and strategies 180-15 necessary for the institute to accomplish the purposes of this 180-16 subchapter. 180-17 Sec. 489.005. Technical Advisory Council. The policy board 180-18 shall appoint a technical advisory council to develop 180-19 recommendations on the educational and technical program priorities 180-20 for the institute. The technical advisory council consists of one 180-21 representative from each member institution, together with an equal 180-22 number of representatives from manufacturing industry, a 180-23 representative of community and junior colleges, and a senior 180-24 representative from a professional engineering society. The 180-25 technical advisory council shall be responsible for those 181-1 activities assigned to it by the policy board. 181-2 Sec. 489.006. Public and Private Funds. The institute may 181-3 receive state-appropriated funds and use the funds as matching 181-4 funds for federal proposals and contracts to provide specialized 181-5 equipment and facilities for members of the institute and to assist 181-6 with technology transfer to Texas industry, and as seed funds for 181-7 new programs within the scope of the institute. The institute may 181-8 accept gifts, donations, and grants, including federal funds, to 181-9 support its purposes and programs. 181-10 Sec. 489.007. Disbursement Policy. Disbursement of funds 181-11 received by the institute shall be in accordance with policy 181-12 determined by the policy board subject to the laws of the state and 181-13 the policies of the member institutions. The disbursement policy 181-14 must recognize the state core support for each institution, 181-15 matching requirements for federal grants and contracts, and new 181-16 cooperative initiatives. Disbursement of funds shall reflect the 181-17 division of labor as specified in the submitted proposal. 181-18 SUBCHAPTER C. FILM AND MUSIC MARKETING 181-19 Sec. 489.008. Promotion; Duties. (a) The Office shall 181-20 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 181-21 exercise its powers and implement and administer the programs under 181-22 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 181-23 Constitution. 181-24 (b) The Office shall: 181-25 (1) promote the development of the music industry in 182-1 the state by informing members of that industry and the public 182-2 about the resources available to the state for music production; 182-3 and 182-4 (2) promote the development of the film, television, 182-5 and multimedia industries in this state by informing members of 182-6 those industries and the public of the resources available in this 182-7 state for film, television, and multimedia production. 182-8 (c) State agencies and political subdivisions of this state 182-9 shall cooperate with the Office to the greatest extent possible to 182-10 fully implement the goal of promoting the development of the music, 182-11 film, television, and multimedia industries in this state. 182-12 Sec. 489.009. Gifts and Grants. (a) The Office may accept 182-13 gifts, grants, and other funds specifically designated by the donor 182-14 or grantor for use in developing the music, film, television, and 182-15 multimedia industries of this state. 182-16 Sec. 489.010. Music, Film, Television, and Multimedia Fund. 182-17 The music, film, television, and multimedia fund is in the state 182-18 treasury. The continued existence of this fund is determined by 182-19 the provisions of S.B. No. 3, Acts of the 72nd Legislature, 1st 182-20 Called Session, 1991. All gifts, grants, and other funds received 182-21 by the Office under this subchapter shall be deposited to the 182-22 credit of the fund and may be used only for the purposes of this 182-23 chapter. 182-24 SUBCHAPTER D. TEXAS AEROSPACE COUNCIL 182-25 Sec. 489.0110. Purpose. The Office shall contract with the 183-1 Partnership to form the Texas Aerospace Council "the Council". The 183-2 Council will develop an economic strategy to provide 183-3 recommendations and alternatives for creating an environment which 183-4 will attract and retain aerospace industry resources and 183-5 investments and facilitate the diversification of nontraditional 183-6 aerospace technologies into the state economy. 183-7 Sec. 489.0111. Composition of the Council. The Council will 183-8 consist of the governor and nine members from the public and 183-9 private sector appointed by the governor. To be eligible for 183-10 appointment, a person must have demonstrated experience in 183-11 aerospace research, economic development in the private sector, 183-12 marketing, banking, or research and development in science or 183-13 engineering. Members of the Council appointed by the governor will 183-14 serve for staggered four-year terms. 183-15 Sec. 489.0112. Duties. The Council shall perform the duties 183-16 of the Office for the purposes of this Subchapter. The Office 183-17 shall encourage economic development in this state by fostering the 183-18 development of industries related to the commercialization of 183-19 aerospace and analyze space related research currently conducted in 183-20 this state and may conduct activities designed to further that 183-21 research. The Office may solicit and accept private and public 183-22 donations and grants specifically designated for the purposes of 183-23 this subchapter. The funds may be deposited in a special account 183-24 in the general revenue fund. The account may be used to administer 183-25 the functions of this Subchapter. 184-1 SUBCHAPTER E. ENERGY AND ALTERNATIVE FUELS PROMOTION 184-2 Sec. 489.0120. Purpose. The Office shall contract with the 184-3 Partnership to promote alternative energy and the natural gas 184-4 industry in the state. The Office will promote research, 184-5 information, and greater use of alternative fuels as a means of 184-6 lessening demand on foreign energy resources, ameliorating 184-7 environmental pollution, and increasing the economic well-being of 184-8 the state. 184-9 Sec. 489.0121. Duties. The Office shall develop and 184-10 implement a research, marketing, and public education plan for the 184-11 increased use of liquefied petroleum gas, natural gas, and other 184-12 alternative energy resources as fuel. The plan will include a 184-13 strategy for the promotion of the use of natural gas for vehicles 184-14 and electric power generation and facilitate the advancement of 184-15 natural gas technology. The general land office and the railroad 184-16 commission shall provide all necessary information to the Office in 184-17 order that the Office and the Partnership may carry out the 184-18 purposes of this subchapter. The Office may solicit and accept 184-19 private and public donations and grants specifically designated for 184-20 the purposes of this subchapter. The funds may be deposited in a 184-21 special account in the general revenue fund. The account may be 184-22 used to administer the functions of this subchapter. 184-23 SUBCHAPTER F. RECYCLING MARKET DEVELOPMENT 184-24 Sec. 489.013. Purpose. The Office shall contract with the 184-25 Partnership to develop and diversify the economy of this state and 185-1 develop and expand commerce in this state through sustaining and 185-2 promoting recycling enterprises. 185-3 Sec. 489.014. Definitions. In this subchapter, "enterprise 185-4 zone" and "governing body" have the meanings assigned by Chapter 185-5 2303. 185-6 Sec. 489.015. Designation as Recycling Market Development 185-7 Zone. On application by the governing body of an enterprise zone, 185-8 the Office may designate the enterprise zone as a recycling market 185-9 development zone for the development of local business and industry 185-10 in the zone to recycle materials that have served their intended 185-11 use or that are scrapped, discarded, used, surplus, or obsolete by 185-12 collecting, separating, or processing the materials for use in the 185-13 production of new products. 185-14 Sec. 489.016. Recycling Market Development Loans and Grants. 185-15 (a) The Office may make a loan or grant to the governing body of 185-16 an enterprise zone designated as a recycling market development 185-17 zone to fund an activity that sustains or increases recycling 185-18 efforts. 185-19 (b) A grant recipient under this section must match the 185-20 amount of the state grant with an equal amount of money from 185-21 another source. 185-22 (c) A grant under this section may not exceed $30,000. 185-23 (d) The Office may make loans or grants from appropriated 185-24 funds or from any special fund. 185-25 Sec. 489.017. Rulemaking. The Office shall adopt necessary 186-1 rules to implement and administer this subchapter in accordance 186-2 with the purposes of this subchapter, including rules on: 186-3 (1) criteria for designating a recycling market 186-4 development zone; 186-5 (2) designation applications, loan applications, and 186-6 grant applications; 186-7 (3) the minimum and maximum amount of a loan made 186-8 under this subchapter; 186-9 (4) application fees; and 186-10 (5) operational guidelines for loan and grant 186-11 disbursement. 186-12 CHAPTER 490. MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS 186-13 SUBCHAPTER A. LITERACY 186-14 Sec. 490.001. Literacy. (a) In this section, "Council" 186-15 means the Council on Workforce and Economic Competitiveness. 186-16 (b) The Council shall: 186-17 (1) advise the governor, the Texas Workforce 186-18 Commission, the State Board of Education, the Texas Higher 186-19 Education Coordinating Board, and any group interested in literacy 186-20 on policy, planning, research, and program development; 186-21 (2) coordinate the development and maintenance of a 186-22 literacy services delivery system; 186-23 (3) oversee the attainment of the state's literacy 186-24 goals; 186-25 (4) build a Partnership with the private sector in 187-1 order to inform the objectives-setting process and to gain 187-2 acceptance of the services of a functional literacy program; 187-3 (5) provide state leadership to encourage and support 187-4 local and statewide literacy efforts; 187-5 (6) advocate the importance of literacy to ensure that 187-6 all in need of assistance understand the benefits of increased 187-7 functional literacy and to ensure that the necessary resources are 187-8 available; 187-9 (7) make literacy instruction available to adults and 187-10 out-of-school youth by ensuring that a comprehensive literacy 187-11 instruction capacity is present in every Texas community; 187-12 (8) coordinate and improve local literacy instruction 187-13 to ensure the most efficient and effective use of resources to meet 187-14 adult education goals; 187-15 (9) identify state and local literacy programs and 187-16 enter them in a directory for centralized referral and 187-17 communication; 187-18 (10) continue oversight of literacy needs analysis; 187-19 (11) continue to develop an awareness campaign; 187-20 (12) develop a timetable and objectives for reaching 187-21 the proposed goals and subgoals; and 187-22 (13) make recommendations to the governor, lieutenant 187-23 governor, and speaker of the house of representatives or other 187-24 state officials or organizations that it considers appropriate 187-25 regarding the expenditure of funds and the administration of 188-1 programs. 188-2 (c) The Office may award literacy grants out of state, 188-3 local, federal, and private money available to the Office for that 188-4 purpose. Grants shall be awarded under guidelines set by the Texas 188-5 Workforce Commission. The guidelines shall include a competitive 188-6 request for proposal process that includes criteria for evaluating 188-7 the proposals. 188-8 (d) The Office may establish a Texas literacy trust fund for 188-9 the purpose of collecting private funds for distribution to 188-10 community literacy programs. The fund, if established, shall be a 188-11 fund held in trust by the comptroller for and on behalf of the 188-12 Office as funds held outside the treasury under Section 404.073. 188-13 The Office shall distribute money from the fund under guidelines 188-14 set by the Texas Workforce Commission. 188-15 SUBCHAPTER B. INDEMNIFICATION IN CONNECTION WITH ART AND 188-16 ARTIFACTS 188-17 Sec. 490.002. Authority of the Office to Indemnify. The 188-18 Office may agree to indemnify against loss or damage in connection 188-19 with eligible items borrowed from or loaned to a nonprofit 188-20 corporation, foundation, individual, corporation, another business 188-21 entity, or a governmental entity outside the state on the terms and 188-22 conditions the Office by rule prescribes to achieve the purposes of 188-23 this subchapter and to protect the financial interest of this 188-24 state. 188-25 Sec. 490.003. Eligible Items and Applicants. (a) The 189-1 following items are eligible to be the subject of an indemnity 189-2 agreement under this subchapter: 189-3 (1) works of art, including but not limited to 189-4 tapestries, paintings, sculpture, folk art, graphics, and craft 189-5 arts; 189-6 (2) manuscripts, rare documents, books, and other 189-7 printed or published materials; 189-8 (3) other artifacts or objects; and 189-9 (4) photographs, motion pictures, audio and video 189-10 tapes, or other forms of audio and visual communication. 189-11 (b) In addition, to be eligible the items must: 189-12 (1) be of public, educational, cultural, artistic, 189-13 historical, or scientific significance; 189-14 (2) not be eligible for an indemnity agreement under 189-15 the United States Arts and Artifacts Indemnity Act (20 U.S.C. 189-16 Section 971 et seq.) and regulations adopted under that Act; 189-17 (3) have or constitute a portion of an exhibition 189-18 having an aggregate fair market value of at least $1 million; and 189-19 (4) be certified by the Office to conform to this 189-20 subchapter. 189-21 (c) The Office may enter an indemnity agreement to cover 189-22 only applicants that the Texas Commission on the Arts has 189-23 determined qualify for indemnity coverage under criteria determined 189-24 by rule of the Texas Commission on the Arts. The criteria must 189-25 include: 190-1 (1) physical security of the borrower's exhibition 190-2 facilities and of the means of transportation of the eligible items 190-3 between the borrower and the lender; 190-4 (2) experience and qualifications of the borrower's 190-5 director, curator, registrar, and other staff; 190-6 (3) eligibility of the borrower's exhibition 190-7 facilities for commercial insurance coverage of the eligible items 190-8 displayed there; and 190-9 (4) availability of proper equipment to protect 190-10 eligible items from damage from extremes of temperature or humidity 190-11 or exposure to glare, dust, or corrosion. 190-12 (d) The Texas Commission on the Arts may consult with 190-13 private insurance and art experts as reasonably necessary to carry 190-14 out Subsection (c). 190-15 (e) An indemnity agreement under this subchapter shall cover 190-16 eligible items from the time the items leave the premises of the 190-17 lender until the time the items are returned to the premises of the 190-18 lender or to a place previously designated in writing by the 190-19 lender. 190-20 Sec. 490.004. Application for Indemnity Agreement. (a) A 190-21 nonprofit corporation, foundation, institution, or state or 190-22 governmental body in the state may apply to the Office for 190-23 indemnification for eligible items it proposes to borrow from or 190-24 loan to a borrower or lender outside the state according to the 190-25 procedures, in the form, and in the manner prescribed by rules of 191-1 the Office. 191-2 (b) An application under this section must: 191-3 (1) describe each item to be covered by the agreement 191-4 and include an estimated value of the item; 191-5 (2) show evidence that the items are eligible under 191-6 Sections 490.003(a) and (b); and 191-7 (3) set forth the policies, procedures, techniques, 191-8 and methods with respect to preparation for, and conduct of, the 191-9 exhibition of the items and any transportation related to the items 191-10 to show compliance with the criteria established under Section 191-11 490.003(c). 191-12 (c) On receipt of an application that complies with this 191-13 subchapter, the Office, through a committee of experts designated 191-14 by the Texas Commission on the Arts, shall review the validity of 191-15 the application, including the accuracy of the value of the items 191-16 for which coverage by an indemnity agreement is sought. The Office 191-17 may have the items appraised by an independent appraiser, with the 191-18 cost of the appraisal charged to the applicant. If the committee 191-19 agrees with the estimated value, the Office shall approve the 191-20 application and enter into an indemnity agreement with and issue a 191-21 certificate to the lender of the eligible items. 191-22 (d) An indemnity agreement shall constitute a contract among 191-23 the Office, the lender, and the borrower under which the Office 191-24 becomes liable as provided by the agreement. The Office shall 191-25 limit the amount of any covered indemnity agreement to $50 million 192-1 for each exhibition and to $100 million for all outstanding 192-2 agreements. An agreement may cover only loss or damage in excess 192-3 of the first $1 million in claims resulting from a single 192-4 exhibition. 192-5 Sec. 490.005. Claims. (a) The commissioner of insurance 192-6 shall adopt rules providing for prompt adjustment of valid claims 192-7 for losses covered by an indemnity agreement under this subchapter, 192-8 including rules providing for the employment of consultants and for 192-9 the arbitration of issues relating to the dollar value of damages 192-10 involving less than total loss or destruction of covered eligible 192-11 items. 192-12 (b) The Office shall investigate and certify the validity of 192-13 a claim and authorize payment of the amount of the loss, less any 192-14 deductible portion, to the indemnity. The Office shall forward the 192-15 authorization to the comptroller, who shall take appropriate action 192-16 to execute authorized payment of the claim from the Texas art 192-17 indemnity fund. 192-18 Sec. 490.006. Texas Art Indemnity Fund. (a) The Texas art 192-19 indemnity fund is a fund outside the state treasury. The 192-20 comptroller shall be trustee of the fund as provided by Section 192-21 404.073. The fund consists of contributions made for the purposes 192-22 of this subchapter. Money in the fund may be used only for payment 192-23 of indemnity claims as provided by this subchapter. 192-24 (b) The Texas Commission on the Arts by rule shall establish 192-25 programs to provide for contributions and other participation to 193-1 carry out the purposes of this subchapter. The rules shall 193-2 establish standards for participation in the programs. 193-3 Sec. 490.007. Annual Report to Legislature. On or before 193-4 December 31 of each year, the Office shall report to the 193-5 legislature. The report must include a statement of: 193-6 (1) the amount of claims, if any, actually paid under 193-7 this subchapter during the preceding state fiscal year; 193-8 (2) the amount of claims pending under this subchapter 193-9 as of the close of that fiscal year; and 193-10 (3) the aggregate face value of indemnity agreements 193-11 entered into by the Office that are outstanding at the close of 193-12 that fiscal year. 193-13 Sec. 490.008. Contract with Partnership. The Office shall 193-14 contract with the Partnership to perform the Office's duties and 193-15 exercise its powers and implement and administer the program under 193-16 this subchapter to the fullest extent permitted by the Texas 193-17 Constitution. 193-18 SUBCHAPTER C. AT-RISK YOUTH AND DROPOUTS 193-19 Sec. 490.009. Guidelines for Access to Funds for At-Risk 193-20 Youth and Dropouts. (a) In this section: 193-21 (1) "Funds" means funds available under Chapter 301, 193-22 Labor Code. 193-23 (2) "Service delivery area" has the meaning assigned 193-24 by Section 301.005(a)(6), Labor Code. 193-25 (b) The Office shall maintain guidelines for the Texas 194-1 Department of Human Services, the Texas Department of Mental Health 194-2 and Mental Retardation, the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission, 194-3 the Texas Education Agency, and the Texas Youth Commission to 194-4 facilitate access to funds for dropouts and youth who are at risk 194-5 of becoming dropouts. The guidelines shall establish the 194-6 procedures for the state agencies' county or regional 194-7 representatives to follow to submit an application to the 194-8 appropriate service delivery area for funds for youth-related 194-9 projects. 194-10 (c) Each agency shall: 194-11 (1) appoint one state agency level employee to assist 194-12 the local agency representatives with the funding process; 194-13 (2) identify projects that meet the requirements for 194-14 obtaining funds; 194-15 (3) distribute the information to local agency 194-16 representatives on a timely basis; and 194-17 (4) assist its local agency representatives in the 194-18 development and submission of project applications and, if a 194-19 project receives funds, in the development of the necessary 194-20 documentation to comply with the project guidelines. 194-21 (d) Not later than the last month of each state fiscal year, 194-22 the Office and the agencies described in Subsection (b) shall 194-23 review and update the guidelines. 195-1 SUBCHAPTER D. MAIN STREET PROGRAM 195-2 Sec. 490.010. Agreement with Historical Commission. The 195-3 Texas Historical Commission shall execute a written agreement with 195-4 the Office providing for coordination and planning of and giving 195-5 priority to loans made under the commission's Main Street program. 195-6 The Office shall contract with the Partnership to perform the 195-7 Office's duties and exercise its powers and implement and 195-8 administer the program under this subchapter to the fullest extent 195-9 permitted by the Texas Constitution. 195-10 SECTION 2. REPEALER. The following laws are repealed: 195-11 (a) Subtitle F, Title 4, Government Code; and 195-12 (b) Chapter 42 and Chapter 44, Agriculture Code. 195-13 SECTION 3. The Texas Partnership for Economic Development is 195-14 abolished. If the Texas Partnership for Economic Development has 195-15 been organized as a nonprofit corporation, the Texas Partnership 195-16 for Economic Development may continue to exist after the effective 195-17 date of this Act only for the purposes of dissolving and of 195-18 disposing of any unencumbered assets in accordance with law. If 195-19 the Texas Partnership for Economic Development has not been 195-20 organized as a nonprofit corporation, any unencumbered assets of 195-21 the Texas Partnership for Economic Development, including property 195-22 and records, are transferred to the Office of Economic Development 195-23 and Tourism in the office of the governor. 195-24 SECTION 4. This Act does not revive a fund, account, or 195-25 dedication that was abolished or consolidated in accordance with 196-1 Section 403.094, Government Code, as added by Chapter 4, Acts of 196-2 the 72nd Legislature, 1st C.S., 1991, or in accordance with other 196-3 law. 196-4 SECTION 5. (a) Subtitle F, Government Code, as added by 196-5 this Act, takes effect September 1, 1997, and on that date the 196-6 powers, duties, and obligations of the Texas Department of Commerce 196-7 relating to the activities that are included in Subtitle F, as 196-8 added by this Act, are transferred to the Office of Economic 196-9 Development and Tourism in the office of the governor. As soon as 196-10 possible after the effective date of Subtitle F, Government Code, 196-11 as added by this Act, the Texas Department of Commerce shall 196-12 transfer all property of the department relating to the powers, 196-13 duties, and obligations being transferred and all records relating 196-14 to the powers, duties, and obligations being transferred in its 196-15 custody to the Office of Economic Development and Tourism in the 196-16 office of the governor. 196-17 (b) On the transfer of all property and records under 196-18 Subsection (a) of this section: 196-19 (1) a rule, form, or policy adopted by the Texas 196-20 Department of Commerce relating to the powers, duties, and 196-21 obligations being transferred becomes a rule, form, or policy of 196-22 the Office of Economic Development and Tourism in the office of the 196-23 governor; and 196-24 (2) a contract made by the Texas Department of 196-25 Commerce relating to the powers, duties, and obligations being 197-1 transferred becomes a contract made by the Office of Economic 197-2 Development and Tourism in the office of the governor. 197-3 (c) As soon as possible after the effective date of Subtitle 197-4 F, Government Code, as added by this Act, all funds appropriated to 197-5 the Texas Department of Commerce for the powers, duties, and 197-6 obligations related to the powers, duties, and obligations being 197-7 transferred are transferred to the Office of Economic Development 197-8 and Tourism in the office of the governor and all other funds 197-9 transferred or deposited pursuant to this Act are hereby 197-10 appropriated as specified in the General Appropriations Act for the 197-11 purposes specified in this Act. 197-12 (d) As soon as possible after the effective date of Subtitle 197-13 F, Government Code, as added by this Act, all personnel employed by 197-14 the Texas Department of Commerce for the administration of the 197-15 powers, duties, and obligations related to those being transferred 197-16 are transferred to the Office of Economic Development and Tourism 197-17 in the office of the governor until the Office of Economic 197-18 Development and Tourism contracts with Partnership Texas to carry 197-19 out the administration related to the powers, duties, and 197-20 obligations being transferred. 197-21 SECTION 6. If an entity that is abolished by this Act has 197-22 property, records, or other assets and the article of this Act that 197-23 abolishes the entity does not provide for their disposition, the 197-24 General Services Commission shall take custody of the property, 197-25 records, or other assets of the entity unless the governor 198-1 designates another appropriate state agency to take custody of the 198-2 entity's property, records, or other assets. 198-3 SECTION 7. EFFECTIVE DATE. This Act takes effect September 198-4 1, 1997. 198-5 SECTION 8. EMERGENCY. The importance of this legislation 198-6 and the crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an 198-7 emergency and an imperative public necessity that the 198-8 constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several 198-9 days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended.