Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 2547
By: Williams
Energy Resources


In 1985, the 68th Texas Legislature enacted legislation creating the
Geo-Technology Research Institute to assist in the development of the Texas
oil and gas industry.  The charter of the institute may need to be expanded
to address environmental and information technology challenges facing
today's oil and gas industry.  H.B. 2547 specifies that the research
consortium where the institute is located includes the University of Texas
at Austin, Texas A&M University, Rice University, and the University of
Houston.  This bill also modifies the institute's duties to include
analysis among basic and applied research; deletes language addressing the
exact direction of this research and analysis; and amends the availability
of research results, and the scope of the institute's use of state funds.


It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does
not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state
officer, department, agency, or institution. 


SECTION 1.  Amends Section 149.002, Education Code, to specify that the
Houston Advanced Research Center, a research consortium and the location of
the Geo-Technology Research Institute, includes the University of Texas at
Austin, Texas A&M University, Rice University, and the University of

SECTION 2.  Amends Section 149.004, Education Code, to require the
institute to conduct analysis, in addition to basic and applied research,
in geoscience, rather than geophysics, in geo-technology, and in related
fields.  Provides that this research and analysis includes the
implementation of technology and development of integrated databases,
rather than the discovery of new reserves and development of technology
that increases the production potential of oil and natural gas.  Requires
that results of the research be made available to state agencies, rather
than the General Land Office and the Railroad Commission of Texas, to other
public bodies and officials, to industry, and to private citizens, rather
than groups. 

SECTION 3.  Amends Section 149.005(c), Education Code, to provide that the
use of state funds by the institute is limited to expenditures for basic
and applied research and analysis, excluding construction costs, rather
than costs for construction, operation, or maintenance of facilities. 

SECTION 4.Emergency clause.
  Effective date: upon passage.