By Zaffirini S.B. No. 351
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
1-1 AN ACT
1-2 relating to the continuation and functions of the Children's Trust
1-3 Fund of Texas Council.
1-4 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
1-5 SECTION 1. Chapter 74, Human Resources Code, is amended by
1-6 amending Sections 74.001, 74.002, 74.003, and 74.011 and by adding
1-7 Sections 74.0021, 74.0022, 74.0031, 74.0032, and 74.0033 to read as
1-9 Sec. 74.001. DEFINITIONS. In this chapter:
1-10 (1) "Council" means the Children's Trust Fund of Texas
1-12 (2) "Executive director" means the executive director
1-13 of the Children's Trust Fund of Texas Council.
1-14 (3) "Operating fund" means the Children's Trust Fund
1-15 of Texas Council operating fund.
1-16 (4) [
(3)] "State agency" means a board, commission,
1-17 department, office, or other state agency that:
1-18 (A) is in the executive branch of state
1-20 (B) was created by the constitution or a statute
1-21 of this state; and
1-22 (C) has statewide jurisdiction.
1-23 (5) [ (4)] "Trust fund" means the children's trust
2-1 Sec. 74.002. ESTABLISHMENT OF COUNCIL. (a) The Children's
2-2 Trust Fund of Texas Council is [ established as] a state agency.
2-3 (b) The council is composed of nine persons appointed by the
2-4 governor with the advice and consent of the senate. An appointee
2-5 must have demonstrated concern for child abuse and neglect.
2-6 Appointments to the council shall be made without regard to the
2-7 race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin of
2-8 the appointees.
2-9 (c) Each member of the council must be a representative of
2-10 the general public.
2-11 (d) The members serve staggered terms of six years with the
2-12 terms of three members expiring every odd-numbered year. A person
2-13 who has served a full six-year term is not eligible for
2-14 reappointment to another consecutive six-year term.
2-15 (e) [ (d)] The governor shall designate a member as the
2-16 presiding officer.
2-17 (f) [ (e)] The council shall meet twice each year and at the
2-18 call of the presiding officer.
2-19 (g) [ (f)] Members of the council receive no compensation but
2-20 are entitled to reimbursement for actual and necessary expenses
2-21 incurred in performing their duties.
2-22 Sec. 74.0021. REMOVAL OF COUNCIL MEMBER. (a) It is a
2-23 ground for removal from the council that a member:
2-24 (1) is ineligible for membership under Section 74.002;
2-25 (2) cannot, because of illness or disability,
2-26 discharge the member's duties for a substantial part of the
2-27 member's term; or
3-1 (3) is absent from more than half of the regularly
3-2 scheduled council meetings that the member is eligible to attend
3-3 during a calendar year without an excuse approved by a majority
3-4 vote of the council.
3-5 (b) The validity of an action of the council is not affected
3-6 by the fact that it is taken when a ground for removal of a council
3-7 member exists.
3-8 (c) If the executive director has knowledge that a potential
3-9 ground for removal exists, the executive director shall notify the
3-10 presiding officer of the council of the potential ground. The
3-11 presiding officer shall then notify the governor and the attorney
3-12 general that a potential ground for removal exists. If the
3-13 potential ground for removal involves the presiding officer, the
3-14 executive director shall notify the next highest ranking officer of
3-15 the council, who shall then notify the governor and the attorney
3-16 general that a potential ground for removal exists.
3-17 Sec. 74.0022. COUNCIL MEMBER TRAINING. (a) A person who is
3-18 appointed to and qualifies for office as a member of the council
3-19 may not vote, deliberate, or be counted as a member in attendance
3-20 at a meeting of the council until the person completes a training
3-21 program that complies with this section.
3-22 (b) The training program must provide the person with
3-23 information regarding:
3-24 (1) the legislation that created the council;
3-25 (2) the programs operated by the council;
3-26 (3) the role and functions of the council;
3-27 (4) the rules of the council with an emphasis on the
4-1 rules that relate to disciplinary and investigatory authority;
4-2 (5) the current budget for the council;
4-3 (6) the results of the most recent formal audit of the
4-5 (7) the requirements of:
4-6 (A) the open meetings law, Chapter 551,
4-7 Government Code;
4-8 (B) the public information law, Chapter 552,
4-9 Government Code;
4-10 (C) the administrative procedure law, Chapter
4-11 2001, Government Code; and
4-12 (D) other laws relating to public officials,
4-13 including conflict-of-interest laws; and
4-14 (8) any applicable ethics policies adopted by the
4-15 council or the Texas Ethics Commission.
4-16 (c) A person appointed to the council is entitled to
4-17 reimbursement, as provided by the General Appropriations Act, for
4-18 the travel expenses incurred in attending the training program
4-19 regardless of whether the attendance at the program occurs before
4-20 or after the person qualifies for office.
4-21 Sec. 74.003. POWERS AND DUTIES. (a) The council shall:
4-22 (1) develop a state plan for expending funds for child
4-23 abuse and neglect prevention programs that includes an annual
4-24 schedule of transfers of trust fund money to the operating fund;
4-25 (2) develop eligibility criteria for applicants for
4-26 grants to fund child abuse and neglect prevention programs;
4-27 (3) establish grant application procedures;
5-1 (4) establish funding priorities for child abuse and
5-2 neglect prevention programs;
5-3 (5) establish guidelines relating to grant amounts;
5-4 (6) establish guidelines to ensure fair distribution
5-5 of grants between rural and urban areas of the state;
5-6 (7) develop procedures for evaluating grant
5-8 (8) review grant proposals submitted to the council
5-9 and approve or deny those grants;
5-10 (9) monitor the expenditure of funds for child abuse
5-11 and neglect prevention programs;
5-12 (10) submit an annual report to the governor and the
5-13 legislature; [ and]
5-14 (11) adopt rules and employ an executive director and
5-15 other necessary staff to implement this chapter;
5-16 (12) develop and implement policies that clearly
5-17 separate the policymaking responsibilities of the council and the
5-18 management responsibilities of the executive director and the staff
5-19 of the council; and
5-20 (13) develop and implement policies that provide the
5-21 public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before the council
5-22 and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of the council.
5-23 (b) The council may:
5-24 (1) apply for and receive funds made available by the
5-25 federal or state government or by another public or private source,
5-26 which funds may be designated and expended for administrative
5-27 purposes and for grants for child abuse and neglect prevention
6-1 programs, and which may be deposited in either the trust fund or
6-2 the operating fund, as appropriate; and
6-3 (2) solicit donations for child abuse prevention
6-5 Sec. 74.0031. STANDARDS OF CONDUCT. The executive director
6-6 or the executive director's designee shall provide to members of
6-7 the council and to council employees, as often as necessary,
6-8 information regarding the requirements for office or employment
6-9 under this chapter, including information regarding a person's
6-10 responsibilities under applicable laws relating to standards of
6-11 conduct for state officers or employees.
6-12 Sec. 74.0032. EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY POLICY. (a) The
6-13 executive director or the executive director's designee shall
6-14 prepare and maintain a written policy statement that implements a
6-15 program of equal employment opportunity to ensure that all
6-16 personnel decisions are made without regard to race, color,
6-17 disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin.
6-18 (b) The policy statement must include:
6-19 (1) personnel policies, including policies relating to
6-20 recruitment, evaluation, selection, training, and promotion of
6-21 personnel, that show the intent of the council to avoid the
6-22 unlawful employment practices described by Chapter 21, Labor Code;
6-24 (2) an analysis of the extent to which the composition
6-25 of the council's personnel is in accordance with state and federal
6-26 law and a description of reasonable methods to achieve compliance
6-27 with state and federal law.
7-1 (c) The policy statement must:
7-2 (1) be updated annually;
7-3 (2) be reviewed by the state Commission on Human
7-4 Rights for compliance with Subsection (b)(1); and
7-5 (3) be filed with the governor's office.
7-6 Sec. 74.0033. COMPLAINTS. (a) The council shall maintain a
7-7 file on each written complaint filed with the council. The file
7-8 must include:
7-9 (1) the name of the person who filed the complaint;
7-10 (2) the date the complaint is received by the council;
7-11 (3) the subject matter of the complaint;
7-12 (4) the name of each person contacted in relation to
7-13 the complaint;
7-14 (5) a summary of the results of the review or
7-15 investigation of the complaint; and
7-16 (6) an explanation of the reason the file was closed,
7-17 if the council closed the file without taking action other than to
7-18 investigate the complaint.
7-19 (b) The council shall provide to the person filing the
7-20 complaint and to each person who is a subject of the complaint a
7-21 copy of the council's policies and procedures relating to complaint
7-22 investigation and resolution.
7-23 (c) The council, at least quarterly and until final
7-24 disposition of the complaint, shall notify the person filing the
7-25 complaint and each person who is a subject of the complaint of the
7-26 status of the investigation unless the notice would jeopardize an
7-27 undercover investigation.
8-1 Sec. 74.011. SUNSET PROVISION. The Children's Trust Fund of
8-2 Texas Council is subject to Chapter 325, Government Code (Texas
8-3 Sunset Act). Unless continued in existence as provided by that
8-4 chapter, the council is abolished and this chapter expires
8-5 September 1, 2007 [ 1999].
8-6 SECTION 2. Section 531.001(4), Government Code, is amended
8-7 to read as follows:
8-8 (4) "Health and human services agencies" includes the:
8-9 (A) Interagency Council on Early Childhood
8-10 Intervention Services;
8-11 (B) Texas Department on Aging;
8-12 (C) Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse;
8-13 (D) Texas Commission for the Blind;
8-14 (E) Texas Commission for the Deaf and Hard of
8-16 (F) Texas Department of Health;
8-17 (G) Texas Department of Human Services;
8-18 (H) Texas Juvenile Probation Commission;
8-19 (I) Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental
8-21 (J) Texas Rehabilitation Commission; [ and]
8-22 (K) Department of Protective and Regulatory
8-23 Services; and
8-24 (L) Children's Trust Fund of Texas Council.
8-25 SECTION 3. (a) This Act takes effect September 1, 1999.
8-26 (b) The changes in law made by this Act in the
8-27 qualifications of, and the prohibitions applying to, members of the
9-1 Children's Trust Fund of Texas Council do not affect the
9-2 entitlement of a member serving on the council immediately before
9-3 September 1, 1999, to continue to carry out the functions of the
9-4 council for the remainder of the member's term. The changes in law
9-5 apply only to a member appointed on or after September 1, 1999.
9-6 This Act does not prohibit a person who is a member of the council
9-7 on September 1, 1999, from being reappointed to the council if the
9-8 person has the qualifications required for a member under Chapter
9-9 74, Human Resources Code, as amended by this Act, and is not
9-10 ineligible for reappointment under Section 74.002(d), Human
9-11 Resources Code, as amended by this Act.
9-12 SECTION 4. The importance of this legislation and the
9-13 crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an
9-14 emergency and an imperative public necessity that the
9-15 constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several
9-16 days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended.