Wednesday, February 7, 2001 
                                     4:00 p.m. 
         Pursuant to a notice posted in accordance with Senate Rule  
         11.18, a public hearing of the Senate Committee on  
         Administration was held on Wednesday, February 7, 2001, in  
         MEMBERS PRESENT:                        MEMBERS ABSENT: 
         Senator David Cain                      Senator Steve Ogden 
         Senator Mike Moncrief                   Senator J. E. Brown 
         Senator Judith Zaffirini 
         The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:23 p.m.  There being  
         a quorum present, the following business was transacted:   
         Linda Pittsford, Manager of the Texas Legislative Council  
         Computer Center, introduced the members to the Automated Bill  
         Book for Administration (ABBA).  She gave a brief overview and  
         allowed members to access the system from their laptop  
         computers.  She answered member questions about the system. 
         Senator Zaffirini moved adoption of the minutes from the  
         previous hearing held on January 31, 2001; without objection, it  
         was so ordered.   
         Senator Cain opened a discussion on Senate policies.  The first  
         item for discussion was Senate floor decorum.  Senator Cain  
         introduced Carleton Turner, the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms, to  
         discuss the problems he has been experiencing during the  
         Legislative Session.  Mr. Turner expressed concern over the  
         large number of groups on the Senate floor for recognitions and  
         introductions.  Senator Moncrief mentioned that he thought the  
         Senate should look into greater security measures for the Senate  
         gallery.  Senator Cain asked the members to think about the  
         issue before the next meeting.  Senator Zaffirini mentioned that  
         the committee should also consider a policy of decorum for the  
         media on the floor.  She mentioned that often times the media  
         distract Senators during debate. 
         The Committee then discussed the four courtesy phones in the  
         chamber.  Mr. Turner explained that the phones were originally  
         installed for members because their desk phones only dialed  
         their Capitol office.  The desk phones now allow members to dial  
         out, so members no longer use the courtesy phones.  Senator  
         Zaffirini moved that the courtesy phones be removed from the  
         Senate Chamber and replaced with seating; without objection, it  
         was so ordered. 
         Senator Cain asked that the Committee consider a policy for  
         issuing voice mail to Senate Offices.  He noted several requests  
         in recent weeks for additional voice mail boxes as impetus for  
         setting a policy.  The Chair suggested allowing a voice mail box  
         for every phone line in the office.  This would provide a  
         maximum of approximately 5 per office. 
         Members also discussed whether items should be distributed on  
         the members' desks during Session.  The Senators agreed that  
         small trinkets or items pertaining to legislation would be  
         allowed, but all other items should be asked to be delivered to  
         the members' offices. 
         The final item for review was the practice of allowing "mini"  
         newsletters.  Currently Senate policy allows for one  
         district-wide mailout each fiscal year, and members are allowed  
         to request permission for "mini" newsletters.  There is no limit  
         on the number of "mini" newsletters a Senator can request.   
         Senator Cain proposed that the Committee monitor the newsletters  
         to make sure no member is abusing the privilege and warn members  
         that appear to be skirting the district-wide mailout policy.   
         Senator Zaffirini added that newsletters of two colors should  
         not be allowed.  Senator Cain asked that committee staff get  
         figures on the cost of having a two color newsletter so that the  
         Committee could determine if a policy was necessary. 
         There being no further business, at 4:55 p.m. Senator Zaffirini  
         moved that the Committee stand recessed subject to the call of  
         the Chair.  Without objection, it was so ordered.   
         Senator David Cain, Chair 
         Tara Cowen Rejino, Clerk