80R1123 BDH-D
  By: Dutton H.B. No. 809
relating to the creation of a commission to study capital
punishment in Texas and to a moratorium on executions.
       SECTION 1.  Chapter 37, Code of Criminal Procedure, is
amended by adding Article 37.15 to read as follows:
       Sec. 1.  CREATION. The Texas Capital Punishment Commission
is created.
       Sec. 2.  DUTIES. (a) The commission shall study capital
punishment in this state, concentrating particularly on issues
relating to the legal representation of inmates in capital cases,
the certainty of the guilt of individuals convicted in capital
cases, and the sufficiency of appellate review of convictions in
capital cases.
       (b)  After completing the study, the commission shall
propose legislation to correct any inequities in the capital
punishment process in this state.
       Sec. 3.  COMPOSITION. (a)  The commission is composed of
nine members appointed by the governor, three of whom must be
appointed from a list of candidates submitted to the governor by the
speaker of the house of representatives and three of whom must be
appointed from a list of candidates submitted to the governor by the
lieutenant governor.  The governor may reject the candidates on a
list and require a new list to be submitted.
       (b)  Each member serves at the pleasure of the governor.
       (c)  The governor shall designate a member to serve as
presiding officer.
       (d)  Each member of the commission must be generally
experienced in criminal justice matters. In addition, there must
be at least one member of the commission who is experienced in the
prosecution of capital cases, one who is experienced in the defense
of capital cases, and one who is experienced as a trial judge in
capital cases. The governor shall ensure that the commission
members have the qualifications required by this subsection.
       Sec. 4.  REIMBURSEMENT. A member of the commission is not
entitled to compensation but is entitled to reimbursement for the
member's travel expenses as provided by Chapter 660, Government
Code, and the General Appropriations Act.
       Sec. 5.  ASSISTANCE. The Texas Legislative Council and the
Legislative Budget Board shall assist the commission in performing
the commission's duties.
       Sec. 6.  SUBMISSION. The commission shall submit the
proposed legislation described by Section 2 to the lieutenant
governor and the speaker of the house of representatives not later
than December 1, 2008.
       Sec. 7.  INITIAL APPOINTMENTS. The governor shall make the
appointments to the commission as soon as possible after the
effective date of this article.
       Sec. 8.  MORATORIUM. The state may not execute an inmate on
or after the effective date of this article and before September 1,
       Sec. 9.  OTHER LAW. The commission is not subject to Chapter
2110, Government Code.
       Sec. 10.  ABOLITION. The commission is abolished on January
1, 2009, and this article expires on that date.
       SECTION 2.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2007.