Honorable Jeff Wentworth, Chair, Senate Committee on Jurisprudence
John S. O'Brien, Director, Legislative Budget Board
HB2949 by Merritt (Relating to certain fees in the administration of the teen court program in the Texas-Louisiana border region.), As Engrossed
The bill would amend the Code of Criminal Procedure and the Family Code to authorize a justice or municipal court that is located in the Texas-Louisiana border region to charge a fee of $20 for participation in a teen court program.
The bill would apply only to fees relating to a request for a teen court program on or after the effective date of the bill, which would be September 1, 2007.
Currently, a justice or municipal court may require a person who requests a teen court to pay a fee not to exceed $10 to cover the costs of administrating the program, and an additional $10 fee to cover the cost to the teen court for performing its duties under the teen program. All fees are retained locally.
The counties that comprise the Texas-Louisiana border region are Bowie, Camp, Cass, Delta, Franklin, Gregg, Harrison, Hopkins, Lamar, Marion, Morris, Panola, Red River, Rusk, Smith, Titus, Upshur, and Wood. The impact would vary by county depending on how many teens would be assessed the fee.
Four counties were contacted by the Comptroller of Public Accounts to determine the number of persons enrolled in the teen program for fiscal 2006; however, three of the counties collect data pertaining to the teen court program on a calendar versus a fiscal year basis.
Bowie County stated that 169 teens were enrolled and processed through its teen court program in calendar year 2006. Each of the teens were assessed a $10 fee, for a total of $1,690 collected.
The teen court coordinator for the teen court program in the City of Longview (Gregg County) stated that 450 teens were processed in the teen court program during fiscal 2006. The City of Longview imposed a $10 fee on each of the participants, for a total of $4,500 collected.
Delta County stated that 16 teen court program cases were filed in calendar year 2006. Delta County collected $20 for each case, for a total of $320.
Smith County's teen court coordinator stated that 269 teens were processed in calendar year 2006. Smith County collected $10 per participant, for a total of $2,690 collected.
304 Comptroller of Public Accounts
JOB, MN, CL, DB