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  H.B. No. 498
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to the establishment of an advisory panel to assist with a
  study regarding the prevention of wrongful convictions.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  (a) The Timothy Cole advisory panel on wrongful
  convictions is established to assist the Task Force on Indigent
  Defense established under Subchapter D, Chapter 71, Government
  Code, in conducting a study and preparing a report regarding the
  prevention of wrongful convictions as provided by this section.
         (b)  The advisory panel is composed of the following members:
               (1)  the director of the Task Force on Indigent
  Defense;
               (2)  the chair of the criminal justice committee of the
  senate or a member of the senate designated by the chair;
               (3)  the chair of the jurisprudence committee of the
  senate or a member of the senate designated by the chair;
               (4)  the chair of the criminal jurisprudence committee
  of the house of representatives or a member of the house of
  representatives designated by the chair;
               (5)  the chair of the corrections committee of the
  house of representatives or a member of the house of
  representatives designated by the chair;
               (6)  the executive director of the Texas Criminal
  Defense Lawyers Association or a representative designated by the
  executive director;
               (7)  the president of the Texas District and County
  Attorneys Association or a representative designated by the
  president;
               (8)  the presiding judge of the court of criminal
  appeals or a representative who is designated by the presiding
  judge and who is a judge of the court of criminal appeals;
               (9)  one representative of a public law school in this
  state, chosen by the deans of the public law schools in this state;
  and
               (10)  one employee of the office of the governor,
  appointed by the governor.
         (c)  The director of the Task Force on Indigent Defense is
  the presiding officer of the advisory panel.  The advisory panel
  shall meet at the call of the presiding officer but not less than
  three times in person and as needed by telephone conference call.
         (d)  The Task Force on Indigent Defense, with the advice and
  assistance of the advisory panel, shall conduct a study regarding:
               (1)  the causes of wrongful convictions;
               (2)  procedures and programs that may be implemented to
  prevent future wrongful convictions;
               (3)  the effects of state law on wrongful convictions,
  as determined based on state statutes regarding eyewitness
  identification procedures, the recording of custodial
  interrogations, postconviction DNA testing, and writs of habeas
  corpus based on relevant scientific evidence; and
               (4)  whether the creation of an innocence commission to
  investigate wrongful convictions would be appropriate.
         (e)  The Task Force on Indigent Defense may request that an
  entity in the legislative, judicial, or executive branch of state
  government or a political subdivision provide to the advisory panel
  information related to the advisory panel's duties under this
  section. On the request of the Task Force on Indigent Defense under
  this subsection, an entity may provide information to the advisory
  panel unless the entity is otherwise prohibited from disclosing the
  information.
         (f)  Not later than January 1, 2011, the Task Force on
  Indigent Defense shall prepare a report regarding the results of
  the study conducted under this section and submit the report, after
  consulting with the advisory panel, to the governor, the lieutenant
  governor, the speaker of the house of representatives, and the
  standing committees of each house of the legislature with a
  representative serving on the advisory panel.
         (g)  This section expires January 1, 2011.
         SECTION 2.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2009.
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
 
         I certify that H.B. No. 498 was passed by the House on May 15,
  2009, by the following vote:  Yeas 87, Nays 51, 2 present, not
  voting; that the House refused to concur in Senate amendments to
  H.B. No. 498 on May 29, 2009, and requested the appointment of a
  conference committee to consider the differences between the two
  houses; and that the House adopted the conference committee report
  on H.B. No. 498 on May 31, 2009, by the following vote:  Yeas 89,
  Nays 56, 1 present, not voting.
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
         I certify that H.B. No. 498 was passed by the Senate, with
  amendments, on May 27, 2009, by the following vote:  Yeas 28, Nays
  3; at the request of the House, the Senate appointed a conference
  committee to consider the differences between the two houses; and
  that the Senate adopted the conference committee report on H.B. No.
  498 on May 31, 2009, by the following vote:  Yeas 27, Nays 4.
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate   
  APPROVED: __________________
                  Date       
   
           __________________
                Governor