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  81R2353 JSC-F
 
  By: Gallegos S.B. No. 460
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to access to information regarding a firefighter or police
  officer under the municipal civil service law.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 143.010, Local Government Code, is
  amended by adding Subsections (c-1) and (c-2) to read as follows:
         (c-1)  The following information relating to a hearing,
  review, or appeal is privileged and confidential, regardless of
  whether the person representing the fire fighter or police officer
  under Subsection (c) is an attorney:
               (1)  the communications, including conversations,
  correspondence, and electronic communications, between a fire
  fighter or police officer and the person representing the fire
  fighter or police officer under Subsection (c); and
               (2)  the work product of the person representing the
  fire fighter or police officer under Subsection (c).
         (c-2)  Information described by Subsection (c-1):
               (1)  is not subject to discovery, subpoena, or other
  means of legal compulsion for its release;
               (2)  is not subject to disclosure under Chapter 552,
  Government Code; and
               (3)  may not be disclosed to another person, including
  a party to a hearing, appeal, or review, without the permission of
  the fire fighter or the police officer.
         SECTION 2.  Section 143.089, Local Government Code, is
  amended by amending Subsection (g) and adding Subsections (h) and
  (i) to read as follows:
         (g)  A fire or police department may maintain a department
  [personnel] file on a fire fighter or police officer employed by the
  department for the department's use. Except as provided by
  Subsection (i), [but] the department may not release any
  information contained in the department file to any agency or
  person requesting information relating to a fire fighter or police
  officer.
         (h)  The department shall refer to the director or the
  director's designee a person or agency that requests information
  that is maintained about a fire fighter or police officer.  Any
  release of information in the fire fighter's or police officer's
  personnel file is governed by Subsection (f).  Any release of
  information in the fire fighter's or police officer's department
  file is governed by Subsections (g) and (i).
         (i)  A fire fighter or police officer is entitled to view the
  contents of the person's department file maintained under
  Subsection (g) and is entitled, on request, to a copy of any
  document in the person's department file.
         SECTION 3.  (a) Sections 143.010(c-1) and (c-2), Local
  Government Code, as added by this Act, apply to a release or
  disclosure of information on or after the effective date of this
  Act. A release or disclosure of information before the effective
  date of this Act is governed by the law in effect on the date of the
  release or disclosure, and the former law is continued in effect for
  that purpose.
         (b)  The changes in law made by this Act to Section 143.089,
  Local Government Code, apply to a request to view or obtain a copy
  of information made on or after the effective date of this Act.  
  Section 143.089(i), Local Government Code, as added by this Act,
  applies to the entire contents of a department file regardless of
  the date on which a document or other information was placed in the
  department file.
         SECTION 4.  This Act takes effect immediately if it receives
  a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as
  provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution.  If this
  Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this
  Act takes effect September 1, 2009.