HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
NOTICE OF FORMAL REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
COMMITTEE: Defense & Veterans' Affairs
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and challenges in scheduling public
hearings at this time, the House Committee on Defense and Veterans Affairs is seeking written submissions from interested parties and the
public on the interim charges listed below. Submissions received in
response to this request will be transmitted to the members of the
· Submissions must be in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF.
· Please submit separate documents if responding to multiple
· Please include the charge # in the title of the document.
· Submissions must be submitted via e-mail to Amy.Rister@house.texas.gov.
· The deadline for submissions is November 10th, 2020.
Interim Charge #1. Monitor the agencies and programs under the Committee's jurisdiction and oversee the implementation of relevant legislation passed by the 86th Legislature. Conduct active oversight of all associated rulemaking and other governmental actions taken to ensure intended legislative outcome of all legislation, including the following:
• HB 1326, which is the sunset legislation for the Texas Military Department. Examine the Adjutant General's policy outlining the director of state administration's responsibility for state administrative interests across all programs, including evaluating procedures for oversight of state employees and mitigating compliance risks.
Interim Charge #2. Study the mental health treatment options available for all Texas veterans, including efforts to fill gaps left by federal government. Make recommendations for future legislation streamlining mental health treatment coordination among federal, state, and local agencies.
Interim Charge #3. Study the potential impact of eliminating Regional Military Sustainability Commissions as an ineffective tool in assisting Texas military installations and their host defense communities with protecting the missions, operations, readiness, and resiliency of military installations. Identify new and enhanced strategies to replace the Commissions with land use limitations or restrictions, regulatory strategies, annexation powers, contractual agreements, or other tools to preserve military use areas inside and outside municipal boundaries.
Interim Charge #4. Examine gaps in services and assess efforts to connect justice-involved veterans, senior citizens, and homeless populations to services while incarcerated and after release at both the local and state levels. Specifically, the committee should evaluate training and technical assistance provided by the Texas Veterans Commission to criminal justice agencies.
Interim Charge #5. Review the connection between the economic vitality of business and industry and the economic vitality of our military veterans transitioning into the workforce. Specifically, the committee should analyze barriers to military veterans transitioning from active duty to civilian life, the effectiveness of government transition and training benefits, and current and ongoing demand for veteran and military spouse employment from industry in Texas.
Interim Charge #6. Monitor the State Auditor's review of agencies and programs under the Committee's jurisdiction. The Chair shall seek input and periodic briefings on completed audits for the 2019 and 2020 fiscal years and bring forth pertinent issues for full committee consideration.
In the event it becomes feasible to safely conduct a public meeting, the Committee reserves the right to hold an in-person hearing on these charges.