TEXAS BILL TO PASS THROUGH TO “PEACE” OFFICERS, VENDORS MUST DISCLOSE COMMISSIONS EARNED OTHER CPS VENDORS?


Texas House Bill 23


Bill Title: Relating to disclosure of certain relationships with local government officers and vendors; creating criminal offenses.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Republican 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2015-04-09 – Scheduled for public hearing on . . . [HB23 Detail]

Download: Texas-2015-HB23-Introduced.html


84R10286 SCL-F
By: Davis of Harris H.B. No. 23
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
AN ACT
relating to disclosure of certain relationships with local
government officers and vendors; creating criminal offenses.
       BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
       SECTION 1.  Section 176.001, Local Government Code, is
amended by amending Subdivisions (1), (2), (2-a), (2-b), (3), and
(4) and adding Subdivisions (2-c), (2-d), and (7) to read as
follows:
             (1)  “Agent” means a third party who undertakes to
transact some business or manage some affair for another person by
the authority or on account of the other person. The term includes
an employee.
             (2)  “Family member” means a person related to another
person within the first degree by consanguinity or affinity, as
described by Subchapter B, Chapter 573, Government Code[, except
that the term does not include a person who is considered to be
related to another person by affinity only as described by Section
573.024(b), Government Code].
             (2-a)  “Family relationship” means a relationship
between a person and another person within the third degree by
consanguinity or the second degree by affinity, as those terms are
defined by Subchapter B, Chapter 573, Government Code.
             (2-b) “Gift” means a benefit offered by a person,
including food, lodging, transportation, and entertainment
accepted as a guest.
             (2-c) “Goods” means personal property.
             (2-d) [(2-b)]  “Investment income” means dividends,
capital gains, or interest income generated from:
                   (A)  a personal or business:
                         (i)  checking or savings account;
                         (ii)  share draft or share account; or
                         (iii)  other similar account;
                   (B)  a personal or business investment; or
                   (C)  a personal or business loan.
             (3)  “Local governmental entity” means a county,
municipality, school district, charter school, junior college
district, water district created under Subchapter B, Chapter 49,
Water Code, or other political subdivision of this state or a local
government corporation, board, commission, district, or authority
to which a member is appointed by the commissioners court of a
county, the mayor of a municipality, or the governing body of a
municipality.  The term does not include an association,
corporation, or organization of governmental entities organized to
provide to its members education, assistance, products, or services
or to represent its members before the legislative, administrative,
or judicial branches of the state or federal government.
             (4)  “Local government officer” means:
                   (A)  a member of the governing body of a local
governmental entity;
                   (B)  a director, superintendent, administrator,
president, or other person designated as the executive officer of a
[the] local governmental entity; or
                   (C)  an agent [employee] of a local governmental
entity who is involved in the planning, advertising, selecting, or
contracting of a vendor [with respect to whom the local
governmental entity has, in accordance with Section 176.005,
extended the requirements of Sections 176.003 and 176.004].
             (7)  “Vendor” means a person who enters or seeks to
enter into a contract with a local governmental entity, seeks to
influence the contract award made by a local governmental entity,
or is an agent of a vendor. The term includes an officer or employee
of a state agency when that individual is acting in a private
capacity to enter into a contract. The term does not include a
state agency except for Texas Correctional Industries.
       SECTION 2.  The heading to Section 176.002, Local Government
Code, is amended to read as follows:
       Sec. 176.002.  APPLICABILITY TO [CERTAIN] VENDORS AND OTHER
PERSONS.
       SECTION 3.  Section 176.002(a), Local Government Code, is
amended to read as follows:
       (a)  This chapter applies to a person who is:
             (1)  a vendor [enters or seeks to enter into a contract
with a local governmental entity]; or
             (2)  a local government officer [is an agent] of [a
person described by Subdivision (1) in the person’s business with]
a local governmental entity.
       SECTION 4.  Sections 176.003(a) and (a-1), Local Government
Code, are amended to read as follows:
       (a)  A local government officer shall file a conflicts
disclosure statement with respect to a vendor [person described by
Section 176.002(a)] if:
             (1)  the vendor [person] enters into a contract with
the local governmental entity or the local governmental entity is
considering entering into a contract with the vendor [person]; and
             (2)  the vendor [person]:
                   (A)  has an employment or other business
relationship with the local government officer or a family member
of the officer that results in the officer or family member
receiving taxable income, other than investment income, that
exceeds $2,500 during the 12-month period preceding the date that
the officer becomes aware that:
                         (i)  a contract between the local
governmental entity and vendor [described by Subdivision (1)] has
been executed; or
                         (ii)  the local governmental entity is
considering entering into a contract with the vendor [person]; [or]
                   (B)  has given to the local government officer or
a family member of the officer one or more gifts that have an
aggregate value of more than $100 [$250] in the 12-month period
preceding the date the officer becomes aware that:
                         (i)  a contract between the local
governmental entity and vendor [described by Subdivision (1)] has
been executed; or
                         (ii)  the local governmental entity is
considering entering into a contract with the vendor; or
                   (C)  has a family relationship with the local
government officer [person].
       (a-1)  A local government officer is not required to file a
conflicts disclosure statement in relation to a gift accepted by
the officer or a family member of the officer if the gift is:
             (1)  [given by a family member of the person accepting
the gift;
             [(2)]  a political contribution as defined by Title 15,
Election Code; or
             (2) [(3)]  food[, lodging, transportation, or
entertainment] accepted as a guest.
       SECTION 5.  Section 176.004, Local Government Code, is
transferred to Section 176.003, Local Government Code,
redesignated as Section 176.003(e), Local Government Code, and
amended to read as follows:
       (e)  [Sec. 176.004.  CONTENTS OF DISCLOSURE STATEMENT.] The
commission shall adopt the conflicts disclosure statement for local
government officers for use under this section.  The conflicts
disclosure statement must include:
             (1)  a requirement that each local government officer
disclose:
                   (A)  an employment or other business relationship
described by Subsection (a)(2)(A) [Section 176.003(a)], including
the nature and extent of the relationship; and
                   (B)  gifts accepted by the local government
officer and any family member of the officer from a vendor [person
described by Section 176.002(a)] during the 12-month period
described by Subsection (a)(2)(B) [Section 176.003(a)(2)(B)] if
the aggregate value of the gifts, including lodging,
transportation, or entertainment [excluding gifts described by
Section 176.003(a-1)], accepted by the officer or a family member
from that vendor exceeds $100 [person exceed $250];
             (2)  an acknowledgment from the local government
officer that:
                   (A)  the disclosure applies to each family member
of the officer; and
                   (B)  the statement covers the 12-month period
described by Subsection (a)(2)(B) [Section 176.003(a)]; and
             (3)  the signature of the local government officer
acknowledging that the statement is made under oath under penalty
of perjury.
       SECTION 6.  Sections 176.006(a), (a-1), (b), (c), (d), and
(i), Local Government Code, are amended to read as follows:
       (a)  A vendor [person described by Section 176.002(a)] shall
file a completed conflict of interest questionnaire if the vendor
[person] has a business relationship with a local governmental
entity and:
             (1)  has an employment or other business relationship
with a local government [an] officer of that local governmental
entity, or a family member of the officer, described by Section
176.003(a)(2)(A); [or]
             (2)  has given a local government [an] officer of that
local governmental entity, or a family member of the officer, one or
more gifts with the aggregate value specified by Section
176.003(a)(2)(B), excluding any gift described by Section
176.003(a-1);
             (3)  has a family relationship with a local government
officer of that local governmental entity; or
             (4)  the amount of a contract that is either executed or
under consideration between the vendor and that local governmental
entity exceeds $1 million.
       (a-1)  The completed conflict of interest questionnaire must
be filed with the appropriate records administrator not later than
the seventh business day after the later of:
             (1)  the date that the vendor [person]:
                   (A)  begins discussions or negotiations to enter
into a contract with the local governmental entity; or
                   (B)  submits to the local governmental entity an
application, response to a request for proposals or bids,
correspondence, or another writing related to a potential contract
with the local governmental entity; or
             (2)  the date the vendor [person] becomes aware:
                   (A)  of an employment or other business
relationship with a local government officer, or a family member of
the officer, described by Subsection (a); [or]
                   (B)  that the vendor [person] has given one or
more gifts described by Subsection (a); or
                   (C)  of a family relationship with a local
government officer.
       (b)  The commission shall adopt a conflict of interest
questionnaire for use under this section that requires disclosure
of a vendor’s [person’s] business and family relationships with a
local governmental entity.
       (c)  The questionnaire adopted under Subsection (b) must
require, for the local governmental entity with respect to which
the questionnaire is filed, that the vendor [person] filing the
questionnaire:
             (1)  describe each employment or business and family
relationship the vendor [person] has with each local government
officer of the local governmental entity;
             (2)  identify each employment or business relationship
described by Subdivision (1) with respect to which the local
government officer receives, or is likely to receive, taxable
income, other than investment income, from the vendor [person
filing the questionnaire];
             (3)  identify each employment or business relationship
described by Subdivision (1) with respect to which the vendor
[person filing the questionnaire] receives, or is likely to
receive, taxable income, other than investment income, that:
                   (A)  is received from, or at the direction of, a
local government officer of the local governmental entity; and
                   (B)  is not received from the local governmental
entity; and
             (4)  describe each employment or business relationship
with a corporation or other business entity with respect to which a
local government officer of the local governmental entity:
                   (A)  serves as an officer or director; or
                   (B)  holds an ownership interest of one [10]
percent or more.
       (d)  A vendor [person described by Subsection (a)] shall file
an updated completed questionnaire with the appropriate records
administrator not later than  the seventh business day after the
date of an event that would make a statement in the questionnaire
incomplete or inaccurate.
       (i)  The validity of a contract between a vendor [person
described by Section 176.002] and a local governmental entity is
not affected solely because the vendor [person] fails to comply
with this section.
       SECTION 7.  Section 176.011, Local Government Code, is
redesignated as 176.0065, Local Government Code, and amended to
read as follows:
       Sec. 176.0065  [176.011].  MAINTENANCE OF RECORDS. A
records administrator shall:
             (1)  maintain a list of local government officers of
the local governmental entity and shall make that list available to
the public and any vendor who may be required to file a conflict of
interest questionnaire under Section 176.006; and
             (2)  maintain the statements and questionnaires that
are required to be filed under this chapter in accordance with the
local governmental entity’s records retention schedule.
       SECTION 8.  Chapter 176, Local Government Code, is amended
by adding Section 176.013 to read as follows:
       Sec. 176.013.  ENFORCEMENT. (a) A local government officer
commits an offense under this chapter if the officer:
             (1)  is required to file a conflicts disclosure
statement under Section 176.003; and
             (2)  fails to file the required conflicts disclosure
statement with the appropriate records administrator not later than
5 p.m. on the seventh business day after the date on which the
officer becomes aware of the facts that require the filing of the
statement.
       (b)  A vendor commits an offense under this chapter if the
vendor:
             (1)  is required to file a conflict of interest
questionnaire under Section 176.006; and
             (2)  either:
                   (A)  fails to file the required questionnaire with
the appropriate records administrator not later than 5 p.m. on the
seventh business day after the date on which the vendor becomes
aware of the facts that require the filing of the questionnaire; or
                   (B)  fails to file an updated questionnaire with
the appropriate records administrator not later than 5 p.m. on the
seventh business day after the date of an event that would make a
statement in a questionnaire previously filed by the vendor
incomplete or inaccurate.
       (c)  An offense under this chapter is:
             (1)  a Class C misdemeanor if the contract amount is
less than $1 million;
             (2)  a Class B misdemeanor if the contract amount is at
least $1 million but less than $5 million; or
             (3)  a Class A misdemeanor if the contract amount is at
least $5 million.
       (d)  A local governmental entity may reprimand, suspend, or
terminate the employment of an employee who knowingly fails to
comply with a requirement adopted under this chapter.
       (e)  The governing body of a local governmental entity may,
at its discretion, declare a contract void if the governing body
determines that a violation of this chapter has occurred.
       SECTION 9.  The following provisions of the Local Government
Code are repealed:
             (1)  Sections 176.003(c) and (d);
             (2)  Section 176.005;
             (3)  Sections 176.006(f), (g), and (h); and
             (4)  Section 176.007.
       SECTION 10.  As soon as practicable after the effective date
of this Act, the Texas Ethics Commission shall adopt forms to
implement this Act.
       SECTION 11.  (a) Chapter 176, Local Government Code, as
amended by this Act, applies only to an event requiring disclosure
that occurs on or after the effective date of this Act. An event
requiring disclosure that occurs before the effective date of this
Act is governed by the law applicable to the event immediately
before the effective date of this Act, and the former law is
continued in effect for that purpose.
       (b)  The repeal by this Act of Sections 176.003(c),
176.005(c), and 176.006(f), Local Government Code, does not apply
to an offense committed under those sections before the effective
date of the repeal. An offense committed before the effective date
of the repeal is governed by those sections as they existed on the
date the offense was committed, and the former law is continued in
effect for that purpose. For purposes of this subsection, an
offense was committed before the effective date of the repeal if any
element of the offense occurred before that date.
       SECTION 12.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2015.
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Bill Title: Relating to discussion or deliberation regarding certain economic development negotiations by governmental bodies.

  [Could this mean converting private property one’s only child if a single, natural (wo)man sometimes artfully termed “mother” by the “state” and local government where father makes offer/bribe as a vendor and CPS the other governmental entity????]
Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2015-04-06 – Scheduled for public hearing on . . . [HB2518 Detail]

Download: Texas-2015-HB2518-Introduced.html


84R10335 SRS-F
By: Coleman H.B. No. 2518
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
AN ACT
relating to discussion or deliberation regarding certain economic
development negotiations by governmental bodies.
       BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
       SECTION 1.  Section 551.087, Government Code, is amended to
read as follows:
       Sec. 551.087.  DELIBERATION REGARDING ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
NEGOTIATIONS; CLOSED MEETING. This chapter does not require a
governmental body to conduct an open meeting:
             (1)  to discuss or deliberate regarding commercial or
financial information that the governmental body has received from
a business prospect or another governmental entity that the
governmental body seeks to have locate, stay, or expand in or near
the territory of the governmental body and with which the
governmental body or the governmental entity providing the
financial information is conducting economic development
negotiations; or
             (2)  to deliberate the offer of a financial or other
incentive to a business prospect described by Subdivision (1).
       SECTION 2.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2015.
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