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News News
Interim Charges for House Committees
Article By: by Texas State Rep. Larry Phillips
Posted: 1/16/2012 Views: 3089  Impressions: 17145
Categories: Government: State, Sports



This week I will discuss the interim charges recently issued to the House Committee on General Investigating & Ethics and the Committee on Government Efficiency & Reform. Interim charges are the issues that the Speaker asks committees to study during the time between regular legislative sessions in order to make recommendations for legislation for the following legislative session. The charges are good indicators of what legislation the legislature will take up during the next session. Legislators rely on public input when crafting legislation, and it is important that they hear from people during the interim.

House Committee on General Investigating & Ethics

* Review the Texas Ethics Commission's sworn complaint process and civil and criminal penalty provisions. Determine whether changes should be made aligned with the mission and purpose of the commission.
* Study and determine whether all appointees to state entities should be required to sign additional governance documents prior to serving in an official state capacity.

House Committee on Government Efficiency & Reform

* Examine and make recommendations on purchasing cooperatives, including the bid process and the role of inter-local contracts. Clarify for consistency the following terms: purchasing cooperatives, inter-local contracts, and inter-local agreements.
* Examine the utilization of alternative project delivery methods, such as design-build and construction-manager-at-risk, by municipalities, water districts, and authorities, and other local governmental entities.
* Examine interagency agreements and charges for providing information or personal identification documents at the request of a state agency to fulfill day-to-day operations at the expense of the requesting state agency.
* Examine areas of potential privatization of state services in an effort to achieve a higher level of service and greater efficiency for Texas taxpayers. (Joint with the House Committee on State Affairs)
* Examine state agency rulemaking and consider ways to improve procedural efficiencies and public transparency, and to better inform policymakers as to their use, purpose, and cost-effectiveness, including an examination of the financial and other impacts such regulations have on both the license holder and the public. (Joint with the House Committee on State Affairs)

The House Committee on General Investigating and Ethics can be reached at 512-463-0780a and the Committee on Government Efficiency & Reform can be reached at 512-463-1538. For more information on these charges or any other matter of state government, please contact my office by writing to P.O. Box 2910, Austin, TX 78768-2910 or by emailing me at larry.phillips@house.state.tx.us. My district office phone number is (903) 891-7297.




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