• February 17, 2014



150 150 Elect Todd Hunter


Speaker of the House Joe Straus has released a list of interim committee charges for the standing committees of the Texas House of Representatives. These committee charges and the resulting recommendations that will be developed during the interim, could form the basis for legislation to be considered during the next legislative session. House committees were each given several issues to study. Committee hearings will be held over the course of the interim period (2014) giving the public an opportunity to testify on a variety of issues. At the end of the interim, each committee will have the opportunity to submit a formal report to the Speaker of the Texas House with their recommendations on possible future legislation to be handled by the next Texas Legislature.

The following is a sampling of charges given to different House committees. If you would like a complete list of the study charges or if you would like more information about issues being studied by any particular committee, please don’t hesitate to call my Capitol office at 512-463-0672 or visit The Texas House of Representatives.

Here are some examples of charges given to the standing House committees:

House Committee on Agriculture & Livestock –
• Study the feasibility of the creation of a border agricultural inspection training program and the authority of Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) employees to augment federal inspectors at Texas border land ports of entry. The study should include similar subject matter to HB 3761 (83R). Measure and estimate the increase in state revenue and secondary economic benefits that could be created from implementing the efficiency measures in HB 3761 (83R) as a way to offset costs for additional state inspectors.

• Examine current statutes and rules to determine any necessary enhancements that can assist in the eradication of feral hogs by using practical solutions and effective eradication techniques. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Culture, Recreation and Tourism)

House Committee on Appropriations –
• Review current capital needs in higher education. The committees shall examine past methods of financing higher education’s capital needs, as well as approaches used in other states. The committees shall jointly make recommendations to address these costs in the future. In adopting recommendations, the committees should focus on methodologies that identify priority capital projects, treat institutions of higher education equitably, and uniformly share costs between the state and institutions. The committees should also examine the viability of alternatives to traditional models for funding capital projects. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Higher Education)

• Monitor the use of funds provided or made available to Texas in relation to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill and make recommendations on the appropriate use of these funds in the future. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Natural Resources)

House Committee on Business and Industry –
• Study the impact of credit card data theft and other credit or privacy information theft on Texas consumers and businesses.

House Committee on Corrections –
• Examine the association between co-occurring serious mental illness and substance use disorders and parole revocation among inmates from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Review current policies and procedures for incarcerating individuals with a dual mental health diagnosis in both state and county correctional facilities and examine potential remedies within the State’s criminal justice system to ensure that the public is protected and that individuals with a mental health diagnosis receive a continuum of mental health services. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Criminal Jurisprudence)

• Study the impact of SB 393 (83R) and SB 1114 (83R). Assess the impact of school discipline and school-based policing on referrals to the municipal, justice, and juvenile courts, and identify judicial policies or initiatives designed to reduce referrals without having a negative impact on school safety. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Public Education)

If you have questions regarding any of the information mentioned in this article, please do not hesitate to call my Capitol or District Office. As always, my offices are available at any time to assist with questions, concerns or comments (Capitol Office, 512-463-0672; District Office, 361-949-4603).

– State Representative Todd Hunter, District 32

Hunter represents Nueces (Part). He can be contacted at todd.hunter@house.state.tx.us or at 512-463-0672.