Law:Title 7. Rehabilitation Of Individuals With Disabilities (Texas)

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Contents

Chapter 111. Texas Rehabilitation Commission

Subchapter A. General Provisions

Section  111.001.  Purpose.

It is the policy of the State of Texas to provide rehabilitation and related services to eligible individuals with disabilities so that they may prepare for and engage in a gainful occupation or achieve maximum personal independence.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2419, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 2, eff. May 17, 1993.



Section  111.002.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Commission" means the Texas Rehabilitation Commission.

(2)  "Commissioner" means the chief administrative officer of the commission.

(3)  "Individual with a disability" means any individual, except one whose disability is of a visual nature, who has a physical or mental impairment which constitutes a substantial impediment to employment, or to achieving maximum personal independence, but which is of a nature that rehabilitation services may be expected to enable the individual to engage in a gainful occupation or enable the individual to achieve a greater level of self-care and independent living.

(4)  "Substantial impediment to employment" means a physical or mental impairment in light of attendant medical, psychological, vocational, educational, or other related factors that impedes an individual's occupational performance by preventing the individual from obtaining, retaining, or preparing for a gainful occupation consistent with the individual's capacities and abilities.

(5)  "Rehabilitation services" means any equipment, supplies, goods, or services necessary to enable an individual with a disability to engage in a gainful occupation or to achieve maximum personal independence. To enable an individual with a disability to engage in a gainful occupation or achieve maximum personal independence the commission may engage in or contract for activities, including but not limited to:

(A)  evaluation of rehabilitation potential, including diagnostic and related services incidental to the determination of eligibility for services and the nature and scope of services to be provided;

(B)  counseling and guidance;

(C)  physical and mental restoration services necessary to correct or substantially modify a physical or mental condition that is stable or slowly progressive;

(D)  training;

(E)  maintenance for additional costs incurred while participating in rehabilitation services;

(F)  transportation;

(G)  placement in suitable employment;

(H)  postemployment services necessary to maintain suitable employment;

(I)  obtaining occupational licenses, including any license, permit, or other written authority required by a state, city, or other governmental unit to be obtained in order to enter an occupation or small business, and providing tools, equipment, initial stocks, goods, and supplies; and

(J)  providing other equipment, supplies, services, or goods that can reasonably be expected to benefit an individual with a disability in terms of employment in a gainful occupation or achievement of maximum personal independence.

(6)  "Vocational rehabilitation program" means a program that provides rehabilitation services required to enable an individual with a disability to engage in a gainful occupation.

(7)  Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.116(b); Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 210, Sec. 2.

(8)  "Board" means the board of the Texas Rehabilitation Commission.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2419, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 338, ch. 77, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984; Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 1052, Sec. 2.09, eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 3, eff. May 17, 1993; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.116(b), eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 210, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter B. Administrative Provisions

Section  111.011.  Texas Rehabilitation Commission.

The Texas Rehabilitation Commission is composed of the board of the Texas Rehabilitation Commission, a commissioner, and other officers and employees required to efficiently carry out the purposes of this chapter.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2420, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979.



Section  111.012.  Sunset Provision.

The Texas Rehabilitation Commission is subject to Chapter 325, Government Code (Texas Sunset Act). Unless continued in existence as provided by that chapter, the commission is abolished and this chapter expires September 1, 2011.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2421, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 479, Sec. 215, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 22, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., 1st C.S., ch. 17, Sec. 4.09, eff. Nov. 12, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.013.  Composition Of Board; Appointment; Qualifications; Terms.

(a) The board of the Texas Rehabilitation Commission is composed of five members appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. Members serve for staggered terms of six years with the terms of one or two members expiring every two years.

(b)  Appointees must be outstanding citizens of the state who are members of the general public and have demonstrated a constructive interest in rehabilitation services. Appointments to the board shall be made without regard to the race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin of the appointees. A person is not eligible for appointment as a board member if the person or the person's spouse:

(1)  is employed by or participates in the management of a business entity or other organization regulated by the agency or receiving funds from the commission;

(2)  owns, controls, or has, directly or indirectly, more than a 10 percent interest in a business entity or other organization regulated by the agency or receiving funds from the commission; or

(3)  uses or receives a substantial amount of tangible goods, services, or funds from the commission.

(c)  The governor shall designate one board member as presiding officer. The presiding officer serves in that capacity at the will of the governor.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2421, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1170, Sec. 39.01, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  111.0131.  Removal Of Board Members.

(a) It is a ground for removal from the board that a member:

(1)  does not have at the time of taking office the qualifications required by Section 111.013(b) for appointment to the board;

(2)  does not maintain during service on the board the qualifications required by Section 111.013(b) for appointment to the board;

(3)  is ineligible for membership under Section 111.013 or 111.025;

(4)  cannot, because of illness or disability, discharge the member's duties for a substantial part of the member's term; or

(5)  is absent from more than half of the regularly scheduled board meetings that the member is eligible to attend during a calendar year without an excuse approved by a majority vote of the board.

(b)  The validity of an action of the board is not affected by the fact that it is taken when a ground for removal of a board member exists.

(c)  If the commissioner has knowledge that a potential ground for removal exists, the commissioner shall notify the chairman of the board of the potential ground. The chairman of the board shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists. If the potential ground for removal involves the presiding officer, the commissioner shall notify the next highest ranking officer of the board, who shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists.

Added by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1985. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.0132.  Training Of Board Members.

(a) A person who is appointed to and qualifies for office as a member of the board may not vote, deliberate, or be counted as a member in attendance at a meeting of the board until the person completes a training program that complies with this section.

(b)  The training program must provide the person with information regarding:

(1)  the legislation that created the commission and the board;

(2)  the programs operated by the commission;

(3)  the role and functions of the commission;

(4)  the rules of the commission with an emphasis on the rules that relate to disciplinary and investigatory authority;

(5)  the current budget for the commission;

(6)  the results of the most recent formal audit of the commission;

(7)  the requirements of:

(A)  the open meetings law, Chapter 551, Government Code;

(B)  the public information law, Chapter 552, Government Code;

(C)  the administrative procedure law, Chapter 2001, Government Code; and

(D)  other laws relating to public officials, including conflict of interest laws; and

(8)  any applicable ethics policies adopted by the commission or the Texas Ethics Commission.

(c)  A person appointed to the board is entitled to reimbursement, as provided by the General Appropriations Act, for the travel expenses incurred in attending the training program regardless of whether the attendance at the program occurs before or after the person qualifies for office.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.014.  Meetings.

(a) The board shall meet quarterly in regular session and on call by the presiding officer when necessary for the transaction of agency business.

(b)  The board shall develop and implement policies that will provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before the board and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of the board.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2421, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1985.



Section  111.015.  Per Diem And Expenses.

(a) Board members are entitled to reimbursement for actual and necessary expenses incurred in the discharge of their official duties and the compensatory per diem authorized by the General Appropriations Act for each day at an official meeting as authorized by the board.

(b)  A member of the board who is disabled and who, because of the disability, requires special aids or travel attendants is entitled to reimbursement for the cost of the special aids or travel attendants.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2421, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1985.



Section  111.016.  Rehabilitation Council Of Texas. The Rehabilita

tion Council of Texas is created by this section in accordance with the federal Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1992, Pub. L. 102-569, and the federal Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998, Pub. L. 105-220. The board shall adopt rules for the implementation of regulations and the administration of the council.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2421, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 4, eff. May 17, 1993; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.0161.  Advisory Committees Report To Board.

(a) Each advisory committee established by law or rule to advise the commission shall report to and advise the board on the committee's activities and the results of the committee's work. For the purpose of performing its advisory functions, each committee shall work with the commissioner, the commission's staff, and the board.

(b)  The board shall adopt rules to implement this section.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Text of section as amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 8.

Section  111.017.  Commissioner.

The commissioner is appointed by the board, with the approval of the governor, and serves at the pleasure of the board. The commissioner is the executive head of the agency.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2421, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 8.146, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Text of section as amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1460, Sec. 2.14

Section  111.017.  Commissioner.

(a) This chapter is administered by the commissioner under operational policies established by the commissioner of health and human services. The commissioner is employed by the commissioner of health and human services in accordance with Section 531.0056, Government Code, on the basis of education, training, experience, and demonstrated ability.

(b)  The commissioner serves as secretary to the board, as well as chief administrative officer of the agency.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2421, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 8.146, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1460, Sec. 2.14, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.018.  Administrative Regulations And Policies.

(a) The board shall:

(1)  adopt policies and rules to effectively carry out the purposes of this chapter; and

(2)  supervise the commissioner's administration of this chapter.

(b)  In carrying out his or her duties under this chapter, the commissioner shall, with the approval of the board, implement policies addressing personnel standards, the protection of records and confidential information, the manner and form of filing applications, eligibility, investigation, and determination for rehabilitation and other services, procedures for hearings, and other regulations subject to this section as necessary to carry out the purposes of this chapter.

(c)  The commissioner shall develop a career ladder program, one part of which must require the posting throughout the commission of all nonentry level positions concurrently with any public posting.

(d)  The commissioner shall develop a system of annual performance evaluations based on measurable job tasks. All merit pay for employees must be based on the system established under this subsection.

(e)  The board shall provide to its members and employees as often as is necessary information regarding their qualifications under this chapter and their responsibilities under applicable laws relating to standards of conduct for state officers or employees.

(f)  The board shall develop and implement policies that clearly separate the policymaking responsibilities of the board and the management responsibilities of the commissioner and staff of the commission. The board may delegate to the commissioner, or to a person acting as commissioner in the commissioner's absence, any power or duty imposed on the board or commission by law except that the board may not delegate the power to adopt rules. The delegation of a power or duty must be in writing. Any delegation of the board's authority must be adopted by the board in a public meeting.

(g)  The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall prepare and maintain a written policy statement that implements a program of equal employment opportunity to ensure that all personnel decisions are made without regard to race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin. The policy statement must include:

(1)  personnel policies, including policies relating to recruitment, evaluation, selection, training, and promotion of personnel, that show the intent of the commission to avoid the unlawful employment practices described by Chapter 21, Labor Code; and

(2)  an analysis of the extent to which the composition of the commission's personnel is in accordance with state and federal law and a description of reasonable methods to achieve compliance with state and federal law.

(h)  The policy statement must:

(1)  be updated annually;

(2)  be reviewed by the state Commission on Human Rights for compliance with Subsection (g)(1); and

(3)  be filed with the governor's office.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.019.  Planning.

The commission shall make long-range and intermediate plans for the scope and development of the program and make decisions regarding the allocation of resources in carrying out the plans.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.020.  Administrative Units; Personnel.

(a) The commissioner shall, with the approval of the board, establish appropriate subordinate administrative units.

(b)  The commissioner shall, under personnel policies adopted by the board, appoint the personnel, including a general counsel, necessary for the efficient performance of the functions of the agency.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 5, eff. May 17, 1993.



Section  111.0205.  Work Incentives And Supplemental Security Income (ssi).

The commission shall employ a person at the commission's central office to:

(1)  train counselors to understand and use work incentives; and

(2)  review cases to ensure that commission clients are informed of the availability of and assisted in obtaining work incentives and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) (42 U.S.C. Section 1381 et seq.).

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 655, Sec. 6.03, eff. Sept. 1, 1995.



Section  111.021.  Reports.

(a) The commissioner shall prepare and submit to the board annual reports of activities and expenditures and, prior to each regular session of the legislature, estimates of funds required for carrying out the purposes of this chapter.

(b)  The board shall file annually with the governor and the presiding officer of each house of the legislature a complete and detailed written report accounting for all funds received and disbursed by the commission during the preceding year. The form of the annual report and the reporting time shall be that provided in the General Appropriations Act.

(c)  The commission shall post on the Internet in an accessible format the reports required under this section and any other agency performance data required to be reported to this state or the federal government. If a report or performance data contains confidential information, the commission shall remove the confidential information before posting the report or performance data.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.022.  Disbursement Of Funds.

The commission shall make certification for disbursement, in accordance with regulations, of funds available for carrying out the purposes of this chapter.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 12, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.023.  Other Duties.

The board shall take other action as necessary or appropriate to carry out the purposes of this chapter.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.024.  Delegation To Employees.

The commissioner may, with the approval of the board, delegate to any officer or employee of the commission responsibilities of the commissioner as necessary to carry out the purposes of this chapter.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 14, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.025.  Restrictions On Board Membership And Employment.

(a) In this section, "Texas trade association" means a cooperative and voluntarily joined association of business or professional competitors in this state designed to assist its members and its industry or profession in dealing with mutual business or professional problems and in promoting their common interest.

(b)  A person may not be a member of the board and may not be a commission employee employed in a "bona fide executive, administrative, or professional capacity," as that phrase is used for purposes of establishing an exemption to the overtime provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. Section 201 et seq.) and its subsequent amendments, if:

(1)  the person is an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of rehabilitation; or

(2)  the person's spouse is an officer, manager, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of rehabilitation.

(c)  A person may not be a member of the board or act as the general counsel to the board or the commission if the person is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government Code, because of the person's activities for compensation on behalf of a profession related to the operation of the commission.

Added by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1985. Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 167, Sec. 2.19(19), eff. Sept. 1, 1987; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 15, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.026.  Public Interest Information; Complaints.

(a) The commission shall prepare information of public interest describing the functions of the commission and describing the commission's procedures by which complaints are filed with and resolved by the commission. The commission shall make the information available to the general public and appropriate state agencies.

(b)  The commission shall adopt rules establishing methods by which consumers and service recipients can be notified of the name, mailing address, and telephone number of the commission for the purpose of directing complaints to the commission. The commission may provide for the notification through inclusion of the information:

(1)  on each registration form, application, or written contract relating to participation in a program that is funded in any part by money derived from or through the commission;

(2)  on a sign that is prominently displayed in the place of business of each person or entity engaging in a program that is funded in any part by money derived from or through the commission; or

(3)  in a bill for service provided by a person or entity engaging in a program that is funded in any part by money derived from or through the commission.

(c)  The commission shall maintain a file on each written complaint filed with the commission. The file must include:

(1)  the name of the person who filed the complaint;

(2)  the date the complaint is received by the commission;

(3)  the subject matter of the complaint;

(4)  the name of each person contacted in relation to the complaint;

(5)  a summary of the results of the review or investigation of the complaint; and

(6)  an explanation of the reason the file was closed if the agency closed the file without taking action other than to investigate the complaint.

(d)  The commission shall provide to the person filing the complaint and to each person who is a subject of the complaint a copy of the commission's policies and procedures relating to complaint investigation and resolution.

(e)  The commission, at least quarterly until final disposition of the complaint, shall notify the person filing the complaint and each person who is a subject of the complaint of the status of the investigation unless the notice would jeopardize an undercover investigation.

Added by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1985. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 16, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Subchapter C. Powers And Duties Of Commission

Section  111.0505.  Powers And Duties Of Commissioner Of Health And Human Services.

The commissioner of health and human services has the powers and duties relating to the commission and commissioner as provided by Section 531.0055, Government Code. To the extent a power or duty given to the commission or commissioner by this chapter or another law conflicts with Section 531.0055, Government Code, Section 531.0055 controls.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1460, Sec. 2.15, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.051.  Commission As Principal Authority.

The Texas Rehabilitation Commission is the principal authority in the state on rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities, except for those matters relating to individuals whose disabilities are of a visual nature. All other state agencies engaged in rehabilitation activities and related services to individuals whose disabilities are not of a visual nature shall coordinate those activities and services with the commission.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 6, eff. May 17, 1993.



Section  111.052.  General Functions.

(a) The commission shall, to the extent of resources available and priorities established by the board, provide rehabilitation services directly or through public or private resources to individuals determined by the commission to be eligible for the services under a vocational rehabilitation program or other program established to provide rehabilitative services.

(b)  In carrying out the purposes of this chapter, the commission may:

(1)  cooperate with other departments, agencies, political subdivisions, and institutions, both public and private, in providing the services authorized by this chapter to eligible individuals, in studying the problems involved, and in planning, establishing, developing, and providing necessary or desirable programs, facilities, and services, including those jointly administered with state agencies;

(2)  enter into reciprocal agreements with other states;

(3)  establish or construct rehabilitation facilities and workshops, contract with or provide grants to agencies, organizations, or individuals as necessary to implement this chapter, make contracts or other arrangements with public and other nonprofit agencies, organizations, or institutions for the establishment of workshops and rehabilitation facilities, and operate facilities for carrying out the purposes of this chapter;

(4)  conduct research and compile statistics relating to the provision of services to or the need for services by disabled individuals;

(5)  provide for the establishment, supervision, management, and control of small business enterprises to be operated by individuals with significant disabilities where their operation will be improved through the management and supervision of the commission;

(6)  contract with schools, hospitals, private industrial firms, and other agencies and with doctors, nurses, technicians, and other persons for training, physical restoration, transportation, and other rehabilitation services; and

(7)  assess the statewide need for services necessary to prepare students with disabilities for a successful transition to employment, establish collaborative relationships with each school district with education service centers to the maximum extent possible within available resources, and develop strategies to assist vocational rehabilitation counselors in identifying and reaching students in need of transition planning.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 342, ch. 77, Sec. 2, eff. Jan. 1, 1984; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 7, eff. May 17, 1993; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 17, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.116(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 210, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  111.0525.  Coordination With State Agencies. (a)

Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.116(b); Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 210, Sec. 2.

(b)  The commission shall enter into an agreement with the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation to reduce duplication and fragmentation of employment services by defining each agency's role and responsibilities for shared client populations.

(c)  The commission shall establish a formal referral process with the Texas Workforce Commission to ensure that appropriate vocational rehabilitation clients are referred to and receive services provided by the Texas Workforce Commission or local workforce development agencies.

(d)  Repealed by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 268, Sec. 32(f), eff. September 1, 2008.

Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.116(b), 2.132, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 210, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1325, Sec. 13.10, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 281, Sec. 4.08, eff. June 14, 2005.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 268, Sec. 32(f), eff. September 1, 2008.



Section  111.053.  Cooperation With The Federal Government.

(a) The commission shall make agreements, arrangements, or plans to cooperate with the federal government in carrying out the purposes of this chapter or of any federal statutes pertaining to rehabilitation, and to this end may adopt methods of administration that are found by the federal government to be necessary, and that are not contrary to existing state laws, for the proper and efficient operation of the agreements, arrangements, or plans for rehabilitation.

(b)  To the extent resources are made available by the federal government, the commission may make agreements, arrangements, or plans to cooperate with the federal government in carrying out the purposes of any federal statute pertaining to the disability determination function under the Social Security Act and to this end shall adopt methods of administration that are found by the federal government to be necessary to the disability determination function and that are not contrary to existing state laws.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2422, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 343, ch. 77, Sec. 3, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.



Section  111.054.  Obtaining Federal Funds.

The commission may comply with any requirements necessary to obtain federal funds in the maximum amount and most advantageous proportion possible.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2423, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979.



Section  111.055.  Finances.

(a) All money paid to the commission under this chapter shall be deposited in the State Treasury and may be used only for the administration of this chapter.

(b)  The financial transactions of the commission are subject to audit by the state auditor in accordance with Chapter 321, Government Code.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2423, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 10, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 584, Sec. 17, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  111.0553.  Procurement Methods.

(a) The commission shall develop and, following review and approval by the board, implement agency-wide procurement procedures to:

(1)  ensure compliance with the best-value purchasing requirements of Section 2155.144(c), Government Code;

(2)  document that a best-value review of vendors has occurred;

(3)  document the reasons for selecting a vendor;

(4)  negotiate price discounts with high-volume vendors;

(5)  consolidate purchases with other agencies, including the Texas Department of Health and the comptroller, to achieve best value; and

(6)  provide effective public notification to potential vendors of planned commission purchases.

(b)  Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the commission's ability to procure goods and services from persons with disabilities.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 21, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 937, Sec. 1.96, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  111.056.  Gifts And Donations To The Commission.

The commission may receive and use gifts and donations for carrying out the purposes of this chapter. No person may receive payment for solicitation of any funds.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2424, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979.



Section  111.057.  Unlawful Use Of Lists Of Names.

(a) Except for purposes directly connected with the administration of health and human service programs and in accordance with regulations, it is unlawful for a person to solicit, disclose, receive, or make use of, or authorize, knowingly permit, participate in, or acquiesce in the use of any list of, names of, or any information directly or indirectly derived from records concerning persons applying for or receiving health and human services.

(b)  The commission is authorized to provide client and other information to and receive client and other information from any state agency for the purpose of increasing and enhancing services to clients and improving agency operations, except where federal law or regulations preclude such sharing.

(c)  The commission shall adopt rules to carry out the purposes of this section.

Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2424, ch. 842, art. 1, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 9, eff. May 17, 1993.



Section 111.058.  Criminal Conviction Record Information.

(a) The commission may obtain criminal conviction record information from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and from the Texas Department of Public Safety if the conviction records relate to:

(1)  an applicant selected for employment with the commission;

(2)  an applicant for rehabilitation services; or

(3)  a client of the commission.

(b)  The Texas Department of Criminal Justice and the Texas Department of Public Safety upon request shall supply to the commission criminal conviction record information relating to applicants selected for employment with the commission, applicants for rehabilitation services, or clients of the commission.  The commission shall treat all criminal conviction record information as privileged and confidential and for commission use only.

Added by Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2435, ch. 842, art. 2, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 10, eff. May 17, 1993.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 87, Sec. 25.118, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  111.0581.  Criminal History Record Information.

(a) The board by rule shall establish criteria for denying a person's application for employment based on criminal history background information obtained pursuant to Section 411.117, Government Code.

(b)  The commission shall treat all criminal history record information as privileged and confidential and for commission use only.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 22, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.059.  Subrogation.

(a) In furnishing a person rehabilitation services, including medical care services, under this chapter, the commission is subrogated to the person's right of recovery from:

(1)  personal insurance;

(2)  another person for personal injury caused by the other person's negligence or wrongdoing; or

(3)  any other source.

(b)  The commission's right of subrogation is limited to the cost of the services provided.

(c)  The commissioner may totally or partially waive the commission's right of subrogation when the commissioner finds that enforcement would tend to defeat the purpose of rehabilitation.

(d)  The commission may adopt rules for the enforcement of its right of subrogation.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 344, ch. 77, Sec. 4, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.



Section  111.060.  Comprehensive Rehabilitation Fund. (a)

The comprehensive rehabilitation fund is created in the state treasury. Money in the fund is derived from court costs collected under Subchapter D, Chapter 102, Code of Criminal Procedure. Money in the fund may be appropriated only to the commission for the purposes provided by Section 111.052.

(b)  The comptroller, on requisition by the commission, shall draw a warrant on the fund for the amount specified in that requisition for a use authorized in Section 111.052, except that the total of warrants issued during a state fiscal year may not exceed the amount appropriated for that fiscal year.  At the end of each state fiscal year, the comptroller shall transfer to the General Revenue Fund any unexpended balance in the comprehensive rehabilitation fund that exceeds $1.5 million.

(c)  The court costs remitted to the comptroller and deposited in the state treasury pursuant to this section are dedicated to the commission.

(d)  Repealed by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 25, Sec. 2, eff. May 9, 2005.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 101, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 142, Sec. 11, eff. May 17, 1993; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.117, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 25, Sec. 1, eff. May 9, 2006.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 25, Sec. 2, eff. May 9, 2005.



Section  111.061.  Contract Payment.

The commission shall base payment under a contract for vocational rehabilitation services on outcome-based performance standards defined in the contract.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 928, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1998.



Subchapter D. Vocational Rehabilitation Services

Section  111.070.  Provision Of Services.

(a) The board by rule shall establish and maintain guidelines for providing vocational rehabilitation services that are consistent with state and federal laws and regulations and that include:

(1)  a system of organization for the delivery of vocational rehabilitation services statewide;

(2)  eligibility requirements for vocational rehabilitation services;

(3)  requirements for the rehabilitation planning process;

(4)  the types of services that may be provided to a client through a vocational rehabilitation program; and

(5)  requirements for client participation in the costs of vocational rehabilitation services, including documentation that a client has sought benefits for which the client is eligible from sources other than the commission and that may assist the client in obtaining vocational rehabilitation goods or services.

(b)  The board shall annually assess the effectiveness of the state's vocational rehabilitation program.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.071.  Training And Supervision Of Counselors.

(a) The commission shall provide specific guidance to vocational rehabilitation counselors in:

(1)  selecting vocational objectives according to a client's skills, experience, and knowledge;

(2)  documenting a client's impediment to employment;

(3)  selecting rehabilitation services that are reasonable and necessary to achieve a client's vocational objective;

(4)  measuring client progress toward the vocational objective, including the documented, periodic evaluation of the client's rehabilitation and participation; and

(5)  determining eligibility of employed and unemployed applicants for rehabilitation services using criteria defined by board rule to document whether a client is substantially underemployed or at risk of losing employment.

(b)  The board by rule shall require monitoring and oversight of vocational rehabilitation counselor performance and decision making in accordance with this section.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  111.072.  Client Orientation Materials.

The commission shall develop and distribute at intake client orientation materials for the vocational rehabilitation program that include information on the commission's decision-making criteria.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Chapter 112. Developmental Disabilities

Subchapter A. General Provisions

Section  112.001.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Council" means the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities.

(2)  "Designated state agency" means the executive agency designated by the governor to provide administrative support and fiscal management services to the council in accordance with this chapter and federal law.

(3)  "Developmental disability" means a severe, chronic disability as defined by applicable federal developmental disability laws.

(4)  "Applicable federal developmental disability laws" refers to the various Acts of congress providing for assistance and services to persons with developmental disabilities and codified as 42 U.S.C. Section 6000 et seq.

(5)  "Protection and advocacy system" means the system established in this state under the applicable federal developmental disabilities laws for the purpose of advocating for and protecting the rights of persons with developmental disabilities.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 11, 12, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.002.  Purpose And Legislative Findings.

(a) The purpose of this chapter is to establish a developmental disabilities program that assures compliance with applicable federal developmental disability laws.

(b)  The legislature finds that persons with developmental disabilities have a right to appropriate treatment, services, and habilitation for their disabilities within the funds available for those purposes and that the treatment, services, and habilitation for a person with developmental disabilities must be designed to maximize the developmental potential of the person and must be provided in the setting that is least restrictive of the person's personal liberty.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 1985.



Subchapter B. Texas Council For Developmental Disabilities

Section  112.011.  Establishment.

The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities is established.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0111.  Definition.

In this subchapter, "executive director" means the executive director of the council.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.012.  Members.

The members of the council shall be appointed by the governor in accordance with applicable federal developmental disability laws. The governor may appoint as many members to the council as is determined appropriate for the council to accomplish its purposes but must appoint, in total membership, an odd number of members to the council. Appointments to the council shall be made without regard to:

(1)  the race, color, sex, religion, age, or national origin of the appointees; or

(2)  the disability of the appointees, except as required by applicable federal developmental disability laws.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 264, Sec. 28, eff. Aug. 26, 1985; Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 14, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 793, Sec. 22, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1170, Sec. 9.01, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  112.013.  Terms.

(a) Members of the council appointed by the governor serve for staggered terms of six years with the term of one-third or approximately one-third of the members expiring on February 1 of each odd-numbered year.

(b)  A person may not serve on the council more than two consecutive six-year terms.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1170, Sec. 9.02, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  112.014.  Vacancies.

(a) A position on the council becomes vacant if:

(1)  a member resigns from the council by providing written notice to the chair; or

(2)  a member ceases to be a resident of this state.

(b)  If a position on the council becomes vacant, the chair shall provide written notice to the governor, agency commissioner, or executive director, as appropriate, requesting a new appointment to fill the remainder of the member's term.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.015.  Expenses.

(a) Council members appointed under Section 112.012 serve without salary but are entitled to reimbursement for actual expenses incurred in performing their duties, including travel, meals, lodging, and telephone long-distance charges.

(b)  Members of the council who have a disability and who, because of the disability, require special aids or travel companions are entitled to reimbursement for those costs.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.016.  Officers.

(a) The governor shall designate a member of the council to be the presiding officer.

(b)  The presiding officer serves in that capacity at the will of the governor.

(c)  A representative of a state agency may not serve as chair or vice-chair.

(d)  The council shall meet quarterly in regular session and on call by the chair when necessary for the transaction of council business.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 15, eff. Sept. 1, 1985.



Section  112.0161.  Conflicts Of Interest.

(a) In this section, "Texas trade association" means a cooperative and voluntarily joined association of business or professional competitors in this state designed to assist its members and its industry or profession in dealing with mutual business or professional problems and in promoting their common interest.

(b)  A person may not be a member of the council and may not be a council employee employed in a "bona fide executive, administrative, or professional capacity," as that phrase is used for purposes of establishing an exemption to the overtime provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. Section 201 et seq.) and its subsequent amendments, if:

(1)  the person is an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of developmental disabilities; or

(2)  the person's spouse is an officer, manager, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of developmental disabilities.

(c)  Unless otherwise required by applicable federal developmental disability laws, a person may not be a member of the council or act as the general counsel to the council if the person is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government Code, because of the person's activities for compensation on behalf of a profession related to the operation of the council.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0162.  Removal Of Council Member.

(a) It is a ground for removal from the council that a member:

(1)  does not have at the time of taking office the qualifications required by applicable federal developmental disability laws;

(2)  is ineligible for membership under Section 112.0161;

(3)  fails to discharge the member's duties for a substantial part of the member's term; or

(4)  is absent from more than half of the regularly scheduled council meetings that the member is eligible to attend during a calendar year without an excuse approved by a majority vote of the council.

(b)  The validity of an action of the council is not affected by the fact that it is taken when a ground for removal of a council member exists.

(c)  If the executive director has knowledge that a potential ground for removal exists, the executive director shall notify the presiding officer of the council of the potential ground. The presiding officer shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists. If the potential ground for removal involves the presiding officer, the executive director shall notify the next highest ranking officer of the council, who shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0163.  Council Member Training.

(a) A person who is appointed to and qualifies for office as a member of the council may not vote, deliberate, or be counted as a member in attendance at a meeting of the council until the person completes a training program that complies with this section.

(b)  The training program must provide the person with information regarding:

(1)  the legislation that created the council;

(2)  the programs operated by the council;

(3)  the role and functions of the designated state agency and council under this chapter and applicable federal developmental disability laws;

(4)  the rules of the council, with an emphasis on the rules that relate to disciplinary and investigatory authority;

(5)  the current budget for the council;

(6)  the results of the most recent formal audit of the council;

(7)  the requirements of:

(A)  the open meetings law, Chapter 551, Government Code;

(B)  the public information law, Chapter 552, Government Code;

(C)  the administrative procedure law, Chapter 2001, Government Code; and

(D)  other laws relating to public officials, including conflict of interest laws; and

(8)  any applicable ethics policies adopted by the council or the Texas Ethics Commission.

(c)  A person appointed to the council is entitled to reimbursement, as provided by the General Appropriations Act, for the travel expenses incurred in attending the training program regardless of whether the attendance at the program occurs before or after the person qualifies for office.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.017.  Bylaws.

The council may adopt bylaws and policies consistent with this chapter and applicable state or federal law.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 16, eff. Sept. 1, 1985.



Section  112.018.  Designated State Agency.

(a) The governor shall designate, by executive order, a state agency to provide administrative support to the council and receive federal and state funds appropriated for the council. In accordance with federal law, the governor may select one of the following to serve as the designated state agency:

(1)  the council;

(2)  a state agency that does not provide or pay for services made available to persons with developmental disabilities;

(3)  a state agency that provides or pays for services made available to persons with developmental disabilities if the state agency was designated by the governor under this section before June 30, 1994, and the governor has not changed the designation;

(4)  a state office, including the office of the governor; or

(5)  a state planning office.

(b)  The designated state agency shall receive, deposit, and disburse funds for the council in accordance with this chapter, applicable federal developmental disability laws, and the purposes and priorities established by the council in the state plan developed under Section 112.019.

(c)  The designated state agency, in accordance with state law and procedures, shall provide for fiscal control and fund-accounting procedures necessary to assure the proper disbursement of and accounting for funds available to the council.

(d)  Unless the council is serving as the designated state agency, the council shall enter into a memorandum of understanding with the designated state agency that delineates the roles and responsibilities of the designated state agency under this chapter.

(e)  The designated state agency may adopt rules as necessary to implement the agency's duties under this chapter and applicable federal developmental disability laws.

(f)  A designated state agency may not assign duties to staff of the council unless the council is serving as the designated state agency.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 17, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.019.  State Plan For Developmental Disabilities.

(a) The council shall develop and submit the state plan for persons with developmental disabilities. The plan must conform to applicable federal developmental disability laws.

(b)  Unless the council is serving as the designated state agency, the council shall consult with the designated state agency before submitting the state plan required by this section solely to:

(1)  obtain appropriate assurances with respect to the plan as required by federal law; and

(2)  ensure that the plan is consistent with state law.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 18, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.020.  Additional Council Powers And Duties.

(a) In addition to powers and duties derived by the council from applicable federal developmental disability laws or other provisions of this chapter, the council shall:

(1)  undertake at the request of the governor and the legislature activities appropriate to the achievement of legislative and executive functions relating to persons with developmental disabilities or other disabling conditions;

(2)  submit to the governor, legislature, and other appropriate state and federal authorities periodic reports on the council's responsibilities and performance;

(3)  develop and implement policies that clearly separate the policymaking responsibilities of the council and the management responsibilities of the executive director and the staff of the council; and

(4)  develop and implement policies that provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before the council and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of the council.

(b)  The council may:

(1)  adopt rules as necessary to implement the council's duties and responsibilities under this chapter and applicable federal developmental disability laws;

(2)  approve and execute an annual budget for council activities under this chapter that is consistent with applicable federal developmental disability laws; and

(3)  contract with or provide grants to agencies, organizations, or individuals as necessary to implement council activities under this chapter.

Added by Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 5272, ch. 970, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 29, 1983. Amended by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 19, eff. Sept. 1, 1985; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0201.  Complaints.

(a) The council shall maintain a file on each written complaint filed with the council. The file must include:

(1)  the name of the person who filed the complaint;

(2)  the date the complaint is received by the council;

(3)  the subject matter of the complaint;

(4)  the name of each person contacted in relation to the complaint;

(5)  a summary of the results of the review or investigation of the complaint; and

(6)  an explanation of the reason the file was closed, if the council closed the file without taking action other than to investigate the complaint.

(b)  The council shall provide to the person filing the complaint and to each person who is a subject of the complaint a copy of the council's policies and procedures relating to complaint investigation and resolution.

(c)  The council, at least quarterly and until final disposition of the complaint, shall notify the person filing the complaint and each person who is a subject of the complaint of the status of the investigation unless the notice would jeopardize an undercover investigation.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.021.  Protection And Advocacy Of Individual Rights.

The protection and advocacy system shall have access to records as required by the provisions of the applicable federal disability laws.

Added by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 603, Sec. 20, eff. Sept. 1, 1985.



Section  112.022.  Executive Director. (a)

The council shall hire an executive director in accordance with 42 U.S.C. Section 6024(c) and its subsequent amendments to carry out the policies and activities established by the council.

(b)  The executive director shall hire and supervise necessary staff who will be responsible solely for carrying out activities designated by the council and consistent with:

(1)  applicable federal developmental disability laws; and

(2)  this chapter.

(c)  The executive director or the executive director's designee shall provide to members of the council and to council employees, as often as necessary, information regarding the requirements for office or employment under this subchapter, including information regarding a person's responsibilities under applicable laws relating to standards of conduct for state officers or employees.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0221.  Equal Employment Opportunity Policy.

(a) The executive director or the executive director's designee shall prepare and maintain a written policy statement that implements a program of equal employment opportunity to ensure that all personnel decisions are made without regard to race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin.

(b)  The policy statement must include:

(1)  personnel policies, including policies relating to recruitment, evaluation, selection, training, and promotion of personnel, that show the intent of the council to avoid the unlawful employment practices described by Chapter 21, Labor Code; and

(2)  an analysis of the extent to which the composition of the council's personnel is in accordance with state and federal law and a description of reasonable methods to achieve compliance with state and federal law.

(c)  The policy statement must:

(1)  be updated annually;

(2)  be reviewed by the state Commission on Human Rights for compliance with Subsection (b)(1); and

(3)  be filed with the governor's office.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section 112.023.  Sunset Provision.

The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities is subject to Chapter 325, Government Code (Texas Sunset Act).  Unless continued in existence as provided by that chapter, the council is abolished and this chapter expires September 1, 2013.

Added by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 729, Sec. 36, eff. Sept. 1, 1985. Amended by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 167, Sec. 2.20(34), eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Renumbered from Sec. 112.021 by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 167, 5.01(a)(28), eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., 1st C.S., ch. 17, Sec. 4.10, eff. Nov. 12, 1991; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 79, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1227, Sec. 2.03, eff. September 1, 2005.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 928, Sec. 3.05, eff. June 15, 2007.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., 1st C.S., Ch. 2, Sec. 2.11, eff. July 10, 2009.



Subchapter C. Office For The Prevention Of Developmental Disabilities

Section  112.041.  Purpose And Policy.

(a) The purpose of this Act is to minimize the economic and human losses in Texas caused by preventable disabilities through the establishment of a joint private-public initiative called the Office for the Prevention of Developmental Disabilities.

(b)  The legislature finds there is a strong need for a unified, comprehensive prevention effort in the State of Texas. Many state agencies, as well as private organizations and local public agencies, are involved in prevention activities that can reduce the incidence and severity of developmental disabilities. However, a coordinated statewide plan that identifies and consolidates research findings and prevention activities has yet to be developed.

(c)  The legislature further finds that by establishing a mechanism by which prevention activities can be better coordinated and needed prevention programs can be initiated, the State of Texas will be making an important investment in Texas's future.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.042.  Definitions.

In this subchapter:

(1)  "Developmental disability" means a severe, chronic disability that:

(A)  is attributable to a mental or physical impairment or to a combination of a mental and physical impairment;

(B)  is manifested before a person reaches the age of 22;

(C)  is likely to continue indefinitely;

(D)  results in substantial functional limitations in three or more major life activities, including:

(i)  self-care;

(ii)  receptive and expressive language;

(iii)  learning;

(iv)  mobility;

(v)  self-direction;

(vi)  capacity for independent living; and

(vii)  economic sufficiency; and

(E)  reflects the person's needs for a combination and sequence of special interdisciplinary or generic care, treatment, or other lifelong or extended services that are individually planned and coordinated.

(2)  "Executive committee" means the executive committee of the Office for the Prevention of Developmental Disabilities.

(3)  "Office" means the Office for the Prevention of Developmental Disabilities.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.043.  Office For The Prevention Of Developmental Disabilities; Administrative Attachment.

(a) The Office for the Prevention of Developmental Disabilities is administratively attached to the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation.

(b)  The Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation shall:

(1)  provide administrative assistance, services, and materials to the office;

(2)  accept, deposit, and disburse money made available to the office;

(3)  accept gifts and grants on behalf of the office from any public or private entity;

(4)  pay the salaries and benefits of the executive director and staff of the office;

(5)  reimburse the travel expenses and other actual and necessary expenses of the executive committee, executive director, and staff of the office incurred in the performance of a function of the office, as provided by the General Appropriations Act;

(6)  apply for and receive on behalf of the office any appropriations, gifts, or other money from the state or federal government or any other public or private entity, subject to limitations and conditions prescribed by legislative appropriation;

(7)  provide the office with adequate computer equipment and support; and

(8)  provide the office with adequate office space and permit the executive committee to meet in facilities of the department.

(c)  The executive director and staff of the office are employees of the office and not employees of the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.044.  Duties.

The office shall:

(1)  educate the public and attempt to promote sound public policy regarding the prevention of developmental disabilities;

(2)  identify, collect, and disseminate information and data concerning the causes, frequency of occurrence, and preventability of developmental disabilities;

(3)  work with state agencies and other entities to develop a coordinated long-range plan to effectively monitor and reduce the incidence or severity of developmental disabilities;

(4)  promote and facilitate the identification, development, coordination, and delivery of needed prevention services;

(5)  solicit, receive, and spend grants and donations from public, private, state, and federal sources;

(6)  identify and encourage establishment of needed reporting systems to track the causes and frequencies of occurrence of developmental disabilities;

(7)  develop, operate, and monitor task forces to address the prevention of specific targeted developmental disabilities;

(8)  monitor and assess the effectiveness of state agencies to prevent developmental disabilities;

(9)  recommend the role each state agency should have with regard to prevention of developmental disabilities;

(10)  facilitate coordination of state agency prevention services and activities; and

(11)  encourage cooperative, comprehensive, and complementary planning among public, private, and volunteer individuals and organizations engaged in prevention activities, providing prevention services, or conducting related research.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.045.  Executive Committee.

(a) The executive committee is the governing body of the office.

(b)  The executive committee is composed of nine members who have expertise in the field of developmental disabilities, of which three are appointed by the governor, three are appointed by the lieutenant governor, and three are appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives. Appointments to the executive committee shall be made without regard to the race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin of the appointees.

(c)  The members serve for staggered six-year terms, with the terms of three members expiring February 1 of each odd-numbered year. Executive committee members receive no compensation but are entitled to reimbursement of actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties.

(d)  The governor shall designate a member of the executive committee as the presiding officer of the executive committee to serve in that capacity at the will of the governor.

(e)  The executive committee shall meet at least quarterly and shall adopt bylaws for the conduct of the meetings.

(f)  Any actions taken by the executive committee must be approved by a majority vote of the members present.

(g)  The executive committee shall establish policies and procedures to implement this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 557, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0451.  Conflict Of Interest.

A person may not be a member of the executive committee or act as the general counsel to the executive committee or the office if the person is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government Code, because of the person's activities for compensation on behalf of a profession related to the operation of the office.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0452.  Removal Of Executive Committee Member.

(a) It is a ground for removal from the executive committee that a member:

(1)  does not have at the time of taking office the qualifications required by Section 112.045;

(2)  does not maintain during service on the executive committee the qualifications required by Section 112.045;

(3)  is ineligible for membership under Section 112.045 or 112.0451;

(4)  cannot, because of illness or disability, discharge the member's duties for a substantial part of the member's term; or

(5)  is absent from more than half of the regularly scheduled executive committee meetings that the member is eligible to attend during a calendar year without an excuse approved by a majority vote of the executive committee.

(b)  The validity of an action of the executive committee is not affected by the fact that it is taken when a ground for removal of an executive committee member exists.

(c)  If the executive director has knowledge that a potential ground for removal exists, the executive director shall notify the presiding officer of the executive committee of the potential ground. The presiding officer shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists. If the potential ground for removal involves the presiding officer, the executive director shall notify the next highest ranking officer of the executive committee, who shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0453.  Executive Committee Member Training.

(a) A person who is appointed to and qualifies for office as a member of the executive committee may not vote, deliberate, or be counted as a member in attendance at a meeting of the executive committee until the person completes a training program that complies with this section.

(b)  The training program must provide the person with information regarding:

(1)  the legislation that created the office and the executive committee;

(2)  the programs operated by the office;

(3)  the role and functions of the office;

(4)  the rules of the office with an emphasis on the rules that relate to disciplinary and investigatory authority;

(5)  the current budget for the office;

(6)  the results of the most recent formal audit of the office;

(7)  the requirements of:

(A)  the open meetings law, Chapter 551, Government Code;

(B)  the public information law, Chapter 552, Government Code;

(C)  the administrative procedure law, Chapter 2001, Government Code; and

(D)  other laws relating to public officials, including conflict-of-interest laws; and

(8)  any applicable ethics policies adopted by the office or the Texas Ethics Commission.

(c)  A person appointed to the executive committee is entitled to reimbursement, as provided by the General Appropriations Act, for the travel expenses incurred in attending the training program regardless of whether the attendance at the program occurs before or after the person qualifies for office.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0454.  Public Access.

The executive committee shall develop and implement policies that provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before the executive committee and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of the office.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.046.  Board Of Advisors.

(a) The executive committee may appoint a board of advisors composed of the following persons:

(1)  representatives of government agencies that are responsible for prevention services for specified targeted disabilities and that contract with the office to provide those services;

(2)  representatives of consumer groups, foundations, or corporations that contract for or donate to the office for prevention services for specific targeted disabilities;

(3)  private citizens who volunteer services or donate to the office for prevention services for specific targeted disabilities; and

(4)  other persons whose assistance the executive committee considers necessary to implement the purposes of this subchapter.

(b)  The board of advisors may serve on task forces, solicit donations and grants, and perform any other duties assigned by the executive committee.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.047.  Executive Director.

(a) The executive committee may hire an executive director to serve as the chief executive officer of the office and to perform the administrative duties of the office.

(b)  The executive director serves at the will of the executive committee.

(c)  The executive director may hire staff within guidelines established by the executive committee.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.0471.  Qualifications And Standards Of Conduct.

The executive director or the executive director's designee shall provide to members of the executive committee and to employees of the office, as often as necessary, information regarding the requirements for office or employment under this subchapter, including information regarding a person's responsibilities under applicable laws relating to standards of conduct for state officers or employees.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.0472.  Equal Employment Opportunity Policies.

(a) The executive director shall prepare and maintain a written policy statement that implements a program of equal employment opportunity to ensure that all personnel decisions are made without regard to race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin.

(b)  The policy statement must include:

(1)  personnel policies, including policies relating to recruitment, evaluation, selection, training, and promotion of personnel, that show the intent of the office to avoid the unlawful employment practices described by Chapter 21, Labor Code; and

(2)  an analysis of the extent to which the composition of the office's personnel is in accordance with state and federal law and a description of reasonable methods to achieve compliance with state and federal law.

(c)  The policy statement must:

(1)  be updated annually;

(2)  be reviewed by the state Commission on Human Rights for compliance with Subsection (b)(1); and

(3)  be filed with the governor's office.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 751, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  112.048.  Task Forces.

(a) The executive committee shall establish guidelines for:

(1)  selecting targeted disabilities;

(2)  assessing prevention services needs; and

(3)  reviewing task force plans, budgets, and operations.

(b)  The executive committee shall create task forces made up of members of the board of advisors to plan and implement prevention programs for specifically targeted developmental disabilities. A task force operates as an administrative division of the office and can be abolished when it is ineffective or is no longer needed.

(c)  A task force shall:

(1)  develop a plan designed to reduce the incidence of a specifically targeted disability;

(2)  prepare a budget for implementing a plan;

(3)  arrange for funds through:

(A)  contracts for services from participating agencies;

(B)  grants and gifts from private persons and consumer and advocacy organizations; and

(C)  foundation support; and

(4)  submit the plan, budget, and evidence of funding commitments to the executive committee for approval.

(d)  A task force shall regularly report to the executive committee, as required by the committee, the operation, progress, and results of the task force's prevention plan.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.049.  Evaluation.

(a) The office shall identify or encourage the establishment of needed statistical bases for each targeted group against which the office can measure how effectively a task force program is reducing the frequency or severity of a targeted developmental disability.

(b)  The executive committee shall regularly monitor and evaluate the results of task force prevention programs.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.050.  Grants.

(a) The executive committee may apply for and distribute private, state, and federal funds to implement prevention policies set by the executive committee.

(b)  The executive committee shall establish criteria for application and review of funding requests and accountability standards for recipients. The executive committee may adjust its criteria as necessary to meet requirements for federal funding.

(c)  The executive committee may not submit a legislative appropriation request for general revenue funds.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  112.051.  Reports To Legislature.

The office shall submit by February 1 of each odd-numbered year biennial reports to the legislature detailing findings of the office and the results of task force prevention programs and recommending improvements in the delivery of developmental disability prevention services.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1209, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.


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