Law:Title 4. Finances. Subtitle B. County Finances from Chapter 130. Miscellaneous Financial Provisions Affecting Counties (Texas)

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Subtitle B. County Finances

Contents

Chapter 130. Miscellaneous Financial Provisions Affecting Counties

Subchapter A. Payment Of Fees And Taxes By Check, Credit Card, Or Electronic Means

Section  130.001.  Definitions.

In this subchapter:

(1)  "Check" means an instrument signed by the maker, containing an unconditional promise or order to pay a sum certain in money, containing no other promise, order, obligation, or power given by the maker, payable on demand, and drawn on a bank.

(2)  "Credit card invoice" means the document authorized by the holder of a credit card to be used to provide payment of an amount from the holder's credit card account.

(3)  "Maker" means the drawer of a check or the holder of a credit card who authorizes a credit card invoice.

(4)  "Payment by electronic means" means payment by telephone or computer but does not include payment in person or by mail.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 148, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  130.002.  Acceptance Of Check Or Credit Card Payment Of Certain Fees And Taxes.

A county tax assessor-collector may accept a check or credit card invoice for the payment of:

(1)  motor vehicle registration fees under Chapter 502, Transportation Code;

(2)  motor vehicle sales taxes imposed by Chapter 152, Tax Code;

(3)  occupation taxes paid to the assessor-collector under Chapter 191, Tax Code;

(4)  motor vehicle title transfer fees under Chapter 501, Transportation Code;

(5)  license or permit fees under the Alcoholic Beverage Code; and

(6)  property taxes.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 30.215, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  130.003.  Payment Conditional.

(a) The acceptance of a check or credit card invoice for the payment of a fee or tax does not constitute payment of the fee or tax. The fee or tax is not considered paid until the check is honored by the bank on which the check is drawn or the credit card invoice is honored by the issuer.

(b)  This section does not prohibit a county tax assessor-collector from issuing receipts, license plates, certificates, or other instruments on the receipt of a check or credit card invoice, but the issuance is conditional on the payment of the check by the drawee bank or the honoring of the credit card invoice by the credit card issuer.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  130.004.  Identification Required.

When a county tax assessor-collector receives a check or credit card invoice as conditional payment of a fee or tax, the assessor-collector shall require adequate identification of the maker and note on the check or invoice or otherwise record the type of identification of the maker and information from the identification to assist in locating the maker in the event the check or invoice is not honored.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  130.0045.  Credit Card Payment Processing Fee.

(a) If a county tax assessor-collector accepts a credit card invoice as conditional payment of a fee or tax, the assessor-collector may collect a fee for processing the invoice.

(b)  The assessor-collector shall set a fee collected under Subsection (a) in an amount that is reasonably related to the expense incurred in processing the credit card invoice, not to exceed five percent of the amount of the fee or tax. The processing fee is in addition to the amount of the fee or tax, and may be paid conditionally by including the amount of the processing fee on the credit card invoice.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 529, Sec. 1, eff. June 11, 2001.



Section  130.0046.  Fee For Payment By Electronic Means.

A county tax assessor-collector that accepts payment by electronic means as conditional payment of a county or state fee or tax may collect a handling fee for processing the payment. The handling fee is in addition to the amount of the fee or tax and may be paid conditionally by electronic means at the same time the tax or fee is paid.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 148, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  130.005.  Liability Of Assessor-collector And Bondsman.

Except as provided by Section 130.008, a county tax assessor-collector and the assessor-collector's bondsman are not liable for the amount of any fee or tax for which the assessor-collector has accepted a check that is not honored by the drawee bank or credit card invoice that is not honored by the credit card issuer if the assessor-collector complied with the requirements of Section 130.004 and if the assessor-collector did not know or should not reasonably have known that the check was not properly drawn, that the credit card payment was not properly made, or that the check or credit card invoice would not be honored.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section 130.006.  Procedures For Collection Of Dishonored Checks And Invoices.

A county tax assessor-collector may establish procedures for the collection of dishonored checks and credit card invoices.  The procedures may include:

(1)  official notification to the maker that the check or invoice has not been honored and that the receipt, registration, certificate, or other instrument issued on the receipt of the check or invoice is not valid until payment of the fee or tax is made;

(2)  notification of the sheriff or other law enforcement officers that a check or credit card invoice has not been honored and that the receipt, registration, certificate, or other instrument held by the maker is not valid; and

(3)  notification to the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, the comptroller of public accounts, or the Department of Public Safety that the receipt, registration, certificate, or other instrument held by the maker is not valid.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 22(46), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 933, Sec. 3H.01, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 130.007.  Remission To State Not Required; State Assistance In Collection.

(a) If a fee or tax is required to be remitted to the comptroller or the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles and if payment was made to the county tax assessor-collector by a check that was not honored by the drawee bank or by a credit card invoice that was not honored by the credit card issuer, the amount of the fee or tax is not required to be remitted, but the assessor-collector shall notify the appropriate department of:

(1)  the amount of the fee or tax;

(2)  the type of fee or tax involved; and

(3)  the name and address of the maker.

(b)  The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles and the comptroller shall assist the county tax assessor-collector in collecting the fee or tax and may cancel or revoke any receipt, registration, certificate, or other instrument issued in the name of the state conditioned on the payment of the fee or tax.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 22(46), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 933, Sec. 3H.02, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 130.008. 

 LIABILITY OF TAX COLLECTOR FOR VIOLATIONS OF

Subchapter

. If the comptroller or the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles determines that the county tax assessor-collector has accepted payment for fees and taxes to be remitted to that department in violation of Section 130.004 or that more than two percent of the fees and taxes to be received from the assessor-collector are not remitted because of the acceptance of checks that are not honored by the drawee bank or of credit card invoices that are not honored by the credit card issuer, the department may notify the assessor-collector that the assessor-collector may not accept a check or credit card invoice for the payment of any fee or tax to be remitted to that department.  A county tax assessor-collector who accepts a check or credit card invoice for the payment of a fee or tax, after notice that the assessor-collector may not receive a check or credit card invoice for the payment of fees or taxes to be remitted to a department, is liable to the state for the amount of the check or credit card invoice accepted.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 22(46), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 933, Sec. 3H.03, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 130.009.  State Rules.

The comptroller and the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles may make rules concerning the acceptance of checks or credit card invoices by a county tax assessor-collector and for the collection of dishonored checks or credit card invoices.

Added by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(3), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 737, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1989; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 22(46), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 933, Sec. 3H.04, eff. September 1, 2009.



Subchapter Z. Other Miscellaneous Provisions

Section  130.901.  Sale Of Rights To Judgment Proceeds.

(a) The commissioners court of a county may sell the rights of the county to any judgment proceeds belonging to the county if the principal and sureties on the judgment are insolvent so that under any existing process of law the judgment cannot be collected, either in whole or in part. The court may advertise the sale to the extent that it considers necessary and in the best interest of the county.

(b)  If the amount bid for the rights to the judgment proceeds at the public sale is not considered sufficient, the commissioners court shall refuse to accept the bid and shall dispose of the rights in the manner considered most advantageous to the county's interest.

(c)  If the court sells the rights to the judgment proceeds, the court shall properly assign the rights to the purchaser.

Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 149, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Renumbered from Sec. 130.001 by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(1), eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  130.902.  Change Fund In Counties.

(a) The commissioners court of a county may set aside from the general fund of the county an amount approved by the county auditor for use as a change fund by any county or district official who collects public funds. The fund may be used only to make change in connection with collections that are due and payable to the county, the state, or another political subdivision of the state that are often made by the official.

(b)  The bond of that official who receives such a change fund must cover the official's responsibility for the correct accounting and disposition of the change fund.

(c)  A change fund may not be used to make loans or advances or to cash checks or warrants of any kind.

(d)  On the recommendation of the county auditor, the commissioners court may increase or decrease the change fund at any time.

Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 149, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Renumbered from Sec. 130.002 by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(1), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 727, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  130.904.  Sheriff's Petty Cash Fund.

(a) The commissioners court of a county may establish a petty cash fund for the sheriff's department in an amount set by the commissioners court. The court shall appropriate the amount from the general fund of the county.

(b)  Unless otherwise authorized by a resolution of the commissioners court, the petty cash fund may be used only to advance funds to an officer or employee of the sheriff's department who is required to travel outside the county to conduct an investigation or to obtain custody of a prisoner.

Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 149, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Renumbered from Sec. 130.004 by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(1), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 578, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 597, Sec. 88, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 123, Sec. 1, eff. May 11, 1993.



Section  130.905.  Petty Cash Fund For County Welfare Department In Populous County.

(a) The commissioners court of a county with a population of 1.3 million or more, for the support of paupers through a county welfare department, may authorize the disbursement of an amount not to exceed $2,500 to the head of the county welfare department for use as a petty cash fund in order that cash is immediately available for transportation and other expenses of the paupers. The petty cash fund must be established under a system provided and installed by the county auditor with reports to be made to the auditor, as the auditor may require, by the head of the county welfare department.

(b)  In making payments to support the paupers that the county is required to support, the commissioners court, with the concurrence of the county auditor, may make one payment to the head of the county welfare department. The head of the county welfare department may disburse the money to the paupers on warrants designed by the county auditor. The warrants are subject to audit by the county auditor at any time. The disbursements must be reported on forms and at times prescribed by the auditor.

Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 149, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Renumbered from Sec. 130.005 by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(1), eff. Aug. 28, 1989. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 669, Sec. 55, 56, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  130.906.  National Forest Receipts Allocated For School Districts And Roads. The

commissioners court of a county in which a national forest is located and that receives funds from the federal government under 16 U.S.C. Section 500 shall allocate 50 percent of the funds to the school districts of the county in proportion to the area encompassed by each district and shall either allocate the remaining 50 percent for the benefit of the public roads in the county or transfer that amount to the school districts.

Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 149, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Renumbered from Sec. 130.006 by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(1), eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  130.907.  Aid To State And Federal Agencies In County With Population Of 22,050 To 23,000.

In each county with a population of 22,050 to 23,000, the commissioners court may provide financial aid and facilities, as the court considers necessary, to a state or federal governmental agency or bureau that conducts activities or maintains projects within the county.

Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 149, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Renumbered from Sec. 130.007 by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1, Sec. 23(a)(1), eff. Aug. 28, 1989.



Section  130.908.  Approval Of Spending By Certain County And Precinct Officers.

If an incumbent county or precinct officer is not renominated or is not reelected to the county or precinct office of a county, during the time following the date the results of the official canvass of the primary or election returns are announced, the commissioners court must approve any expenditure by the incumbent county or precinct officer who was not renominated or reelected that is over an amount set by the commissioners court.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 793, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 26, 1991. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 592, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section 130.909.  Petty Cash Funds For Certain Officials.

(a) The commissioners court of a county may set aside from the general fund of the county, for the establishment of a petty cash fund for any county or district official or department head approved by the commissioners court, an amount approved by:

(1)  the county auditor, for a county with a population of 3.3 million or more; or

(2)  the commissioners court, for a county with a population of less than 3.3 million.

(a-1)  The petty cash fund must be established under a system provided and installed by the county auditor and, in a county with a population of 3.3 million or more, the county purchasing agent.  Reports relating to the petty cash fund must be made to the auditor and, if applicable, the purchasing agent as the auditor or purchasing agent requires.

(a-2)  Falsifying documents or reports relating to the petty cash fund is an offense according to Section 32.21 or 37.10, Penal Code.

(b)  The bond of that county or district official or department head who receives such a petty cash fund must cover the official's responsibility for the correct accounting and disposition of the petty cash fund.

(c)  The petty cash fund may not be used to make loans or advances or to cash checks or warrants of any kind.

(d)  On the recommendation of the county auditor, the commissioners court may increase or decrease the petty cash fund at any time.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 60, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 28, 1995. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 669, Sec. 57, 58, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 830, Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 830, Sec. 2, eff. June 17, 2005.



Section 130.910.  Aid To Disaster Victims.

(a) Subject to Subsection (b), the commissioners court of a county may provide money from the general fund of the county to individual residents of the county who are adversely affected by a disaster for which the county judge declared a local state of disaster under Section 418.108, Government Code.

(b)  A county may not provide assistance to an individual under this section until the commissioners court of the county:

(1)  has implemented policies and procedures to ensure that money granted under this section is used for the public purpose of providing disaster relief for emergency food, shelter, transportation, or other items or services necessary for public health and safety; and

(2)  has determined that financial assistance from other sources, including this state and the federal government, is unavailable or inadequate.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 784, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.


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