Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Finance Committee

May 30, 2001

Commission Hearing Room
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Headquarters Complex
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744


           6             BE IT REMEMBERED that heretofore on the 30th day  

           7   of May, 2001, there came on to be heard matters under the 

           8   regulatory authority of the Parks and Wildlife Commission 

           9   of Texas, in the Commission Hearing Room of Texas Parks 

          10   and Wildlife Headquarters Complex, Austin, Travis County, 

          11   Texas, beginning at 11:27 a.m., to wit: 

          12   APPEARANCES: 
               Finance Committee Chair:  Ernest Angelo, Jr. 
          14   Lee M. Bass, Ft. Worth, Texas, Chairman 
               John Avila, Jr., Fort Worth, Texas 
          15   Alvin L. Henry, Houston, Texas 
               Carol E. Dinkins, Houston, Texas, Vice-Chair 
          16   Ernest Angelo, Jr., Midland, Texas 
               Katharine Armstrong Idsal, Dallas, Texas 
          17   Mark E. Watson, San Antonio, Texas 
               Phil Montgomery, Dallas, Texas 
          18   Joseph Fitzsimons, San Antonio 


          20   Andrew Sansom, Executive Director 
               Other personnel of the Parks and Wildlife Department 





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           1                    FINANCE COMMITTEE 

           2                   * * * * * * * * * * 

           3                       MAY 30, 2001 

           4                   * * * * * * * * * * 

           5                        11:27 A.M. 

           6                   * * * * * * * * * * 

           7                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  The first item of 

           8   business for the Finance Committee would be approval of 

           9   the committee minutes from the previous meeting.   

          10             Do I hear a motion to that effect?   

          11                  COMMISSIONER HENRY:  Moved.  

          12                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any corrections or 

          13   additions?   

          14                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Second. 

          15                  COMMISSIONER AVILA:  Second. 

          16                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  All in favor say aye.  

          17             Minutes have been approved.  The first item of 

          18   business is a briefing from the Chairman's charges from 

          19   Mr. Sansom.  Andy? 


          21                  MR. SANSOM:  Yes, sir.  Mr. Chairman, 

          22   briefly one of the key charges to this committee was to 

          23   implement the authority and direction given by this recent 

          24   legislature and fully participate in the Sunset Review.  

          25   You will be receiving a full briefing on the outcome of 

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           1   the Sunset legislation this morning.   

           2             You've asked us and directed us to ensure 

           3   uninterrupted service of the Texas Outdoor Connection, 

           4   which is the largest automated licensing implementing 

           5   system in the world.  And Jayna Burgdorf will brief you on 

           6   the status of our new system, which goes into effect this 

           7   summer.   

           8             You've directed us to enhance marketing and 

           9   promotion opportunities.  And I'm happy to report to you 

          10   that as of May 18th, we've sold over 15,000 of the horny 

          11   toad license plates which have produced about $3,011,000 

          12   in gross revenue.  As of May 18, the Avila plate has sold 

          13   a total of 351.  And you should be seeing those on the 

          14   road this month.  Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

          15                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Our Item No. 2 on the 

          16   agenda is a briefing again on the Financial Review Update 

          17   from Suzy Whittenton, who will present a financial review 

          18   for fiscal year 01.  Suzy? 


          20                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  Thank you.  For the 

          21   record, I'm Suzy Whittenton, Chief Financial Officer.  

          22   Today I'll cover quickly the current revenue status of our 

          23   accounts, the status of expenditures compared to budgets 

          24   and then show you our time line for next year's operating 

          25   budget preparation. 

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           1             Start with Account 9, which is the Game, Fish 

           2   and Water Safety account where we deposit license fees and 

           3   boat registrations.  And then I'll show you an estimated 

           4   ending cash balance for fiscal year end on that account.   

           5             When we compare the total number of license 

           6   sales from this year to last year, the numbers sold are 

           7   down slightly about two-and-a-half percent.  However, the 

           8   super combo sales are up nearly 19 percent.  Regular 

           9   resident hunting or fishing licenses and non-resident 

          10   hunting and fishing licenses are down, as are stamp sales.  

          11   And although the number of licenses sold are down, the 

          12   total revenue from this source is up, primarily due to the 

          13   success of the super combo.  And we've sold just under 

          14   two-and-a-half million licenses and stamps so far this 

          15   year. 

          16   When we look at just straight hunting licenses or hunting 

          17   and combination licenses sold, the number's actually up 

          18   over last year when you include the combination sale -- 

          19   combination licenses.  These numbers have not changed much 

          20   since the last meeting.  A total of 1,046,000 hunting type 

          21   licenses have been sold as of the month of May. 

          22             Fishing license sales are pretty close to even 

          23   when compared to this same period last year.  Combination 

          24   sales are up.  Resident fishing and resident non -- 

          25   non-resident fishing sales are down.  Since the last 

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           1   meeting we've sold an additional 245,000 fishing licenses.  

           2   This is probably due to the excellent lake conditions and 

           3   time of year.  We've currently sold 1,385,000 fishing and 

           4   combination licenses. 

           5             And as I said earlier, license revenue is up by 

           6   just under $2 million or 3.3 percent over this same period 

           7   last year.  Part of the increase, as I said, is due to the 

           8   continued shift to the super combo from other types of 

           9   licenses and, also, $700,000 of it is due to the increase 

          10   in the saltwater stamp fee.   

          11             It's important to remember that we don't base 

          12   our budget strictly on last year's revenue, and we tend to 

          13   budget more conservatively.  And so we have collected 

          14   almost 97 percent of the license revenue that we counted 

          15   on to fund our budget.  And at this point we actually 

          16   expect to exceed the budgeted amount here.  But it shows 

          17   of the $62 million that we've budgeted, we've collected 

          18   almost all of it at this point. 

          19             Turning to boat registration and titling fees, 

          20   which are also deposited in that fund, in Fund 9, we had 

          21   projected $13.5 from that source.  The conservative 

          22   revenue estimate and -- as of the end of April, revenue 

          23   was up $338,000 over the same period last year.  And you 

          24   can see it's likely that that number will be higher. 

          25             As of the end of the April, we had collected 

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           1   53 percent of the budgeted revenue or 7.2 million of that 

           2   $13.5 million that we budgeted or projected, and continue 

           3   to believe that we'll meet or exceed that target. 

           4             The estimated ending balance of unobligated 

           5   funds in this account is expected to be at least $3 

           6   million by year end.  This takes into account all -- it 

           7   substracts out all the dedicated amounts and anticipated 

           8   encumbrances.  So we think we'll have $3 million just 

           9   unobligated to start the next fiscal year with.   

          10             Now, in the State Parks account, Account 64, 

          11   we'll look at revenue status and projected cash balances.  

          12   When you compare the period September through April, 

          13   revenue's about 10 percent lower this year than last year, 

          14   10-and-a-half percent.  As we've discussed in previous 

          15   meetings, weather conditions weren't ideal in the winter 

          16   and fall months and so park revenue was down.  And also in 

          17   the year 2000, we had significantly higher revenue than 

          18   normal.  So we're not surprised by these numbers, nor are 

          19   we concerned at this point about being able to fund the 

          20   current operating budget from State park funds -- State 

          21   park fees.  We didn't base our budget, again, on last 

          22   year's revenue numbers.   

          23             The parks-funded budget was based on $23 million 

          24   in estimated park fees.  And even with the slow start this 

          25   year, the current projections indicate we will exceed that 

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           1   amount.  So the current estimate is $23.3 million.  And if 

           2   the summer months are good, as they have been in the last 

           3   couple of months, that estimate -- it will end up -- we'll 

           4   come in higher than the $23.3.  This is so dependent on 

           5   weather. 

           6             This graph shows the trend in park revenue over 

           7   the last six years.  And you can see that revenue seemed 

           8   to have peaked in the year 2000 and it's now dropping back 

           9   off.  Our estimate is now about at what we did in fiscal 

          10   year '99.  Again, our 2001 estimate could easily come in 

          11   higher than this current projection.   

          12             The $23 million we included in our budget, we've 

          13   already collected $13.3 or about 58 percent.  

          14   Historically, we collect most of our park revenue in the 

          15   spring and summer months, so we don't expect to have any 

          16   trouble collecting the remaining $9.7 million.   

          17             This pie chart shows when park revenue tends to 

          18   be collected.  You can see that 64 percent of it tends to 

          19   come in the third and fourth quarters, which is March 

          20   through August.  And the numbers we've been reporting on 

          21   today are only revenue through April.  So there are still 

          22   four more historically high revenue months unreported at 

          23   this time. 

          24             We're projecting to have $2.3 million 

          25   approximately in unobligated balances at year end in this 

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           1   account, and this is not far off from what we usually have 

           2   to start the year off.  So that's good news. 

           3             And I'll show you where we are in terms of 

           4   spending and our current operating budget and then let you 

           5   know of our plans for the next year's operating budget.   

           6             As of the end of April, which is two-thirds 

           7   through the fiscal year, we've spent 65 percent of 

           8   budgeted funds.  This includes all payables and 

           9   encumbrances and shows that we're about where we should 

          10   expect to be for cash flow purposes in the year. 

          11             And this time of year is when we start focusing 

          12   on the coming year's operating budget.  Last week we had 

          13   our budget kickoff meeting to begin the collection of 

          14   budget data by division.  And we've decided this year to 

          15   prepare a zero-based budget, so divisions will have to 

          16   request every dollar from zero up in this process.  

          17   Submissions are due from each division on June the 8th and 

          18   then we'll have presentations to executive staff in late 

          19   June.   

          20             If the Commission would like to have a budget 

          21   workshop, work session, we would like to get that 

          22   scheduled in advance -- in enough time in advance of the 

          23   August Commission meeting.  At that meeting, we'll be 

          24   asking for your final approval on the FY02 budget. 

          25                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  Is this the first 

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           1   time a zero-based budgeting has been used?  Is it -- 

           2                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  The first time at 

           3   least in some number of years.  We've been using a 

           4   procedure called 95 percent budgeting, where each division 

           5   was required to cut five percent and show the executive 

           6   staff where they take their cuts from.  But they were kind 

           7   of -- the first 95 percent was kind of a given that -- and 

           8   this time we thought we would try it a little differently, 

           9   see how it works. 

          10                  MR. SANSOM:  We wanted to -- we have a 

          11   natural resistance as a culture to just assuming a base, 

          12   but, yet, it had become pretty obvious to us that 95 

          13   percent had become an exercise that had lost a lot of its 

          14   impact.  So we -- so we're going to go back and try to do 

          15   it from the ground up this year.  We're pretty excited 

          16   about it.   

          17             I would echo something that Ms. Whittenton has 

          18   just said that, members, while you're here this week, we 

          19   would like for you to look at your calendars and see 

          20   whether there's a possibility of a workshop session on the 

          21   budget sometime in mid July to the first week of August so 

          22   that we can bring you more fully into this process prior 

          23   to the time that you'll be presented with its final 

          24   adoption in August. 

          25                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  That work session is 

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           1   vital, I think.  We really need to.  Last year, we let it 

           2   get by without the full Commission getting involved in it.  

           3   And I think it's important that we, at this meeting, try 

           4   to get together on a date that gets all or most of us to 

           5   do this.   

           6             Does anyone have any questions or comments?  I 

           7   guess before entertaining the first one of those, I would 

           8   like to point out something that kind of went by fairly 

           9   fast, but I think it's real significant and hopefully it's 

          10   a trend.   

          11             But the total hunting licenses sold as of May 16 

          12   are up 3.6 percent.  And that's -- that's something we 

          13   haven't seen much of in the recent times.  And even though 

          14   the numbers are kind of confusing to understand and in 

          15   terms of what they really mean, I think that one stands 

          16   out as something significant to us all.   

          17             Are there any other comments or questions?  

          18   Hearing none, we'll move on to the next item on the 

          19   agenda, which, again, is a briefing.  And this time it's a 

          20   the automated license system.   

          21             To bring us up-to-date, Suzy is presenting this 

          22   with Jayna Burgdorf, I believe, as the main commentator.  

          23   Jayna? 


          25                  MS. BURGDORF:  Hi.  Members of the 

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           1   Commission, my name is Jayna Burgdorf, and I'll be 

           2   updating you on the status of our transition from our 

           3   automated license system, which is currently managed by 

           4   Transactive and which will be operated by WorldCom.   

           5             We're going to be selling licenses on two 

           6   different platforms.  One will be a P.C. and the other 

           7   will be a point-of-sale terminal.  The P.C. will be 

           8   provided by our license agents along with their own 

           9   Internet connection.  The printer will be provided by 

          10   WorldCom.  And this setup will be used by our own offices 

          11   as well as low-volume licensed deputies which sell less 

          12   than 100 licenses per year. 

          13             Nancy Collins, who's the director of World 

          14   Markets -- excuse me, Government Markets for WorldCom came 

          15   and met with us last week with Andy and committed to the 

          16   dates that I'm going to present to you today.  The 

          17   roll-out for the P.C. system is as follows:  The 

          18   application will be fully developed and ready for pilot by 

          19   June 30 -- June 20th; excuse me.  The training via 

          20   computer, video and help desk and equipment deployment 

          21   will start June 11th.  Live sales of recreational licenses 

          22   will start June 30th.  And then our own offices who sell 

          23   the commercial licenses will actually start those sales on 

          24   July 21st.   

          25             The second application, the hypercom 

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           1   point-of-sale terminal, similar to the equipment that we 

           2   use right now with the improvements of a bar code reader, 

           3   a built-in receipt printer and a touch screen.  It's 

           4   primarily used by higher volume retailers, and, again, 

           5   those are folks that sell more than 100 licenses per year. 

           6             Now, the date that's on the slide and that's in 

           7   your packet has changed as of yesterday for the classroom 

           8   training and equipment deployment.  We agreed with 

           9   WorldCom yesterday to move that to the 18th.  They wanted 

          10   a little bit of extra time, and we were wanting to use 

          11   that extra time to both review the training.  And we also 

          12   got them to agree to spread the training throughout the 

          13   summer.  That better matches what our licensed deputies 

          14   want in terms of training instead of consolidating it in a 

          15   three-week period.  That also doesn't change the critical 

          16   dates of development being ready by June 30th and live 

          17   sales starting on July 14th. 

          18             Okay.  This is our coverage by county.  These 

          19   are sales location.  The yellow are where we have no 

          20   agents selling licenses.  And this is true under the 

          21   Transactive system.  So these are not new locations where 

          22   people are just dropping out of the system.  That's 

          23   probably true in one location where an individual was 

          24   asked if they would take the P.C. version; they're a low 

          25   volume seller.  They declined.  We asked them, "Well, if 

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           1   we provide it for free, the full setup, the hypercom 

           2   terminal, would you continue to sell?"  No.  They didn't 

           3   think they were interested in continuing to sell anymore.  

           4   But, in general, these are counties where we haven't had 

           5   sales for a while.   

           6             The green are counties where we have only a low 

           7   volume seller.  The P.C. agent basically sells less than 

           8   100 licenses per year, and they're going to continue with 

           9   the system.  And then the vast majority of the state is 

          10   covered by counties where there is at least one higher 

          11   volume seller of licenses. 

          12             The final point I want to make is that we have 

          13   preliminary indications from our legal counsel that we 

          14   will need to require Social Security numbers for license 

          15   sales for child support enforcement purposes, because with 

          16   this new system we will have an updated DPS driver's 

          17   license database.  When you input your driver's license 

          18   either by keying it in or mag stripe, that information 

          19   will automatically be updated in the file.  The sales 

          20   clerk will not see an individual's Social Security number, 

          21   but the actual information will be transferred to the 

          22   Attorney General in a database file.  So that's going to 

          23   be a change for our customers to some extent.  It will be 

          24   invisible for the vast majority of them who use their 

          25   driver's license anyway.  And it will be a little bit of a 

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           1   change, then, for our license agents who right now request 

           2   a Social Security number but do not require it.   

           3             And I'll be happy to answer any questions. 

           4                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Jayna, for the youth 

           5   license that are required for, you know, the tags, 

           6   basically, they obviously -- most of them won't have a 

           7   driver's license. 

           8                  MS. BURGDORF:  Right. 

           9                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Is there a way to kind 

          10   of -- and they won't, I wouldn't think, have child support 

          11   obligations. 

          12                  MS. BURGDORF:  Right. 

          13                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  But they also may not have 

          14   a Social Security number or remember it or have it with 

          15   them. 

          16                  MS. BURGDORF:  Right.   

          17                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Is there a way to opt them 

          18   out of that? 

          19                  MS. BURGDORF:  At this point, we're 

          20   planning on not requesting anyone's Social Security number 

          21   if they're under 18.  So that's the plan.   

          22                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  So if you have a driver's 

          23   license and you're under 18, you're never really going to 

          24   know that this happens? 

          25                  MS. BURGDORF:  Right.  Well, if you have a 

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           1   driver's license and you use it to purchase your license, 

           2   you probably won't know that this is happening at all.  

           3   So... 

           4                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other questions 

           5   or comments? 

           6                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  Are you all 

           7   confident you have the managerial and contractual 

           8   commitment now from WorldCom to roll it out on schedule?  

           9   I know that was a question a few weeks ago. 

          10                  MS. BURGDORF:  Right.  And I believe that 

          11   having the Director of Government Markets -- basically, 

          12   she's probably two or three folks down from the Chairman 

          13   of the Board.  So she's, you know, the little top person 

          14   in this unit, in this section of Worldcom.  This is an 

          15   extremely visible project for them.  We know for a fact 

          16   that they've already applied more resources to this 

          17   project than they anticipated.  So they have every 

          18   interest making it a success.  So we believe that they're 

          19   going to do what it takes to get this done and get these 

          20   licenses sold. 

          21                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Anything else?  Thank 

          22   you.  Very good.   

          23             Item 4 on our agenda is another briefing on 

          24   legislative update from Joey Park. 


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           1                  MR. SANSOM:  Mr. Chairman, I've asked both 

           2   Joey and Suzy and Harold Stone, who worked on our 

           3   legislative team, to present this briefing to you.  These 

           4   are the three officers of the Department most -- who were 

           5   most involved in the legislative process. 

           6                  MS. WHITTENTON:  Thank you, Andy.  I'm just 

           7   going to cover real quickly the appropriations bill and 

           8   then turn it over to Joey to handle all other legislative 

           9   action.   

          10             So I thought we would start with SB-1, which is 

          11   a General Appropriations Act, and look at quickly the 

          12   differences between what we asked for and what we 

          13   ultimately ended with and then some of the changes that 

          14   were made to our riders.   

          15             Just as a quick reminder, what we asked for was 

          16   base level funding with the addition of five million 

          17   dollars per year for park services.  And with that five 

          18   million dollars, this was new money, general revenue and 

          19   81 new employees.  We also asked for eight million dollars 

          20   a year in new money for -- to be able to set up a 

          21   scheduled facility repair program.  And we asked for just 

          22   the authority to spend the money that we earn from 

          23   saltwater stamp fee on licensed buy-backs.  We have the 

          24   money, the cash; we just don't have the authority to spend 

          25   it.  We asked for that.   

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           1             We also asked for our entrepreneurial rider, 

           2   which we lost last session.  So we've gone two years 

           3   without it.  We asked for the authority to have that back.  

           4   What that does for us is it allows us to spend -- if we 

           5   earn more money than we originally project, if we bring in 

           6   more money, we can spend it and it doesn't just sit there 

           7   in our funds. 

           8             Okay.  What we ended up getting is -- is -- the 

           9   first thing that happened was they -- the legislative 

          10   budget board staff took a cut to our base of 

          11   two-and-a-half million from Account 9 for what they 

          12   identified were one-time only projects.  They were called 

          13   conservation education projects.   

          14             The good news was they did act on all of our 

          15   other requests.  They gave us -- out of the five million 

          16   that we asked for in park services, they did give us 

          17   $4.2 million of new money, general revenue money, and the 

          18   authority to hire the 81 full-time employees.   

          19             The other $800,000 per year, they gave us the 

          20   authority to spend out of our own State parks account, if 

          21   the money should be there.   

          22             And then for the facility repairs, the 

          23   legislature approved general obligation bonds, a big bond 

          24   package that will be voted on in November.  That includes 

          25   money for the backlog of repairs that we still have, gave 

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           1   us money to set up a scheduled repair program, but it also 

           2   includes money for the battle ship, the Nimitz and San 

           3   Jacinto, Sheldon.  Is that it?   

           4             They also included our entrepreneurial rider, 

           5   and the entrepreneurial rider will also allow us to spend 

           6   the money, the saltwater stamp fee increase, on license 

           7   buy-backs.  So that rider alone covered two of our 

           8   original requests. 

           9             Another thing that the legislature acted on this 

          10   session was they granted employee pay raises, which is 

          11   great news for our employees.  It was a four percent pay 

          12   raise or $100 a month, whichever is greater, but it 

          13   presented something of a budget challenge, because they 

          14   didn't give us money -- new money to come up with the pay 

          15   raises.  So that will hit our cash balances pretty hard.  

          16   In fact, our estimate is about five million dollars a year 

          17   is what that will cost us. 

          18             And then at the end of the session, additional 

          19   funds were added for Hermann Park.  New general revenue 

          20   money was added to the local park funds for that 

          21   particular park. 

          22             Also, some changes were made to some of our 

          23   riders.  We had asked for the authority to -- for 

          24   landowner incentive program grants to be treated the same 

          25   way construction grants are treated, which means that 

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           1   they'll carry forward for five years or that landowner 

           2   will have five years to finish his program, which is good 

           3   for the landowner.  Currently, they only have three years 

           4   to spend those funds.   

           5             One bit of bad news was we got a rider that 

           6   limits our out-of-state travel to 75 percent of what we 

           7   normally spend.  So we're going to have to take a 25 

           8   percent cut in out-of-state travel. 

           9                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Good things those national 

          10   meeting are in Texas. 

          11                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  We'll have to start 

          12   trying to get all meetings to be in Texas.   

          13             And I think we talked before about the radio 

          14   systems requirement where our radios have to be 

          15   interoperable with DPS's radios by January.  We don't 

          16   think that will be a problem. 

          17             State -- we asked to have land sale proceeds be 

          18   reappropriated so that we can -- once we sell land we can 

          19   use that money to buy additional land if we -- if there's 

          20   anything available, and we did get that authority.   

          21             One of the most important riders is the 

          22   commercial fishery license fee changes where we were 

          23   required to raise fees to cover the cost of that program.   

          24             There's some changes to our local parks rider, 

          25   which requires that certain amount of funds were used out 

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           1   of that local parks -- the local parks account.   

           2             The park restoration is for the Hermann Park; 

           3   money that we talked about earlier, and then some minor 

           4   things.  They added some reporting requirements to us for 

           5   Game Wardens, FTEs, capital equipment, kind of extra 

           6   reporting we need to do to our oversight agencies.  And 

           7   then, finally, this Lake Fort Parker and Lake Casa Blanca 

           8   that we've been asked to apply for federal funds for 

           9   these.  One is a restoration project and one is a dredging 

          10   project. 

          11                  MR. SANSOM:  Members, I would like to say 

          12   that particularly because of the work for Harold and Suzy 

          13   and Harold Stone, whom you've met for the first time 

          14   today, this really -- the bottom line is this is the 

          15   largest increase in budgetary funds and authority in the 

          16   Department's history.  It's going to be nearly $50 million 

          17   dollars in increases.   

          18                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  If the bonds pass. 

          19                  MR. SANSOM:  If the bonds pass.  And they 

          20   will be on the ballet in November.  And we will be working 

          21   with some of the other agencies in the next couple weeks 

          22   to try to determine how to approach that issue. 

          23             The issue that I think is important that we 

          24   bring to your attention today is that I did use the word 

          25   "authority".  A lot of this is -- is -- is -- comes in the 

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           1   form of increased spending authority through the 

           2   entrepreneurial rider, but also increased mandated 

           3   expenditures including -- the largest one being the 

           4   employee pay raise.  We will be, therefore -- as we get 

           5   through the summer - and one of the reasons why I believe 

           6   this workshop is so important - and in the fall, 

           7   presenting you with an analysis of our entire fee 

           8   structure from boats to commercial fisheries to 

           9   recreational hunting and fishing licenses and park fees to 

          10   determine what I believe will be some necessary 

          11   adjustments, upward adjustments, some of which were 

          12   mandated and some of which we will need to do.  So that 

          13   will be a big task for us this summer and one that we will 

          14   want to alert you to as early as possible, that we are 

          15   looking at the increases.   

          16                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  I have a question on the 

          17   G.O. bonds.  If that package passes, how many dollars will 

          18   come to the Department in this current biannual? 

          19                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  It's $36 million.  

          20   And fiscal year 2003 is when it's appropriated.  So we 

          21   actually couldn't get to it in the coming fiscal year. 

          22                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  So zero comes in -- 

          23                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  In 2002.  There are 

          24   provisions in Article 9 that let you move money between 

          25   fiscal years.  So it doesn't necessarily mean we can't get 

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           1   to any of it in 2002.  But it's appropriated -- 

           2                  MR. SANSOM:  But as a practical matter, if 

           3   you look at the bond process, the election will take place 

           4   in November.  And even in our bonds, it often takes as 

           5   much as six to eight months to get through the bond sales 

           6   and issuance.  So it will take most of -- 

           7                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  Probably until 

           8   February. 

           9                  MR. SANSOM:  Presuming they pass, it will 

          10   take a good part of the year just to issue them. 

          11                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Good morning, 

          12   Commissioners.  My name is Joey Park.  I'm the Director of 

          13   Intergovernmental Affairs.  I've got a brief presentation 

          14   for you of bills that passed this session that affect the 

          15   Department.   

          16             First and most important bill that passed this 

          17   session was SB-305, our Sunset bill.  Some of the 

          18   highlights and provisions of this bill include, first and 

          19   most importantly, it extends the agency for 12 more years.   

          20             Secondly, it calls for an increase in public 

          21   input into the Commission process.   

          22             SB-305 removes the reporting requirements for 

          23   law enforcement related to the racial profiling bill that 

          24   was passed this session.  It will prohibit the advertising 

          25   of tobacco in any of our publications, and there will be 

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           1   an increase in oversight of employee fundraising.   

           2             SB-305 requires that the Department create a 

           3   land and water resource conservation plan.  We'll be 

           4   required to improve our business oversight for the 

           5   Department's commercial ventures.  It directs us to better 

           6   manage our education and outreach efforts, as well as 

           7   improving our capital projects process.   

           8             And, lastly, it makes changes to the private 

           9   oyster lease program as set forth in the State Auditor's 

          10   report last year. 

          11             Next, Senate Bill 2, the water bill.  Some of 

          12   the provisions of SB 2 include the creation of the Texas 

          13   Water Advisory Council, which will provide guidance on 

          14   state water issues.  It allows for surface water and 

          15   groundwater management to be consideration of natural 

          16   resources.  

          17              SB 2 ratifies the groundwater districts created 

          18   by SB-1911 of the 76th legislature last session.  Lastly, 

          19   it establishes a joint committee on water resources with 

          20   an interim study on the appropriate role of environmental 

          21   and wildlife concerns on water permitting and developing, 

          22   including the protection of the natural condition of the 

          23   State-owned river beds. 

          24             SB-1173 provides for the issuance of up to nine 

          25   million dollars in revenue bonds to be used to finance the 

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           1   repair, renovation, improvement, expansion and equipping 

           2   of the Admiral Nimitz Memorial Naval Museum.   

           3               SB-1194 amends Parks and Wildlife Code, making 

           4   it a Class C Parks and Wildlife misdemeanor to hunt, sell, 

           5   purchase or possess a bat in this state.  However, it does 

           6   not apply to a bat in a building occupied by people.  

           7   Certain authorized individuals, including licensed pest 

           8   control operators or a person transporting a bat that is a 

           9   threat to human health or safety. 

          10             SB-1410 gives the Parks and Wildlife Commission 

          11   the authority to establish and make rules governing a 

          12   closed season for crab traps in our public waters.  This 

          13   period when waters are closed to crab traps will provide 

          14   an opportunity to remove and dispose of abandoned or 

          15   illegal traps in our Coastal water. 

          16             SB-1573 amends the Parks and Wildlife Code by 

          17   adding Chapter 32, floating cabins.  Provide a general 

          18   prohibition of floating cabins in the saltwater of this 

          19   State.  It allows the Department to adopt rules to 

          20   implement procedures for permitting the placement and 

          21   maintenance of floating cabins in our coastal water. 

          22                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Good slides, by the way. 

          23                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Yeah.  Those are 

          24   well-chosen.  

          25                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  You really went out of your 

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           1   way to make it look like an upscale community.   

           2                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Are there some 

           3   fees associated with that registration? 

           4                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Yes, sir, there are.  Yes, 

           5   sir. 

           6             HB 63 amends a portion of the Transportation 

           7   Code to include automatic driver's license suspension for 

           8   a person on final conviction for boating while 

           9   intoxicated.  It also allows or would authorize suspension 

          10   of a person's driver's license for their refusal to submit 

          11   to the taking of a specimen for committing an offense 

          12   involving operation of water craft.  Basically, these 

          13   penalties would paralegal the same ones now in effect for 

          14   DWI.  So it takes BWI to the same level. 

          15             HB-247.  The purpose of this was to amend the 

          16   Texas Water Code by revising the language exempting 

          17   permitting requirements for a water impoundment up to 

          18   200-acre feet, to include the wildlife management purposes 

          19   for commercial or non-commercial use.   

          20             HB-1915.  The purpose of this bill was to 

          21   require that a person who is mentally retarded and lives 

          22   at home with his family members could engage in 

          23   recreational fishing under the immediate supervision of a 

          24   volunteer who holds a fishing license and has permission 

          25   of that person's family's head or legal guardian to take 

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           1   the mentally retarded person fishing. 

           2             Current law only allows for hospital employees 

           3   to do this.  This expands it to the family members or a 

           4   person authorized by the family members.   

           5             HB-3123 requires the Department to cooperate 

           6   with the Comptroller in developing and adopting new 

           7   standards for open space land used for wildlife 

           8   management.   

           9             HB-3209.  If a commercial shrimp boat is legally 

          10   licensed and the only violation existing is that the owner 

          11   or operator failed to display the shrimp license or failed 

          12   to display the documentation or registration numbers as 

          13   required by law, the catch of shrimp on board the vessel 

          14   would not be seized or sold and no civil restitution would 

          15   be sought for the value of that shrimp.  A citation would 

          16   be issued for the criminal violations of failure to 

          17   display.  Current law requires that shrimp on board that 

          18   vessel would be ceased, sold and civil restitution 

          19   assessed. 

          20             Secondly, if a commercial shrimp boat is legally 

          21   licensed and the only violation that exists is the captain 

          22   of the vessel does not have a commercial shrimp boat 

          23   captain's license, the shrimp onboard the vessel could be 

          24   ceased and sold; however no civil restitution would be 

          25   assessed for the value of those shrimp.  Current law 

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           1   requires that civil restitution be assessed for those 

           2   shrimp that are ceased.  

           3             That's the end of my presentation.  I'll be 

           4   happy to answer any questions. 

           5                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  I would like to go back, 

           6   please, to the portion of the Sunset bill which deals with 

           7   commercial fishery license fees, et cetera, to recap a 

           8   little bit.   

           9             There was a State Auditor's report done at the 

          10   request of then Senator Ratliff -- 

          11                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Senator Ratliff. 

          12                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  -- in the interim which 

          13   showed, I believe, it was -- was it nine million dollars 

          14   -- 

          15                  MR. JOEY PARK:  That's correct. 

          16                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  -- of unrecovered costs in 

          17   the commercial fishery? 

          18                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Yes, sir. 

          19                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  The bulk of that was, I 

          20   believe, from commercial shrimping. 

          21                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Yes, sir.   

          22                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  A lot of the focus of 

          23   discussion during the session was dealing with the oyster 

          24   leases and the unrecovered costs associated there.   

          25             Would you review for me the final outcome of 

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           1   what the directive is in the Sunset bill as pertains to 

           2   the oyster leases as well as other fisheries such as 

           3   shrimping?   

           4                  MR. JOEY PARK:  The Sunset bill only 

           5   addresses the private oyster bed leases.  It puts in code 

           6   that there is a term of the lease.  It gives the 

           7   Department the authority to promulgate rules on drawing up 

           8   new contracts for the term of those leases.  It specifies 

           9   some of the boundary demarcations that can be changed or 

          10   done, and it sets the floor of the lease per acre at six 

          11   dollars or an amount set by the Commission.  It was three, 

          12   and it just moved the floor up to six dollars.  Those are 

          13   the primary issues that were addressed.   

          14             At one time, it was thought that those leases 

          15   were in perpetuity, and it set those at 15 years.   

          16                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Now, was there a rider 

          17   associated with the budget bill that also pertained to 

          18   this fee recovery of commercial fisheries?   

          19                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Yes, sir.  There was a 

          20   rider in our appropriations bill pattern, which directed 

          21   the Department to adjust the fees for commercial fishing 

          22   in order to recover the cost to administer the program.  

          23   Now, don't quote me.  That's not exactly how it was. 

          24                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  Pretty close. 

          25                  MR. JOEY PARK:  That's pretty much what it 

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           1   said. 

           2                  MR. SANSOM:  And the entrepreneurial rider 

           3   was capped in the appropriations bill at approximately 

           4   nine million for the same reason.  They used the same 

           5   basic calculation. 

           6                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  There's obviously 

           7   discretion involved in determining what those direct costs 

           8   are, is there not? 

           9                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Yes, sir, I believe that 

          10   was stated. 

          11                  MR. SANSOM:  And there's some disagreement. 

          12                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  As to what they 

          13   should be? 

          14                  MR. SANSOM:  When our biologists are out 

          15   surveying in the bays and estuaries of Texas, they don't 

          16   just serve one industry.  They're serving a broad number 

          17   of purposes. 

          18             So -- but I think the way the language finally 

          19   came out was that that was good. 

          20                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Yes. 

          21                  MR. SANSOM:  No. 1, it allowed for us to 

          22   put some immediate reforms into this, particularly in the 

          23   oyster industry.  

          24             No. 2, it allowed us to use our normal processes 

          25   to incrementally begin to approach costs recovery in 

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           1   commercial fisheries.  So it was real bad in the 

           2   beginning.   

           3             At one point in time, the legislation required 

           4   that oyster leases be raised from three dollars an acre to 

           5   $1,000 an acre, which would have destroyed the industry.  

           6   So I believe that it -- thanks to some good work and 

           7   involvement by the industry and interested members, it 

           8   came out probably about as good as it could have. 

           9                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  Would it be 

          10   possible to put together a notebook with the Sunset bill 

          11   and then the text from these ones that I could read? 

          12                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Certainly.  Absolutely.  

          13   Happy to do that for you. 

          14                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  I would like to 

          15   read the actual text. 

          16                  MR. JOEY PARK:  I'll get that for you. 

          17                  MR. SANSOM:  Mr. Chairman, I would like to 

          18   particularly thank those members of the Commission, which 

          19   basically constitute a majority of the members of the 

          20   Commission, who participated with us in this legislative 

          21   session.   

          22             That, as you all have found out, makes all the 

          23   difference in the world to us.  They can address us in one 

          24   manner, but they address you all in a completely different 

          25   manner and it's always positive.  And we deeply appreciate 

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           1   those of you who went down there.   

           2             I should point out that Dr. McKinney was a major 

           3   player in the SB 2 negotiations and activities. 

           4             In this session, we probably had more support of 

           5   a general nature from outside interests than ever before.  

           6   And as Joey commented to me, it wasn't just reactive.  We 

           7   felt the presence of a number of outside interests helping 

           8   us sort of move this whole agenda forward in a way that I 

           9   had not experienced in the six sessions that I've had the 

          10   privilege of working.  Particularly, David Langford was 

          11   there almost every day, George Bristol from the Texas 

          12   Conservation Coalition and Jan Brown from Trust for Public 

          13   Lands, Brian Seibert from the Sierra Club and many, many 

          14   more.  It was a wonderful show of support and one that we 

          15   deeply appreciate. 

          16             And, finally, I will tell you that in all the 

          17   years that I've been working in the legislature, I have 

          18   not had the privilege of working with as good a team as 

          19   Harold and Joey.  And I want to let you know publicly how 

          20   deeply grateful I am for what you've done. 

          21                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  We appreciate it.   

          22                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  You made it seem painless.  

          23   I know it wasn't. 

          24                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  They're tired.   

          25                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  I know firsthand it wasn't, 

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           1   but you made it look relatively easy. 

           2                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Thank you. 

           3                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  I'm sure they're 

           4   sorry the session is over, so they'll be bored. 

           5                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  What are you 

           6   going to do with yourself now? 

           7                  MR. JOEY PARK:  I'm not sure yet; 

           8   decompress a little bit. 

           9                  MS. SUZY WHITTENTON:  Sleep 

          10                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other comments or 

          11   questions?  Again, thank you all. 

          12                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Well, I just have 

          13   one on SB 2.  Does the Water Advisory Council provide for 

          14   Parks and Wildlife representatives in that advisory 

          15   council necessarily? 

          16                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Yes, sir, it does. 

          17                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Thank you all. 

          18                  MR. JOEY PARK:  Thank you. 

          19                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Mr. Chairman, I guess 

          20   you want to continue and finish this agenda? 

          21                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Yeah.  Let's go ahead and 

          22   finish this off. 

          23                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Item No. 5 is an 

          24   action item which we'll take up tomorrow at the Commission 

          25   meeting, presumably, a stamp fee for disabled veterans.  

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           1   We'll have a presentation by Frances Stiles.  Frances? 


           3                  MS. FRANCES STILES:  Hello.  I'm Frances 

           4   Stiles.  I'm with the Administrative Resources Division, 

           5   and I'll be presenting the proposal to add hunting and 

           6   fishing stamps to the disabled veterans hunting and 

           7   fishing license.   

           8             In order to get this in place before the new 

           9   license year, this has already been published in Texas 

          10   Register.  We have received no comments on that proposal 

          11   at this time.   

          12             What this would do is it takes the hunting and 

          13   fishing combination license that is currently offered to 

          14   disabled veterans and it would add the five hunting stamps 

          15   and the two fishing stamps to this license.  Currently, 

          16   the hunting and fishing license is there, available to 

          17   those who qualify under the Veterans Administration at no 

          18   fee.  This would also add the stamps to this license at no 

          19   fee. 

          20             The definition for the disabled veteran are 

          21   those who are 60 percent or more disabled as defined by 

          22   the Veterans Administration.  This is estimated to have a 

          23   fiscal impact of $43,000 to $46,000 to the agency. 

          24             And this is a -- this would impact these 

          25   sections under the Finance Chapter.  Section 53.90 would 

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           1   be added.   

           2             Any questions? 

           3                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any questions or 


           5             If there's no objections from the Commission, 

           6   this will be placed on the agenda for discussion and 

           7   action tomorrow.   

           8             Hearing none, it will be done.  And we thank 

           9   you. 

          10                  MS. FRANCES STILES:  Thank you. 

          11                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Item No. 6 is another 

          12   action item.  This is to be presented by Bob Cook with 

          13   regard to fleet policy. 

          14   ACTION ITEM NO. 6 - FLEET POLICY 

          15                  MR. ROBERT COOK:  Thank you, Mr. Chairman, 

          16   my name is Robert Cook.  I'm Chief Operating Officer of 


          18             This is a -- primarily, I would call this is a 

          19   housekeeping item.  In the 76th legislature two years ago, 

          20   there was a statewide fleet management plan established by 

          21   House Bill 3125, which requires us to meet certain rules 

          22   and regs within that plan, one of which, for example, was 

          23   that we hire a fleet manager at Texas Parks and Wildlife 

          24   Department, which I am glad to report that we did in May 

          25   of last year, Doug Schonberner was hired and has done us 

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           1   an excellent job and has done a great job of coordinating 

           2   with our divisions and with the people downtown at GSC and 

           3   with the Council on Competitive Government, who we work 

           4   all of these programs through. 

           5             The fleet management plan requires an adoption 

           6   of a plan by each agency.  We have been working with those 

           7   folks on our fleet and what our fleet management plan will 

           8   say.  It's been going pretty well.   

           9             One of the -- one of the things that happened 

          10   when this thing was implemented was they put a moratorium 

          11   on all of our vehicle purchase, all purchases.  Then in 

          12   negotiating with them, we got some exemptions on some law 

          13   enforcement vehicles that we were able to purchase.  And 

          14   with the implementation of this plan, with the acceptance 

          15   of this plan, that moratorium on acquisitions will be 

          16   removed, and we will be allowed to replace -- to purchase 

          17   replacement vehicles on a one-to-one basis.  If we -- for 

          18   instance, if we choose to add vehicles to our current 

          19   fleet, add additional numbers of vehicles to our current 

          20   fleet, we've got to go through a fairly detailed and 

          21   fairly bureaucratic process of requesting and getting that 

          22   permission, building the justification for that.  Part of 

          23   the statewide fleet management plan, of course, is to 

          24   control the number of vehicles in these various fleets 

          25   cross the state.  

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           1             Just to give you an idea of our fleet at Texas 

           2   Parks and Wildlife Department, we currently have about 

           3   something over 2100 vehicles.  The average age of our 

           4   vehicle is almost eight years old.  So that means we've 

           5   got some vehicles that are 25 and 30 years old.  Now, that 

           6   may seem astonishing to you, but those of you who have 

           7   ranches and operate country like that -- many of our State 

           8   parks and wildlife management vehicles, those older 

           9   vehicles we may not put 1,000 miles a year on, but we use 

          10   them to haul trash or we use them to do specific jobs on 

          11   the ranch that you don't want a new vehicle out there 

          12   doing that kind of thing.  So an average age of eight, 

          13   that scares a lot of people, but we operate quite well. 

          14             The average mileage of our fleet is over 76,000 

          15   miles.  Now, again, that's lots of miles.  But that means 

          16   you've got a lot of vehicles that have got 150,000 on them 

          17   as well as 25,000.  But we -- our people are pretty 

          18   efficient with their vehicles.  They take good care of 

          19   them.  They stretch them out.  They make them last a long 

          20   time.  Again, that's a process that Doug is helping with 

          21   and that the various division directors are helping with. 

          22             This process requires that you -- or requests 

          23   that you adopt two rules in order for us to comply, and 

          24   you see those rules posted there.  Each agency vehicle, 

          25   with the exception of a vehicle assigned to a field 

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           1   employee, shall be assigned to an agency motor pool.  And 

           2   that motor pool, of course, will be headed out of here.  

           3   The vehicles in that motor pool would be available for 

           4   checkout.   

           5             The agency may assign a vehicle to an 

           6   administrative person or an executive employee here on a 

           7   regular basis only if the agency makes a written 

           8   documented finding that the assignment is critical to the 

           9   needs of the agency. 

          10             So those are the two basic rules that we are all 

          11   having to present to our commissions and have adopted for 

          12   your consideration.   

          13             If you have any questions, I would be glad to 

          14   address them. 

          15                  COMMISSIONER WATSON:  Bob, at one of the 

          16   earlier -- I guess it was Senate Finance meetings that we 

          17   attended, Senator Lucio, I remember specifically, raised a 

          18   number of issues, questions with the Department relative 

          19   to its numbers of vehicles -- vehicle usages.   

          20             Has any of that crept into anything that's here? 

          21                  MR. ROBERT COOK:  Not really.  You know, 

          22   most of the concerns that we hear at the legislature deal 

          23   almost specifically, almost exclusively, totally with the 

          24   vehicles here in Austin; very little to do with the fleet 

          25   scattered across the state that our field employees use on 

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           1   a regular basis. 

           2             This plan, one which I might add we had already 

           3   been addressing and dealing with, primarily focuses on 

           4   those fleets of vehicles here in Austin.  And it will 

           5   impact us some here.  It will affect us a little bit.  I 

           6   believe it will address the concerns expressed by the 

           7   Senator and by a few others in the legislature.  It should 

           8   resolve those issues for their satisfaction. 

           9                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other questions?  

          10   All right.   

          11             Hearing none -- this is an action item.  And 

          12   with no objection, we'll place it on the agenda tomorrow 

          13   for public discussion and action.  Hearing none -- 

          14                  MR. ROBERT COOK:  Thank you, sir. 

          15                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  -- it will be done. 

          16             Item No. 7, another action item with regard to 

          17   local park funding.  Tim Hogsett will discuss the Urban 

          18   Park and Recreation Recovery Act.  Tim? 


          20                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  Thank you, Mr. Chairman 

          21   and members of the Commission.  

          22             I'm Tim Hogsett, Director of the Recreation 

          23   Grants Program in the State Parks Division.  I'm going to 

          24   talk to you today a little about the Urban Parks and 

          25   Recreation Recovery Program.  This is a grant program that 

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           1   is administered by the U.S. Department of Interior and 

           2   National Parks Service.  

           3             The UPRR program essentially makes grants 

           4   available from the park service for parks and recreation 

           5   communities that have parks and recreation facilities, 

           6   primarily the urban facilities and for the rehabilitation 

           7   of facilities that are, for whatever reason, no longer 

           8   usable.   

           9             The federal government makes the funding 

          10   decisions.  It's based on a national competition.  All 

          11   parks and recreation departments, communities are eligible 

          12   to submit applications if they have what's called a 

          13   recovery actino plan that's been approved by the National 

          14   Parks Service.   

          15             It is a matching grant program with a 70 percent 

          16   federal share being available, and the additional 

          17   30 percent can be made either strictly through a local 

          18   contribution or a combination of a local and state 

          19   contribution.  Basically, what happens is -- is if the 

          20   Commission determines that Texas applicants should be 

          21   supported through part of our program through the local 

          22   park fund, then up to 15 percent of that local share can 

          23   be taken over by state contributions.   

          24             If the -- if we do make a contribution using the 

          25   Texas Recreation and Parks account, it will make Texas 

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           1   applications more competitive in the national competition.   

           2             There is $28 million available for this national 

           3   competition of which no state is eligible for more than 15 

           4   percent, and that works out to be approximately $4.3 

           5   million available for Texas projects. 

           6             In the past, past Commissions have agreed to 

           7   participate at a ten percent match level.  That would 

           8   essentially, then, leave a ten percent share that would be 

           9   required of the local governments of their contribution.  

          10   And, basically, the rationale in the past for that has 

          11   been that there really needs to be a local commitment and 

          12   it not be a complete 100 percent state and local -- I'm 

          13   sorry, state and federal commitment of resources.   

          14             At 10 percent, we would set aside and request 

          15   that you consider setting aside $432,540 from the Texas 

          16   Recreation and Parks Account.  That would be the maximum 

          17   commitment.  If Texas applicants were not -- some of them 

          18   were not successful and we did not end up receiving the 

          19   $4.3 million collectively, then any of that unused State 

          20   fund would go back into out normal grant -- State outdoor 

          21   grant program.   

          22             And I would be glad to answer any questions that 

          23   you might have. 

          24                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Are there any 

          25   questions? 

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           1                  COMMISSIONER AVILA:  Is that an annual 

           2   award?  

           3                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  This is the first time 

           4   that this program's been available for several years.  

           5   Each year Congress considers it, but it has not been -- 

           6   funds have not be appropriated for the last several years. 

           7                  COMMISSIONER AVILA:  But the period of time 

           8   for respondents is going to be what, over what period, a 

           9   year or more? 

          10                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  They will -- you mean how 

          11   long they will have to accomplish the project?  They will 

          12   have up to the five years. 

          13                  COMMISSIONER AVILA:  But to apply for it. 

          14                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  And the application 

          15   deadline is June the 18th.  So they need -- if -- if, as 

          16   part of the scoring process, they're going to get 

          17   additional priority for Parks and Wildlife's participation 

          18   they need to know that so they can get that additional 

          19   credit. 

          20                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Obviously, they have 

          21   been well aware of their application process? 

          22                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  Yes.  In fact, the 

          23   National Parks Service came and in this room had two 

          24   workshops that were well attended by local governments. 

          25                  MR. SANSOM:  And this is -- this action 

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           1   would be very supported by local government in Texas. 

           2                  COMMISSIONER WATSON:  You mentioned 70 

           3   percent, 10 percent and 10 percent.  Where's the other 10 

           4   percent? 

           5                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  70 percent is the minimum 

           6   federal share that the federal government will make 

           7   available.  That leaves 30 percent.   

           8             If the local -- if the state governments provide 

           9   a dollar for each dollar that's provided, up to 15 percent 

          10   will be matched by an increase in that federal share.  So 

          11   a -- if we participate at 15 percent, then essentially 

          12   it's 15 percent -- it's, what, 85 percent federal and 15 

          13   percent state.  And what we're asking you to consider 

          14   doing is only provide a ten percent share which would then 

          15   increase the federal share to 80 percent and then leave a 

          16   ten percent share for the local governments to have to 

          17   commit. 

          18                  MS. DINKINS:  Tim, how many communities 

          19   participate and what sorts of parks? 

          20                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  In the last -- the last 

          21   time we received applications, they were primarily the 

          22   large cities.  Houston received a grant.   

          23                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Aging facilities.  

          24                  MR. TIM HOGSETT:  It's aging facilities 

          25   Aging outdoor recreation facilities, typically in the 

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           1   inner city.   

           2             One of the things that the fellow from the Parks 

           3   Service said when he was here is that many of these parks 

           4   are in war zones, basically.  They are really in bad 

           5   shape, and they've got to have rehabilitation or they're 

           6   going to be lost. 

           7                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other questions 

           8   or discussion?   

           9             Again, this an action item and, with no 

          10   objection, will be placed on the agenda for public 

          11   discussion and action by the Commission.   

          12             Hearing none, it will be done so.  And we have 

          13   now Item 8, which is other business.  And I believe Andy 

          14   has something. 

          15   ITEM 8 - OTHER BUSINESS 

          16                  MR. SANSOM:  Just a couple of final 

          17   comments, members.   

          18             I have caught Dee Skelton in the process of 

          19   running an errand, which she does at all -- all during 

          20   these meetings, and could not pass the opportunity to tell 

          21   you that Dee is an important part of this legislative 

          22   process, as well.   

          23             We probably look at several thousand pieces of 

          24   information place to determine how they're going to affect 

          25   the Department or its mission.  And Dee is the person who 

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           1   is in charge of making sure that that piece of legislation 

           2   gets to the officer in the Department who's been assigned 

           3   to review it and then get that analysis back and up to the 

           4   Capital.  So she's been a critical part of this process, 

           5   as well. 

           6             I also want to just take a moment and say that 

           7   we went over Sunset a little quickly.  Sunset is going to 

           8   be a big deal for us.  We've got basically less than the 

           9   full biennium to report back to the legislature on 

          10   implementing all of the new tasks that the Sunset bill has 

          11   given us.  And I fully anticipate that, once again, by the 

          12   time we reconvene in August, we're going to lay in front 

          13   of you an action plan to get all of those things put into 

          14   place.  And they're going to have to do everything from 

          15   creating essentially a master land and water conservation 

          16   plan for the whole state to changing the way that you do 

          17   business here in these meetings.  And I'm confident that 

          18   that process will be ably coordinated by Gene McCarty.   

          19             I will tell you that throughout this Sunset 

          20   issue, Gene has been the person who has taken it from the 

          21   points in time that the Sunset staff first began to 

          22   interview and perform analysis in the Department through 

          23   the process of the Commission hearings and the legislative 

          24   process itself.  And he's done a wonderful job of it.  And 

          25   I fully anticipate giving him the charge to take it this 

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           1   final step over the goal line.  So thank you, Gene.   

           2             And that concludes my remarks. 

           3                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Are there any 

           4   other -- any other items to be discussed?   

           5             If not, Mr. Chairman, that concludes the Finance 

           6   Committee meeting. 

           7                  CHAIRMAN BASS:  Thank you.   

           8             At this time I would like to announce that 

           9   pursuant to requirements of Chapter 551, referred to as 

          10   the Open Meetings Act, the Executive Session will be held 

          11   for purpose of consideration of land transactions and we 

          12   will reconvene in this room after that.  Thank you. 

          13                  (Meeting adjourned at 12:26 p.m.) 













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           1   STATE OF TEXAS  ) 

           2   COUNTY OF TRAVIS) 

           3                 REPORTER'S CERTIFICATION 

           4             I, Rhonda Howard, Certified Shorthand Reporter in 

           5   and for the State of Texas, hereby certify that on May 30, 

           6   2000, I was present at the Texas Parks and Wildlife 

           7   Commission for committee meetings and that this is a true 

           8   and complete transcript of the proceedings. 

           9            I further certify that the proceedings were put 

          10   into writing by myself with the help of Lori Estrada of 


          12             I further certify that I am neither counsel for,  

          13   related to, nor employed by any of the parties or 

          14   attorneys in the action in which this proceeding was 

          15   taken, and further that I am not financially or otherwise 

          16   interested in the outcome of the action. 

          17             Certified to by me, this 28th day of June,  

          18   2001. 

          19                     _____________________________________ 

          20                       ____________________________ 
                                   RHONDA HOWARD, Texas CSR No. 4136 
          21                       Expiration Date 12/31/02 
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