Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Finance Committee

Nov. 2, 2011

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

BE IT REMEMBERED, that heretofore on the 2nd day of November 2011, there came to be heard matters under the regulatory authority of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission in the Commission Hearing Room of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Headquarters Complex, to wit:





       1                 COMMISSIONER FALCON:  Thank you,

       2  Mr. Chairman.  The first item would be the approval of

       3  the minutes for the previous Committee meeting from 24

       4  August, 2011.  Do I hear a motion from a Commissioner?

       5                 COMMISSIONER MARTIN:  So moved.

       6                 COMMISSIONER SCOTT:  Second.

       7                 COMMISSIONER FALCON:  Scott and Margaret.

       8  All those in favor say aye.

       9                 (A chorus of ayes)

      10                 COMMISSIONER FALCON:  Opposed?  All

      11  right, I'm going to go ahead and remove Committee Item

      12  No. 2 from the agenda and I'm going to ask Mr. Carter

      13  Smith now to present Committee Item No. 1 and for him to

      14  discuss Committee Item No. 3 and No. 4.

      15                 MR. SMITH:  Right.  Thank you,

      16  Mr. Chairman, members of the Commission.  I'm going to

      17  kind of dispense with a full report on Committee Item

      18  No. 1 and just two things I want to point out real

      19  quickly.  I think all of you are aware that built into

      20  our base budget is a presumed collection of a million

      21  600,000 a year in donations to State Parks and this is

      22  presumed to come from people who are making donations

      23  when they go to re-register their vehicles.

      24                 And I just want to compliment Darcy and

      25  Linda and Lydia and everybody who's been working on this

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       1  with very, very limited funds to try to get the word out

       2  so that people will be motivated to donate.  Y'all have

       3  asked us to be thinking about collateral that we could

       4  place in tax assessor/collector's offices and they've

       5  done a great job.  You'll see these table tents which

       6  they've put forward, State Parks need your help more now

       7  than ever; so encouraging you to donate $5 or more when

       8  you register your vehicles.

       9                 They've also -- and I think, Commissioner

      10  Duggins, this may have even been something that you had

      11  proposed; but, you know, basically a placemat here that

      12  could put up there where folks are going to register

      13  their vehicles just to make people aware of this

      14  opportunity.  That is a huge issue.  Remember, built

      15  into our budget is an assumption that we'll come up with

      16  a million 600,000 a year.  That funds core operational

      17  needs of State Parks -- keeping the lights on, taking

      18  care of our State Parks, the stewardship, the

      19  maintenance.  So we need to do everything we can.

      20                 And I just wanted to let you know how

      21  hard our team in marketing has been working on this and

      22  come up with a lot of creative capital.  So real proud

      23  of them for that and appreciate y'alls help in getting

      24  the word out.

      25                 The last thing I'll mention, we've talked

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       1  a lot about the importance about how we reach out to the

       2  Hispanic demographic and try to work to encourage them

       3  to get more involved in our outdoor recreational

       4  activities.  And so I'm real pleased to show our new

       5  State Park Guide that was published in Spanish.  And so,

       6  you know, we were given that feedback from Spanish

       7  speaking families that it would certainly help to have

       8  more information that was presented in Spanish.  And

       9  again, our team has worked hard to do that and so I just

      10  wanted to share those updates with you because I know

      11  they would both be meaningful on that front.

      12                 Mr. Chairman, that's the only thing I've

      13  got on Item No. 1, unless anybody has any questions for

      14  me.

      15                 COMMISSIONER FALCON:  No, sir.  Go ahead.

      16                 MR. SMITH:  Okay, all right.  I'm going

      17  to go to Item No. 3 and in the interest of time, Darcy

      18  and her team have been working very, very hard on this

      19  issue.  In the last session, there was legislation

      20  passed that would give the Department more authority to

      21  enter into agreements with corporate partners to help

      22  license the use of the Parks and Wildlife name and

      23  brand, to engage in strategic marketing partnerships in

      24  which entities could be, you know, the official partner

      25  of Parks and Wildlife with X, Y, Z activity, to set up

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       1  opportunities where companies could acquire and sell

       2  State Park passes.  So there were a set of kind of

       3  permissive things that were provided in that

       4  legislation.

       5                 Our team has worked hard to develop a set

       6  of rules by which we would evaluate that.  And so I'm

       7  not going to go in -- in the interest of time, I'm not

       8  going to go into a lot of detail on that.  But basically

       9  what we're asking for is your permission to go ahead and

      10  publish the proposed rules for official corporate

      11  partners and get those published in the Texas Register

      12  and so with y'alls permission, we would like to proceed

      13  with that.  Good with that?

      14                 COMMISSIONER FALCON:  Sounds all right.

      15                 MR. SMITH:  And certainly if you've got

      16  any questions at all about the details on that, please

      17  do contact Darcy and Lydia.  They can certainly fill you

      18  in on that in more detail.

      19                 Mr. Chairman, the last item that we have

      20  on this Committee has to do -- and it's an action item

      21  for tomorrow and so we'll get a full presentation on

      22  this, but this is basically giving the Executive

      23  Director the authority to set fees that an internet

      24  service provider could collect for providing boater

      25  education on the internet.  Right now, it's capped at $3

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       1  a student.  This legislation allowed us to have the

       2  Executive Director to set a fee not to exceed $25.

       3                 What we heard from all of these internet

       4  service providers, that they just can't provide boater

       5  education to students at $3 a head; and so this gives

       6  them something to be competitive.  We need to do

       7  everything we can to allow these service providers to

       8  recapture kind of their basic costs and have some kind

       9  of a profit motive in there for them if they're going to

      10  continue with this service and so this is an action item

      11  on the agenda tomorrow and I just wanted to give you

      12  that quick overview of that.  So pretty straight

      13  forward.

      14                 COMMISSIONER FALCON:  Okay.  So we'll

      15  place this item on the committee -- the Thursday

      16  Commission meeting agenda for public comment and action.

      17                 MR. SMITH:  That's right.  Thank you,

      18  Mr. Chairman.

      19                 COMMISSIONER FALCON:  Chairman Friedkin,

      20  that completes the business of this Committee.

       1                    C E R T I F I C A T E

       2  STATE OF TEXAS   )

       3  COUNTY OF TRAVIS )

       4            I, Paige S. Watts, Certified Shorthand

       5  Reporter in and for the State of Texas, do hereby

       6  certify that the above-mentioned matter occurred as

       7  hereinbefore set out.

       8            I FURTHER CERTIFY THAT the proceedings of such

       9  were reported by me or under my supervision, later

      10  reduced to typewritten form under my supervision and

      11  control and that the foregoing pages are a full, true,

      12  and correct transcription of the original notes.

      13            IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my

      14  hand and seal this Turn in date _____ day of

      15  ________________, 2011.




      19                             __________________________

      20                             Paige S. Watts, CSR, RPR
                                     CSR No.: 8311
      21                             Expiration: December 31, 2012
                                     Firm Registration Number: 87
      22                             1016 La Posada Drive
                                     Suite 294
      23                             Austin, Texas 78752
                                     Job No. 95402


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