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  82R6084 JTS-D
 
  By: Nichols S.B. No. 538
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to transportation reinvestment zones.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 222.105, Transportation Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         Sec. 222.105.  PURPOSES.  The purposes of Sections 222.106,
  [and] 222.107, and 222.110 are to:
               (1)  promote public safety;
               (2)  facilitate the improvement, development, or
  redevelopment of property;
               (3)  facilitate the movement of traffic; and
               (4)  enhance a local entity's ability to sponsor a
  transportation project authorized under Section 222.104.
         SECTION 2.  Section 222.106, Transportation Code, is amended
  by amending Subsections (b), (c), (g), (h), (i), (j), (k), and (l)
  and adding Subsections (i-1) and (i-2) to read as follows:
         (b)  This section applies only to a municipality in which a
  transportation project is to be developed [the governing body of
  which intends to enter into an agreement with the department] under
  Section 222.104.
         (c)  If the governing body determines an area to be
  unproductive and underdeveloped and that action under this section
  will further the purposes stated in Section 222.105, the governing
  body of the municipality by ordinance may designate a contiguous
  geographic area in the jurisdiction of the municipality to be a
  transportation reinvestment zone to promote a transportation
  project [described by Section 222.104 that cultivates development
  or redevelopment of the area].
         (g)  The ordinance designating an area as a transportation
  reinvestment zone must:
               (1)  describe the boundaries of the zone with
  sufficient definiteness to identify with ordinary and reasonable
  certainty the territory included in the zone;
               (2)  provide that the zone takes effect immediately on
  passage of the ordinance;
               (3)  assign a name to the zone for identification, with
  the first zone designated by a municipality designated as
  "Transportation Reinvestment Zone Number One, (City or Town, as
  applicable) of (name of municipality)," and subsequently
  designated zones assigned names in the same form, numbered
  consecutively in the order of their designation;
               (4)  designate the base year for purposes of
  establishing the tax increment base of the municipality;
               (5)  establish a [an ad valorem] tax increment account
  for the zone; and
               (6)  [(5)]  contain findings that promotion of the
  transportation project will cultivate the improvement,
  development, or redevelopment of the zone.
         (h)  From taxes collected on property in a zone, the
  municipality shall pay into the tax increment account for the zone
  [an amount equal to] the tax increment produced by the
  municipality, less any amount allocated under previous agreements,
  including agreements under Chapter 380, Local Government Code, or
  Chapter 311, Tax Code.
         (i)  All or the portion specified by the municipality of the
  money deposited to a tax increment account must be used to fund the
  transportation project for which the zone was designated. Any
  remaining money deposited to the tax increment account may be used
  for other purposes as determined by the municipality [Money
  deposited to a tax increment account must be used to fund projects
  authorized under Section 222.104, including the repayment of
  amounts owed under an agreement entered into under that section].
         (i-1)  The governing body of a municipality may contract with
  a public or private entity to develop, redevelop, or improve a
  transportation project in a transportation reinvestment zone and
  may pledge and assign all or a specified amount of money in the tax
  increment account to that entity. After a pledge or assignment is
  made, if the entity that received the pledge or assignment has
  itself pledged or assigned that amount to secure bonds or other
  obligations issued to obtain funding for the transportation
  project, the governing body of the municipality may not rescind its
  pledge or assignment until the bonds or other obligations secured
  by the pledge or assignment have been paid or discharged.
         (i-2)  To accommodate changes in the limits of the
  transportation project for which a reinvestment zone was
  designated, the boundaries of a zone may be amended at any time,
  except that property may not be removed or excluded from a
  designated zone if any part of the tax increment account has been
  assigned or pledged directly by the municipality or through another
  entity to secure bonds or other obligations issued to obtain
  funding of the transportation project, and property may not be
  added to a designated zone unless the governing body of the
  municipality complies with Subsections (e) and (g).
         (j)  Except as provided by Subsections (i-1) and
  [Subsection] (k), a transportation reinvestment zone terminates on
  December 31 of the year in which the municipality completes
  [complies with] a contractual requirement, if any, that included
  the pledge or assignment of all or a portion of money deposited to a
  tax increment account or the repayment of money owed under an [the]
  agreement for development, redevelopment, or improvement of the
  transportation project for [under Section 222.104 in connection
  with] which the zone was designated.
         (k)  A transportation reinvestment zone terminates on
  December 31 of the 10th year after the year the zone was designated,
  if before that date the municipality has not entered into a contract
  described in Subsection (i-1) or otherwise not used the zone for the
  purpose for which it was designated.
         (l)  Any surplus remaining in a tax increment account on
  termination of a zone may be used for other purposes as determined
  by [transportation projects of] the municipality [in or outside of
  the zone].
         SECTION 3.  The heading to Section 222.107, Transportation
  Code, is amended to read as follows:
         Sec. 222.107.  COUNTY TRANSPORTATION REINVESTMENT ZONES[;
  TAX ABATEMENTS; ROAD UTILITY DISTRICTS].
         SECTION 4.  Section 222.107, Transportation Code, is amended
  by amending Subsections (b), (c), (e), (f), (h), (i), (k), and (l)
  and adding Subsections (h-1) and (k-1) to read as follows:
         (b)  This section applies only to a county in which a
  transportation project is to be developed [the commissioners court
  of which intends to enter into a pass-through toll agreement with
  the department] under Section 222.104.
         (c)  The commissioners court of the county, after
  determining that an area is unproductive and underdeveloped and
  that action under this section would further the purposes described
  by Section 222.105, by order or resolution may designate a
  contiguous geographic area in the jurisdiction of the county to be a
  transportation reinvestment zone to promote a transportation
  project [described by Section 222.104 that cultivates development
  or redevelopment of the area] and for the purpose of abating ad
  valorem taxes or granting other relief from ad valorem taxes
  imposed by the county on real property located in the zone.
         (e)  Not later than the 30th day before the date the
  commissioners court proposes to designate an area as a
  transportation reinvestment zone under this section, the
  commissioners court must hold a public hearing on the creation of
  the zone, its benefits to the county and to property in the proposed
  zone, and the abatement of ad valorem taxes or the grant of other
  relief from ad valorem taxes imposed by the county on real property
  located in the zone.  At the hearing an interested person may speak
  for or against the designation of the zone, its boundaries, or the
  abatement of or the relief from county taxes on real property in the
  zone.  Not later than the seventh day before the date of the
  hearing, notice of the hearing and the intent to create a zone must
  be published in a newspaper having general circulation in the
  county.
         (f)  The order or resolution designating an area as a
  transportation reinvestment zone must:
               (1)  describe the boundaries of the zone with
  sufficient definiteness to identify with ordinary and reasonable
  certainty the territory included in the zone;
               (2)  provide that the zone takes effect immediately on
  adoption of the order or resolution; [and]
               (3)  assign a name to the zone for identification, with
  the first zone designated by a county designated as "Transportation
  Reinvestment Zone Number One, County of (name of county)," and
  subsequently designated zones assigned names in the same form
  numbered consecutively in the order of their designation; and
               (4)  designate the base year for purposes of
  establishing the tax increment base of the county.
         (h)  The commissioners court by order or resolution may enter
  into an agreement with the owner of any real property located in the
  transportation reinvestment zone to abate all or a portion of the ad
  valorem taxes or to grant other relief from the taxes imposed by the
  county on the owner's property in an amount not to exceed the amount
  calculated under Subsection (a)(1) for that year.  All abatements
  or other relief granted by the commissioners court in a
  transportation reinvestment zone must be equal in rate.  In the
  alternative, the commissioners court by order or resolution may
  elect to abate a portion of the ad valorem taxes or otherwise grant
  relief from the taxes imposed by the county on all real property
  located in the zone.  In any ad valorem tax year, the total amount of
  the taxes abated or the total amount of relief granted under this
  section may not exceed the amount calculated under Subsection
  (a)(1) for that year, less any amount allocated under previous
  agreements, including agreements under Chapter 381, Local
  Government Code, or Chapter 312, Tax Code.
         (h-1)  To further the development of the transportation
  project for which the transportation reinvestment zone was
  designated, a county may assess all or part of the cost of the
  transportation project against property within the zone. The
  assessment against each property in the zone may be levied and
  payable in installments in the same manner as provided by Sections
  372.016-372.018, Local Government Code, provided that the
  installments do not exceed the total amount of the tax abatement or
  other relief granted under Subsection (h). The county may elect to
  adopt and apply the provisions of Sections 372.015-372.020 and
  372.023, Local Government Code, to the assessment of costs and
  Sections 372.024-372.030, Local Government Code, to the issuance of
  bonds by the county to pay the cost of a transportation project.  
  The commissioners court of the county may contract with a public or
  private entity to develop, redevelop, or improve a transportation
  project in the transportation reinvestment zone and may pledge and
  assign to that entity all or a specified amount of the revenue the
  county receives from installment payments of the assessments for
  the payment of the costs of that transportation project. After a
  pledge or assignment is made, if the entity that received the pledge
  or assignment has itself pledged or assigned that amount to secure
  bonds or other obligations issued to obtain funding for the
  transportation project, the commissioners court of the county may
  not rescind its pledge or assignment until the bonds or other
  obligations secured by the pledge or assignment have been paid or
  discharged.  Any amount received from installment payments of the
  assessments not pledged or assigned in connection with the
  transportation project may be used for other purposes associated
  with the transportation project or in the zone.
         (i)  In the alternative, to [To] assist the county in
  developing a transportation project [authorized under Section
  222.104], if authorized by the commission under Chapter 441, a road
  utility district may be formed under that chapter that has the same
  boundaries as a transportation reinvestment zone created under this
  section.
         (k)  A road utility district formed as provided by Subsection
  (i) may enter into an agreement [with the county to assume the
  obligation, if any, of the county] to fund development of a
  transportation project [under Section 222.104] or to repay funds
  owed to the department [under Section 222.104].  Any amount paid
  for this purpose is considered to be an operating expense of the
  district.  Any taxes collected by the district that are not paid
  for this purpose may be used for any district purpose.
         (k-1)  To accommodate changes in the limits of the
  transportation project for which a reinvestment zone was
  designated, the boundaries of a zone may be amended at any time,
  except that property may not be removed or excluded from a
  designated zone if any part of the assessment has been assigned or
  pledged directly by the county or through another entity to secure
  bonds or other obligations issued to obtain funding of the
  transportation project, and property may not be added to a
  designated zone unless the commissioners court of the county
  complies with Subsections (e) and (f).
         (l)  Except as provided by Subsections (h-1) and 
  [Subsection] (m), a tax abatement agreement entered into under
  Subsection (h), or an order or resolution on the abatement of taxes
  or the grant of relief from taxes under that subsection, terminates
  on December 31 of the year in which the county completes any
  contractual requirement that included the pledge or assignment of
  assessments [of money] collected under this section.
         SECTION 5.  Subchapter E, Chapter 222, Transportation Code,
  is amended by adding Sections 222.108, 222.109, and 222.110 to read
  as follows:
         Sec. 222.108.  TRANSPORTATION REINVESTMENT ZONES FOR OTHER
  TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS. (a)  Notwithstanding the requirement in
  Sections 222.106(b) and 222.107(b) that a transportation
  reinvestment zone be established in connection with a
  transportation project under Section 222.104, a municipality or
  county may establish a transportation reinvestment zone for any
  transportation project. If all or part of the transportation
  project is subject to oversight by the department, at the option of
  the governing body of the municipality or county, the department
  may delegate full responsibility for the development, design,
  letting of bids, and construction of the project, including project
  oversight and inspection, to the municipality or county.
         (b)  A transportation project developed under Subsection (a)
  that is on the state highway system must comply with state design
  criteria unless the department grants an exception to the
  municipality or county.
         (c)  In this section, "transportation project" has the
  meaning assigned by Section 370.003.
         Sec. 222.109.  REDUCTION PROHIBITED.  (a)  A municipality or
  county may not be penalized with a reduction in traditional
  transportation funding because of the designation and use of a
  transportation reinvestment zone under this chapter.  Any funding
  from the department identified for a project before the date that a
  transportation reinvestment zone is designated may not be reduced
  because the transportation reinvestment zone is designated in
  connection with that project.
         (b)  The department may not reduce any allocation of
  traditional transportation funding to any of its districts because
  a district contains a municipality or county that contains a
  transportation reinvestment zone designated under this chapter.
         Sec. 222.110.  SALES TAX INCREMENT. (a) In this section,
  "sales tax base" for a transportation reinvestment zone means the
  amount of sales and use taxes imposed by a municipality under
  Section 321.101(a), Tax Code, or by a county under Chapter 323, Tax
  Code, as applicable, attributable to the zone for the year in which
  the zone was designated under this chapter.
         (b)  The governing body of a municipality or county may
  determine, in an ordinance or order designating an area as a
  transportation reinvestment zone or in an ordinance or order
  adopted subsequent to the designation of a zone, the portion or
  amount of tax increment generated from the sales and use taxes
  imposed by a municipality under Section 321.101(a), Tax Code, or by
  a county under Chapter 323, Tax Code, attributable to the zone,
  above the sales tax base, to be used as provided by Subsection (e).  
  Nothing in this section requires a municipality or county to
  contribute sales tax increment under this subsection.
         (c)  A county that designates a portion or amount of sales
  tax increment under Subsection (b) must establish a tax increment
  account. A municipality or county shall deposit the designated
  portion or amount of tax increment under Subsection (b) to their
  respective tax increment account.
         (d)  Before pledging or otherwise committing money in the tax
  increment account under Subsection (c), the governing body of a
  municipality or county may enter into an agreement, under
  Subchapter E, Chapter 271, Local Government Code, to authorize and
  direct the comptroller to:
               (1)  withhold from any payment to which the
  municipality or county may be entitled the amount of the payment
  into the tax increment account under Subsection (b);
               (2)  deposit that amount into the tax increment
  account; and
               (3)  continue withholding and making additional
  payments into the tax increment account until an amount sufficient
  to satisfy the amount due has been met.
         (e)  The sales and use taxes to be deposited into the tax
  increment account under this section may be disbursed from the
  account only to:
               (1)  pay for transportation projects for which the zone
  was designated; and
               (2)  notwithstanding Sections 321.506 and 323.505, Tax
  Code, satisfy claims of holders of tax increment bonds, notes, or
  other obligations issued or incurred for transportation projects.
         (f)  The amount deposited by a county to a tax increment
  account under this section is not considered to be sales and use tax
  revenue for the purpose of property tax reduction and computation
  of the county tax rate under Section 26.041, Tax Code.
         SECTION 6.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2011.