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  S.B. No. 625
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to public access to financial and tax rate information of
  certain special purpose districts; imposing a civil penalty.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Subchapter B, Chapter 403, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Sections 403.0241 and 403.0242 to read as
  follows:
         Sec. 403.0241.  SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICT PUBLIC INFORMATION
  DATABASE. (a)  In this section:
               (1)  "Special purpose district" means a political
  subdivision of this state with geographic boundaries that define
  the subdivision's territorial jurisdiction.  The term does not
  include a municipality, county, junior college district,
  independent school district, or political subdivision with
  statewide jurisdiction.
               (2)  "Tax year" has the meaning assigned by Section
  1.04, Tax Code.
         (b)  The comptroller shall create and make accessible on the
  Internet a database, to be known as the Special Purpose District
  Public Information Database, that contains information regarding
  all special purpose districts of this state that:
               (1)  are authorized by the state by a general or special
  law to impose an ad valorem tax or a sales and use tax, to impose an
  assessment, or to charge a fee; and
               (2)  during the most recent fiscal year:
                     (A)  had bonds outstanding;
                     (B)  had gross receipts from operations, loans,
  taxes, or contributions in excess of $250,000; or
                     (C)  had cash and temporary investments in excess
  of $250,000.
         (c)  For each special purpose district described by
  Subsection (b), the database must include:
               (1)  the name of the special purpose district;
               (2)  the name of each board member of the special
  purpose district;
               (3)  contact information for the main office of the
  special purpose district, including the physical address, the
  mailing address, and the main telephone number;
               (4)  if the special purpose district employs a person
  as a general manager or executive director, or in another position
  to perform duties or functions comparable to those of a general
  manager or executive director, the name of the employee;
               (5)  if the special purpose district contracts with a
  utility operator, contact information for a person representing the
  utility operator, including a mailing address and a telephone
  number;
               (6)  if the special purpose district contracts with a
  tax assessor-collector, contact information for a person
  representing the tax assessor-collector, including a mailing
  address and telephone number;
               (7)  the special purpose district's Internet website
  address, if any;
               (8)  the information the special purpose district is
  required to report under Section 140.008(b) or (g), Local
  Government Code, including any revenue obligations;
               (9)  the total amount of bonds authorized by the voters
  of the special purpose district that are payable wholly or partly
  from ad valorem taxes, excluding refunding bonds if refunding bonds
  were separately authorized and excluding contract revenue bonds;
               (10)  the aggregate initial principal amount of all
  bonds issued by the special purpose district that are payable
  wholly or partly from ad valorem taxes, excluding refunding bonds
  and contract revenue bonds; 
               (11)  the rate of any sales and use tax the special
  purpose district imposes; and
               (12)  for a special purpose district that imposes an ad
  valorem tax:
                     (A)  the ad valorem tax rate for the most recent
  tax year if the district is a district as defined by Section 49.001,
  Water Code; or
                     (B)  the table of ad valorem tax rates for the most
  recent tax year described by Section 26.16, Tax Code, in the form
  required by that section, if the district is not a district as
  defined by Section 49.001, Water Code.
         (d)  The comptroller may consult with the appropriate
  officer of, or other person representing, each special purpose
  district to obtain the information necessary to operate and update
  the database.
         (e)  To the extent information required in the database is
  otherwise collected or maintained by a state agency or special
  purpose district, the comptroller may require the state agency or
  special purpose district to provide that information and updates to
  the information as necessary for inclusion in the database.
         (f)  The comptroller shall update information in the
  database annually.
         (g)  The comptroller may not charge a fee to the public to
  access the database.
         (h)  The comptroller may establish procedures and adopt
  rules to implement this section.
         Sec. 403.0242.  SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICT NONCOMPLIANCE
  LIST. The comptroller shall prepare and maintain a noncompliance
  list of special purpose districts that have not timely complied
  with a requirement to provide information under Section 203.062,
  Local Government Code.
         SECTION 2.  Chapter 203, Local Government Code, is amended
  by adding Subchapter D to read as follows:
  SUBCHAPTER D.  RECORDS AND INFORMATION PROVIDED TO COMPTROLLER
         Sec. 203.061.  APPLICABILITY OF SUBCHAPTER.  This subchapter
  applies only to a special purpose district described by Section
  403.0241(b), Government Code.
         Sec. 203.062.  PROVISION OF CERTAIN RECORDS AND OTHER
  INFORMATION TO COMPTROLLER.  (a)  A special purpose district shall 
  transmit records and other information to the comptroller annually
  for purposes of providing the comptroller with information to
  operate and update the Special Purpose District Public Information
  Database under Section 403.0241, Government Code.
         (b)  The special purpose district may comply with Subsection
  (a) by affirming that records and other information previously
  transmitted are current.
         (c)  The special purpose district shall transmit the records
  and other information in a form and in the manner prescribed by the
  comptroller.
         Sec. 203.063.  PENALTIES FOR NONCOMPLIANCE. (a)  If a
  special purpose district does not timely comply with Section
  203.062, the comptroller shall provide written notice to the
  special purpose district:
               (1)  informing the special purpose district of the
  violation of that section; and
               (2)  notifying the special purpose district that the
  special purpose district will be subject to a penalty of $1,000 if
  the special purpose district does not report the required
  information on or before the 30th day after the date the notice is
  provided.
         (b)  Not later than the 30th day after the date the
  comptroller provides notice to a special purpose district under
  Subsection (a), the special purpose district must report the
  required information.
         (c)  If a special purpose district does not report the
  required information as prescribed by Subsection (b):
               (1)  the special purpose district is liable to the
  state for a civil penalty of $1,000; and
               (2)  the comptroller shall provide written notice to
  the special purpose district:
                     (A)  informing the special purpose district of the
  liability for the penalty; and
                     (B)  notifying the special purpose district that
  if the special purpose district does not report the required
  information on or before the 30th day after the date the notice is
  provided:
                           (i)  the special purpose district will be
  subject to an additional penalty of $1,000; and
                           (ii)  the noncompliance will be reflected in
  the list maintained by the comptroller under Section 403.0242,
  Government Code.
         (d)  Not later than the 30th day after the date the
  comptroller provides notice to a special purpose district under
  Subsection (c), the special purpose district must report the
  required information.
         (e)  If a special purpose district does not report the
  required information as prescribed by Subsection (d):
               (1)  the special purpose district is liable to the
  state for a civil penalty of $1,000; and
               (2)  the comptroller shall:
                     (A)  reflect the noncompliance in the list
  maintained under Section 403.0242, Government Code, until the
  special purpose district reports all information required under
  Section 203.062; and
                     (B)  provide written notice to the special purpose
  district that the noncompliance will be reflected in the list until
  the special purpose district reports the required information.
         (f)  The attorney general may sue to collect a civil penalty
  imposed by this section.
         SECTION 3.  (a)  The comptroller shall create and post on
  the Internet the Special Purpose District Public Information
  Database required by Section 403.0241, Government Code, as added by
  this Act, not later than September 1, 2018.
         (b)  Not later than January 1, 2018, the comptroller shall
  send written notice to each special purpose district described by
  Section 403.0241(b), Government Code, as added by this Act, that
  describes the changes in law made by this Act.  Each special purpose
  district that receives notice shall submit to the comptroller any
  information required under Section 403.0241, Government Code, as
  added by this Act, or Section 203.062, Local Government Code, as
  added by this Act, not later than the 90th day after the date the
  district receives the notice.
         (c)  Notwithstanding another provision of this Act,
  including Subsections (a) and (b) of this section, the comptroller
  is required to implement this Act only if the legislature
  appropriates money specifically for that purpose.  If the
  legislature does not appropriate money specifically for that
  purpose, the comptroller may, but is not required to, implement
  this Act using other appropriations available for that purpose.
         SECTION 4.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2017.
 
 
 
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 625 passed the Senate on
  May 1, 2017, by the following vote:  Yeas 31, Nays 0.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate    
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 625 passed the House on
  May 24, 2017, by the following vote:  Yeas 144, Nays 0, one
  present not voting.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
 
 
  Approved:
 
  ______________________________ 
              Date
 
 
  ______________________________ 
            Governor