This website will be unavailable from Friday, April 26, 2024 at 6:00 p.m. through Monday, April 29, 2024 at 7:00 a.m. due to data center maintenance.

  S.B. No. 289
  relating to disaster recovery.
         SECTION 1.  Subchapter C, Chapter 418, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Section 418.054 to read as follows:
         Sec. 418.054.  DISASTER RECOVERY TASK FORCE. (a)  The
  division shall develop a disaster recovery task force to operate
  throughout the long-term recovery period following natural and
  man-made disasters by providing specialized assistance for
  communities and individuals to address financial issues, available
  federal assistance programs, and recovery and resiliency planning
  to speed recovery efforts at the local level.
         (b)  The disaster recovery task force may include and use the
  resources of:
               (1)  any appropriate state agencies, including
  institutions of higher education; and
               (2)  organized volunteer groups.
         (c)  The disaster recovery task force shall develop
  procedures for preparing and issuing a report listing each project
  related to a disaster that qualifies for federal assistance. A
  report must be submitted to the appropriate federal agencies as
  soon as practicable after any disaster.
         (d)  Once each quarter, the disaster recovery task force
  shall brief members of the legislature, legislative staff, and
  state agency personnel on the response and recovery efforts for
  previous disasters and any preparation or planning for potential
  future hazards, threats, or disasters.
         SECTION 2.  Chapter 418, Government Code, is amended by
  adding Subchapter F-1 to read as follows:
         Sec. 418.131.  DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:
               (1)  "Center" means the Hazard Reduction and Recovery
  Center at Texas A&M University.
               (2)  "Local government" means a county, municipality,
  or council of government that has jurisdiction in a first tier
  coastal county, as defined by Section 2210.003, Insurance Code.
               (3)  "Plan" means a local housing recovery plan
  developed under Section 418.133.
  STATE AGENCY. (a)  Unless the governor designates a state agency
  under Subsection (d), the General Land Office shall receive and
  administer federal and state funds appropriated for long-term
  disaster recovery.
         (b)  The General Land Office shall:
               (1)  collaborate with the Texas Division of Emergency
  Management and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, as
  appropriate, on plans developed under Section 418.133;
               (2)  seek prior approval from the Federal Emergency
  Management Agency and the United States Department of Housing and
  Urban Development for the immediate post-disaster implementation
  of local housing recovery plans accepted by the General Land Office
  under Section 418.135; and
               (3)  maintain a division with adequate staffing and
  other administrative support to review plans developed under
  Section 418.133.
         (c)  The General Land Office may adopt rules as necessary to
  implement the General Land Office's duties under this subchapter.
         (d)  The governor may designate a state agency to be
  responsible for long-term disaster recovery under this subchapter
  instead of the General Land Office.  If the governor designates a
  state agency under this subsection, a reference to the General Land
  Office in this subchapter means the designated state agency.
         Sec. 418.133.  LOCAL HOUSING RECOVERY PLAN. (a)  A local
  government may develop and adopt a local housing recovery plan to
  provide for the rapid and efficient construction of permanent
  replacement housing following a disaster.
         (b)  In developing the plan, a local government shall seek
  input from:
               (1)  stakeholders in the community, including
  residents, local businesses, and community-based organizations;
               (2)  neighboring local governments.
         (c)  A local government may submit a plan developed and
  adopted under Subsection (a) to the center for certification.
  review and certify plans submitted to the center by local
         (b)  The center shall establish criteria for certifying a
  plan.  The center may not certify a plan unless the plan:
               (1)  identifies areas in the local government's
  boundaries that are vulnerable to disasters;
               (2)  identifies sources of post-disaster housing
  assistance and recovery funds;
               (3)  provides procedures for rapidly responding to a
  disaster, including procedures for:
                     (A)  assessing and reporting housing damage,
  disaggregated by insured and uninsured losses, to the governor;
                     (B)  providing fair and efficient access to
  disaster recovery assistance for residents;
                     (C)  determining residents' eligibility for
  disaster recovery assistance;
                     (D)  educating residents about the rebuilding
  process and providing outreach and case management services; and
                     (E)  prequalifying and training local
  professionals needed for disaster recovery;
               (4)  allows for the temporary waiver or modification of
  an existing local code, ordinance, or regulation on an emergency
  basis that may apply in the event of a disaster declaration in order
  to expedite the process of providing temporary housing or
  rebuilding residential structures for persons displaced by a
               (5)  provides procedures to encourage residents to
  rebuild outside of the vulnerable areas identified under
  Subdivision (1);
               (6)  provides procedures to maximize the use of local
  businesses, contractors, and supplies to rebuild to the extent
               (7)  provides procedures to maximize cost efficiency; 
               (8)  provides for the provision of:
                     (A)  temporary housing to displaced residents as
  soon as possible after the disaster, with a goal of providing the
  housing within six months following the disaster; and
                     (B)  permanent replacement housing to displaced
  residents as soon as possible after the disaster, with a goal of
  providing the housing within three years following the disaster;
               (9)  specifies whether the local government that
  submitted the plan or the General Land Office, as determined by the
  General Land Office, will administer disaster rebuilding
  activities under the plan;
               (10)  provides a procedure through which the local
  government that submits the plan is required to, between every four
  to seven years:
                     (A)  review the plan to ensure continued local
  community support;
                     (B)  provide the center with, as necessary,
  revisions to the plan based on the review conducted under Paragraph
  (A); and
                     (C)  provide the center with a resolution or
  proclamation adopted by the local government that certifies
  continued local community support for the plan; and
               (11)  complies with applicable state and federal law.
         (c)  If the center determines that a plan does not meet the
  criteria prescribed by Subsection (b), the center shall identify
  the plan's deficiencies and assist the local government in revising
  the plan to meet the criteria.
         (d)  The center shall provide training to local governments
  and community-based organizations on developing a plan. A local
  government that submits a plan to the center for certification
  under this section shall designate at least one representative to
  attend the center's training. The training must include
  information relating to:
               (1)  previous experiences with housing recovery from
               (2)  best practices for achieving rapid and efficient
  construction of permanent replacement housing;
               (3)  federal and state laws and regulations on disaster
               (4)  methods for identifying and planning for
  vulnerable areas and populations before a disaster; and
               (5)  cost-effective land use and building practices.
         (e)  The center shall create and maintain mapping and data
  resources related to disaster recovery and planning, including the
  Texas Coastal Communities Planning Atlas.
         (f)  The center shall assist a local government on request in
  identifying areas that are vulnerable to disasters.
         (g)  The center shall provide recommendations to the Texas
  Department of Insurance regarding the development of policies,
  procedures, and education programs to enable the quick and
  efficient reporting and settling of housing claims related to
         (h)  The center may seek and accept gifts, grants, donations,
  and other funds to assist the center in fulfilling its duties under
  this section.
  GENERAL LAND OFFICE. (a)  The center shall submit to the General
  Land Office a plan certified by the center under Section 418.134.
         (b)  The General Land Office shall review the plan and
  consult with the center and the local government about any
  potential improvements the General Land Office may identify. In
  reviewing the plan, the General Land Office shall give deference to
  the local government regarding matters in the local government's
         (c)  On completion of the review, the General Land Office
  shall accept the plan unless the General Land Office determines
  that the plan does not:
               (1)  satisfy the criteria for a certified plan under
  Section 418.134(b);
               (2)  provide for the rapid and efficient construction
  of permanent replacement housing; or
               (3)  comply with applicable state and federal law.
         (d)  If the General Land Office rejects a plan under this
  section, the General Land Office may require the local government
  to revise and resubmit the plan.
         (e)  At any point after the General Land Office accepts a
  plan under this section, the General Land Office may withdraw
  acceptance of the plan and require the plan to be revised and
  resubmitted for acceptance or rejection under this section.
         (f)  The General Land Office may limit the number of plans it
  reviews annually under this section.
         Sec. 418.136.  EFFECT OF ACCEPTANCE. (a)  A plan accepted
  by the General Land Office under Section 418.135 is valid for four
  years and may be implemented during that period without further
  acceptance if a disaster occurs.
         (b)  In accordance with rules adopted by the General Land
  Office, on or before expiration, the plan may be reviewed by the
  center and the General Land Office, updated if necessary, and
  resubmitted to the General Land Office for acceptance or rejection.
         SECTION 3.  Not later than January 1, 2021, the General Land
  Office and the Hazard Reduction and Recovery Center at Texas A&M
  University shall prepare and submit to the legislature a written
  report that:
               (1)  summarizes the success of the planning process
  under Subchapter F-1, Chapter 418, Government Code, as added by
  this Act; and
               (2)  recommends any statutory or legislative changes
  necessary to improve the planning process, including whether to
  expand the number of local governments eligible to participate in
  the planning process.
         SECTION 4.  The General Land Office or another state agency
  designated by the governor under Section 418.132, Government Code,
  as added by this Act, is required to implement a provision of this
  Act only if the legislature appropriates money specifically for
  that purpose. If the legislature does not appropriate money
  specifically for that purpose, the General Land Office or other
  state agency may, but is not required to, implement the provision
  using other appropriations available for that purpose.
         SECTION 5.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2019.
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 289 passed the Senate on
  April 8, 2019, by the following vote: Yeas 30, Nays 0; and that
  the Senate concurred in House amendments on May 23, 2019, by the
  following vote: Yeas 31, Nays 0.
  Secretary of the Senate    
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 289 passed the House, with
  amendments, on May 21, 2019, by the following vote: Yeas 145,
  Nays 2, one present not voting.
  Chief Clerk of the House