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House Committee on Appropriations - 79th R.S. (2005)

Committee Members
Jim Pitts, Chair
Vilma Luna, Vice Chair
Leo Berman
Dan Branch
Betty Brown
Fred Brown
Warren Chisum
Myra Crownover
John E. Davis
Dawnna Dukes
Al Edwards
Dan Gattis
Ryan Guillen
Patrick "Pat" Haggerty
Peggy Hamric
Glenn Hegar
Ruben Hope, Jr.
Chuck Hopson
Carl Isett
Tracy O. King
Lois W. Kolkhorst
Armando Martinez
Ruth Jones McClendon
José Menéndez
Aaron Pena
Joe C. Pickett
Todd Smith
Vicki Truitt
Sylvester Turner
Charges
• Monitor the performance of state agencies and institutions, including operating budgets and plans to carry out legislative initiatives, caseload projections, performance measure attainment and other matters affecting the fiscal condition of the agencies and the state.
• Examine and report on the implementation of HB 1516, 79th Legislature, Regular Session, to accommodate consolidation and future budgeting of shared services and commodity information technology procurements. This review should consider revisions to the automated information systems to streamline the state's planning, budgeting and purchase of information technology.
• Review the compensation structure for state employees, including benefits.
• Examine the state budget process from start to finish, including but not limited to the establishment of spending limits, budget structures, performance measures and other relevant issues to control the growth in state spending.
• Study the implementation of the Driver Responsibility Program (DRP) by the Department of Public Safety and its efforts to reach certain revenue goals. Examine discrepancies in estimated revenue for the Designated Trauma Facility and Emergency Medical Services Account. Evaluate the need to reimburse physicians and other providers directly from this account for their costs in the provision of trauma care.
• Analyze and compare service coordination and other administrative functions across waiver programs as a continuation of the health and human services system consolidation and optimization. This analysis should include evaluation processes, procedures, outcomes and costs with the intent of ensuring quality, defining best practices and reducing costs.
• Review the implementation status and impact on prison populations as a result of increased funding for Prison Diversion Programs and Substance Abuse Treatment Programs.
• Research and report on the state's use of bonds and other instruments of debt financing to determine if such use could be modified to increase cost-effectiveness.
• Review proportionality as it relates to health and retirement appropriations for higher education institutions. This review should analyze the determination of contribution levels for public community colleges' health and retirement benefits, as well as the role of proportionality in the formula allocations of General Revenue Funds to General Academic and Health-related Institutions.
• Examine the contract between Texas Online and the State. This examination should also include an evaluation of the usefulness and cost effectiveness of Texas Online.
• Review regulatory agency testing procedures to determine the mode and accessibility of each test.
• Analyze and compare Medicaid cost containment strategies in other states. This study should consider how effective these strategies are at reducing costs in the Medicaid program while taking into account how these strategies effect quality of care, ongoing services, and the availability of federal funding sources.
• Review and analyze all higher education funding formulas. (Joint Interim Charge with the House Committee on Higher Education)

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