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House Committee on Juvenile Justice and Family Issues - 80th R.S. (2007)

Committee Members
Harold V. Dutton, Jr., Chair
Craig Eiland, Vice Chair
Valinda Bolton
Joe Farias
Jessica Farrar
Yvonne Gonzalez Toureilles
Ana Hernandez
Mark Strama
Allen Vaught
Charges
• Study the current Texas law governing suits by nonparents affecting the parent-child relationship, specifically including suits for possession of or access to a child by a grandparent under Family Code Sections 153.432 - 153.434 in light of Troxel v. Granville and other court rulings. Recommend any needed changes.
• Evaluate child support guidelines and formulas, considering whether the current methods provide adequate support to a child. Also, study child support for the costs of college.
• Review methods for determining equal access and visitation under the standard possession order, and ascertain whether or not the distance parents reside from each other should create the need for a distinct standard possession order.
• Consider the law governing presumption of parentage, and examine the adequacy of relief available to presumed parents who are child support obligors and who assert a claim of paternity fraud.
• Consider the law governing no-fault divorces and make recommendations for any possible changes.
• Study the use of police diversion under Chapter 52 of the Family Code for youth who are referred to the juvenile justice system, including those there as a result of incidents in school.
• Study victim-offender mediation and neighborhood restorative justice panels.
• Determine whether current mental health practices followed by the Texas Youth Commission are adequate or appropriate, and make recommendations for any needed changes.
• Study the organizational structure of the Texas Youth Commission and the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission to determine if the current system is effectively and efficiently addressing the needs of the juvenile justice system in conjunction with the sunset review of these agencies. (Joint Interim Charge with the House Committee on Corrections.)
• Study Disciplinary Alternative Education Programs and Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Programs, including referral rates, age of students, whether parents have sufficient recourse to challenge a placement, funding, and course requirements. (Joint Interim Charge with the House Committee on Corrections.)
• Monitor the agencies and programs under the committee's jurisdiction.

Note:
Charges issued by the Speaker November 30, 2007.

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