HBA-SEB S.B. 1580 76(R) BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisS.B. 1580 By: West, Royce Juvenile Justice and Family Issues 4/28/1999 Engrossed BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Security Threat Division, the Department of Public Safety, and representatives from numerous local law enforcement agencies have been participating in an informal task force created to share information primarily on prison gang members released from prison. The task force has begun to fill a void in the need to address gang activity from a statewide, coordinated perspective. The task force, however, typically meets on an average of four times per year, and has no statutory authority, mandates, directives, or funding. S.B. 1580 establishes the Texas Violent Gang Task Force for the purpose of forming a strategic partnership among federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to better enable law enforcement agencies to take a proactive stance toward tracking gang activity and the growth and spread of gangs statewide. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency, or institution. SECTION BY SECTION ANALYSIS SECTION 1. Amends Chapter 61, Code of Criminal Procedure, by adding Article 61.07, as follows: Art. 61.07. TEXAS VIOLENT GANG TASK FORCE. (a) Defines "task force." (b) Provides that the purpose of the Texas Violent Gang Task Force (task force) is to form a strategic partnership between state, federal, and local law enforcement agencies to better enable law enforcement agencies and correctional agencies to take a proactive stance towards tracking gang activity and the growth and spread of gangs statewide. (c) Requires the task force to focus its efforts on developing a statewide networking system that will provide timely access to gang information, establishing communication and combining resources between independent agencies, and forming a group of representatives from throughout the state to discuss specific cases and investigations involving gangs and gang-related activities. (d) Authorizes the task force to take any other actions as necessary to accomplish the purposes of this article. (e) Requires the Department of Public Safety to support the task force to assist in coordinating statewide antigang initiatives. (f) Sets forth the composition of the task force. SECTION 2. Requires each entity to designate its respective representative to the task force not later than October 1, 1999. SECTION 3.Emergency clause. Effective date: upon passage.