Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 2015
By: Garcia


The institutional division of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice
(TDCJ) operates 53 state prison units, over half of which have been
constructed in the 1990s. The current value of all correctional and support
facilities of the TDCJ is over $4 billion.  Currently the Criminal Justice
Policy Council (policy council) is required to report on and make prison
capacity and population projections as well as performance reviews
evaluating rates of recidivism.  House Bill 2015 requires the policy
council to make recommendations concerning rehabilitation programs and
places a moratorium on new prison construction until August 31, 2005. 


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. 


House Bill 2015 amends the Government Code to establish a moratorium on
entering into a contract for the construction or beginning of the
construction of a secure correctional facility by the Texas Department of
Criminal Justice (TDCJ) between September 1, 2001 and August 31, 2005.   

H.B. 2015 requires the Criminal Justice Policy Council (policy council) to
include with its required report to the 78th and 79th regular sessions of
the legislature a special report related to the studies by the policy
council regarding projected capacity and population of correctional
facilities, and the success of programs and services offered by TDCJ, with
the primary purpose of rehabilitating inmates.  The bill requires the
special report to contain the recommendations of the policy council as to
those rehabilitation programs not currently used in this state that show,
in the opinion of the council, the most promise for reducing recidivism and
protecting public safety.  The bill provides that the special report must
be more detailed than the capacity and population projections and the
recidivism performance review that the policy council is already required
to submit to the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the house of
representatives.  These provisions expire September 1, 2005. 


On passage, or if the Act does not receive the necessary vote, the Act
takes effect September 1, 2001.