HBA-AMW, KDB, SEP C.S.H.B. 230 77(R)BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisC.S.H.B. 230 By: Wise Economic Development 3/14/2001 Committee Report (Substituted) BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Under current law and Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) rules, TWC is responsible for overseeing workforce development programs that are geared toward certain populations with a high incidence of unemployment or underemployment. Military veterans, who make up an important part of the overall population of Texas, are not included in the populations specifically assisted by TWC. Upon returning from military service, many veterans find it difficult to gain employment because employers are reluctant to hire newly-discharged veterans who have been away from civilian employment for so many years. C.S.H.B. 230 requires TWC to give priority to veterans when determining which recipients will be accepted for various workforce development training programs. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that rulemaking authority is expressly delegated to the Texas Workforce Commission in SECTION 1 (Section 302.010, Labor Code) of this bill. ANALYSIS C.S.H.B. 230 amends the Labor Code to require the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) and any other provider of job training and employment services, in accepting an applicant for job training and employment services, to grant priority for admission to a veteran who otherwise qualifies for the benefit or services, meets the eligibility criteria and qualifications for the specific program, and applies for priority status. The application for priority status must include information or be accompanied by documentation that satisfies TWC or the provider that the applying veteran served: _on active duty and was discharged or released from active duty with an honorable discharge or because of an established service-connected disability; or _as a member of a reserve component on active duty during a war or in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge or ribbon is authorized and was discharged or released from the duty with an honorable discharge. The bill also requires TWC to adopt rules and prescribe forms as necessary to administer these provisions. EFFECTIVE DATE On passage, or if the Act does not receive the necessary vote, the Act takes effect September 1, 2001. COMPARISON OF ORIGINAL TO SUBSTITUTE C.S.H.B. 230 modifies the original bill by adding the provision that a veteran must otherwise qualify for the benefit or services to be eligible for priority status for job training and employment services.