2005 Texas Human Resources Code CHAPTER 117. DEPARTMENT OF ASSISTIVE AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES


HUMAN RESOURCES CODE
CHAPTER 117. DEPARTMENT OF ASSISTIVE AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER A. GENERAL PROVISIONS
§ 117.001. DEFINITIONS. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. In this chapter: (1) "Commission" means the Health and Human Services Commission. (2) "Commissioner" means the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services. (3) "Council" means the Assistive and Rehabilitative Services Council. (4) "Department" means the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services. (5) "Executive commissioner" means the executive commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.002. AGENCY. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The department is an agency of the state. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.003. SUNSET PROVISION. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The department is subject to Chapter 325, Government Code (Texas Sunset Act). Unless continued in existence as provided by that chapter, the department is abolished and this chapter expires September 1, 2009. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13.
SUBCHAPTER B. ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS
§ 117.021. ASSISTIVE AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES COUNCIL. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The Assistive and Rehabilitative Services Council is created to assist the commissioner in developing rules and policies for the department. (b) The council is composed of nine members of the public appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. To be eligible for appointment to the council, a person must have demonstrated an interest in and knowledge of problems and available services related to early childhood intervention services or to persons with disabilities other than developmental delay and mental retardation and persons who are blind, deaf, or hard of hearing. (c) The council shall study and make recommendations to the executive commissioner and the commissioner regarding the management and operation of the department, including policies and rules governing the delivery of services to persons who are served by the department and the rights and duties of persons who are served or regulated by the department. (d) Chapter 551, Government Code, applies to the council. (e) Chapter 2110, Government Code, does not apply to the council. (f) A majority of the members of the council constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.022. APPOINTMENTS. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) Appointments to the council shall be made without regard to the race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin of the appointees. (b) Appointments to the council shall be made so that each geographic area of the state is represented on the council. Notwithstanding Subsection (a), appointments to the council must reflect the ethnic diversity of this state. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.023. TRAINING PROGRAM FOR COUNCIL MEMBERS. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) A person who is appointed as a member of the council may not vote, deliberate, or be counted as a member in attendance at a meeting of the council until the person completes a training program that complies with this section. (b) The training program must provide the person with information regarding: (1) the legislation that created the department and the council; (2) the programs operated by the department; (3) the role and functions of the department and the council, including detailed information regarding: (A) the division of authority and of responsibility between the commissioner and the executive commissioner; and (B) the advisory responsibilities of the council; (4) the rules of the executive commissioner applicable to the department, with an emphasis on the rules that relate to disciplinary and investigatory authority; (5) the current budget for the department; (6) the results of the most recent formal audit of the department; (7) the requirements of: (A) the open meetings law, Chapter 551, Government Code; (B) the public information law, Chapter 552, Government Code; (C) the administrative procedure law, Chapter 2001, Government Code; and (D) other laws relating to public officials, including conflict-of-interest laws; and (8) any applicable ethics policies adopted by the executive commissioner or the Texas Ethics Commission. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.024. TERMS. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) Council members serve for staggered six-year terms with the terms of three members expiring February 1 of each odd-numbered year. (b) A member of the council may not serve more than two consecutive full terms as a council member. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.025. VACANCY. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The governor by appointment shall fill the unexpired term of a vacancy on the council. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.026. PRESIDING OFFICER; OTHER OFFICERS; MEETINGS. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The governor shall designate a member of the council as the presiding officer to serve in that capacity at the pleasure of the governor. (b) The members of the council shall elect any other necessary officers. (c) The council shall meet quarterly and at other times at the call of the presiding officer. The council may hold meetings in different areas of the state. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.027. REIMBURSEMENT FOR EXPENSES. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. A council member may not receive compensation for service as a member of the council but is entitled to reimbursement for travel expenses incurred by the member while conducting the business of the council as provided by the General Appropriations Act. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.028. PUBLIC INTEREST INFORMATION AND COMPLAINTS. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The commissioner, with the advice of the council, shall prepare information of public interest describing the functions of the department and the procedures by which complaints are filed with and resolved by the department. The commission shall make the information available to the public and appropriate state governmental entities. (b) The executive commissioner by rule shall establish methods by which consumers and service recipients are notified of the name, mailing address, and telephone number of the department for directing complaints to the department. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.029. PUBLIC ACCESS AND TESTIMONY. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The commissioner shall develop and implement policies that provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before the commissioner and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of the department. (b) The commissioner shall grant an opportunity for a public hearing before the council makes recommendations to the commissioner regarding a substantive rule if a public hearing is requested by: (1) at least 25 persons; (2) a governmental entity; or (3) an association with at least 25 members. (c) The executive commissioner shall consider fully all written and oral submissions about a proposed rule. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.030. POLICYMAKING AND MANAGEMENT RESPONSIBILITIES. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The commissioner, with the advice of the council and subject to the approval of the executive commissioner, shall develop and the department shall implement policies that clearly delineate the policymaking responsibilities of the executive commissioner from the management responsibilities of the commission, the commissioner, and the staff of the department. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.031. ANNUAL REPORT. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The commissioner shall file annually with the governor, the presiding officer of each house of the legislature, and the executive commissioner a complete and detailed written report accounting for all funds received and disbursed by the department during the preceding fiscal year. (b) The annual report must be in the form and be reported in the time provided by the General Appropriations Act. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.032. OFFICES. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The department shall maintain its central office in Austin. The department may maintain offices in other areas of the state as necessary. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13.
SUBCHAPTER C. PERSONNEL
§ 117.051. COMMISSIONER. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The executive commissioner shall appoint a commissioner of the department with the approval of the governor. The commissioner is to be selected according to education, training, experience, and demonstrated ability. (b) The commissioner serves at the pleasure of the executive commissioner. (c) Subject to the control of the executive commissioner, the commissioner shall act as the department's chief administrative officer and as a liaison between the department and commission. (d) The commissioner shall administer this chapter under operational policies established by the executive commissioner and in accordance with the memorandum of understanding under Section 531.0055(k), Government Code, between the commissioner and the executive commissioner, as adopted by rule. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.052. PERSONNEL. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The department may employ, compensate, and prescribe the duties of personnel necessary and suitable to administer this chapter. (b) The executive commissioner shall prepare and by rule adopt personnel standards. (c) A personnel position may be filled only by an individual selected and appointed on a nonpartisan, merit basis. (d) The commissioner, with the advice of the council, shall develop and the department shall implement policies that clearly define the responsibilities of the staff of the department. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.053. INFORMATION ABOUT QUALIFICATIONS AND STANDARDS OF CONDUCT. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall provide to department employees, as often as necessary, information regarding the requirements for employment under this chapter or rules adopted by the executive commissioner, including information regarding a person's responsibilities under applicable laws relating to standards of conduct for state employees. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.054. MERIT PAY. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. Subject to rules adopted by the executive commissioner, the commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall develop a system of annual performance evaluations. All merit pay for department employees must be given under the system established under this section or under rules adopted by the executive commissioner. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.055. CAREER LADDER. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall develop an intra-agency career ladder program. The program must require intra-agency postings of all nonentry-level positions concurrently with any public posting. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.056. EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY POLICY. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) Subject to rules adopted by the executive commissioner, the commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall prepare and maintain a written policy statement that implements a program of equal employment opportunity to ensure that all personnel decisions are made without regard to race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin. (b) Unless the following are included in a policy statement adopted by the executive commissioner that is applicable to the department, the policy statement must include: (1) personnel policies, including policies relating to recruitment, evaluation, selection, training, and promotion of personnel, that show the intent of the department to avoid the unlawful employment practices described by Chapter 21, Labor Code; and (2) an analysis of the extent to which the composition of the department's personnel is in accordance with state and federal law and a description of reasonable methods to achieve compliance with state and federal law. (c) The policy statement must be: (1) updated annually; (2) reviewed by the state Commission on Human Rights for compliance with Subsection (b)(1); and (3) filed with the governor's office. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.057. STATE EMPLOYEE INCENTIVE PROGRAM. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The commissioner or the commissioner's designee shall provide to department employees information and training on the benefits and methods of participation in the state employee incentive program. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13.
SUBCHAPTER D. POWERS AND DUTIES OF DEPARTMENT
§ 117.071. GENERAL POWERS AND DUTIES OF DEPARTMENT. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The department is responsible for administering human services programs to provide early childhood intervention services and rehabilitation and related services to persons who are blind, deaf, or hard of hearing. The department is also responsible for providing and coordinating programs for the rehabilitation of persons with disabilities so that those persons may prepare for and engage in a gainful occupation or achieve maximum personal independence. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.072. INFORMATION REGARDING COMPLAINTS. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. (a) The department shall maintain a file on each written complaint filed with the department. The file must include: (1) the name of the person who filed the complaint; (2) the date the complaint is received by the department; (3) the subject matter of the complaint; (4) the name of each person contacted in relation to the complaint; (5) a summary of the results of the review or investigation of the complaint; and (6) an explanation of the reason the file was closed, if the department closed the file without taking action other than to investigate the complaint. (b) The department shall provide to the person filing the complaint and to each person who is a subject of the complaint a copy of the executive commissioner's and the department's policies and procedures relating to complaint investigation and resolution. (c) The department, at least quarterly until final disposition of the complaint, shall notify the person filing the complaint and each person who is a subject of the complaint of the status of the investigation unless the notice would jeopardize an undercover investigation. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.073. RULES. Text of section effective on date the commissioner of assistive and rehabilitative services is appointed. See Historical and Statutory Notes, post. The executive commissioner may adopt rules reasonably necessary for the department to administer this chapter, consistent with the memorandum of understanding under Section 531.0055(k), Government Code, between the commissioner and the executive commissioner, as adopted by rule. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, § 1.13. § 117.074. RATES FOR MEDICAL SERVICES. (a) The executive commissioner by rule shall adopt standards governing the determination of rates paid for medical services provided under this chapter. The rules must provide for an annual reevaluation of the rates. (b) The executive commissioner shall establish a schedule of rates based on the standards adopted under Subsection (a). In adopting the rate schedule, the executive commissioner shall: (1) compare the proposed rate schedule to other cost-based and resource-based rates for medical services, including rates paid under the Medicaid and Medicare programs; and (2) for any rate adopted that exceeds the Medicaid or Medicare rate for the same or a similar service, document the reasons why the adopted rate reflects consideration of the best value, provider availability, and consumer choice. (c) The executive commissioner shall provide notice to interested persons and allow those persons to present comments before adopting the standards and schedule of rates under Subsections (a) and (b). Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., ch. 211, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2005.

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