TITLE 37. PUBLIC SAFETY AND CORRECTIONS

PART 6. TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE

CHAPTER 195. PAROLE

37 TAC §195.81

The Texas Board of Criminal Justice proposes amendments to §195.81, concerning Temporary Housing Assistance Program. The amendments are proposed in conjunction with a proposed rule review of §195.81 as published in other sections of the Texas Register. The proposed amendments are necessary to conform the language of the rule to current practice and update formatting.

Jerry McGinty, Chief Financial Officer for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, has determined that for each year of the first five years the rule will be in effect, enforcing or administering the rule will not have foreseeable implications related to costs or revenues for state or local government.

Mr. McGinty has also determined that for each year of the first five year period, there will not be an economic impact on persons required to comply with the rule. There will not be an adverse economic impact on small or micro businesses. Therefore, no regulatory flexibility analysis is required. The anticipated public benefit, as a result of enforcing the rule, will be to update the existing rule.

Comments should be directed to Sharon Felfe Howell, General Counsel, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, P.O. Box 4004, Huntsville, Texas 77342, Sharon.Howell@tdcj.texas.gov. Written comments from the general public must be received within 30 days of the publication of this rule in the Texas Register.

The amendments are proposed under Texas Government Code §492.013, §508.157.

Cross Reference to Statutes: None.

§195.81.Temporary Housing Assistance Program.

(a) Purpose. The temporary housing assistance program is intended primarily to provide housing assistance for offenders who have been approved for parole, but have no home plan, and to assist offenders in the transition from community residential facilities and transitional treatment centers. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) is authorized to pay for temporary housing for any offender who has insufficient financial and residential resources when released on parole or mandatory supervision on or after January 1, 2010.

(b) Criteria for Temporary Housing Assistance.

(1) Temporary housing assistance may only be provided if the TDCJ does not operate or contract for the operation of a residential correctional facility in the offender’s legal county of residence. A residential correctional facility does not include a transitional treatment center, a substance abuse felony punishment facility, or any other facility operated by or under contract with the TDCJ for the primary purpose to provide substance abuse treatment or aftercare.

(2) The temporary housing must have existed on June 1, 2009, as either a multifamily residence or a motel unless the TDCJ or the owner of the structure provides notice and has a public meeting as required for a community corrections facility on the issue of whether the use is appropriate.

(3) An offender’s family, personal sponsors, or anyone on community supervision, parole, or mandatory supervision, or persons required to register as a sex offender are not eligible to provide housing for temporary housing assistance.

(c) Temporary Housing Site Approval.

(1) Any provider that wants to provide temporary housing for an offender shall contact the [forward the following information to the] TDCJ Parole Division, Huntsville Placement and Release Unit, 1650 7th St., West Building, Huntsville, Texas 77320.

[(A) Director’s name or point of contact;

(B) E-mail address;

(C) Physical address, city, and zip code;

(D) Telephone number;

(E) Cost; and

(F) Services provided.]

(2) The TDCJ shall investigate and approve the sites it deems appropriate. Factors considered shall include[, but not be limited to] whether:

[(A) An on-site manager is available 24 hours per day, seven days per week.]

(A) [(B)] The site is located within range of public transportation routes, or transportation is provided by the provider to job interviews, employment, housing searches, and counseling appointments.

(B) [(C)] The site is located within 1,000 feet of premises where children commonly gather, including a school, day care [day-care] facility, playground, public or private youth center, public swimming pool, or video arcade facility.

(C) [(D)] The site is properly maintained and clean.

(D) [(E)] The provider rules are consistent with parole rules and conditions of supervision.

(3) The TDCJ shall maintain a list of all providers and sites that have been approved for temporary housing.

(d) Offender Selection and Placement.

(1) The TDCJ shall not discriminate against any offender because of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability, or genetic information.

(2) An offender released on parole or mandatory supervision on or after January 1, 2010, with insufficient financial and residential resources, shall be considered for temporary housing assistance.

(3) An offender released on parole or mandatory supervision on or after January 1, 2010, who is residing in a community residential facility or transitional treatment center and who demonstrates progress toward self-sufficiency, may also be considered for temporary housing assistance if it appears they will become capable of meeting their own financial needs. The TDCJ shall consider whether the offender has:

(A) A savings or trust fund account balance;

(B) Current or prospective employment;

(C) An employment history;

(D) Vocational skills; and

(E) A level of educational achievement above the sixth grade.

(4) An offender shall only receive temporary housing assistance at sites in the county in which the offender resided at the time of committing the offense for which the offender was sentenced to the TDCJ or in the county of conviction if not a resident of the state at the time of conviction.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on April 6, 2017.

TRD-201701472

Sharon Howell

General Counsel

Texas Department of Criminal Justice

Earliest possible date of adoption: May 21, 2017

For further information, please call: (936) 437-6700