In accordance with House Bill (HB) 1, the General Appropriations Act, Article IX, Section 167, the Texas Department of Agriculture (department) submits the following agency rule review plan. In addition, department staff will review the rules of the State Seed and Plant Board, the Texas Agricultural Finance Authority, and the Agriculture Resources Protection Authority.
Prior to the legislative mandate to review its rule, the department conducted a comprehensive review of all its rules in Fiscal Year 1996. In addition to determining whether the reason for adopting the rules still existed, the department also reviewed the rules to ensure the requirements and procedures imposed by the rules were limited to only those mandated by federal or state law and necessary to protect public health and the environment. Other considerations during the review included ensuring that the rules did not impose any unnecessary costs, record keeping, reporting requirements other unduly burdensome requirements and to and improve their readability. Also those requirements and procedures that were determined to be no longer necessary or redundant to existing provisions in other rules were eliminated.
As a result of its exhaustive review, which included public comment, the department repealed all its rules and adopted or readopted only those rules that were determined to be essential to carry out the mandates of the Legislature and to ensure the citizens of Texas are provided efficient and extraordinary service.
All department rules currently expire on August 31, 2000 or August 31, 2001, unless they are amended, repealed or readopted prior to those dates. Therefore, the department plans to conduct a comprehensive review and consideration for readoption of its rules according to the following schedule:
Fiscal Year 2000------4 Texas Administrative Code, Part I, Chapters 1, 3, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23.
Fiscal Year 2001------4 Texas Administrative Code, Part I, Chapters 2,4, 6, 7.
The department will conduct a review of the rules of the Texas Agricultural Finance Authority in 4 Texas Administrative Code, Part I, Chapters 24, 26, 28, and 30 in Fiscal Year 2000.
The department will also conduct a review of the rules of the State Seed and Plant Board in 4 Texas Administrative Code, Part V, Chapters 81 and 82 in Fiscal Year 2000.
In addition, the department will conduct a review of the rules of the Texas Agriculture Resources Protection Authority in 4 Texas Administrative Code, Part VII, Chapters 101 and 105 in Fiscal Year 2000.
This schedule will be on a continual basis, rotating every four years. While the department plans to conduct a comprehensive review of all its rules every four years, the department may also review a chapter as part of a routine rulemaking either before or after its scheduled review date when deemed appropriate.
All comments and questions should be directed to Wil Galloway, General Counsel, Texas Department of Agriculture, P.O. Box 12847, Austin, Texas 78711.