Bill Text: TX HB2340 | 2019-2020 | 86th Legislature | Enrolled


Bill Title: Relating to emergency and disaster management, response, and recovery.

Spectrum: Slight Partisan Bill (Democrat 38-17)

Status: (Passed) 2019-05-29 - Effective on 9/1/19 [HB2340 Detail]

Download: Texas-2019-HB2340-Enrolled.html
 
 
  H.B. No. 2340
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to emergency and disaster management, response, and
  recovery.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 418.002, Government Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 418.002.  PURPOSES. The purposes of this chapter are
  to:
               (1)  reduce vulnerability of people and communities of
  this state to damage, injury, and loss of life and property
  resulting from natural or man-made catastrophes, riots, or hostile
  military or paramilitary action;
               (2)  prepare for prompt and efficient rescue, care, and
  treatment of persons victimized or threatened by disaster;
               (3)  provide a setting conducive to the rapid and
  orderly restoration and rehabilitation of persons and property
  affected by disasters;
               (4)  clarify and strengthen the roles of the governor,
  state agencies, the judicial branch of state government, and local
  governments in prevention of, preparation for, response to, and
  recovery from disasters;
               (5)  authorize and provide for cooperation in disaster
  mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery;
               (6)  authorize and provide for coordination of
  activities relating to disaster mitigation, preparedness,
  response, and recovery by agencies and officers of this state, and
  similar state-local, interstate, federal-state, and foreign
  activities in which the state and its political subdivisions may
  participate;
               (7)  provide an emergency management system embodying
  all aspects of predisaster preparedness and postdisaster response;
               (8)  assist in mitigation of disasters caused or
  aggravated by inadequate planning for and regulation of public and
  private facilities and land use; [and]
               (9)  encourage state agencies, local governments,
  nongovernmental organizations, private entities, and individuals
  to adopt the goals of the strategic plan of the Federal Emergency
  Management Agency for preparing for, responding to, and recovering
  from a disaster that emphasize cooperation among federal agencies,
  state agencies, local governments, nongovernmental organizations,
  private entities, and individuals in each activity or project
  undertaken to ensure that this state is prepared to effectively
  respond to and recover from a disaster; and
               (10)  provide the authority and mechanism to respond to
  an energy emergency.
         SECTION 2.  Subchapter C, Chapter 418, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Sections 418.054 and 418.055 to read as follows:
         Sec. 418.054.  UNMANNED AIRCRAFT STUDY GROUP. (a)  In this
  section, "study group" means the unmanned aircraft study group
  established under this section.
         (b)  The unmanned aircraft study group is established and
  consists of the following members appointed by the chief of the
  division:
               (1)  representatives of the division;
               (2)  representatives from institutions of higher
  education; and
               (3)  other appropriate interested persons.
         (c)  The study group shall study issues related to the
  appropriate use of unmanned aircraft in responding to and
  recovering from a disaster, including:
               (1)  strategies for coordinating and promoting the use
  of unmanned aircraft among state agencies, local governments, and
  private entities in the response and recovery; and
               (2)  recommended changes to state law that would allow
  state agencies, local governments, and private entities to more
  effectively use unmanned aircraft in the response and recovery.
         (d)  Not later than November 1, 2020, the study group shall
  submit a report containing recommendations on the issues described
  by Subsection (c) to each member of the legislature.
         (e)  The study group is abolished and this section expires
  January 1, 2021.
         Sec. 418.055.  INFORMATION SHARING WORK GROUP. (a) In this
  section, "work group" means the work group established under this
  section.
         (b)  The division shall establish a work group of state
  agencies involved in disaster management.  The work group consists
  of members appointed by the chief of the division who represent:
               (1)  the comptroller's office;
               (2)  the Department of State Health Services;
               (3)  the Texas Department of Transportation;
               (4)  the General Land Office;
               (5)  the Health and Human Services Commission;
               (6)  institutions of higher education; and
               (7)  to the extent practicable, appropriate federal
  agencies.
         (c)  The work group shall develop recommendations for
  improving the manner in which electronic information is stored by
  and shared among state agencies and between state agencies and
  federal agencies to improve the capacity of the agencies to:
               (1)  respond to a disaster; and
               (2)  coordinate the agencies' responses to a disaster.
         (d)  Not later than November 1 of each even-numbered year,
  the work group shall submit the group's recommendations to the
  governor.
         SECTION 3.  Subchapter C, Chapter 418, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Section 418.056 to read as follows:
         Sec. 418.056.  PERMITTING TASK FORCE. (a) The division
  shall form a task force with representatives from the General Land
  Office, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, Parks and
  Wildlife Department, Texas Water Development Board, Texas A&M
  AgriLife Extension Service, Department of State Health Services,
  Public Utility Commission of Texas, and Texas Historical Commission
  to be activated if a state of disaster is declared under Section
  418.014 because of weather conditions to expedite:
               (1)  environmental permitting; and
               (2)  access to funds from federal disaster relief
  programs following the disaster.
         (b)  The task force formed under this section shall develop
  recommendations for expediting the evaluation of environmental
  permits during disaster recovery in order for local entities to
  demonstrate compliance with regulations and access federal
  disaster relief programs and funding.
         (c)  In performing its duties under this section, the task
  force may use resources of agencies participating in the task
  force.
         SECTION 4.  Subchapter A, Chapter 751, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Section 751.017 to read as follows:
         Sec. 751.017.  FEDERAL LEGISLATIVE AND POLICY
  RECOMMENDATIONS REGARDING DISASTER ASSISTANCE. (a)  The office, in
  consultation with the Texas Division of Emergency Management, and,
  as practicable, federal agencies and members of Congress, shall:
               (1)  study federal laws and policies related to issues
  affecting the ability of federal agencies, state agencies, and
  local governments to cooperate in responding to a disaster,
  including issues related to procurement, housing assistance,
  information sharing, personnel, and federal disaster assistance
  programs; and
               (2)  make recommendations to improve federal laws and
  policies related to the issues described by Subdivision (1).
         (b)  Not later than November 1, 2020, the office shall
  deliver to the board a report of the recommendations described by
  Subsection (a)(2).
         (c)  This section expires January 1, 2021.
         SECTION 5.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2019.
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
 
         I certify that H.B. No. 2340 was passed by the House on April
  11, 2019, by the following vote:  Yeas 145, Nays 1, 2 present, not
  voting.
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
 
         I certify that H.B. No. 2340 was passed by the Senate on May
  16, 2019, by the following vote:  Yeas 31, Nays 0.
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate    
  APPROVED:  _____________________
                     Date          
   
            _____________________
                   Governor       
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