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Article 16, Sections 51-72, Texas Constitution

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Sections 51-72 of Article 16 of the Texas Constitution are part of the full Article 16 which altogether includes Sections 1-72. The entire article is labeled General Provisions.

Section 51

AMOUNT OF HOMESTEAD; USES.

The homestead, not in a town or city, shall consist of not more than two hundred acres of land, which may be in one or more parcels, with the improvements thereon; the homestead in a city, town or village, shall consist of lot or contiguous lots amounting to not more than 10 acres of land, together with any improvements on the land; provided, that the homestead in a city, town or village shall be used for the purposes of a home, or as both an urban home and a place to exercise a calling or business, of the homestead claimant, whether a single adult person, or the head of a family; provided also, that any temporary renting of the homestead shall not change the character of the same, when no other homestead has been acquired; provided further that a release or refinance of an existing lien against a homestead as to a part of the homestead does not create an additional burden on the part of the homestead property that is unreleased or subject to the refinance, and a new lien is not invalid only for that reason.

NOTE: The joint resolution amending Sec. 51 in 1983 included a section that did not purport to amend the constitution and that provided the following: "This amendment applies to all homesteads in this state, including homesteads acquired before the adoption of this amendment."

Section 52

DESCENT AND DISTRIBUTION OF HOMESTEAD; RESTRICTIONS ON PARTITION.

On the death of the husband or wife, or both, the homestead shall descend and vest in like manner as other real property of the deceased, and shall be governed by the same laws of descent and distribution, but it shall not be partitioned among the heirs of the deceased during the lifetime of the surviving husband or wife, or so long as the survivor may elect to use or occupy the same as a homestead, or so long as the guardian of the minor children of the deceased may be permitted, under the order of the proper court having the jurisdiction, to use and occupy the same.

Section 53

(Repealed Nov. 2, 1999.)

(TEMPORARY TRANSITION PROVISIONS for Sec. 53: See Appendix, Note 1.)

Section 54

(Repealed Aug. 5, 1969.)

Section 55

(Repealed Aug. 5, 1969.)

Section 56

(Repealed Nov. 6, 2001.)

(TEMPORARY TRANSITION PROVISION for Sec. 56: See Appendix, Note 3.)

Section 57

(Repealed Aug. 5, 1969.)

Section 58

(Repealed Aug. 5, 1969.)

Section 59

CONSERVATION AND DEVELOPMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES AND PARKS AND RECREATIONAL FACILITIES; CONSERVATION AND RECLAMATION DISTRICTS.

(a) The conservation and development of all of the natural resources of this State, and development of parks and recreational facilities, including the control, storing, preservation and distribution of its storm and flood waters, the waters of its rivers and streams, for irrigation, power and all other useful purposes, the reclamation and irrigation of its arid, semiarid and other lands needing irrigation, the reclamation and drainage of its overflowed lands, and other lands needing drainage, the conservation and development of its forests, water and hydro-electric power, the navigation of its inland and coastal waters, and the preservation and conservation of all such natural resources of the State are each and all hereby declared public rights and duties; and the Legislature shall pass all such laws as may be appropriate thereto.

(b) There may be created within the State of Texas, or the State may be divided into, such number of conservation and reclamation districts as may be determined to be essential to the accomplishment of the purposes of this amendment to the constitution, which districts shall be governmental agencies and bodies politic and corporate with such powers of government and with the authority to exercise such rights, privileges and functions concerning the subject matter of this amendment as may be conferred by law.

(c) The Legislature shall authorize all such indebtedness as may be necessary to provide all improvements and the maintenance thereof requisite to the achievement of the purposes of this amendment. All such indebtedness may be evidenced by bonds of such conservation and reclamation districts, to be issued under such regulations as may be prescribed by law. The Legislature shall also authorize the levy and collection within such districts of all such taxes, equitably distributed, as may be necessary for the payment of the interest and the creation of a sinking fund for the payment of such bonds and for the maintenance of such districts and improvements. Such indebtedness shall be a lien upon the property assessed for the payment thereof. The Legislature shall not authorize the issuance of any bonds or provide for any indebtedness against any reclamation district unless such proposition shall first be submitted to the qualified voters of such district and the proposition adopted.

(c-1) In addition and only as provided by this subsection, the Legislature may authorize conservation and reclamation districts to develop and finance with taxes those types and categories of parks and recreational facilities that were not authorized by this section to be developed and financed with taxes before September 13, 2003. For development of such parks and recreational facilities, the Legislature may authorize indebtedness payable from taxes as may be necessary to provide for improvements and maintenance only for a conservation and reclamation district all or part of which is located in Bexar County, Bastrop County, Waller County, Travis County, Williamson County, Harris County, Galveston County, Brazoria County, Fort Bend County, or Montgomery County, or for the Tarrant Regional Water District, a water control and improvement district located in whole or in part in Tarrant County. All the indebtedness may be evidenced by bonds of the conservation and reclamation district, to be issued under regulations as may be prescribed by law. The Legislature may also authorize the levy and collection within such district of all taxes, equitably distributed, as may be necessary for the payment of the interest and the creation of a sinking fund for the payment of the bonds and for maintenance of and improvements to such parks and recreational facilities. The indebtedness shall be a lien on the property assessed for the payment of the bonds. The Legislature may not authorize the issuance of bonds or provide for indebtedness under this subsection against a conservation and reclamation district unless a proposition is first submitted to the qualified voters of the district and the proposition is adopted. This subsection expands the authority of the Legislature with respect to certain conservation and reclamation districts and is not a limitation on the authority of the Legislature with respect to conservation and reclamation districts and parks and recreational facilities pursuant to this section as that authority existed before September 13, 2003.

(d) No law creating a conservation and reclamation district shall be passed unless notice of the intention to introduce such a bill setting forth the general substance of the contemplated law shall have been published at least thirty (30) days and not more than ninety (90) days prior to the introduction thereof in a newspaper or newspapers having general circulation in the county or counties in which said district or any part thereof is or will be located and by delivering a copy of such notice and such bill to the Governor who shall submit such notice and bill to the Texas Water Commission, or its successor, which shall file its recommendation as to such bill with the Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the House of Representatives within thirty (30) days from date notice was received by the Texas Water Commission. Such notice and copy of bill shall also be given of the introduction of any bill amending a law creating or governing a particular conservation and reclamation district if such bill (1) adds additional land to the district, (2) alters the taxing authority of the district, (3) alters the authority of the district with respect to the issuance of bonds, or (4) alters the qualifications or terms of office of the members of the governing body of the district.

(e) No law creating a conservation and reclamation district shall be passed unless, at the time notice of the intention to introduce a bill is published as provided in Subsection (d) of this section, a copy of the proposed bill is delivered to the commissioners court of each county in which said district or any part thereof is or will be located and to the governing body of each incorporated city or town in whose jurisdiction said district or any part thereof is or will be located. Each such commissioners court and governing body may file its written consent or opposition to the creation of the proposed district with the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the house of representatives. Each special law creating a conservation and reclamation district shall comply with the provisions of the general laws then in effect relating to consent by political subdivisions to the creation of conservation and reclamation districts and to the inclusion of land within the district.

(f) A conservation and reclamation district created under this section to perform any or all of the purposes of this section may engage in fire-fighting activities and may issue bonds or other indebtedness for fire-fighting purposes as provided by law and this constitution.

(Added Aug. 21, 1917; Subsec. (d) added Nov. 3, 1964; Subsec. (e) added Nov. 6, 1973; Subsec. (f) added Nov. 7, 1978; Subsec. (c) amended Nov. 2, 1999; Subsec. (a) amended and (c-1) added Sept. 13, 2003.) (TEMPORARY TRANSITION PROVISIONS for Sec. 59: See Appendix, Note 1.)

Section 60

(Repealed Aug. 5, 1969.)

Section 61

COMPENSATION OF DISTRICT, COUNTY, AND PRECINCT OFFICERS; SALARY OR FEE BASIS; DISPOSITION OF FEES.

(a) All district officers in the State of Texas and all county officers in counties having a population of twenty thousand (20,000) or more, according to the then last preceding Federal Census, shall be compensated on a salary basis.

(b) In all counties in this State, the Commissioners Courts shall be authorized to determine whether precinct officers shall be compensated on a fee basis or on a salary basis, with the exception that it shall be mandatory upon the Commissioners Courts, to compensate all justices of the peace, constables, deputy constables and precinct law enforcement officers on a salary basis.

(c) In counties having a population of less than twenty thousand (20,000), according to the then last preceding Federal Census, the Commissioners Courts have the authority to determine whether county officers shall be compensated on a fee basis or on a salary basis, with the exception that it shall be mandatory upon the Commissioners Courts to compensate all sheriffs, deputy sheriffs, county law enforcement officers including sheriffs who also perform the duties of assessor and collector of taxes, and their deputies, on a salary basis.

(d) All fees earned by district, county and precinct officers shall be paid into the county treasury where earned for the account of the proper fund, provided that fees incurred by the State, county and any municipality, or in case where a pauper's oath is filed, shall be paid into the county treasury when collected and provided that where any officer is compensated wholly on a fee basis such fees may be retained by such officer or paid into the treasury of the county as the Commissioners Court may direct.

(e) All Notaries Public, county surveyors and public weighers shall continue to be compensated on a fee basis.

(Added Aug. 24, 1935; amended Nov. 2, 1948, Nov. 7, 1972, and Nov. 2, 1999.) (TEMPORARY TRANSITION PROVISIONS for Sec. 61: See Appendix, Note 1.)

Section 62

(Repealed April 22, 1975.)

Section 63

(Repealed April 22, 1975.)

Section 64

TERMS OF OFFICE, CERTAIN OFFICES.

The elective district, county, and precinct offices which have heretofore had terms of two years, shall hereafter have terms of four years; and the holders of such offices shall serve until their successors are qualified.

(Added Nov. 2, 1954.)

Section 65

TERMS OF OFFICE; AUTOMATIC RESIGNATION.

(a) This section applies to the following offices: District Clerks; County Clerks; County Judges; Judges of the County Courts at Law, County Criminal Courts, County Probate Courts and County Domestic Relations Courts; County Treasurers; Criminal District Attorneys; County Surveyors; County Commissioners; Justices of the Peace; Sheriffs; Assessors and Collectors of Taxes; District Attorneys; County Attorneys; Public Weighers; and Constables.

(b) If any of the officers named herein shall announce their candidacy, or shall in fact become a candidate, in any General, Special or Primary Election, for any office of profit or trust under the laws of this State or the United States other than the office then held, at any time when the unexpired term of the office then held shall exceed one (1) year, such announcement or such candidacy shall constitute an automatic resignation of the office then held, and the vacancy thereby created shall be filled pursuant to law in the same manner as other vacancies for such office are filled.

(Added Nov. 2, 1954; amended Nov. 4, 1958, and Nov. 2, 1999.) (TEMPORARY TRANSITION PROVISIONS for Sec. 65: See Appendix, Note 1.)

Section 65A

(Repealed Nov. 6, 2001.)

(TEMPORARY TRANSITION PROVISION for Sec. 65A: See Appendix, Note 3.)

Section 66

PROTECTED BENEFITS UNDER CERTAIN PUBLIC RETIREMENT SYSTEMS.

(a) This section applies only to a public retirement system that is not a statewide system and that provides service and disability retirement benefits and death benefits to public officers and employees.

(b) This section does not apply to a public retirement system that provides service and disability retirement benefits and death benefits to firefighters and police officers employed by the City of San Antonio.

(c) This section does not apply to benefits that are:

(1) health benefits;
(2) life insurance benefits; or
(3) disability benefits that a retirement system determines are no longer payable under the terms of the retirement system as those terms existed on the date the retirement system began paying the disability benefits.

(d) On or after the effective date of this section, a change in service or disability retirement benefits or death benefits of a retirement system may not reduce or otherwise impair benefits accrued by a person if the person:

(1) could have terminated employment or has terminated employment before the effective date of the change; and
(2) would have been eligible for those benefits, without accumulating additional service under the retirement system, on any date on or after the effective date of the change had the change not occurred.

(e) Benefits granted to a retiree or other annuitant before the effective date of this section and in effect on that date may not be reduced or otherwise impaired.

(f) The political subdivision or subdivisions and the retirement system that finance benefits under the retirement system are jointly responsible for ensuring that benefits under this section are not reduced or otherwise impaired.

(g) This section does not create a liability or an obligation to a retirement system for a member of the retirement system other than the payment by active members of a required contribution or a future required contribution to the retirement system.

(h) A retirement system described by Subsection (a) and the political subdivision or subdivisions that finance benefits under the retirement system are exempt from the application of this section if:

(1) the political subdivision or subdivisions hold an election on the date in May 2004 that political subdivisions may use for the election of their officers;
(2) the majority of the voters of a political subdivision voting at the election favor exempting the political subdivision and the retirement system from the application of this section; and
(3) the exemption is the only issue relating to the funding and benefits of the retirement system that is presented to the voters at the election.

(Former Sec. 66 repealed Nov. 2, 1999; current Sec. 66 added Sept. 13, 2003.)

Section 67

STATE AND LOCAL RETIREMENT SYSTEMS.

(a) General Provisions.

(1) The legislature may enact general laws establishing systems and programs of retirement and related disability and death benefits for public employees and officers. Financing of benefits must be based on sound actuarial principles. The assets of a system are held in trust for the benefit of members and may not be diverted.
(2) A person may not receive benefits from more than one system for the same service, but the legislature may provide by law that a person with service covered by more than one system or program is entitled to a fractional benefit from each system or program based on service rendered under each system or program calculated as to amount upon the benefit formula used in that system or program. Transfer of service credit between the Employees Retirement System of Texas and the Teacher Retirement System of Texas also may be authorized by law.
(3) Each statewide benefit system must have a board of trustees to administer the system and to invest the funds of the system in such securities as the board may consider prudent investments. In making investments, a board shall exercise the judgment and care under the circumstances then prevailing that persons of ordinary prudence, discretion, and intelligence exercise in the management of their own affairs, not in regard to speculation, but in regard to the permanent disposition of their funds, considering the probable income therefrom as well as the probable safety of their capital. The legislature by law may further restrict the investment discretion of a board.
(4) General laws establishing retirement systems and optional retirement programs for public employees and officers in effect at the time of the adoption of this section remain in effect, subject to the general powers of the legislature established in this subsection.

(b) State Retirement Systems.

(1) The legislature shall establish by law a Teacher Retirement System of Texas to provide benefits for persons employed in the public schools, colleges, and universities supported wholly or partly by the state. Other employees may be included under the system by law.
(2) The legislature shall establish by law an Employees Retirement System of Texas to provide benefits for officers and employees of the state and such state-compensated officers and employees of appellate courts and judicial districts as may be included under the system by law.
(3) The amount contributed by a person participating in the Employees Retirement System of Texas or the Teacher Retirement System of Texas shall be established by the legislature but may not be less than six percent of current compensation. The amount contributed by the state may not be less than six percent nor more than 10 percent of the aggregate compensation paid to individuals participating in the system. In an emergency, as determined by the governor, the legislature may appropriate such additional sums as are actuarially determined to be required to fund benefits authorized by law.

(c) Local Retirement Systems.

(1) The legislature shall provide by law for:
(A) the creation by any city or county of a system of benefits for its officers and employees;
(B) a statewide system of benefits for the officers and employees of counties or other political subdivisions of the state in which counties or other political subdivisions may voluntarily participate; and
(C) a statewide system of benefits for officers and employees of cities in which cities may voluntarily participate.
(2) Benefits under these systems must be reasonably related to participant tenure and contributions.

(d) Judicial Retirement System.

(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, the system of retirement, disability, and survivors' benefits heretofore established in the constitution or by law for justices, judges, and commissioners of the appellate courts and judges of the district and criminal district courts is continued in effect. Contributions required and benefits payable are to be as provided by law.
(2) General administration of the Judicial Retirement System of Texas is by the Board of Trustees of the Employees Retirement System of Texas under such regulations as may be provided by law.

(e) Anticipatory Legislation. Legislation enacted in anticipation of this amendment is not void because it is anticipatory.

(f) Retirement Systems Not Belonging to a Statewide System. The board of trustees of a system or program that provides retirement and related disability and death benefits for public officers and employees and that does not participate in a statewide public retirement system shall:

(1) administer the system or program of benefits;
(2) hold the assets of the system or program for the exclusive purposes of providing benefits to participants and their beneficiaries and defraying reasonable expenses of administering the system or program; and
(3) select legal counsel and an actuary and adopt sound actuarial assumptions to be used by the system or program.

(g) If the legislature provides for a fire fighters' pension commissioner, the term of office for that position is four years.

(Added April 22, 1975; Subsec. (f) added Nov. 2, 1993; Subsec. (g) added Nov. 6, 2001.)

Section 68

ASSOCIATIONS OF AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS; ASSESSMENTS ON PRODUCT SALES TO FINANCE PROGRAMS OF MARKETING, PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND EDUCATION.

The legislature may provide for the advancement of food and fiber in this state by providing representative associations of agricultural producers with authority to collect such refundable assessments on their product sales as may be approved by referenda of producers. All revenue collected shall be used solely to finance programs of marketing, promotion, research, and education relating to that commodity.

(Added Nov. 8, 1983.)

Section 69

PRIOR APPROVAL OF EXPENDITURE OR EMERGENCY TRANSFER OF APPROPRIATED FUNDS.

The legislature may require, by rider in the General Appropriations Act or by separate statute, the prior approval of the expenditure or the emergency transfer of any funds appropriated to the agencies of state government.

(Added Nov. 5, 1985.)

Section 70

TEXAS GROWTH FUND.

(a) In this section:

(1) "Board of trustees" means the board of trustees of the Texas growth fund.

(2) "Fund" means the Texas growth fund.

(3) "Venture capital investment" means an investment in debt, equity, or a combination of debt and equity that possesses the potential for substantial investment returns, and includes investments in new or small businesses, investments in businesses with rapid growth potential, or investments in applied research and organizational activities leading to business formation and opportunities involving new or improved processes or products.

(b) The Texas growth fund is created as a trust fund. Except as otherwise provided by this section, the fund is subject to the general laws of this state governing private sector trusts. The governing boards of the permanent university fund, the permanent school fund, the Teacher Retirement System of Texas, the Employees Retirement System of Texas, and any other pension system created under this constitution or by statute of this state in their sole discretion may make investments in the fund.

(c) The fund is managed by a board of trustees consisting of four public members appointed by the governor and one member from and elected by the membership of each of the following:

(1) the Board of Regents of The University of Texas System;

(2) the Board of Regents of The Texas A&M University System;

(3) the Board of Trustees of the Teacher Retirement System of Texas;

(4) the Board of Trustees of the Employees Retirement System of Texas; and

(5) the State Board of Education.

(d) Each public member of the board must have demonstrated substantial investment expertise. A public member serves for a six-year term expiring February 1 of an odd-numbered year.

(e) A person filling an elected position on the board of trustees ceases to be a member of the board of trustees when the person ceases to be a member of the board the person represents or as otherwise provided by procedures adopted by the board the person represents. The governor shall designate a chairman from among the members of the board of trustees who serves a term of two years expiring February 1 of each odd-numbered year. A member may serve more than one term as chairman.

(f) The board of trustees shall manage the investment of the fund, and may:

(1) employ and retain staff, including a chief executive officer;

(2) analyze and structure investments;

(3) set investment policy of the fund;

(4) take any action necessary for the creation, administration, and protection of the fund;

(5) enter into investment contracts with the participating funds or systems;

(6) adopt rules regarding the operation of the fund;

(7) pay expenses of the fund based on an assessment on investor contributions; and

(8) alternatively, or in combination with its own staff, contract for the management of investments under this section with a private investment management firm or with an investing fund or system electing a member of the board of trustees.

(g) In making investments, including venture capital investments, the board of trustees shall exercise the judgment and care under the circumstances then prevailing that persons of ordinary prudence, discretion, and intelligence exercise in the management of their own affairs, not in regard to speculation but in regard to the permanent disposition of their funds, considering the probable income as well as the probable safety of the capital of the fund. All investments of the fund shall be directly related to the creation, retention, or expansion of employment opportunity and economic growth in Texas. In making venture capital investments, all other material matters being equal, the board of trustees shall invest in technological advances that could be expected to result in the greatest increase in employment opportunity and economic growth in Texas.

(h) The board of trustees shall establish and operate the fund to the extent practical under the generally accepted business procedures relating to a mutual fund and shall value the investments for determining the purchase or sales price of participating shares of investing funds or systems participating in the fund consistent with investment contracts. Evidences of participation in the fund shall be held by the comptroller of public accounts in keeping with the custodial responsibilities of that office.

(i) An investing fund or system, without liability at law or in equity to members of the governing board of the fund or system in their personal or official capacities, may cumulatively invest in the Texas growth fund not more than one percent of the book or cost value of the investing fund or system, as determined at the end of each fiscal year.

(j) The board of trustees shall establish criteria for the investment of not more than 10 percent of the fund in venture capital investments. Not more than 25 percent of the funds available for venture capital investments may be used for unilateral investment. Investments of the remainder of the funds available for venture capital investments must be matched at least equally by funds from sources other than the fund, with matching amounts established by the board of trustees. The board of trustees shall also establish criteria for the investment of not less than 50 percent of the fund in equity or debt security, or a combination of equity and debt security, for the initial construction, expansion, or modernization of business or industrial facilities in Texas. The board of trustees may invest in money funds whose underlying investments are consistent and acceptable under the investment policy of the fund.

(k) On a quarterly basis, the amount of income realized on investments under this section shall be distributed to each of the systems and funds investing in the Texas growth fund in proportion to the number of participating shares of each investing system and fund. Capital appreciation becomes a part of the corpus of the Texas growth fund and shall be distributed in accordance with the investment contracts.

(l) The board of trustees shall make arrangements to begin liquidation, phase out investments, and return the principal and capital gains on investments to the investors in the fund not later than the 10th anniversary of the date of the adoption of this section. Except under unusual circumstances where it may be necessary to protect investments previously made, further investments may not be made in or by the fund after the 10th anniversary of the date of the adoption of this section.

(m) At the regular legislative session next preceding the 10th anniversary of the date of the adoption of this section, the legislature, by two-thirds vote of each house, may authorize the creation of Texas growth fund II, which shall operate under this section and under the board of trustees created by this section in the same manner as the Texas growth fund. Funds in Texas growth fund II may not be commingled with funds in the Texas growth fund.

(n) The board of trustees may purchase liability insurance for the coverage of the trustees, employees, and agents of the board.

(o) The legislature shall provide by law for the periodic review of the board of trustees in the same manner and at the same intervals as it provides for review of other state agencies, except that the legislature shall provide that the board of trustees is not subject to abolishment as part of the review process.

(p) This section expires September 1, 1998, except that if the legislature authorizes the creation of Texas growth fund II as provided by Subsection (m) of this section, this section expires September 1, 2008.

(q) This section is self-executing and takes effect on its adoption by the voters. All state officials named in this section and the comptroller of public accounts shall take all necessary actions for the implementation of this section. The legislature shall provide by law for full disclosure of all details concerning investments authorized by this section.

(r) (Repealed Nov. 2, 1999.)

(Added Nov. 8, 1988; amended Nov. 7, 1995, and Nov. 2, 1999.) (TEMPORARY TRANSITION PROVISIONS for Sec. 70: See Appendix, Note 1.)

Section 71

TEXAS PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT AND SMALL BUSINESS INCUBATOR FUNDS; BONDS.

(a) The legislature by law may establish a Texas product development fund to be used without further appropriation solely in furtherance of a program established by the legislature to aid in the development and production of new or improved products in this state. The fund shall contain a program account, an interest and sinking account, and other accounts authorized by the legislature. To carry out the program authorized by this subsection, the legislature may authorize loans, loan guarantees, and equity investments using money in the Texas product development fund and the issuance of up to $25 million of general obligation bonds to provide initial funding of the Texas product development fund. The Texas product development fund is composed of the proceeds of the bonds authorized by this subsection, loan repayments, guarantee fees, royalty receipts, dividend income, and other amounts received by the state from loans, loan guarantees, and equity investments made under this subsection and any other amounts required to be deposited in the Texas product development fund by the legislature.

(b) The legislature by law may establish a Texas small business incubator fund to be used without further appropriation solely in furtherance of a program established by the legislature to foster and stimulate the development of small businesses in the state. The fund shall contain a project account, an interest and sinking account, and other accounts authorized by the legislature. A small business incubator operating under the program is exempt from ad valorem taxation in the same manner as an institution of public charity under Article VIII, Section 2, of this constitution. To carry out the program authorized by this subsection, the legislature may authorize loans and grants of money in the Texas small business incubator fund and the issuance of up to $20 million of general obligation bonds to provide initial funding of the Texas small business incubator fund. The Texas small business incubator fund is composed of the proceeds of the bonds authorized by this subsection, loan repayments, and other amounts received by the state for loans or grants made under this subsection and any other amounts required to be deposited in the Texas small business incubator fund by the legislature.

(c) The legislature may require review and approval of the issuance of bonds under this section, of the use of the bond proceeds, or of the rules adopted by an agency to govern use of the bond proceeds. Notwithstanding any other provision of this constitution, any entity created or directed to conduct this review and approval may include members, or appointees of members, of the executive, legislative, and judicial departments of state government.

(d) Bonds authorized under this section constitute a general obligation of the state. While any of the bonds or interest on the bonds is outstanding and unpaid, there is appropriated out of the first money coming into the treasury in each fiscal year, not otherwise appropriated by this constitution, the amount sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds that mature or become due during the fiscal year, less any amount in any interest and sinking account at the end of the preceding fiscal year that is pledged to payment of the bonds or interest.

(Added Nov. 7, 1989; Subsec. (b) amended Nov. 2, 1999.)

Section 72

TEMPORARY REPLACEMENT OF PUBLIC OFFICER ON MILITARY ACTIVE DUTY.

(a) An elected or appointed officer of the state or of any political subdivision who enters active duty in the armed forces of the United States as a result of being called to duty, drafted, or activated does not vacate the office held, but the appropriate authority may appoint a replacement to serve as temporary acting officer as provided by this section if the elected or appointed officer will be on active duty for longer than 30 days.

(b) For an officer other than a member of the legislature, the authority who has the power to appoint a person to fill a vacancy in that office may appoint a temporary acting officer. If a vacancy would normally be filled by special election, the governor may appoint the temporary acting officer for a state or district office, and the governing body of a political subdivision may appoint the temporary acting officer for an office of that political subdivision.

(c) For an officer who is a member of the legislature, the member of the legislature shall select a person to serve as the temporary acting representative or senator, subject to approval of the selection by a majority vote of the appropriate house of the legislature. The temporary acting representative or senator must be:

(1) a member of the same political party as the member being temporarily replaced; and
(2) qualified for office under Section 6, Article III, of this constitution for a senator, or Section 7, Article III, of this constitution for a representative.

(d) The officer who is temporarily replaced under this section may recommend to the appropriate appointing authority the name of a person to temporarily fill the office.

(e) The appropriate authority shall appoint the temporary acting officer to begin service on the date specified in writing by the officer being temporarily replaced as the date the officer will enter active military service.

(f) A temporary acting officer has all the powers, privileges, and duties of the office and is entitled to the same compensation, payable in the same manner and from the same source, as the officer who is temporarily replaced.

(g) A temporary acting officer appointed under this section shall perform the duties of office for the shorter period of:

(1) the term of the active military service of the officer who is temporarily replaced; or
(2) the term of office of the officer who is temporarily replaced.

(h) In this section, "armed forces of the United States" means the United States Army, the United States Navy, the United States Air Force, the United States Marine Corps, the United States Coast Guard, any reserve or auxiliary component of any of those services, or the National Guard.

(Added Sept. 13, 2003.)

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