Bill Text: TX HB2006 | 2019-2020 | 86th Legislature | Comm Sub


Bill Title: Relating to locations, terms, sessions, and procedures for conducting court proceedings.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Republican 2-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-04-08 - Considered in Calendars [HB2006 Detail]

Download: Texas-2019-HB2006-Comm_Sub.html
  86R16274 YDB-D
 
  By: Leach, Murr H.B. No. 2006
 
  Substitute the following for H.B. No. 2006:
 
  By:  Meyer C.S.H.B. No. 2006
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to locations, terms, sessions, and procedures for
  conducting court proceedings.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 22.0035(b), Government Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other statute, the supreme court
  may modify or suspend procedures for the conduct of any court
  proceeding affected by a disaster during the pendency of a disaster
  declared by the governor. An order under this section may not
  extend for more than 90 [30] days from the date the order was signed
  unless renewed by the chief justice of the supreme court.
         SECTION 2.  Section 24.012(a), Government Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (a)  Except as provided by Subsections (a-1) and (a-2) and
  Section 24.0125, notwithstanding any other law, each district court
  holds in each county in the judicial district terms that commence on
  the first Mondays in January and July of each year. To the extent of
  a conflict between this subsection and a specific provision
  relating to a particular judicial district, this section controls.
         SECTION 3.  Subchapter A, Chapter 24, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Section 24.0125 to read as follows:
         Sec. 24.0125.  TERMS AND SESSIONS OF COURT FOLLOWING CERTAIN
  DISASTERS. Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as
  defined by Section 418.004, precludes a district court from holding
  its judicial district terms in accordance with Section 24.012, the
  presiding judge of the administrative judicial region, with the
  approval of the judge of the affected district court, may designate
  the terms and sessions of court.
         SECTION 4.  Section 24.033(b), Government Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined
  by Section 418.004, [occurs in a first tier coastal county or a
  second tier coastal county that] precludes a district court from
  conducting its proceedings at the county seat of that county, the
  presiding judge of the administrative judicial region, with the
  approval of the judge of the affected district court, may designate
  for the proceedings an alternate location:
               (1)  in the judicial district of the affected court; or
               (2)  outside the judicial district at the location the
  presiding judge determines is closest in proximity to the county
  seat that allows [at which] the court to safely and practicably
  [may] conduct its proceedings, provided the presiding judge of the
  administrative judicial region for the designated location
  approves if that presiding judge is not the presiding judge making
  the designation.
         SECTION 5.  Section 25.0016, Government Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 25.0016.  TERMS OF COURT; TERMS AND SESSIONS OF COURT
  FOLLOWING CERTAIN DISASTERS. (a) The commissioners court, by
  order, shall set at least two terms a year for the statutory county
  court.
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined
  by Section 418.004, precludes a statutory county court from holding
  its terms in accordance with the order of the commissioners court,
  the presiding judge of the administrative judicial region, with the
  approval of the judge of the affected statutory county court, may
  designate the terms and sessions of court.
         SECTION 6.  Section 25.0019(b), Government Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, including a specific
  provision in this chapter for a particular court or county that
  requires a statutory county court to conduct its proceedings at the
  county seat, if a disaster, as defined by Section 418.004, [occurs
  in a first tier coastal county or a second tier coastal county that]
  precludes a statutory county court in that county from conducting
  its proceedings at the county seat, the presiding judge of the
  administrative judicial region, with the approval of the judge of
  the affected statutory county court, may designate for the
  proceedings an alternate location:
               (1)  in the county; or
               (2)  outside the county at the location the presiding
  judge determines is closest in proximity to the county seat that
  allows [at which] the court to safely and practicably [may] conduct
  its proceedings, provided the presiding judge of the administrative
  judicial region for the designated location approves if that
  presiding judge is not the presiding judge making the designation.
         SECTION 7.  Section 25.0032(b), Government Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, including a specific
  provision in this chapter for a particular court or county that
  requires a statutory probate court to conduct its proceedings at
  the county seat, if a disaster, as defined by Section 418.004,
  [occurs in a first tier coastal county or a second tier coastal
  county that] precludes a statutory probate court in that county
  from conducting its proceedings at the county seat, the presiding
  judge of the statutory probate courts, with the approval of the
  judge of the affected statutory probate court, may designate for
  the proceedings an alternate location:
               (1)  in the county; or
               (2)  outside the county at the location the presiding
  judge of the statutory probate courts determines is closest in
  proximity to the county seat that allows [at which] the court to
  safely and practicably [may] conduct its proceedings, provided the
  presiding judge of the administrative judicial region for the
  designated location approves.
         SECTION 8.  Section 25.0035, Government Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 25.0035.  TERMS OF COURT; TERMS AND SESSIONS OF COURT
  FOLLOWING CERTAIN DISASTERS. (a) The commissioners court, by
  order, shall set at least two terms a year for the statutory probate
  court.
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined
  by Section 418.004, precludes a statutory probate court from
  holding its terms in accordance with the order of the commissioners
  court, the presiding judge of the statutory probate courts, with
  the approval of the judge of the affected statutory probate court,
  may designate the terms and sessions of court.
         SECTION 9.  The heading to Section 26.002, Government Code,
  is amended to read as follows:
         Sec. 26.002.  TERMS; TERMS AND SESSIONS OF COURT FOLLOWING
  CERTAIN DISASTERS.
         SECTION 10.  Section 26.002, Government Code, is amended by
  amending Subsection (a) and adding Subsection (b-1) to read as
  follows:
         (a)  By order entered on its records, the commissioners court
  subject to Subsection (b-1) may fix the number of court terms, may
  set the times at which the terms shall be held, including the four
  terms required by the constitution, and may set the length of each
  term.
         (b-1)  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as
  defined by Section 418.004, precludes a county court from holding
  its terms in accordance with the order of the commissioners court,
  the presiding judge of the administrative judicial region, with the
  approval of the county judge, may designate the terms and sessions
  of court.
         SECTION 11.  Section 26.009(b), Government Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, including Section
  26.002(c), if a disaster, as defined by Section 418.004, [occurs in
  a first tier coastal county or a second tier coastal county that]
  precludes the county court from conducting its proceedings at the
  county seat, the presiding judge of the administrative judicial
  region, with the approval of the judge of the affected county court,
  may designate for the proceedings an alternate location:
               (1)  in the county; or
               (2)  outside the county at the location the presiding
  judge determines is closest in proximity to the county seat that
  allows [at which] the court to safely and practicably [may] conduct
  its proceedings, provided the presiding judge of the administrative
  judicial region for the designated location approves if that
  presiding judge is not the presiding judge making the designation.
         SECTION 12.  Subchapter C, Chapter 27, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Section 27.0515 to read as follows:
         Sec. 27.0515.  LOCATION FOR COURT PROCEEDINGS AND TERMS AND
  SESSIONS OF COURT FOLLOWING CERTAIN DISASTERS. (a)
  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined by Section
  418.004, precludes a justice court from conducting its proceedings
  at a location in the court's precinct or in the county seat of that
  county, the presiding judge of the administrative judicial region
  in which the county is located, with the approval of the justice of
  the affected justice court, may designate for the proceedings an
  alternate location:
               (1)  in the county; or
               (2)  outside the county at the location the presiding
  judge determines is closest in proximity to the court's precinct
  that allows the court to safely and practicably conduct its
  proceedings, provided the presiding judge of the administrative
  judicial region for the designated location approves if that
  presiding judge is not the presiding judge making the designation.
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined
  by Section 418.004, precludes a justice court from holding its
  terms in accordance with the times prescribed by the commissioners
  court, the presiding judge of the administrative judicial region,
  with the approval of the justice of the affected justice court, may
  designate the terms and sessions of court.
         SECTION 13.  Subchapter A, Chapter 29, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Section 29.015 to read as follows:
         Sec. 29.015.  LOCATION FOR COURT PROCEEDINGS AND TERMS AND
  SESSIONS OF COURT FOLLOWING CERTAIN DISASTERS. (a)
  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined by Section
  418.004, precludes a municipal court from conducting its
  proceedings at the location assigned for the proceedings, the
  presiding judge of the administrative judicial region, with the
  approval of the judge of the affected municipal court, may
  designate for the proceedings an alternate location:
               (1)  in the corporate limits of the municipality; or
               (2)  outside the corporate limits of the municipality
  at the location the presiding judge determines is closest in
  proximity to the municipality that allows the court to safely and
  practicably conduct its proceedings, provided the presiding judge
  of the administrative judicial region for the designated location
  approves if that presiding judge is not the presiding judge making
  the designation.
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined
  by Section 418.004, precludes a municipal court from holding its
  terms, the presiding judge of the administrative judicial region,
  with the approval of the judge of the affected municipal court, may
  designate the terms and sessions of court.
         SECTION 14.  Subchapter A, Chapter 30, Government Code, is
  amended by adding Section 30.000123 to read as follows:
         Sec. 30.000123.  LOCATION OF COURT PROCEEDINGS AND TERMS AND
  SESSIONS OF COURT FOLLOWING CERTAIN DISASTERS. (a)
  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined by Section
  418.004, precludes a municipal court of record from conducting its
  proceedings at the location assigned for the proceedings, the
  presiding judge of the administrative judicial region, with the
  approval of the judge of the affected municipal court of record, may
  designate for the proceedings an alternate location:
               (1)  in the corporate limits of the municipality; or
               (2)  outside the corporate limits of the municipality
  at the location the presiding judge determines is closest in
  proximity to the municipality that allows the court to safely and
  practicably conduct its proceedings, provided the presiding judge
  of the administrative judicial region for the designated location
  approves if that presiding judge is not the presiding judge making
  the designation.
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, if a disaster, as defined
  by Section 418.004, precludes a municipal court of record from
  holding its terms, the presiding judge of the administrative
  judicial region, with the approval of the judge of the affected
  municipal court of record, may designate the terms and sessions of
  court.
         SECTION 15.  Sections 292.001(b) and (d), Local Government
  Code, are amended to read as follows:
         (b)  Except as provided by this subsection and to the extent
  permitted under other law, the [The] building or rooms must be
  located in the county seat. If [However, if] the building or rooms
  are for housing a county or district court in buildings or rooms
  designated for that purpose, or for housing county jail facilities,
  the building or rooms may be located anywhere in the county at the
  discretion of the commissioners court.
         (d)  A justice of the peace court may not be housed or
  conducted in a building located outside the court's precinct except
  as provided by Section 27.051(f) or 27.0515, Government Code, or
  unless the justice of the peace court is situated in the county
  courthouse in a county with a population of at least 275,000 persons
  but no more than 285,000 persons.
         SECTION 16.  Section 292.002(a), Local Government Code, is
  amended to read as follows:
         (a)  The commissioners court of a county may provide an
  office building or a jail facility at a location in the county
  outside the county seat in the same manner that is applicable to
  such a building or facility at the county seat. The commissioners
  court may provide for the building or facility through the issuance
  of bonds as provided by Subtitles A, C, and D, Title 9, Government
  Code, or through the issuance of other evidences of indebtedness in
  the same manner as bonds or evidences of indebtedness applicable to
  a courthouse or jail at the county seat. The commissioners court
  may provide office space in the building or facility for any county
  or precinct office [except a court required by law to sit at the
  county seat]. However, a county officer who is provided space in
  the building or facility shall maintain an office at the county seat
  and shall keep the original records of office at that office unless
  otherwise required during a disaster, as defined by Section
  418.004, Government Code.
         SECTION 17.  Sections 24.033(a), 25.0019(a), 25.0032(a),
  and 26.009(a), Government Code, are repealed.
         SECTION 18.  This Act takes effect immediately if it
  receives a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each
  house, as provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution.
  If this Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate
  effect, this Act takes effect September 1, 2019.
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