Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Finance Committee

May 31, 2000

Commission Hearing Room
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Headquarters Complex
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744

      7      BE IT REMEMBERED that heretofore on the 31st
      8   day of May 2000, there came on to be heard
      9   matters under the regulatory authority of the
     10   Parks and Wildlife  Commission of Texas, in the
     11   commission hearing room of the Texas Parks and
     12   Wildlife Headquarters complex, Austin, Travis
     13   County, Texas, beginning at 3:10 p.m., to wit:
     14
     15
          APPEARANCES:
     16   THE PARKS AND WILDLIFE COMMISSION:
          FINANCE COMMITTEE:
     17   Chair:      Ernest Angelo, Jr.
                      Lee M. Bass
     18               Carol E. Dinkins
                      Dick W. Heath (Absent)
     19               Nolan Ryan
                      Alvin L. Henry
     20               John Avila, Jr.
                      Katharine Armstrong Idsal
     21               Mark E. Watson, Jr.
     22
     23   THE PARKS AND WILDLIFE DEPARTMENT:
     24   Andrew H. Sansom, Executive Director, and other
     25   personnel of the Parks and Wildlife Department.
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      1                     MAY 31, 2000
      2                      *-*-*-*-*
      3               FINANCE COMMITTEE MEETING
      4                      *-*-*-*-*
      5                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Okay.  We'll
      6   call to order the meeting of the Finance
      7   Committee.  And the first item is to approve the
      8   minutes from the previous meeting.  Could we have
      9   a motion to that effect?
     10                COMMISSIONER AVILA:  So moved.
     11                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Do we have a
     12   second?
     13                COMMISSIONER HENRY:  Second.
     14                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  All in favor
     15   say aye.  So moved.
     16                     (Motion passed unanimously.)
     17      ITEM 1 - BRIEFING - CHAIRMAN'S CHARGES.
     18                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  The next item
     19   is a chairman's charge which will be reviewed by
     20   Andy.
     21                MR. SANSOM:  Members, the Finance
     22   Committee also has a fairly extensive list of
     23   charges.  The first was to make sure that we
     24   satisfied our customers by ensuring an
     25   uninterrupted Texas Outdoor Connection automated
.0003
      1   licensing system.  Today you'll get a briefing
      2   item which will give you the status of the new
      3   efforts to acquire a new contractor for the
      4   outdoor connection.
      5                Charge Number 4 was to work with the
      6   conservation committee to monitor and track
      7   current initiatives to support enhanced funding
      8   of land and water conservation, wildlife
      9   diversity initiatives and coastal restoration
     10   projects through OCS revenues.
     11                Carol Dinkins and I spent a couple
     12   of days along with Walt Dabney and Gary Graham
     13   and others up in Washington working on the
     14   Conservation and Reinvestment Act and it did pass
     15   the House and is now headed for a hearing markup
     16   in the Senate on June the 14th.
     17                You charged us to enhance our
     18   marketing and promotional opportunities in order
     19   to increase revenue, and today you're also going
     20   to see a presentation on the new Senior Combo and
     21   Super Combo license proposals.
     22                Our Big Time Texas Hunts has been a
     23   great success.  We've almost doubled the average
     24   number of entries.  And the Whitetail Bonanza
     25   accounts for 28 percent now of all sales.  We're
.0004
      1   about to do a mailing to 320,000 customers to
      2   promote the program for next year, and we
      3   anticipate its growth to be as much as 20
      4   percent, for a total of about 86,000 customers.
      5                Our license plate is doing well.  We
      6   sold 5,000 and expect to reach total sales of
      7   about 6,500 plates by year-end.  We're beginning
      8   to look at the introduction of a second plate in
      9   the late fall of the year 2000 and will develop a
     10   series of designs for product testing at Expo.
     11   We project to generate about $278,000 in license
     12   plate sales, and a net of $146,000 will go
     13   directly back into our conservation programs.
     14                Bob Cook and his team have met with
     15   the Presidian Corporation on a series of
     16   proposals that they have submitted to us for
     17   nature lodges in several of our locations.  I
     18   believe that the projects currently under
     19   discussion are at Palo Duro Canyon, Guadalupe
     20   River State Park, Mustang Island, and Indian
     21   Lodge.  We'll report to you as that proceeds.
     22                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  That concludes
     23   your --
     24                MR. SANSOM:  Yes, sir.
     25                COMMISSIONER BASS:  Andy, pardon me,
.0005
      1   if I may.  The monies from the license plate are
      2   going to what use?  I know they're going to
      3   conservation programs.  But is that -- has that
      4   been budgeted or marketed for --
      5                MR. SANSOM:  It has not been
      6   budgeted yet.  It will be a part of the operating
      7   budget process that we will bring to you.
      8                COMMISSIONER BASS:  I would be
      9   interested in some feedback from staff, maybe at
     10   our August meeting or something, about what
     11   the -- how they might assess it this time, given
     12   the success of the horny toad license plate.  I'm
     13   sure Fort Worth is probably --
     14                COMMISSIONER AVILA:  I was going to
     15   ask, have those sales been in Fort Worth?
     16                COMMISSIONER BASS:  TCU-1, TCU-2,
     17   TCU -- but John's idea of using the bluebonnet in
     18   relation to state parks for a license specialty
     19   plate, you know, whether people care about parks
     20   or not, I think there will be a lot of people who
     21   like the bluebonnet that will create a market for
     22   it.  Just like the horny toad sold at TCU, the
     23   bluebonnet is going to sell to a lot of people, I
     24   think.  And I'd hate for somebody else to pick
     25   that icon up, since the legislation is such that
.0006
      1   that could happen.
      2                So I'd be interested in maybe in our
      3   August meeting for the staff to give us some
      4   assessment of how they might view the feasibility
      5   of adding a second icon and a second plate.
      6                MR. SANSOM:  We could do that.
      7                COMMISSIONER BASS:  Okay.
      8                MR. SANSOM:  Thank you.
      9                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other
     10   questions or comments?
     11                If not, we'll go to Item Number 2 on
     12   the agenda, which is a current financial review
     13   and a budget preview for fiscal year 2001.  And
     14   Suzy Whittenton will give us that.
     15      ITEM 2 - BRIEFING - FINANCIAL REVIEW AND
     16      FYO1 BUDGET PREVIEW.
     17                MS. WHITTENTON:  Thank you.  I'll be
     18   very brief, per Chairman Bass's request.  We'll
     19   do real quickly a brief update of the financial
     20   information for our major accounts for the
     21   current fiscal year, and then talk a little bit
     22   about what we've done on the fiscal year '01
     23   budget at this point, and then just some final
     24   reminders about the appropriations request that's
     25   due on the fiscal year 2002-2003 budget.
.0007
      1                A look first at account 9, where we
      2   keep our -- where we deposit our boat fees and
      3   our license fees.  As of -- I believe this is as
      4   of the end of April, boat fees were down slightly
      5   from what we had originally anticipated.
      6   However, it's still early in the year for boat
      7   fees.  So far we've collected 47 percent.  And
      8   the projected amount is close to what we
      9   originally estimated.  So we're not going to
     10   recommend any kind of adjustment on boat fees.
     11                We take a look at license sales.  We
     12   have information now through May the 17th.  Super
     13   Combo sales are up, as we expected, and Combo
     14   Sales are down, with overall combination license
     15   sales up just a little bit, 1.1 percent.
     16                Resident hunting sales are down
     17   three percent.  Nonresident sales are up 11
     18   percent.  If you look at total hunting sales,
     19   which includes combo sales, they're up a half a
     20   percent, or close to a million licenses.  This is
     21   very similar to the information we saw at the
     22   last meeting.  So there's not much change there.
     23                On the fishing licenses, these are
     24   very similar to last year's sales figures, with a
     25   half percent variance on total fishing sales.
.0008
      1   That number also includes combo sales.  Total
      2   license sales are up $1.8 million, or about three
      3   percent over last year.
      4                Based on the sales report from the
      5   Texas Outdoor Connection, our point-of-sale
      6   system, revenue is up about $1.4 million over the
      7   budgeted amount, budgeted estimate.  We've
      8   already made a previous adjustment to our
      9   estimate, so we're not going to ask for another
     10   adjustment at this time.  Of course, we'll have
     11   better information at the next meeting.
     12                This slide shows projected ending
     13   balance in Account 9, where we have our licenses
     14   and boat fees.  It starts with the beginning
     15   balance that we had at the beginning of the
     16   fiscal year of $32 million, adds in our estimated
     17   annual revenue of $128 million and subtracts out
     18   our estimated annual expenditures of
     19   $158 million.  And we expect to have an estimated
     20   ending balance of about $2 million August 31st.
     21                We'll look at State Park fees.  The
     22   revenue is up almost 16 percent as of the end of
     23   April over last year's.  This number, we think it
     24   may be up partly because of the warm winter we
     25   had.  The number that we had looked at at the
.0009
      1   last meeting revenue was up 19 percent.  So
      2   it's -- the variance has dropped off some.  So
      3   we'll see what the summer hot weather and drought
      4   does.
      5                At this time, with 67 percent of
      6   park fees collected, it looks like the park
      7   revenue could be up $2 million over last year's
      8   and almost $3 million over what we originally
      9   estimated.
     10                We're going to recommend a $1
     11   million increase in our projection, in our
     12   estimate, to be conservative in case we have
     13   issues with the drought or the hot summer.  We'll
     14   just go ahead and bump up our estimate, our
     15   revenue estimate to $23.3 million.
     16                And then when you look at projected
     17   ending balance for Account 64, and including the
     18   revenue adjustment of the million dollars
     19   additional revenue that we think we'll have,
     20   we'll have an ending balance of about
     21   $3 million.
     22                That was a real quick update of the
     23   current situation.  And I'll give you a preview
     24   of our fiscal year '01 budget status.
     25                We started the budget process in
.0010
      1   March and division -- each division submitted
      2   their request for budgets in mid April.  We start
      3   by looking at how much we think we're going to
      4   have available to spend.  And early estimates
      5   show that we'll have about $252 million to work
      6   with.  We're still working on refining that
      7   number some.
      8                What we did was, we did the 95
      9   percent budgeting process again, which meant each
     10   division was given 95 percent of their current
     11   year budget, and then they were allowed to ask
     12   for supplementals over and above that.  And so
     13   what we got in was $33 million in requested
     14   supplementals.  And then grants and capital
     15   budgets are considered separately.
     16                If you look at the $33 million in
     17   supplemental requests, $17 million of that was
     18   just for regular operating budget items,
     19   reinstatements and fulfillment of unmet needs.
     20   Then we had $2 million in dedicated fund requests
     21   and then $14 million in revenue-generating items
     22   and grant requests.
     23                The grant budget -- the grant
     24   requests were -- totaled $29 million and are
     25   broken out as shown.  Local park grants of
.0011
      1   $20 million, community outdoor outreach grants of
      2   $1.5 million.  Three and a half million to the
      3   Balcones Canyonland Preserve, which I think is a
      4   federal pass-through, and then other grants of
      5   $3.8.
      6                Capital budget requests are focused
      7   primarily on major and minor repairs.  I've put a
      8   note there that $19 million of that is bondable,
      9   but we won't have $19 million of bond funds.  So
     10   that -- we'll have about $13 million of bond
     11   funds available.
     12                Here is the bottom line.
     13   $262 million in requests, and estimated funds
     14   available of $252 million (inaudible).  So we'll
     15   be trying to pair that down.  There's about $10
     16   million more requests than we have funds
     17   available.  And this number may change some as we
     18   try to nail down that estimated funds available
     19   number.  We'll try to prioritize those requests.
     20                Looking at the number of positions
     21   that were requested, we -- as you know, we have a
     22   legislative cap limit on number of employees we
     23   can have at any one time in the agency.  Our cap
     24   is 2,954 employees.  And when you look at the
     25   base budget, it included 2,800.  With the
.0012
      1   additional supplementals and capital budget
      2   employees, that brings us up to 3,100.  So we
      3   have more positions requested than we can have.
      4   But we're also able to budget more than the
      5   legislative cap, due to turnover.  So this isn't
      6   really -- isn't going to be a big issue, I don't
      7   think, for us to deal with.
      8                MR. SANSOM:  I believe, Suzy,
      9   there's something like 131 current vacancies.
     10                MS. WHITTENTON:  That's right.
     11                MR. SANSOM:  So that means that
     12   difference there is much smaller than it appears
     13   on this chart, potentially.
     14                MS. WHITTENTON:  I don't think that
     15   we'll have too big an issue dealing with FTEs.
     16   It will be more an issue dealing with funding,
     17   how many of these requests we can fund dollarwise
     18   rather than employees.
     19                MR. SANSOM:  All employees that are
     20   not -- that are retained, whether they be summer
     21   interns or seasonal employees, are counted into
     22   that amount.
     23                MS. WHITTENTON:  Right.
     24                MR. SANSOM:  So a seasonal employee
     25   would be -- say, a summer employee would be
.0013
      1   one-fourth of an FTE.
      2                MS. WHITTENTON:  Right.  Actually
      3   you have to include some contractors as well, if
      4   they work longer than six months for us, we have
      5   to count them as employees.  So there are a lot
      6   of people.
      7                But with the turnover, we have -- I
      8   don't know what our turnover rate is, but it's --
      9   most agencies have more than eight percent
     10   turnover, so you get to build that into what you
     11   can budget.  So, as long as you don't average
     12   more than 2,954 employees in any one quarter,
     13   you're okay with the legislative cap.
     14                COMMISSIONER RYAN:  And that number
     15   would be changed by the legislature?
     16                MS. WHITTENTON:  Yes.  When they do
     17   the appropriations bill.  And we can request an
     18   increase in our --
     19                MR. SANSOM:  We requested an
     20   increase in FTEs here in the last legislative
     21   session and it was denied, although our overall
     22   funding was increased.
     23                MS. WHITTENTON:  Before final
     24   decisions are made, these are some considerations
     25   for us to --
.0014
      1                COMMISSIONER HENRY:  Vehicles.
      2                MS. WHITTENTON:  The first one I
      3   list is salary issues.  And what I mean by that
      4   is career ladders, promotions, and merit
      5   increases.  We just need to budget for those,
      6   decide what amount we need to budget for those.
      7                MR. SANSOM:  Members, you'll recall
      8   that during the last legislative session, our law
      9   enforcement officers received a fairly
     10   substantial legislative pay increase.  What we
     11   have been attempting to do is to try to, as we
     12   have done in the past, create a more equitable
     13   internal balance of compensation.  And that's a
     14   pretty large number as we try to move the
     15   biologists, the park rangers, and other employees
     16   toward that same compensation level, that could
     17   be -- that's the biggest number on the chart.
     18   And it's one that we'll be wanting to seek your
     19   counsel on as we go forward because compensation
     20   is important to us.
     21                MS. WHITTENTON:  We also want to
     22   consider legislative direction that was given to
     23   the agency during the last appropriations
     24   process.
     25                MR. SANSOM:  Excuse me, Suzy.  Let
.0015
      1   me just -- you and I can just kind of go back and
      2   forth here.  The issue there, members, is, the
      3   appropriations direction which we received,
      4   particularly as it relates to capital projects,
      5   that there's some specific goals that we need to
      6   make sure we meet.  And so as we consider
      7   allocating these funds, we've got to remember
      8   that there are specific items in the
      9   appropriations bill that the Legislature expects
     10   us to complete.
     11                MS. WHITTENTON:  Right.  I think
     12   they said that if the money is available, we want
     13   you to spend it on these projects.  So we need to
     14   consider those in making our budget decisions.
     15                The vehicle issue --
     16                COMMISSIONER HENRY:  Major issue.
     17                MS. WHITTENTON:  Well, take into
     18   account --
     19                COMMISSIONER HENRY:  (inaudible) the
     20   secretary has seven cars --
     21                MS. WHITTENTON:  The mail room had
     22   four.
     23                They have a study going on right now
     24   that -- the council on competitive government is
     25   doing some recommendations which include at this
.0016
      1   time that agencies would only be able to replace
      2   vehicles.  They wouldn't be able to add to their
      3   fleet, except for law enforcement.
      4                MR. SANSOM:  It's very similar to
      5   the FTE cap.
      6                MS. WHITTENTON:  We're going to have
      7   a vehicle cap, probably.  So we'll have to
      8   consider what comes out of that.  And we don't
      9   want to have another Sunset hearing like the last
     10   one, where they tell us how many vehicles we
     11   have.
     12                Also, we'll try to address any
     13   Sunset issues that we can, with the legislative
     14   authority that we have currently.  And we'll try
     15   to consider some of those and try to prioritize
     16   things with Sunset's report in mind.
     17                MR. SANSOM:  As you all, those of
     18   you who were at the Sunset hearings recall, we
     19   pretty much made a commitment to implementing all
     20   of the nonstatutory Sunset recommendations, and
     21   some of those would involve additional
     22   expenditures.  And so we instructed the staff
     23   that the implementation of Sunset recommendations
     24   comes pretty close to the top of the list in
     25   terms of requests for supplemental funding.
.0017
      1                MS. WHITTENTON:  Okay.  What we need
      2   to do next is try to pair down requests and nail
      3   down the amount of funds we have to work with.
      4   We're targeting an internal completion date of
      5   around July 7th.  That's so that we'll have
      6   enough time to start working on the legislative
      7   appropriations request, which this year is due
      8   August 18th.  That will be our request for funds
      9   and for FTEs for the fiscal years 2002 and 2003.
     10   So we have to have our '01 budget done first
     11   before we get to make decisions about what we
     12   want to request.
     13                That request -- the instructions for
     14   the appropriations request say that we are
     15   limited to current level funding and anything
     16   over and above that would go into an exceptional
     17   item request.  So we'll have to be thinking about
     18   whether we want to ask for exceptional items and
     19   how we want to structure those.
     20                So by the next Commission meeting in
     21   August, end of August, we'll have a final fiscal
     22   year '01 budget, as well as we will have turned
     23   in our appropriation requests for fiscal years
     24   '02 and '03.  And that concludes my --
     25                MR. SANSOM:  Any questions or
.0018
      1   comments?
      2                COMMISSIONER RYAN:  Yeah.  I'd like
      3   to ask Suzy, on that $10 million difference that
      4   you have, and you said that your estimated
      5   revenue could vary, do you expect that to vary up
      6   before the deadline?  And I assume the deadline,
      7   would it be the 18th or July the 7th?
      8                MS. WHITTENTON:  July the 7th.  Yes,
      9   I -- we've been trying to get a little closer on
     10   that.  It does look like there may be a little
     11   bit more available than we originally thought.
     12   So I think the number may go up a couple
     13   million.
     14                COMMISSIONER RYAN:  So do you expect
     15   to adjust that?
     16                MS. WHITTENTON:  Yes.  But it will
     17   go in the right direction, so -- we started out
     18   ultra conservative.
     19                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other
     20   questions, comments?  Thank you, Suzy.
     21                MR. SANSOM:  We would like to --
     22   I've asked Michelle to begin working on all of
     23   our calendars to see whether or not we could find
     24   a date to have a brief budget meeting during the
     25   summer, you know, coincident with this process
.0019
      1      ITEM 3 - ACTION - REINSTATEMENT OF RECIPROCAL
      2      LICENSE AGREEMENT WITH LOUISIANA AND OKLAHOMA.
      3                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Okay.  We'll
      4   move to Item Number 3, which is the reinstatement
      5   of the reciprocal license agreement with
      6   Louisiana and Oklahoma, to be presented by Ken
      7   Kurzawski.
      8                MR. KURZAWSKI:  Good afternoon,
      9   Commissioners.  The purpose of my presentation
     10   today would be to ask for the Commission's
     11   approval of some of the changes that were
     12   discussed at our April meeting to our reciprocal
     13   license agreements for seniors.
     14                If I could quickly take you through
     15   the history and the status of these agreements,
     16   you recall we eliminated these agreements with
     17   Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Kansas in August of
     18   '99.  Now residents from these states need
     19   nonresident licenses when they come fish in
     20   Texas.  Conversely, Texas seniors also need those
     21   nonresident licenses when they go fishing in
     22   those states.
     23                These exemptions were eliminated in
     24   response to complaints from Texas anglers that
     25   were based on the special resident license that
.0020
      1   they had to purchase after 199 -- 1995.  That was
      2   a $6 license.  They felt it was an equity issue,
      3   that people were able to come from out of state
      4   and fish for free and they had to pay $6.
      5                Of course, another part of that
      6   equation is, when they went to those states, they
      7   got a free license, so that was the reciprocal
      8   portion.
      9                But since the change in last year,
     10   we received numerous complaints from our anglers,
     11   the seniors having to go over and fish in these
     12   other states, and now having to pay the full
     13   nonresident license fees, which can range from,
     14   for an annual license 30 or 40 dollars or more.
     15                After discussing these changes with
     16   anglers, legislators, and staff from the other
     17   states, we decided that reinstatement of those
     18   agreements was our best option.  Unfortunately,
     19   here I have an error on the slide.  We were
     20   proposing that the -- excuse me -- two states did
     21   propose that they would respond in kind.  But
     22   this morning about 10:30 we received a fax from
     23   Louisiana saying that they were not going to go
     24   through with the reciprocal portion of their
     25   agreement with us.  They cited some problems they
.0021
      1   were having in getting a license fee through -- a
      2   general license fee through in their legislature
      3   and they're putting it on hold.  So what that
      4   means is, we can go ahead and pass this as we are
      5   proposing, but it wouldn't go into effect until
      6   Louisiana takes some sort of action to ratify
      7   it.
      8                Oklahoma, as soon as we pass it,
      9   they have a similar-type process, that if we have
     10   one in place, it automatically comes into effect
     11   for them.  So unfortunately, that's something
     12   that just came up.  And we did have a lot of
     13   interest down in the southeast corner of the
     14   state for that to happen.  It looks like that
     15   might not happen as quickly as we had hoped.
     16                So as it stands now with these
     17   changes, Oklahoma and Texas will have an
     18   agreement but Louisiana and Texas won't.  We are
     19   not including Kansas, as I mentioned before.
     20   We're just kind of sticking with the border
     21   states.
     22                These changes were published in the
     23   Texas Register for public comment.  And we
     24   haven't received any particular comments on that
     25   since that publication.
.0022
      1                So we would -- staff would recommend
      2   that the Finance Committee recommend to the full
      3   commission that we adopt those changes as were
      4   published in the Texas Register.  And this item
      5   would be available for the consent agenda.
      6                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  The original
      7   objections have kind of gone away.  Is that
      8   right?
      9                MR. KURZAWSKI:  For the --
     10                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  For the
     11   seniors.  We felt like it was unfair that they
     12   had to pay a Texas fee?
     13                MR. KURZAWSKI:  I think a lot of
     14   that stems -- they're probably basically unhappy
     15   about having to pay the $6.  It wasn't
     16   necessarily that others were getting it for
     17   free.  But I guess in face of the $6 versus the
     18   $30, this is a little higher priority for them
     19   now.
     20                COMMISSIONER HENRY:  How much money
     21   are we talking about?
     22                MR. KURZAWSKI:  We really don't
     23   know.  This just came into effect in September 1
     24   and it's really been in just seven, eight
     25   months.  We really can't measure that.  And I'd
.0023
      1   be surprised if -- I'm sure Louisiana can't,
      2   either, to their -- their looking for extra
      3   funds.  But to get some of the input we had from
      4   the seniors down in the Beaumont area, they might
      5   not be going over there fishing at all and paying
      6   that fee.  So I don't know if it's much of an
      7   impact financially or not.  Probably preventing
      8   more people from fishing one way or the other
      9   than it's worth the extra license fees that come
     10   in.
     11                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other
     12   questions or comments?  Do we have a motion?  It
     13   could be on the consent agenda?
     14                COMMISSIONER RYAN:  I make a motion
     15   that we put it on the consent agenda.
     16                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Second?
     17                COMMISSIONER IDSAL:  Second.
     18                COMMISSIONER RYAN:  And also what
     19   staff recommends.
     20                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  It's been
     21   moved and seconded.  Any further discussion?  All
     22   in favor say aye?  All opposed?  Thank you, Ken.
     23                     (Motion passed unanimously.)
     24      ITEM 4 - BRIEFING - TEXAS OUTDOOR CONNECTION
     25      LICENSE POINT OF SALE SYSTEM.
.0024
      1                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Item Number 4
      2   is the -- a briefing on the Texas Outdoor
      3   Connection license point-of-sale system.  Jayna
      4   Burgdorf.  Jayna?
      5                MS. BURGDORF:  I do have a very
      6   brief briefing.  We did receive legislative
      7   budget board approval on our project to proceed
      8   and go forward with that.  We released our final
      9   request for offers on April 10th.  And we have
     10   five bids from three different vendors.  Here is
     11   one of the reasons why it's going to be very
     12   brief.  I cannot discuss the proposal's contents
     13   in a public meeting.  So you have a handout, a
     14   confidential handout that's being passed around
     15   that has key points.
     16                One thing that I can tell you is
     17   that our request for offers included certain
     18   requirements that we expect any legitimate bid to
     19   address.  And that was an online system,
     20   30-second response time, graphic capability for
     21   our printers so that we can print our license in
     22   a more horizontal format, a display screen which
     23   will be much more user friendly for retailers,
     24   online connections to the Internet and telephone
     25   sales, and a separate pricing structure.
.0025
      1                I can also tell you this.  We did
      2   receive one bid from EDS.  We received two bids
      3   from kind of a group that works together, Central
      4   Bank/ALS, which is also known as Automated
      5   Licensing System, and two bids from MCI Worldcom.
      6                And our next steps, next week, we
      7   plan to proceed with best and final offers.  And
      8   then the rest of these are basically the same --
      9   the same calendar that I've been showing you.  We
     10   plan to have our statewide rollout completed by
     11   June.
     12                And I'd be happy to answer any
     13   questions that I'm allowed to.
     14                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  How do you
     15   feel about it at this point?  What's your --
     16                MS. BURGDORF:  At this point, I feel
     17   pretty good about it.  I think we had a --
     18   interesting reference calls.  And I don't think
     19   I'm going to get into trouble here.  It's just,
     20   we talked to some other states that worked with
     21   all sorts of different vendors and there just
     22   isn't a system implementation that goes
     23   incredibly smoothly or not one out there that we
     24   know of.  And so just trying to determine how are
     25   we going to get this project off the ground in
.0026
      1   the time frame that we've got, which isn't an
      2   unaggressive time frame.  I mean, it's aggressive
      3   but it's not unrealistic.  But we just want to do
      4   it with uninterrupted service to our customers.
      5   And I do think it's good that we have a
      6   transition at this point.  We've been through
      7   this.  Most of -- there really isn't another
      8   state that's going back out for bid, other than
      9   Missouri, that has a state requirement, and
     10   they're pretty much looking at the same system.
     11   So we will have the benefit this time of having
     12   gone through it once and knowing what we're
     13   looking for.
     14                And we've already -- John Wilson who
     15   is my co-project manager, has already started
     16   working on the system design.  So basically when
     17   we contract with someone, we're going to be
     18   giving them a lot of work that most states
     19   wouldn't even know where to start with.
     20                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any other
     21   questions or comments?
     22                Thank you, Jayna, I guess.
     23                COMMISSIONER BASS:  I have one
     24   question.  The bid packages, as they came back,
     25   what significant differences in what the customer
.0027
      1   will perceive is it from the current system?
      2                MS. BURGDORF:  The most significant
      3   differences are the ones probably that we had up
      4   there.  The license will look different to the
      5   customer.  And I passed out a mock-up at our last
      6   meeting.  It will be much more like the license
      7   before we went to the automated system.  And so
      8   that will be the biggest difference, I think, for
      9   our own customers.
     10                For our other customers, our
     11   retailers, our vendors, I think we're going for
     12   see improved accuracy, just in -- the technology
     13   has improved in the past five years.  And so
     14   we're looking at these little machines that have
     15   much more functionality and it's very clear, just
     16   like an ATM, which key you're supposed to press.
     17   It's much more question driven as opposed to them
     18   having to memorize license numbers, like, oh,
     19   yeah, this license is the 102 and I need to punch
     20   that in.  And so I think we'll see improved
     21   accuracy and reduced voids from our retailers,
     22   and I think they'll appreciate that.
     23                COMMISSIONER BASS:  Just a little
     24   more user friendly.  Smaller counter space?
     25                MS. BURGDORF:  Probably about the
.0028
      1   same.  Because instead of having one printer now,
      2   we're going to have another printer.
      3                COMMISSIONER BASS:  And time
      4   required to service each customer, will that
      5   be --
      6                MS. BURGDORF:  It will probably be
      7   about the same, maybe a little less.
      8                COMMISSIONER BASS:  At some point, I
      9   would like to see the mock-up of the license,
     10   since I was not here.
     11                MS. BURGDORF:  Okay.  Sure.
     12                MR. SANSOM:  It's not big enough to
     13   wrap around your head.
     14                MS. BURGDORF:  It doesn't feel like
     15   a phone book.
     16                CHAIRMAN BASS:  It's even smaller
     17   than the Alvin phone book.
     18                COMMISSIONER RYAN:  No comment.
     19      ITEM 5 - ACTION - SENIOR COMBINATION LICENSES.
     20                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Jayna, we'll
     21   move to Item Number 5 and the senior combination
     22   license.
     23                MS. BURGDORF:  Okay.  Briefly review
     24   three items.  One is the senior fishing license
     25   and how that was established, the public hearing
.0029
      1   feedback that we've gotten on the two proposals
      2   for our combination licenses, and then what the
      3   actual proposal is on the table today.
      4                The senior fishing license was
      5   established by House Bill 1785 in the 74th
      6   Legislative Session.  We believe that
      7   approximately five percent of the senior
      8   population is anglers.  It may even be as high as
      9   seven percent.  The resident seniors age 65,
     10   after August 31, 1995, may purchase a discounted
     11   fishing license for $6.  In other words, the
     12   legislation grandfathered those who were already
     13   seniors at the time.
     14                The bill was largely passed to
     15   address our aging population.  Equity with our
     16   senior hunters who have paid $6 since 1985, a
     17   revenue stream which in the future will become
     18   considerable.  And I have -- that's my next
     19   slide.
     20                What we wanted to do is establish a
     21   discount for seniors, like other business and
     22   government services.  We do have a need for that
     23   customer information for accurate surveys.  And
     24   the bottom line, to some extent, is that our
     25   resource is still taken.
.0030
      1                In fiscal '96 when we first sold
      2   those licenses to the senior population, we sold
      3   almost 14,000.  Last year, we sold almost
      4   40,000.  And by 2020, we're expected to sell
      5   almost 180,000, over a million dollars in
      6   revenue.  And so that's the point about at some
      7   point, it does become a significant revenue
      8   stream.
      9                We asked at the public hearing --
     10   public hearings this spring, what individuals
     11   thought of a Senior Combo and a Senior Super
     12   Combo.  We had 69 total responses.  Thirty-six
     13   thought it was a good idea, ten generally made
     14   comments along the lines -- and I think these
     15   were mostly the e-mail ones -- that seniors
     16   should pay the same as we pay.  And then 23 felt
     17   like they should not have a fee at all.
     18                COMMISSIONER BASS:  Not a lot of
     19   seniors doing the e-mail.
     20                MS. BURGDORF:  And then the proposal
     21   on the Senior Combo was -- we posted it at a
     22   range at the last meeting, $9 to $11; and on the
     23   Super Combo, $19 to $25.  We haven't received any
     24   additional public feedback since then and we did
     25   present this to the House Recreational Resources
.0031
      1   Committee and they were generally very
      2   favorable.
      3                So our recommendation today for
      4   approval and consideration tomorrow is, the
      5   Senior Combination at $10, the Senior Super
      6   Combination at $25.
      7                We do expect a revenue impact but I
      8   want to emphasize that it's only -- the only
      9   reason that it's a positive fiscal note is
     10   because that represents the option of individuals
     11   choosing to purchase what they consider to be an
     12   added value license.  If they already buy a
     13   hunting and fishing license, they will get a
     14   discount.  If that's what they want is the $2
     15   discount, they will get a $2 discount.
     16                So it's a revenue increase, not
     17   because we're raising fees for anyone, but we're
     18   offering something that they haven't had before.
     19   And we actually, based on our regular Super Combo
     20   experience, we think people will take advantage
     21   of that.
     22                Chairman Ellis of the subcommittee
     23   did ask us to consider establishing a Senior
     24   Texan, which would basically include the
     25   privileges of the Texas Conservation Passport as
.0032
      1   well as the Senior Super Combo.  And it's -- we
      2   can't do that at this point in time because of
      3   the way the register works.  And you have to --
      4   you can't make substantive changes at this
      5   point.  But we could consider that for the
      6   future.
      7                And I'd be happy to answer any
      8   questions.
      9                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  There being
     10   none, do we have a motion?
     11                COMMISSIONER AVILA:  So moved.
     12                COMMISSIONER HENRY:  Second.
     13                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any further
     14   discussion?  All in favor say aye.  Opposed?
     15   Motion passes.
     16                     (Motion passed unanimously.)
     17                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Jayna, thank
     18   you.
     19                MS. BURGDORF:  Thanks.  ITEM 6 -
     20      ACTION - SALTWATER SPORTFISHING STAMP
     21      SURCHARGE (HEARD IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE
     22      REGULATIONS COMMITTEE).
     23      ITEM 7 - ACTION - PROPOSAL FOR CONTRACT
     24      DISPUTE.
     25                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  We've already
.0033
      1   taken care of Item Number 6 this morning, so
      2   we'll move to Item Number 7, which is the
      3   proposal for contract dispute resolution.  And
      4   Judi Doran will present that.
      5                MS. DORAN:  Good afternoon.  This is
      6   a proposal for, as you said, contract dispute
      7   resolution.  A new law last session under the
      8   Government Code Chapter 2260, requires each State
      9   agency to adopt rules to implement procedures for
     10   contract claims against the State.
     11                Staff participated in an interagency
     12   task force that developed a lot of rules and then
     13   staff adapted those rules for TPW.  The rules
     14   contained key definitions, procedures for
     15   negotiation, and for department counterclaims,
     16   and for mediation.  It also has procedures for
     17   appeals to the State Office of Administrative
     18   Hearings and for settlement agreement.  It also
     19   contains the timetable that TPWD and the
     20   contractors must follow in order to assert their
     21   contract claims.
     22                Therefore, staff recommends that
     23   this committee authorize it to publish the rules
     24   as you have them in your material in the Texas
     25   Register.
.0034
      1                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Questions,
      2   comments, motions?
      3                COMMISSIONER HENRY:  I'll move.
      4                VICE-CHAIR DINKINS:  Second.
      5                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Any further
      6   discussion?  All in favor say aye?  The motion is
      7   adopted.
      8                     (Motion passed unanimously.)
      9                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Thank you.  On
     10   the action on item -- Item Number 5, we could
     11   have put that on the consent agenda if there's
     12   any desire to do so, if we want to amend that
     13   motion and do that.  Or what's the preference?
     14   Will there be any objection to putting it on the
     15   consent agenda?
     16                VICE-CHAIR DINKINS:  You mean
     17   motion?
     18                COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Without
     19   objection, we would like to put Item Number 5 on
     20   the consent agenda.
     21                And I believe if there's no other
     22   business, that concludes the Finance Committee.
     23                        *-*-*-*-*
     24                    (HEARING ADJOURNED.)
     25                        *-*-*-*-*
.0035
      1                REPORTER'S CERTIFICATE
      2   STATE OF TEXAS   )
          COUNTY OF TRAVIS )
      3
      4        I, MELODY RENEE DeYOUNG, a Certified Court
      5   Reporter in and for the State of Texas, do hereby
      6   certify that the above and foregoing 33 pages
      7   constitute a full, true and correct transcript of
      8   the minutes of the Texas Parks and Wildlife
      9   Commission on MAY 31, 2000, in the commission
     10   hearing room of the Texas Parks and Wildlife
     11   Headquarters Complex, Austin, Travis County,
     12   Texas.
     13        I FURTHER CERTIFY that a stenographic record
     14   was made by me a the time of the public meeting
     15   and said stenographic notes were thereafter
     16   reduced to computerized transcription under my
     17   supervision and control.
     18        WITNESS MY HAND this the 28TH day of JULY,
     19   2000.
     20
     21
                 MELODY RENEE DeYOUNG, RPR, CSR NO. 3226
     22          Expiration Date:  12-31-00
                 3101 Bee Caves Road
     23          Centre II, Suite 220
                 Austin, Texas  78746
     24          (512) 328-5557
     25   EBS NO. 40483

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