DPSOA Public Safety Commission Meeting Summary 6/18/2009


Public Safety Commission Meeting

Thursday, June 18, 2009, 10:30 a.m.

Criminal Law Enforcement Auditorium
6100 Guadalupe, Bldg. E Austin, TX 78752

The Public Safety Commission convened  as posted to consider and take formal action, if necessary, on the following agenda items:


10:37 am: Chairman Polunsky called the meeting to order. In attendance: Chairman Alan Polunsky, Commissioners Carin Barth, Ada Brown, and John Steen. Also present were Lt. Col. Lamar Beckworth, General Counsel Stuart Platt.  Commissioner Tom Clowe absent. A quorum is present.

Public Safety Commission - June 18, 2009

Public Safety Commission - June 18, 2009


Minutes were approved unanimously.

III. PUBLIC COMMENT (members of the public wishing to address the Commission are subject to a time limit of 5 minutes)

Dallas Trip – Texas State Rifle Association – Page, TX – TSRA has been around for 9 yrs.  Dan Walker, TSRA President, is retired DPS Trooper.  We are the Texas affiliate of NRA.  I’m here to voice our concern regarding the delay in the Concealed Handgun Licensing. I’ve provided a handout with info regarding what other states do.  We always hear from DPS that it always comes down to money.

Chair Polunsky – this is an issue that needs to be addressed.  We are experiencing a phenomena with an overwhelming increase in the number of applications that we are receiving.  Normally 64,000 – 65,000 applications are received in a year.  So far we are over 48,000 applications this year.

A. Discussion and possible action to acknowledge individuals who have served the
Department in the 81st Legislative Session

Michael Kelley, Chief of Public Relations –  Chief Kelley recognized several groups that contributed to the success that DPS had during the Legislative Session.

Kyle Mitchell 2 e  Kyle Mitchell
  Governor’s Advisor
  Gov. Rick Perry



Amy Trost e  Amy Trost                                                                       
  Policy Analyst
  Sunset Advisory Commission


Chris Steinbach e

  Chris Steinbach
  Chief of Staff
  Rep. Lois Kolkhorst



Athena Ponceq e  Athena Ponce                                     

  Policy Analyst
  Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa


Lori Gabbert e  Lori Gabbert
  Budget Analyst
  Legislative Budget Board



Michael Meyer e  Michael Meyer
  Budget Alalyst
  Senate Finance Committee




David Erinakes_Erika Akpan_Adam Burkland e

Adam Burkland, Erika Akpan, and David Erinakes
Senate Transportation & Homeland Security Committee

Chair Polunsky said that he was truly honored, but the true credit should go to the staff that did the hours of work.  He specifically recognized Chief Kelley (and his staff) for his tireless effort in working with the various committees and legislators.  He also thanked Col. Beckworth (and prior to that Col. Clark) and all of the Chiefs that work so hard during the session.

Comm. Steen also thanked Michael Kelley for “the best I’ve ever seen” in the position.  He asked Chief Kelley to introduce and acknowledge his staff.

B. Discussion and possible action to implement organizational changes discussed in the roundtable workshop of June 17, 2009, and possible next steps in planning to
develop and administer a project management plan and project management office for reorganization of the Department

Chairman Polunsky – Meeting was postponed (did not take place).  Comm. Clowe had a medical procedure yesterday, which was minor.  We will likely be making a selection for a permanent Director in the next few weeks, and I wanted to include that discussion in the workshop.  We will reschedule the workshop for a month or six weeks.

C. Report on Department asset forfeiture policy and procedure

Col. Beckworth – I have provided information about the current policy proposal, and I ask that we keep this agenda item open until we get feedback on the policy.  Chairman Polunsky asked Col. Beckworth to look into the possible funding of the additional 150 black and whites (removed from our LAR request for 450) from this fund, or look for other sources for funding such as grants, etc.

D. Discussion and possible action regarding pending litigation and appeal: DPS v. Cox Texas Newspapers and Hearst Newspapers, Travis County District Court, No. D-1- GN-07-004116.

Stuart Platt – I would like to delay discussion until we have additional information for discussion.  Chair Polunsky – also thanked Counsel Platt for his work during the legislative session.

After Executive Session – Stuart Platt – we will report additional information at the next meeting.  If action is required before the next meeting, I will notify the Commission.

E. Discussion and possible action to review and approve a revised policy for vendor responsibilities regarding sensitive personal information acquired by the Department

Stuart Platt – I would like to move this to the Executive Session discussion.  Chair Polunsky agreed.
Following Executive Session: Duncan Fox – have implemented the PSC mandated policy and have had some difficulties that we have worked through.

Commission passed unanimously.

F. Discussion and possible action regarding the Drivers License Division – Driver
Responsibility – Vendor Management HQ-08-37, September 2008

Comm. Barth – Said that she feels that the 35% target for collections seems very low.  Chief Judy Brown said that the DPS model is based on one from New Jersey, and a decision was made that DPS would not  become a hard-core collection agency and would not garnish wages.  I think we may be nearing a saturation point.

Comm. Brown asked who were the people/groups complaining.  If it is the criminals, OK, we’re doing our jobs.  What would be needed to increase the level of aggressiveness regarding collecting. Chief Brown said we would have to change our service level in the contract (contract is in place until 2013).  Chief Brian Lane said that there are some changes that could be implemented right away such as reporting non-payers to the credit bureaus and increasing the frequency of our collection calls.

Chairman Polunsky asked that each Commissioner receive a copy of the contract with a summary.  There was much concern from the PSC that way too much money is being left on the table (currently collecting about $175 million of the $600+ million out there).  I feel that we should be much more aggressive and not worry about the members of the legislature that have concerns regarding the public’s perception of DPS regarding being too aggressive in this collection process.  Chair Polunsky asked that representatives from the contractor at the next PSC meeting and we will have it on the agenda.

G. Review of pending Contracts:
1.  Deliverables-Based Information Technology Services

2.  Stop Stick Tire Deflation Devices

3.  Texas Highway Patrol Information Systems

Chief Oscar Ybarra – Chief of Finance – Stop Stick –  Dustin Crain of HP is the lead person for this contract; Deliverables -Todd Early of HP is the lead person on this contract. The 3rd contract will be discussed in Executive Session. Oscar Ybarra reported following the Exec. Session – Deserie ____ is the lead person.
IV. EXECUTIVE SESSION (if required) to consult with legal counsel regarding pending or contemplated litigation or settlement offers or to  th legal advice on items posted on this agenda; deliberation regarding real estate matters; consideration of any other items authorized by law, including personnel matters, the Directors action of discharging employees as identified in this agenda; ongoing criminal investigations

Break to Closed Session at 11:55 am.
Reconvene: 2:37

A. Reports, discussion, deliberation and possible action regarding the following:
1.  Procurement of a project management contract to implement organizational changes and planning regarding the development and administration of the project management plan for reorganization

Comm. Clowe not being present, tabled until next meeting.

2.  Executive search firm services for executive director and management positions, interview processes for those positions, status report on the search, and possible action regarding the employment of management position candidates

Comm. Clowe, again.  Not present.  Chair Polunsky – It is the intention of the Committee to meet with search firm, Corn-Ferry, and Comm. Barth and Comm. Clowe will conduct interviews in Dallas or elsewhere, and then bring recommendations to the full Board.

Chief Brown- We have four offices up and running, and are working through some difficulties with the Conflikr virus.  1404.  Tonight we will work on Waco and Bryant, and next week we will move on to Houston. We are asking for an additional $50,000 for the roll-out to cover contingency costs.

B. Discussion and possible action regarding the ongoing Sunset Review recommendations and other legislation affecting the Department and the Public Safety Commission

Chief Michael Kelley – Government Relations – Gave a review of the Bills Tracked during the 81st Legislative Session.  Of the 7419 bills filed, DPS tracked 1102 of them.  33% of the tracked bills (364) were passed to engrossment.

Sunset mandates the PRT standards for DPS must include individual fitness goals relative to an officer’s age and gender.  The bill requires DPS to adopt a reward policy that provides incentives to peace officers who participate in a physical fitness and wellness program.  Col. Beckworth clarified that the bill did not remove the “condition of employment” from the current law, so all affected personnel must still work to pass the PRT.

Office of Inspector General will replace the Internal Affairs Division and will report directly to the Public Safety Commission.

The Private Security Division becomes the Private Security Board and codifies them under DPS and the Public Safety Commission.

By December 1, 2010, the Sunset Advisory Commission will review the DPS implementation of the Sunset changes.
C. Update report, discussion and possible action to develop an approach for transforming the administration of the Driver License Division to a civilian model

Asst. Chief Bob Burroughs, Drivers License Division – Several supervisors have moved to posted positions in HP.  We have just posted 29 new civilian positions.  The process is ongoing.  We have a training program for new civilians coming into DL.  The first class is set for July 21.

D. Discussion and possible action regarding review and reconsideration of physical readiness standards for commissioned officers of the Department

Chief Valarie Fulmer –  Chief of Administration – the Committee continues to meet.  We will be discussing possible incentives and will be reviewing the surveys for recommendations.

E.  Discussion and possible action regarding security measures for Department

Discussed in the Executive Session

F.  Discussion and possible action regarding the procurement of an information management intrusion detection system.

Brian Lane, Chief of IMS – We are working on a contract with AT&T.  I do not have a projected date.  I’m waiting for a new draft.  Comm. Barth would like to have a subcontract for our interim coverage.

It was moved that a contract retroactive to the time that AT&T donated the equipment to deal with the Conflikr virus for a period of 6 mos.  Passed unanimously.

G. Report, discussion and possible action regarding the after action report on computer virus containment

Nothing new to report.

A. Commission member reports and discussion


B. Budget Matters

Oscar Ybarra, Chief of Finance– 6 Goals for funding
1. Highway Patrol – 9.8% increase
2. Drivers License Division 3.2 % increase
3. Criminal Law Enforcement – 5.4% increase
4. Emergency Management – 1.9% decrease
5. Regulatory Programs – 12.6 % increase
6. Indirect Administration (IMS, TDEKS, etc.) –  3.5% increase
Overall, there is an 8.8% increase in funding.

Crime labs – 6 FTE’s

C. Audit & Inspection Report

Ferrell Walker, Director of Audit & Inspections – Continuing with Audits through the summer.

D. Division status reports on activities and action taken

Valarie Fulmer, Chief of Administration – You have my report. We had a good recruiting effort in Michigan.

Tom Ruocco, Chief of Criminal Law Enforcement – You have my report.  Recovery of kidnapped victims doesn’t end the story…we have been successful in getting convictions as well.

Jack Collie, Chief of Emergency Management –  our chief focus in on severe weather preparedness. We have about 10 initiatives, and I want to report on one of them – Texas Re-Entry Task Force. t 21-23 we will have a major trial of this system.
We are very happy with the outcome of the legislature with 29 additional FTE’s and additional $62 million in funding for disaster preparedness.
At the end of July we will conduct another major exercise.

David Baker, Chief of Highway Patrol – Chief Baker reported on success in getting commercial vehicles off the road that are in violation. Trooper Brad Gibson from Big Spring won the CVE Inspection Challenge in College Station and will go to Philadelphia to compete nationally.

Chief Brown e

Judy Brown, Chief of Drivers License – Chair Polunsky said that Chief Brown has announced her retirement from the Department after 32 years and thanked her for tremendous service.  Col. Beckworth thanked her as well.

Tony Leal, Texas Rangers Chief – You have my report.  Another real cold case has been solved from 1994, and located bodies on a ranch in Medina County. The rest is pretty routine murders and mayhem.

Brian Lane, Chief of IMS – Nothing additional to add to my report. I thank the PSC and the agency for supporting me as the interim Chief.
Col. Beckworth announced the hiring of a new CIO (Chief Information Officer) – Brad Rabble, who comes to DPS from USAA where he was a Vice President.  He brings vast experience to the position. He will begin as of July 29.

The following items may be discussed and acted upon in a single motion or discussed separately as determined by the Commission
A. Discussion and possible action on the Directors action of discharging probationary employees John Cavaco and Gary Teague (Tx Gov Code 551.074)

B. Discussion and possible action on appointments of Special Rangers and Special Texas Rangers pursuant to Government Code chapter 411, Secs. 411.023 & 411.024:  Miguel J. Cordero, Darrell W. Estes, Raul Garza, Richard J. Peche, Ray A. Woods, Stanley E. Clark

C.  Discussion and possible action on adoption of proposed rules:
Proposed repeal of Rules 3.7–3.9, 37 TAC Secs. 3.7–3.9, regarding crash investigations, as published in 34 TexReg 2451, April 17, 2009

D.  Discussion and possible action on proposed rule for publication:
Proposed amendments to Rule 28.93, 37 TAC Sec. 28.93, regarding Policy, Procedure and Rule Compliance for DNA laboratories

All items approved unanimously.




July 16, 2009


4:20 pm

The Commission may take items out of the order in which they are posted on this agenda.  Also, an item that has been adopted, passed upon, delayed or tabled for a later meeting may be considered or reconsidered at the same meeting.


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