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  By: Taylor of Collin, et al. S.B. No. 500
 
  (Geren, Davis of Harris, Howard, King of Parker,
 
  Johnson of Dallas, et al.)
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to the effect of certain felony convictions of public
  elected officers.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Chapter 810, Government Code, is amended by
  adding Section 810.002 to read as follows:
         Sec. 810.002.  CERTAIN ELECTED OFFICIALS INELIGIBLE FOR
  RETIREMENT ANNUITY. (a)  In this section:
               (1)  "Governing body of a public retirement system" and
  "public retirement system" have the meanings assigned by Section
  802.001.
               (2)  "Qualifying felony" means any felony involving:
                     (A)  bribery;
                     (B)  the embezzlement, extortion, or other theft
  of public money;
                     (C)  perjury;
                     (D)  coercion of public servant or voter;
                     (E)  tampering with governmental record;
                     (F)  misuse of official information;
                     (G)  conspiracy or the attempt to commit any of
  the offenses described by Paragraphs (A)-(F); or
                     (H)  abuse of official capacity.
         (b)  This section applies only to a person who is:
               (1)  a member of the elected class of the Employees
  Retirement System of Texas as described by Section 812.002(a)(1) or
  (2); or
               (2)  otherwise eligible for membership in a public
  retirement system wholly or partly because the person was elected
  or appointed to an elected office.
         (c)  Except as provided by Subsection (d), a member of a
  public retirement system is not eligible to receive a service
  retirement annuity under the retirement system if the member is
  convicted of a qualifying felony committed while in office and
  arising directly from the official duties of that elected office.
         (d)  The retirement system, on receipt of notice of a
  conviction under Subsection (e) or (k), any similar notice of a
  conviction of a qualifying felony from a United States district
  court or United States attorney, or any other information that the
  retirement system determines by rule is sufficient to establish a
  conviction of a qualifying felony, shall suspend payments of an
  annuity to a person the system determines is ineligible to receive
  the annuity under Subsection (c). A person whose conviction is
  overturned on appeal or who meets the requirements for innocence
  under Section 103.001(a)(2), Civil Practice and Remedies Code:
               (1)  is entitled to receive an amount equal to the
  accrued total of payments and interest earned on the payments
  withheld during the suspension period; and
               (2)  may resume receipt of annuity payments on payment
  to the retirement system of an amount equal to the contributions
  refunded to the person under Subsection (f).
         (e)  Not later than the 30th day after the conviction of a
  person of a qualifying felony, the governmental entity to which the
  person was elected or appointed must provide written notice of the
  conviction to the public retirement system in which the person is
  enrolled. The notice must comply with the administrative rules
  adopted by the public retirement system under Subsection (j).
         (f)  A member who is ineligible to receive a service
  retirement annuity under Subsection (c) is entitled to a refund of
  the member's service retirement annuity contributions, including
  interest earned on those contributions.
         (g)  Benefits payable to an alternate payee under Chapter 804
  who is recognized by a domestic relations order established before
  the effective date of this subsection are not affected by a member's
  ineligibility to receive a service retirement annuity under
  Subsection (c).
         (h)  On conviction of a member for a qualifying felony, a
  court may, in the interest of justice and in the same manner as in a
  divorce proceeding, award half of the service retirement annuity
  forfeited by the member as the separate property of an innocent
  spouse if the annuity is partitioned or exchanged by written
  agreement of the spouses as provided by Subchapter B, Chapter 4,
  Family Code.  The amount awarded to the innocent spouse may not be
  converted to community property.
         (i)  Ineligibility for a service retirement annuity under
  this section does not impair a person's right to any other
  retirement benefit for which the person is eligible.
         (j)  The governing body of a public retirement system shall
  adopt rules and procedures to implement this section.
         (k)  A court shall notify the retirement system of the terms
  of a conviction of a person convicted of an offense described by
  Subsection (c).
         SECTION 2.  Chapter 601, Government Code, is amended by
  adding Section 601.011 to read as follows:
         Sec. 601.011.  VACANCY ON FINAL FELONY CONVICTION OF MEMBER
  OF LEGISLATURE, GOVERNOR, OR STATE ELECTED OFFICIAL. A member of
  the legislature, the governor, or a state elected official
  convicted of a felony vacates the member's, governor's, or
  official's office on the date the conviction becomes final.
         SECTION 3.  Article 42.01, Code of Criminal Procedure, is
  amended by adding Section 12 to read as follows:
         Sec. 12.  In addition to the information described by
  Section 1, the judgment should reflect affirmative findings entered
  pursuant to Article 42.0196.
         SECTION 4.  Chapter 42, Code of Criminal Procedure, is
  amended by adding Article 42.0196 to read as follows:
         Art. 42.0196.  FINDING REGARDING OFFENSE RELATED TO
  PERFORMANCE OF PUBLIC SERVICE. (a) In the trial of an offense
  described by Section 810.002, Government Code, the judge shall make
  an affirmative finding of fact and enter the affirmative finding in
  the judgment in the case if the judge determines that the defendant
  is:
               (1)  a member of the elected class described by Section
  810.002(b)(1), Government Code, while a member of the Employees
  Retirement System of Texas; or
               (2)  a holder of an elected office for which the
  defendant wholly or partly became eligible for membership in a
  public retirement system.
         (b)  A judge who makes the affirmative finding described by
  this article shall make the determination and provide the notice
  required by Section 810.002(k), Government Code.
         SECTION 5.  Section 810.002, Government Code, as added by
  this Act, applies only to a member of a public retirement system who
  holds or has held elected office and, on or after the effective date
  of this Act, commits an offense that is a qualifying felony as
  defined by that section. A person who commits a qualifying felony
  before the effective date of this Act is subject to the law in
  effect on the date the offense was committed, and the former law is
  continued in effect for that purpose. For purposes of this section,
  an offense was committed before the effective date of this Act if
  any element of the offense occurred before that date.
         SECTION 6.  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, 2017.