Chapter 9: Public Policy and Administration

Lt. Governor

      1. Elected to four year term
      2. Performs executive tasks when governor away
      3. Must have same qualifications as governor
      4. Salary is $7,200 per year

Attorney General

      1. Elected to four year term
      2. Represents the state and its agencies in court when state is a party in a case
      3. Responsible for legal matters such as consumer protection
      4. Greatest power is showing opinions on questions concerning constitutionality of existing or proposed litigation

Comptroller of Public Accounts

1. Elected to four year term
2. Custodian of all public money
3. Chief accounting officer and tax collector
4. Keeps all accounts of the state, signs all warrants paid by the state
5. Before an appropriations bill can be passed by the legislature, the comptroller must certify that revenue is expected to be available;   legislature can override with a 4/5 vote

Commissioner of General Land Office

    1. Around 12 million acres in Texas are administered by this office; awards oil, gas, sulfur leases on state owned land
    2. Supervises leasing of all state owned land
    3. Elected to four year term

Commissioner of Agriculture

    1. Elected to four year term
    2. Heads state department of agriculture which promotes agriculture by
      1. Protecting through licensing
      2. Advertising agricultural products grown in Texas
      3. Improving farming methods
      4. d. Checks gasoline pumps and scales which weigh food

  1. Secretary of State
    1. Appointed by Governor to four year term & confirmed by the Senate
    2. Custodian of records of the state
    3. Keeper of the seal of the state
    4. Chief election officer for the state
    5. Presides over the House until the Speaker is elected
    6. Issues certificates of incorporation
    7. Administers the "blue sky laws"
  2. Adjutant General
        1. Command the state militia
        2. Who is a military officer
        3. Serves both the governor and the U.S. Dept. of Defense

        A. State Board of Education

  1. Members elected based on Congressional districts to four year terms;
  2. sets standards to be met by schools, determine teacher requirements
  3. Establishes policy for the state's primary, secondary, and vocational schools;
  4. approves textbooks for classroom use;
  5. Sets general policies for all school districts.

B. The Texas Railroad Commission

1. It is created in 1891 to regulate the state's railroads;
2. Federal court decisions in 1984 stripped the Railroad Commission of its power to regulate railroads; Now, the  FCC has jurisdiction over railroads in Texas and other states.
3. has regulating jurisdiction over buses, trucks, and oil and natural gas firms doing business in Texas, mining operation of the state's coal, lignite and uranium deposits;
      

  1. Ex Officio is a Latin term for "by virtue of the office";
  2. Many persons hold a position on a board or agency by virtue of their holding some other related positions;
  3. It serves to coordinate the efforts of related agencies and strengthen responsibility.

Example:

Lt. Governor is the ex officio chairman of the Legislative Budget Board, The Legislative Council, the Legislative Audit Board.

      1. Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
        1. Appointed by the governor to six year overlapping terms
        2. Responsible to statewide direction for all state colleges and universities.
      2. Public Utilities Commission
        1. Appointed by governor to six year term
        2. Regulates rates on utilities
      3. Alcoholic Beverage Commission
        1. Appointed by governor to six year term
        2. Regulates all aspects of alcoholic beverages in the state
      4. Parks and Wildlife Commission
        1. Appointed by governor to six year term
        2. Regulate hunting and fishing in Texas
        3. Supervise state parks

Multiple Choice Questions