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RULE §201.4Board Policies

(a) The executive director is hereby delegated authority by the board to grant a requesting state agency a compliance waiver from administrative rule, statewide standards, or other board policies. A state agency may request a compliance waiver from administrative rule, statewide standards or other board policy. The agency must clearly demonstrate to the department through written justification any performance or cost advantages to be gained and that the overall economic interests of the state are best served by granting the compliance waiver. The executive director of the department will notify the board when requests for waivers are received.

(b) The executive director is hereby delegated authority by the board to establish a sick leave pool program for employees of the department. The program must be consistent with the requirements of state law regarding state employee sick leave pools. The executive director is hereby appointed as the sick leave pool administrator. The executive director may designate another employee of the department to serve as the pool administrator under the supervision of the executive director. The pool administrator shall prescribe procedures relating to the operation of the sick leave pool program.

(c) In compliance with Chapter 2255, Texas Government Code, this subsection establishes the criteria, procedures and standards of conduct governing the relationship between the department and its officers and employees and private donors. This subsection authorizes the department to accept gifts and donations the department determines it is in the public interest to accept as a result of an emergency, including both natural and manmade disasters.

  (1) A private donor may make donations, including gifts, to the department to be spent or used for public purposes during times of emergency, including times of manmade and natural disasters. Use by the department of the donation must be consistent with the mission and duties of the department. If the donor specifies the purpose for which the donation may be spent, the department must expend the donation only for that purpose.

  (2) Donations must be spent in accordance with the State Appropriations Act and shall be deposited in the state treasury unless statutorily exempted.

  (3) The executive director is hereby delegated authority to coordinate all donations and may accept donations that do not exceed $250,000 in value on behalf of the department. Each donation accepted by the executive director must be acknowledged by the board within thirty days of acceptance of the donation by the department. Donations that exceed $250,000 in value must be accepted by the board.

  (4) Acceptance of the donation by either the board or the executive director of the department must be recorded in the board minutes, together with the name of the donor, description of the donation and a statement of the purpose of the donation.

  (5) Donations may be accepted only if the executive director or board, as applicable, determines the donation will further the department's mission or duties, provide significant public benefit and not influence or reasonably appear to influence, the department in the performance of its duties.

  (6) Execution of a donation agreement is required if the value of the donation exceeds $10,000 or if a written agreement is necessary, in the opinion of the department, to:

    (A) indemnify the department as to ownership;

    (B) prevent potential claims that could result from use of the donation;

    (C) document donation terms or conditions; or

    (D) describe how the donation will further the department's mission or duties, provides a significant public benefit and is not made in an effort to influence action on the part of the department.

  (7) Each donation agreement must include:

    (A) a description of the donation, including a determination of its value;

    (B) donor attestation of ownership rights in the donation;

    (C) any restrictions or terms of use of the donation imposed by the donor;

    (D) contact information for the donor;

    (E) a statement that the department takes no position regarding and is not responsible for any tax-related representations by the donor; and

    (F) the signature of the executive director and the donor or an authorized representative of the donor if it is an entity rather than an individual.

(d) The board shall set a strategic direction for the department by:

  (1) establishing a subcommittee for each major program area to monitor activities, major outsourced contracts, and new initiatives for and service offerings by the department;

  (2) evaluating and approving new initiatives for, or categories of, services offered by the department under the department's various programs.

(e) The board shall regularly evaluate the extent to which the department fulfills the department's information resources technology mission by providing cost-effective services and meeting customer needs.

(f) The board shall regularly evaluate department operations, including an evaluation of analytical data and information regarding trends in department revenue and expenses, as well as performance information.

(g) The board shall maintain an audit subcommittee of the board. The subcommittee shall oversee the department's internal auditor and any other audit issues that the board considers appropriate. The subcommittee shall evaluate whether the internal auditor has sufficient resources to perform the auditor's duties and ensure that sufficient resources are available.

(h) A department employee may not:

  (1) have an interest in, or in any manner be connected with, a contract or bid for a purchase of goods or services by the department; or

  (2) in any manner, including by rebate or gift, directly or indirectly accept or receive from a person to whom a contract may be awarded anything of value or a promise, obligation, or contract for future reward or compensation.

  (3) A department employee who violates paragraph (1) or (2) of this subsection is subject to disciplinary action, including dismissal.

  (4) The department shall train staff in the requirements of this subsection and Government Code, Chapter 572, and incorporate the requirements into the contract management guide and the department's internal policies, including employee manuals.

Source Note: The provisions of this §201.4 adopted to be effective September 20, 2011, 36 TexReg 6141; amended to be effective March 19, 2014, 39 TexReg 1926

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