HBA-MPM, NIK H.B. 1828 76(R)BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 1828 By: Christian State Recreational Resources 8/11/1999 Enrolled BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Game wardens turn to justice of the peace courts for the adjudication of offenses punishable by a fine, but seizures of property believed to have been used in poaching must be handled in county courts. County courts often have crowded dockets, so cases can be left pending for two or three years, or dropped before any action is taken. H.B. 1828 authorizes the justice courts to grant disposition of seized property used in the commission of a crime concerning poaching or the illegal taking of wildlife to the Parks and Wildlife Department. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency, or institution. SECTION BY SECTION ANALYSIS SECTION 1. Amends Section 12.1105(c), Parks and Wildlife Code, to include the justice court as one of the authorities to which the warden or other peace officer is required to give notice of the seizure. SECTION 2. Amends Section 12.1106(b), Parks and Wildlife Code, to make a conforming change. SECTION 3. Amends Subchapter A, Chapter 62, Parks and Wildlife Code, by adding Section 62.017, as follows: Sec. 62.017. DISPOSITION OF SEIZED PROPERTY. (a) Authorizes a court convicting a person of violating Section 62.003 (Hunting from Vehicles), 62.004 (Hunting at Night), or 62.005 (Hunting with Light) to order any weapon or other personal property used in the commission of the offense destroyed or forfeited to the Parks and Wildlife Department (department). (b) Authorizes the department to use the property in its normal operation, sell or transfer the property, or destroy the property if the department receives a forfeiture order from a court as authorized by this section. (c) Provides that this section does not apply to a vehicle, aircraft, or vessel. (d) Requires the sale proceeds to be deposited in the game, fish, and water safety account if the disposition of property under this section is by sale of the property. SECTION 4. Effective date: September 1, 1999. SECTION 5. Makes application of this Act prospective. SECTION 6. Emergency clause.