Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 2427
By: King, Tracy
Ways & Means


Current law requires unclaimed property reports to be notarized.
Eliminating this requirement may reduce paper work and improve processing
efficiency by allowing the comptroller of public accounts (comptroller) to
take full advantage of electronic reporting automation.  H.B. 2427
eliminates the notary requirement from business property reports. 

Currently, the comptroller's office schedules receipt of property, from
abandoned safe deposit boxes, between November 1 of the current year and
June 1 of the following year.  The large volume of property is difficult to
handle with the existing staff of two employees.  This bill moves the
schedule for receipt of this property to November 1 of the current year
through November 1 of the following year, giving the comptroller's staff a
full year to process abandoned property. 

Under current law, once a business files an unclaimed property report it is
required by law to file subsequent annual reports even if there is no
additional unclaimed property to report to the comptroller's office.  In
1998, 5,000 of property reports  reflected "0," or no, unclaimed property.
This bill repeals Section 74.101(b) (relating to property reports),
Property Code, to require businesses to file an unclaimed property report
only when the business has abandoned property to sent to the state. 


It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that rulemaking
authority is expressly delegated to the comptroller of public accounts in
SECTION 1 (Sec. 74.102, Property Code) of this bill. 


SECTION 1.  Amends Section 74.102, Property Code, as follows:

Sec. 74.102.  New title: SIGNED STATEMENT.  Requires the person preparing a
property report under this section to provide a statement signed by, rather
than verification made under oath and executed by, a specified person.
Authorizes the comptroller of public accounts (comptroller) to adopt rules
or policies relating to the signature requirement, as the comptroller deems
appropriate, to maximize the use of future developments in electronic
filing technology.  Makes a conforming change. 

SECTION 2.  Amends Section 74.301(c), Property Code, to move from after
November 1 but before June 1, to before November 1, the date by which the
comptroller is required to deliver property under this subsection
(regarding the contents of a safe deposit box). 

SECTION 3.  Repealer: Section 74.101(b), Property Code (relating to
property reports when there is no reportable property). 

SECTION 4.  Effective date: September 1, 1999.

SECTION 5.  Emergency clause.