Office of House Bill AnalysisS.B. 283
By: West
Juvenile Justice and Family Issues


Currently, law enforcement officers may dispose of a juvenile case without
having a juvenile court adjudicate the matter.  According to a 1997 survey
by the Office of Court Administration, over half of Texas counties, usually
the least populated areas, do not emphasize an informal disposition of
juvenile cases such as through deferred prosecution, First Program,
Neighborhood/County Committees, Teen Court, and early intervention
programs.  S.B. 283 requires the juvenile board of a county to develop
informal guidelines for the disposition of juvenile cases. 


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 1.  Amends Section 52.03(a), Family Code, to provide that one of
the conditions of a law enforcement officer's authorization to dispose of a
case of a child taken into custody without referral to juvenile court is if
guidelines for such dispositions have been adopted by the juvenile board of
the county in which the disposition is made as required by Section 52.032.
Redesignates Subdivisions (3)-(4) to (2)-(3).  Makes conforming and
nonsubstantive changes. 

SECTION 2.  Amends Section 52.031(c), Family Code, to make conforming
changes with respect to the disposition of a child under the first offender

SECTION 3.  Amends Chapter 52, Family Code, by adding Section 52.032, as

Sec. 52.032.  INFORMAL DISPOSITION GUIDELINES.  Requires the juvenile board
of each county to adopt guidelines for the disposition of a child under
Section 52.03 (Disposition Without Referral to Court) or 52.031 (First
Offender Program) in cooperation with each law enforcement agency in the
county.  Prohibits the guidelines from being considered mandatory.   

SECTION 4.  Requires the juvenile board of each county to adopt the
guidelines required by Section 52.032, Family Code, as added by this Act,
not later than January 1, 2000. 

SECTION 5.  Makes application of this Act prospective to conduct that
occurs on or after January 1, 2000.  Establishes that conduct violating a
penal law of this state occurs on or after January 1, 2000, if every
element of the violation occurs on or after that date.  

SECTION 6.  Effective date: September 1, 1999.

SECTION 7.  Emergency clause.