HBA-MSH C.S.H.B. 2318 77(R)BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisC.S.H.B. 2318 By: Solomons County Affairs 4/20/2001 Committee Report (Substituted) BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Under current law, it is unclear whether counties and municipalities may accept competitive bids electronically because such bids are required to be sealed. Modern identification and security measures for electronic communications make it possible to ensure the confidentiality of the bids. Electronic bidding should help streamline the processing of bids and vendors may benefit from the convenience. Furthermore, the requirement for the publication of notices of bids and proposals is costly and untimely compared to posting the notice on the Internet. C.S.H.B. 2318 authorizes municipalities and counties to receive bids and post notices via the Internet. 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. ANALYSIS C.S.H.B. 2318 amends the Local Government Code to authorize a municipality, county, or commissioners court to provide for the receipt of bids or proposals through the Internet or by other electronic means if the municipality or county implements security measures regarding the electronic transmission of information that ensures that bids and proposals are not viewed by unauthorized persons or tampered with and that the bids and proposals remain effectively unopened until the proper time. The bill specifies that a bid or proposal is considered sealed if it is received through the Internet or by other electronic means in accordance with security measures that the municipality or county implements (Secs. 252.004, 262.0235, 263.007, and 271.906). In lieu of publishing notice in a newspaper the bill authorizes a county with a population of 400,000 or more or municipality with a population of 25,000 or more to post certain notices on its Internet website. The bill requires the county or municipality to post such notices for at least two consecutive weeks and publish notice in a newspaper that the county or municipality is soliciting proposals or bids on its website (Secs. 252.041, 262.025, and 263.007). The bill sets forth provisions regarding the posting of an intention to issue obligation certificates for at least two consecutive weeks on the Internet (Secs. 271.049 and 271.055). The bill authorizes a commissioners court in a county with a population of 400,000 or more to post notice of a sale of surplus or salvage property on the county's Internet website and requires that such a notice be posted for at least two consecutive weeks and be first posted between 30 and 10 days before the date of the sale (Sec. 263.1535). EFFECTIVE DATE September 1, 2001. COMPARISON OF ORIGINAL TO SUBSTITUTE C.S.H.B. 2318 differs from the original to authorize a county with a population of 400,000 or more or municipality with a population of 25,000 or more to post certain notices on its Internet website (Secs. 252.041, 262.025, and 263.007). The substitute authorizes a commissioners court in a county with a population of 400,000 or more to post notice of a sale of surplus or salvage property on the county's Internet website (Sec. 263.1535).