Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 2593
By: Chavez
Economic Development


The U.S. Senate passed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) on
November 20, 1993. NAFTA went into effect January 1, 1994, establishing
free and open trading borders between the United States, Mexico, and
Canada.  This agreement was designed to change the nature of trade among
its partners, creating U.S. jobs and increasing import-export activity.
With the increasing impact of NAFTA and other changes in the state economy,
the Texas job market is shifting to high tech positions requiring a skilled
labor force.  According to the Texas Workforce Commission's Texas Labor
Market Review, the demand for computer-related occupations will continue to
increase as a result of the  advances in computer technology and the
continuing demand for new computer applications.   Workers skilled in
computer technology will continue to be needed across all industries.
House Bill 2593 requires the Texas Workforce Commission to establish and
implement a pilot program for technology training for certain persons.   


It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that rulemaking
authority is expressly delegated to the Texas Workforce Commission in
SECTION 1 (Section 301.0674, Labor Code) of this bill. 


House Bill 2593 amends the Labor Code to require the Texas Workforce
Commission (commission) by rule to establish and implement a pilot program
under which the commission is required to provide, or through competitive
grants, contract with other persons to provide adult technology training
for residents of the state who are first-generation citizens of the United
States, are displaced workers as a result of the North American Free Trade
Agreement or other changes in the state economy, or do not speak English as
their primary language.  The bill requires the pilot program to be
established to provide training in an urban community, a rural community,
and a community in the region of the state that borders the United Mexican

The bill authorizes the commission to obtain funds for the pilot program
from money appropriated to the commission and, to the extent possible, from
the telecommunications infrastructure fund, the Texas Education Agency, the
federal government, and private corporate partners.  The bill requires the
commission, not later than December 1 of each year, to submit a report to
the governor and the members of the legislature regarding the status and
results of the pilot program.  The bill provides that these provisions
expire September 1, 2005. 


September 1, 2001.