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					CHAPTER 24:
 THE TEXAS
EXECUTIVE
  BRANCH
Current Texas Governor

Rick Perry (a Republican), was sworn in as
 Texas’ 47th governor on December 21, 2000.
 He was elected to a four-year term on
 November 5, 2002.
Formal/Informal Qualifications
for Becoming Governor
 Formal:
  – 30 years of age
  – American citizen and citizen of Texas for five years prior to
    election
 Informal:
  –   (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant)
  –   Male (there have only been two female governors in TX)
  –   Middle-aged Successful Businessperson or Attorney
  –   Conservative-to-Moderate candidate
Governor’s Tenure, Removal, &
Succession
4 year term
No limits on number of terms
Can be removed from office only by
 impeachment (requires simple majority of
 legislative members present; conviction
 requires 2/3 vote of Senate)
Lieutenant Governor is next in the line of
 succession
Governor’s Compensation

Salary is set by the legislature
Present salary is $115,345 (among highest in
 the nation)
Governor’s Mansion
Expense account
Professional staff
Governor’s Tools of Persuasion
 Informal or extra-legal powers: Powers that are not stated in
  rules, laws, or the constitution, but are usually derived from
  these legal powers.
 Formal or legal powers: Powers stated in rules, laws, or the
  constitution.
 Informal and formal powers are enhanced by other conditions
  such as the governor having:
   –   a strong personality
   –   political expertise
   –   prestige
   –   knack for public relations and political drama
   –   good press relations
   –   supporters with economic and political strength
   –   a favorable political climate
   –   good luck
Legislative Tools of Persuasion

 The Veto: Executive power to reject a proposed law
  unless a majority votes to override governor’s
  opposition.
 The Item Veto: Executive power to veto sections of a
  bill, but allowing remainder of bill to become law.
  Limited to appropriation bills only.
 Pre-session Bargaining: Negotiation that lets governor
  and legislative leaders reach necessary compromises
  prior to start of the session.
Legislative Tools of Persuasion
(cont.)
 Message Power: Allows governor to focus the
  attention of the press, legislators, and citizens on
  legislative proposals he/she considers important. Also
  called the “Bully Pulpit”.
 “Blue Ribbon” Commission: Governor appoints this
  commission consisting of influential citizens,
  politicians, and members of concerned special interest
  groups. Measures public reaction to proposals.
Executive Tools of Persuasion

 Appointive Powers: An effective governor will use the power
  of appointment to the maximum.
   – Senatorial Courtesy: Senators have some influence over
      appointments due to senatorial courtesy, giving them power
      to reject appointments of a political enemy from their
      senatorial district. Other senators show courtesy by not
      approving the appointee.
 Removal Powers: The governor is very limited in powers of
  removal.
 Chief of State: The governor serves as the symbol of TX,
  performs ceremonial duties, and represents the state at meetings
  with foreign officials and other governors.
The Organization of the Federal Government
Executive Tools of Persuasion
(cont.)
 Clemency Powers: Governor is very limited in his
  power to grant clemency (relief from criminal
  punishment).
 Budget Powers: The governor is designated the Chief
  Budget Officer of the state, however his/her proposals
  are usually not as influential as the Legislative Budget
  Board, headed by the Lt. Governor.
 Law Enforcement/Military Powers: The governor has
  very little law enforcement powers, however, he/she is
  the Commander-In-Chief of the Texas National Guard
  and Texas State Guard.
Texas Governor is a Weak
Governor
When compared to governors in other states,
 the TX governor is weak.
The denial of power to the governor (and
 legislature) has created a power vacuum in
 government that is filled willingly by interest
 groups and administrative agencies.
   Chief of Party

 The governor is the most visible leader of her or his
  party, and usually exercises influence within the party
  by controlling its executive committee. This party
  control permits what is considered one of the most
  powerful tools of the governor’s office: rewarding
  supporters with political patronage. As party leader, the
  governor may lead the party’s delegation to the national
  nominating convention and thus become involved in
  presidential politics. By stepping into the national
  political spotlight the governor can enhance his or her
  image at home by taking stands on issues (e.g., illegal
  immigration) over which she or he has little or no
  control but with which people identify.
Characteristics of Bureaucracy

 Bureaucracy
   – Develop wherever human beings organize themselves to
     systematically accomplish goals and in the process lose
     some of their flexibility and efficiency.
 Size
 Hierarchy
 Expertise
 Neutrality
Size

The largest number of government employees
 work for local governments.
Attempts are being made to make bureaucracies
 more efficient.
Privatization is one way to reduce
 bureaucracies by awarding government
 contracts to private sector.
Neutrality

 Administration of the laws in a neutral
  fashion
 The separation of politics and administration
 Texas attempted to depoliticize the
  bureaucracy by establishing the independent
  board and commission system.
Hierarchy

All bureaucracies are formally characterized as
 hierarchical structures.
An ideal hierarchy looks like the military chain
 of command or an organizational chart.
The governor is elected by the people to be the
 chief executive, but has little direct authority
 over most administrators.
Expertise

Individual bureaucrats should have an
 understanding of their jobs and the effects of
 their decisions on others.
Individual bureaucrats become experts in
 specialized area of administration.
The Bureaucracy and Public
Policy
 Clientele Groups
 The Legislature, the Lieutenant Governor, and The
  Speaker
 The Governor
 The Iron Texas Star
 Public Support
 Expertise
 Information
 Administration of the Law
 Accountability
Clientele Groups

The most natural allies for an agency are its
 clientele (or constituent) interest groups.
Interest groups- The groups that benefit directly
 from agency programs.
The agency reciprocates by protecting its
 clients within the administration.
Legislature, Lieutenant Governor,
and The Speaker
 Agency depends on legislative allies for laws
  expanding power, increase scope of duties, protection,
  and appropriations of funds.
 Because of short session and the power of presiding
  officers, agencies seek support of the Lieutenant
  governor and the Speaker of the House.
 Revolving door is the sleaze practice of corporations
  employing ex-administrators and ex-legislators as
  executives, lobbyists, or consultants.
The Governor

 The need of administrative agencies for the governor’s
  support depends on the extent of the governor’s formal
  and informal powers
 In Texas, the executive is decentralized and the
  governor has few direct administrative powers.
 The administrative autonomy is enhanced.
 The governor can influence agency programs by use
  of veto power and appointment to policymaking
  boards and commissions.
The Iron Texas Star

The coalition and mutual support that exists
 between legislative committees, administrative
 agencies, and economic special interest groups.
Economic interest groups provide the mortar
 that builds and holds together the five cornered
 coalition between administrators, legislators,
 the presiding officers, the governor, and the
 clientele interests.
Public Support

Good public relations are beneficial for any
 agency.
Favorable propaganda combined with myth and
 literature have created broadly based public
 support for the Texas Rangers and Texas
 Department of Criminal Justice.
Expertise

Administrators are experts in a field
A bureaucrat’s knowledge often exceeds the
 expertise of a legislator or governor.
Lifetime government employees advise
 policymaking officials.
Bureaucrats are important players in the
 political system.
Information

Administrative agencies gather information
 used by constituent interest groups and/or the
 general public.
Administrators may dispense or interpret
 information in a way that benefits their agency
 or constituency interest, thus affecting the
 formation of public policy.
Administration of the Law

Administrative Law – The rules and regulations
 that bureaucrats write to interpret and define
 the meaning of the law and enforcement.
Bureaucratic Review – The rules and
 regulations that define the substance of law and
 determine its effect on the public.
  Accountability
 Elective Accountability – The theory to make the
  bureaucracy directly accountable to the people through
  to democratic process.
 Legislative Accountability – Texas Legislator attempts
  to regulate the bureaucrat Administration.
   – Sunset Advisory Commission – Periodically reviews state
     boards, commissions and agencies to determine if they need
     alteration, termination or continuation.
 Accountability to the Chief Executive
   – In a cabinet system, the governor would appoint the
     administrators of the agency.
   – In Texas, the executive branch is decentralized.
 Bureaucratic Accountability
 Texas administrator are really accountable to interest
  group that benefit from the programs she or he
  administers.
 Open-meetings laws – Governments bodies must have
  meeting open to general public except for personal,
  land acquisition, and litigation matters.
 Open-records law – records of government
  proceedings be available to public.
 Whistleblowers – Government employees who expose
  bureaucratic excesses, blunders, corruption, or
  favoritism.
The Texas Administration

There is no single official who bears the
  ultimate responsibility for the actions of the
  Texas Bureaucracy.
  – Elected Executives
  – Appointed Executives
  – Boards and Commissions
Elected Executives: Attorney
General
Attorney General
  – Four-year term with no limits
  – The lawyer for the state and all officials, boards,
    and agencies in Texas state government.
  – Attorney General’s Opinion – The power to
    interpret law or to give an opinion that a law or
    practice does or does not violate other laws or
    Constitutions.
Elected Executives: Comptroller

Comptroller of Public Accounts
  – Four-year term with no limits.
  – Functions encompass either directly or indirectly
    almost all financial activities of state government.
  – Chief tax collect and Chief pre-audit accounting
    officer.
  – Certifies the approximate biennial income for the
    state and the financial condition of the state at the
    close of each year.
Commissioners of General Land
Office & Agriculture
 Commissioner of the General Land office
  – Elected for four-year term.
  – Managing and collecting rentals and leases for state-owned
    lands.
  – Awarding oil, gas, sulfur, and other hard-mineral leases for
    exploration and production on state lands.
  – Leasing mineral interests in the state’s riverbeds and
    tidelands.
  – Serves on the School Land Board that gives money to
    Permanent School Fund.
 Commissioner of Agriculture
  – Four years to oversee the Texas Department of Agriculture.
Appointed Executives

 Secretary of State – Appointed for four-year term to
  enforce uniform interpretation and application of the
  election laws.
 Adjutant General – Appointed two-year term to be the
  top military officer and exercises administrative
  jurisdiction over the Texas National Guard and the
  Texas State Guard.
 Commissioner, Health and Human Services – Two-
  year term to manage health and welfare agencies.
Appointed Executives (cont.)

Insurance Commissioner – A three-member
 State Board of Insurance appointed for a two-
 year terms that monitors and regulates the
 Texas insurance industry.
Boards and Commissions

 Elective Boards
  – Railroad Commission of Texas – Three members serve for
    overlapping six-year terms that oversee regulation of gas
    utilities, oil and gas pipelines, oil and gas drilling and
    pumping activities and intrastate railroad transportation.
  – Texas Education Agency- Fifteen members serving four-
    year staggered terms which comprises the State Board of
    Education and oversees and regulates the Texas public
    school system below the college level and administers
    national and state education laws.
Boards & Commissions

Ex Officio Boards – Boards whose members
 are automatically assigned due to their holding
 some other position.
Appointed Boards – These boards are usually
 appointed by the governor with the consent of
 the senate that, normally serve staggered terms,
 that makes policies for their agencies and
 appoint their own chief administrators.

				
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