|(a) Statutory authority. The Policy Council for Children
and Families (Policy Council) is established in accordance with Texas
Government Code §531.012.
(b) Purpose. The Policy Council works to improve the
coordination, quality, efficiency, and outcomes of services provided
to children with disabilities and their families through the state's
health, education, and human services systems.
(c) Tasks. The Policy Council performs the following
(1) studies and makes recommendations to improve coordination
between the state's health, education, and human services systems
to ensure that children with disabilities and their families have
access to high quality services;
(2) studies and makes recommendations to improve long-term
services and supports, including community-based supports for children
with special health and mental health care needs, as well as children
with disabilities and their families receiving protective services
from the state;
(3) studies and makes recommendations regarding emerging
issues affecting the quality and availability of services available
to children with disabilities and their families;
(4) studies and makes recommendations to better align
resources with the service needs of children with disabilities and
(5) studies and makes recommendations to ensure that
the needs of children with autism spectrum disorder and their families
are addressed, and that all available resources are coordinated to
meet those needs;
(6) makes recommendations regarding the implementation
and improvement of the STAR Kids managed care program; and
(7) performs other tasks consistent with its purpose
as requested by the Executive Commissioner.
(d) Reporting requirements.
(1) Reporting to Executive Commissioner. By December
31 of each year, the Policy Council files a written report with the
Executive Commissioner that covers the meetings and activities in
the immediately preceding fiscal year. The report includes:
(A) a list of the meeting dates;
(B) the members' attendance records;
(C) a brief description of actions taken by the committee;
(D) a description of how the committee accomplished
(E) a summary of the status of any committee recommendations
(F) a description of activities the committee anticipates
undertaking in the next fiscal year;
(G) recommended amendments to this section; and
(H) the costs related to the committee, including the
cost of HHSC staff time spent supporting the committee's activities
and the source of funds used to support the committee's activities.
(2) Reporting to Executive Commissioner and Texas Legislature.
By November 1 of each even-numbered year, the Policy Council submits
a written report to the Executive Commissioner and Texas Legislature
(A) describes current gaps and barriers to the provision
of services to children with disabilities and their families through
the state's health and human services system; and
(B) provides recommendations consistent with the Policy
(e) The Policy Council complies with the requirements
for open meetings under Texas Government Code Chapter 551, as if it
were a governmental body.
(1) The Policy Council is composed of 24 members:
(A) five nonvoting, ex officio members, one from each
of the following state programs and agencies or their successors,
as selected by the represented agency:
(i) HHSC Medicaid and CHIP Services;
(ii) HHSC Health, Developmental & Independence
(iii) Texas Council on Developmental Disabilities;
(iv) Texas Department of Family and Protective Services;
(v) Texas Department of State Health Services;
(B) eleven voting members selected by the Executive
Commissioner from families with a child under the age of 26 with a
(i) at least one adolescent or young adult under the
age of 26 with a disability receiving services from a health and human
services system agency; and
(ii) at least one member of a family of a child with
mental health care needs; and
(iii) at least one member of a family of a child with
autism spectrum disorder;
(C) eight professional voting members, selected by
the Executive Commissioner, one each to represent the following types
of organizations or areas of expertise:
(i) a faith-based organization;
(ii) an organization that is an advocate for children
(iii) a physician providing services to children with
(iv) an individual with expertise providing mental
health services to children with disabilities;
(v) an organization providing services to children
with disabilities and their families;
(vi) an organization providing community services;
(vii) an organization or professional that advocates
for or provides services or resources to children and the families
of children with autism spectrum disorder; and
(viii) one at large position for an individual with
expertise or experience relevant to the purposes and tasks of the
(2) In selecting members, the Executive Commissioner
considers ethnic and minority representation and diverse disability
(3) Members appointed under paragraph (1)(B) and (C)
of this subsection serve staggered terms so that the terms of approximately
one-quarter of these members' terms expire on December 31 of each
(4) Except as necessary to stagger terms, the term
of office of each non-agency member, described in paragraph (1)(B)
and (C) of this subsection, is four years.
(5) A member with an expiring term may apply to serve
one additional term.
(6) A member with an expiring term may continue to
serve on the Policy Council until a new member is appointed.
(g) Officers. The Policy Council selects from among
its members a presiding officer and an assistant presiding officer.
(1) The presiding and assistant presiding officers
must be appointed family representatives.
(2) The presiding officer serves until December 31
of each odd-numbered year. The assistant presiding officer serves
until December 31 of each even-numbered year.
(3) A presiding officer or assistant presiding officer
remains in his or her position until the Policy Council selects a
successor; however, the individual may not remain in office past the
individual's membership term.
(h) Required Training. Each member shall complete all
training on relevant statutes and rules, including this section and §351.801
of this subchapter (relating to Authority and General Provisions)
and Texas Government Code §531.012, and Texas Government Code
Chapters 551 and 2110. HHSC will provide the training.
(i) Date of abolition. The Policy Council is abolished,
and this section expires, on December 31, 2024.