|(a) Purpose. The purpose of this section is to establish
the procedures by which a Requestor may ask that a Reasonable Accommodation
is made to the Department. For rules governing the handling of reasonable
accommodation requests and responsibilities of entities receiving
funds or resources from the Department see Subchapter B, §1.204
of this Chapter. This rule is statutorily authorized by Tex. Gov't
Code, 2306.066(e), which requires the Executive Director to prepare
a written plan to provide persons with disabilities an opportunity
to participate in the Department's programs, and in accordance with
the Fair Housing Act, and other federal and state civil rights laws.
(b) Definitions. The following words and terms, when
used in this section, shall have the following meanings, unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise.
(1) Board--Texas Department of Housing and Community
Affairs Governing Board.
(2) Division Manager or Director--Department staff
member supervising the division or area of a division containing the
program for which a Reasonable Accommodation is being requested.
(3) Disability--A physical or mental impairment that
substantially limits one or more major life activities; or having
a record of such an impairment; or being regarded as having such an
impairment. Included in this meaning is the term handicap as defined
in the Fair Housing Act, or as defined by other applicable federal
or state law.
(4) Fair Housing Act--Fair Housing Act of 1968, also
known as Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968.
(5) Reasonable Accommodation--An accommodation and/or
modification that is an alteration, change, exception, or adjustment
to a program, service, building, or dwelling unit, that will allow
a qualified person with a Disability to:
(A) Participate fully in a program;
(B) Take advantage of a service;
(C) Live in a dwelling; or
(D) Use and enjoy a dwelling.
(6) Requestor--Includes applicants, members of the
public, clients of Department programs, and program participants.
(7) Section 504--Section 504 of the Rehabilitation
Act of 1973, as amended.
(1) The Requestor of the Reasonable Accommodation shall
submit a request to the Division Manager or Director. A request does
not have to be in writing. A request can be made in a face-to-face
conversation with a Division Manager or Director or using any other
method of communication. A request is any communication in which an
individual clearly asks or states that they need the Department to
provide or to change something because of a Disability.
(2) The request, whether oral or written, must contain,
(A) The Department program or procedure for which an
accommodation is being requested;
(B) Household information to include name and address;
(C) Description of the Reasonable Accommodation being
(D) Reason the Reasonable Accommodation is necessary.
(E) In the case of oral requests, the Division Manager
or Director will create a written summary of the request.
(3) The Division Director will coordinate with the
Fair Housing Manager and the supervising Director, if any, and may
ask for additional information from the Requestor. Staff should address
Reasonable Accommodations requests promptly. If making such a Reasonable
Accommodation would involve incurring expense, staff should consult
with their Division Manager or Director to ensure that they remain
within their approved budget or, if additional measures beyond those
within budget are required, that they are promptly considered and
a compliant decision made. Upon having the applicable information,
the Division Director or Manager and Fair Housing Manager will determine:
(A) If the proposed Reasonable Accommodation is covered
under Section 504 and/or the Fair Housing Act, or any other federal
or state law; and
(B) Whether to recommend to the Executive Director
approval, an alternative Reasonable Accommodation, or denial.
(4) The request and recommendation, are then sent to
the Executive Director or their designee, resulting in one of the
(A) The Executive Director determines Board action
is not necessary and approves the request;
(B) The Executive Director proposes an alternative
Reasonable Accommodation to the Requestor;
(C) The Executive Director determines Board action
is necessary and presents the request and any proposed alternative
Reasonable Accommodation at an ensuing Board meeting. The Executive
Director can choose to include a recommendation for or against the
(D) The Executive Director refers the request to the
Department's Dispute Resolution Coordinator for an Alternative Dispute
Resolution procedure as outlined in 10 TAC §1.17; or
(E) The Executive Director denies the request. In the
case of a denial, the Requestor can ask that their request be placed
on the agenda for the next available Board meeting.