In 2005, the Texas Legislature enacted House Bill 914, adding Chapter 176 to the Local Government Code. This imposed new disclosure and reporting obligations on vendors and potential vendors to local government entities beginning on January 1, 2006. This includes school districts. The new law requires school board members and superintendents to file conflicts disclosure statements revealing certain relationships they may have with vendors doing business or seeking to do business with their school districts. It also mandates that trustees and superintendents report certain gifts received from current vendors and those seeking to become vendors. The Texas Ethics Commission adopted Forms CIS (for local government officers) and CIQ (for vendors) pursuant to HB 914. The Texas Ethics Commission does NOT have jurisdiction to interpret or enforce Chapter 176 of the Government Code, and these forms are NOT filed with the commission.
Vendors are required to file a Conflict of Interest Questionnaire with the District if a relationship exists between the vendor's company and an officer of the District. Vendors are encouraged to review and become familiar with all disclosure requirements of Texas Local Government Code, Chapter 176.
Disclosure is required from vendors regarding each affiliation or business relationship between the vendor and:
- an officer of the District;
- an officer of the District that results in the officer or family member receiving taxable income;
- an officer of the District that results in the vendor receiving taxable income that does not come from the District;
- a corporation or other business entity in which an officer of the District serves as an officer or director, or holds an ownership interest of 10% or more;
- an employee or contractor of the District who makes recommendations to an officer of the District regarding the expenditure of money;
- an officer of the District who appoints or employs an officer of the District that is the subject of questionnaire; and
- any person or entity that might cause a conflict of interest with the District.
Forms must be filed:
- No later than the seventh business day after the date that the person begins contract discussions or negotiations with the government entity, or submits to the entity an application, response to the request for proposal or bid, correspondence, or other writing related to a potential agreement or the entity.
- The Vendor also shall file an updated questionnaire: a. not later than September 1 of each year in which a covered transaction is pending, and b. the seventh business day after the date of an event that would make a statement in questionnaire incomplete or inaccurate.
- A vendor is not required to file an updated questionnaire if the person had filed an updated statement on or after June 1, but before September 1 of the year. (No one is required to file a disclosure under this statute before January 1, 2006)
Vendors or potential vendors for the Hondo Independent School District shall complete the Conflict of Interest Questionnaire (CIQ) and return it to: Hondo Independent School District, PO Box 308, Hondo, Texas 78861