Representation Before State Agencies
A Guide to Chapter 2004, Government Code
Revised October 6, 1997
Certain individuals who appear before state agencies in the executive branch of state government must register with the agency. State agencies must keep records of registrants, and must file reports with the Ethics Commission. Before September 1, 1997, state agencies filed reports with the Office of the Secretary of State.
An individual who has contact with an officer or employee of a state agency may be required to register with the agency. To determine whether an individual must register, it is necessary to know the answers to the following questions:
- Is the individual contacting an officer or employee of the state agency in person?
- Is the contact on behalf of an individual, firm, partnership, corporation, or association about a matter before the state agency?
- Is the contact being made in order to attempt to influence the action of an officer or employee of the state agency?
- Does the contact concern a matter that is not on file with the state agency as a pleading or other instrument that discloses the individuals representation?
- Is the individual receiving compensation or any thing of value for the contact?
If the answer to ALL of these questions is "YES," the individual must register with the agency unless the individual is an officer or employee of another state agency and is making contact on an interagency matter.
If the answer to ANY of these questions is "NO," the individual is not required to register.
Note: If the contact consists of making an appearance and participating at a public hearing, registration is not required.
Is There A Penalty For Not Registering?
An individual who does not register as required by Chapter 2004 of the Government Code commits a misdemeanor punishable by:
1) a fine of not more than $500;
2) confinement in jail for a term not to exceed six months; or
3) both the fine and imprisonment.
What Are The State Agencys Reporting And Filing Requirements?
There is not a prescribed registration form for all state agencies to use. Each state agency may create its own forms and procedures for recording the registration information. The Texas Ethics Commission has created a form that is available for other state agencies to use.
A state agency must prepare a report for each calendar quarter that includes the information from all registrations filed with the agency during the quarter. The report is filed with the Texas Ethics Commission not later than the 10th day of the month following the end of the calendar quarter.
|Period Covered||Report Due Date|
|January 1 through March 31||April 10|
|April 1 through June 30||July 10|
|July 1 through September 30||October 10|
|October 1 through December 31||January 10|
The Texas Ethics Commission is required to index each report and keep the report on file for four years after the date the report is filed.