Lamont Jefferson and Rafael Anchia Appointed To Texas Sunset Advisory Commission

11/11/2009

AUSTIN – Two Haynes and Boone, LLP lawyers have been named to the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission, the powerful 12-member panel that advises the legislature whether state agencies should be continued or phased out.

Partners Rafael Anchia of the Dallas office of Haynes and Boone and Lamont Jefferson of San Antonio were among the new house-appointed commission members announced this week by Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio. Members serve four-year terms.

Mr. Jefferson, who focuses his trial practice on business, insurance, and fiduciary duty litigation, will serve as the House’s public member. Mr. Anchia, D-Dallas, is serving his third term for District 103 in the Texas House of Representatives. Texas Monthly named him "Rookie of the Year" during the 79th Legislative Session and one of the "10 Best Legislators" during the 80th Legislative Session. He currently serves as vice-chair of the Pensions, Investments and Financial Services Committee.

The commission is expected to start work this month on assessments of agencies including the Texas Department of Transportation, Department of Insurance and the Texas Public Utility Commission.

“During tight budget times, the work of the commission becomes even more important,” Mr. Anchia said. “It can help streamline processes and incent efficiencies in our state agencies.”

Mr. Jefferson said his role as a public member is a key responsibility. “The Senate and the House each have one public member who serves in an at-large capacity representing the citizens of Texas,” Mr. Jefferson said. “It is an honor to be asked to serve, and a job that I will take very seriously.”

The Texas Legislature created the Sunset Advisory Commission in 1977 to identify and eliminate waste, duplication, and inefficiency in government agencies. The commission is a legislative body that reviews the policies and programs of more than 150 government agencies every 12 years.

Commissioners question the need for each agency, look for potential duplication of other public services or programs, and consider new and innovative changes to improve each agency's operations and activities. It seeks public input through hearings on every agency under Sunset review and recommends actions on each agency to the full legislature. In most cases, agencies under Sunset review are automatically abolished unless legislation is enacted to continue them.

Other new members announced by Mr. Straus are Reps. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton and Byron Cook, R-Corsicana. They join Linda-Harper Brown, R-Irving, and Carl Isett, R-Lubbock. The panel is chaired by Sen. Glenn Hegar, R-Katy; Mr. Bonnen will serve as vice-chairman.

Of the commission membership, six - five senators and one public member - are selected by the lieutenant governor, and six - five representatives and one public member - are selected by the speaker of the house.

Haynes and Boone, LLP is an international corporate law firm with offices in Texas, New York, California, Washington, D.C., Mexico City and Moscow, providing a full spectrum of legal services. With more than 500 attorneys, Haynes and Boone is ranked among the largest law firms in the nation by The National Law Journal. The firm has been recognized as one of the "Best Corporate Law Firms in America" (Corporate Board Member Magazine, 2001-2009), as one of "The Best 20 Law Firms to Work For" (Vault.com, 2009), and as a Top 100 law firm for both diversity (MultiCultural Law Magazine, 2009) and women (Women 3.0, 2008).

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