the elected officialMerit-based civil service system- government jobs are given because of qualifications and formal training. Pay raises are keyed to job performanceSunshine laws are designed to make state government more transparent and accessible to the peopleSunset review is a formal assessment of the effectiveness of all statutory boards, commissions, and state agenciesSunset advisory commission reviews effectiveness of state agenciesTwelve members, including five each from the House and the Senate, appointed by the presiding officers of each chamber; two public members appointed by the speaker and the Lt. governorSunset review process requires most Texas commissions and agencies to be reviewed every 12 yearsoIt’s a combination of self-evaluation and commission produced reportsoThe review can result in continuation, reorganization, merger or “sunsetting” of agencies Since the process began, 37 agencies have been abolished, 46 have been consolidated, with $980 million estimated saving.
Chapter 7 Texans trace its confidence in harsh justice back to the frontier, where individuals were largely responsible for their own protection. Retribution theory is the approach to criminal justice that emphasizes punishment because the guilty violated societal rules. The U.S. has the highest incarceration rate in the worldoTexas ranks 5thamong the states, with 891 inmates per every 100,000 residents. It has 400,000 residents on probation and 111,000 on parole. The issue of age and mental capacity is a critical issue in criminal justice policy. One can serve the military and vote at age 18Legal alcohol consumption at age 21The human brain reaches full development until about age 25 The supreme court is forcing states to drop support for the death juvenile death penalty. And eliminate life without parole sentences. Another issue is the willingness of Texas to execute the mentally ill. The case of Scott PanettioKilled his mother and father in law in 1992oHe suffered delusions, hallucinations, and schizophreniaoBelieves selena Gomez is his daughter, CNN reporter is conspiring against him. oThis case went to the supreme court. oLimbooNo funding for an up-to-date examination of his mental competencyPolicies in Texas tend to criminalize more behaviorThe political culture of the state is tough on crime, long sentences are popular among voters.Stiff drug lawsoMore recent consideration of marijuana decriminalization, 77% favored some level of decriminalizationRehabilitation is now an option as treatment for nonviolent crimes and substance abuse offenses.oAlso for restorative justice, technical parole violations, special drug courts and veteran courts, and motivation by cost and reduce recidivismTexas has a reputation for having among the toughest prisons in the country that include prisoners overseeing over prisoners, harsh living conditions, violence, aging prisoners, and lack of air conditioning.