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Electronic And Information Resources Accessibility Policy

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to provide persons with disabilities the same access to and use of the website and electronic and information resources for which the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts (the Comptroller’s office) is responsible as do persons without disabilities.

Scope

This policy applies to the website and all electronic and information resources (EIR) for which the Comptroller’s office is responsible.

Policy Statement

The Comptroller’s office is committed to making its website and all electronic and information resources accessible to persons with disabilities by applying principles of accessibility and usability design.

Procurement of Information Resources

The Comptroller’s office integrates EIR accessibility criteria into its procurement processes and follows its Agency Purchasing Procedures, the Department of Information Resource’s IT Commodity Purchasing Guidelines for State Agencies and the Texas Procurement and Support Service’s Contract Management Guide when coordinating a procurement initiative for information technology goods and services.

The Comptroller’s office uses the Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) to assess the degree of accessibility of products. Additional accessibility analysis and testing may need to be performed to validate the accuracy of the VPAT, or assess the level of accessibility when a VPAT is not available.

For items not on an existing statewide contract, Government Code chapters 2155 through 2161 and Texas Administrative Code, Title 34, Part 1, Chapter 20, provide additional detail on the Comptroller’s office purchasing oversight and contract responsibilities, as well as the purchasing authority delegated to state agencies.

Standards and Specifications

Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §206.50 and §§213.10 through 213.17 prescribe the standards and specifications to which the Comptroller’s office and other state agencies must comply in making their websites and electronic and information resources accessible to persons with disabilities. The Comptroller’s office has developed a plan to ensure that its website and electronic and information resources comply with the standards and specifications.

Guidelines

The Comptroller’s office also follows guidelines established by the World Wide Web Consortium Web Accessibility Initiative, as defined in the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, as well as the guidelines in the 1998 Amendment to Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794d) that are required by Texas state law.

Testing and Validation

The Comptroller’s office carefully inspects its Web pages and electronic and information resources by testing them with a variety of Section 508 compliance testing tools and other manual procedures to ensure compliance with these requirements.

Exceptions

TAC §213.17 provides for exceptions for compliance with standards and specifications for all new or changed Web pages and content and all electronic and information resources developed, procured or changed on or after September 1, 2006. The Comptroller may approve an exception if the agency determines that compliance would impose a “significant difficulty or expense.” Alternate methods of accessibility may be used by the Comptroller’s office as provided for in Section 2054.460, Texas Government Code (PDF, 260K).

EIR Accessibility Coordinator

The Comptroller’s office has designated an Electronic Information Resources (EIR) Accessibility Coordinator to monitor the agency’s compliance with this policy. If you use assistive technology and the format of any material on this agency’s websites interferes with your ability to access the information, please send an email to the EIR Accessibility Coordinator at accessibility@cpa.state.tx.us. Please indicate the nature of your accessibility problem, the format in which you would like to receive the material, the Web address of the requested material and your contact information. The Comptroller’s office welcomes comments on how to improve its pages for persons with disabilities.

Workplace Accommodations

Please contact the Comptroller’s office Workplace Accommodations Coordinator in the Human Resources Division at 1-800-531-5441 for any non-Web related assistance.

If you need to contact the agency via TDD equipment, please visit Relay Texas for assistance.

Additional information about accessibility programs in Texas is available from the Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities.

Glossary

  • Accessible – A Web page that can be used in a variety of ways and that does not depend on a single sense or ability.
  • Alternate methods – Different means of providing information, including product documentation, to people with disabilities. Alternate methods may include, but are not limited to, voice, fax, relay service, TTY, Internet posting, captioning, text-to-speech synthesis, and audio description.
  • Electronic and information resources – This includes information technology and any equipment or interconnected system or subsystem of equipment that is used in the creation, conversion, duplication, or delivery of data or information. The term electronic and information resources includes, but is not limited to, telecommunications products (such as telephones), information kiosks and transaction machines, websites, multimedia, and office equipment such as copiers and fax machines. The term does not include any equipment that contains embedded information technology that is used as an integral part of the product, but the principal function of which is not the acquisition, storage, manipulation, management, movement, control, display, switching, interchange, transmission, or reception of data or information. For example, HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) equipment such as thermostats or temperature control devices, and medical equipment where information technology is integral to its operation, is not information technology.
  • Exception – A justified, documented non-conformance with one or more standards or specifications of Chapter 206 and/or Chapter 213 of Title 1, Texas Administrative Code, which has been approved by the Executive Director of an Agency.
  • Usability – The extent to which an application or product is determined to be well-designed with the goals of maximizing user task completion, comprehension, and efficiency.
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