Shift the State Preservation Board s Administrative Functions to the General Services Commission


The state should shift the State Preservation Board s administrative functions to the General Services Commission, while retaining the board s overall policy guidance and project responsibilities.


Background
The State Preservation Board (SPB) was established in 1983 to coordinate the preservation, maintenance and restoration of the Capitol and the General Land Office Building (GLOB), their contents and grounds. The six-member board consists of the governor, th e lieutenant governor, the speaker of the house, one senator appointed by the lieutenant governor, one state representative appointed by the speaker of the house and one member appointed by the governor.

The agency has created a Master Plan which outlines plans for restoration of the exterior and interior of the Capitol and extension of the Capitol for the legislative offices scheduled to be completed in 1995. The staff s continuing duties include ongoing maintenance and repair, event coordination, acquisition and inventory of antiques and art, fund-raising and oversight of the Capitol Complex Visitors Center and Texas History Gallery.

The staff has doubled in the last few years to accommodate the need for construction administration of the main restoration project. It is the wish of the board, as outlined in the 1992-93 and 1994-95 Legislative Appropriations Requests, to reduce this staff considerably in 1995 to only those persons necessary to follow-up on constructio n warranties; to develop and enforce a maintenance plan for furnishings, restored areas and the grounds; to enforce policies; to design and oversee repairs; to add to and conserve the Capitol Historical Artifacts collection and to promote private fund-rais ing for these purposes. 1~

The existence of individual agencies, no matter what the size, creates a need for personnel assistance to employees, plus accounting, printing and other support services. In addition to added cost to the state, the staff s ability to accomplish core functions efficiently is hindered.


Recommendation
The State Preservation Board s (CSPB) administrative functions should be shiftet to the General Services Commission (GSC), effective September 1, 1993. The composition and the duties of the board would remain unchanged.

SPB would continue its current functions with staff reductions occurring as construction projects are completed. At the beginning of fiscal 1996, only a core staff would remain. SPB would then use its appropriations to purchase administrative and support services from GSC and continue to submit its own Legislative Appropriations Request.

Another recommendation in this report would establish the GSC as the state agencies customer service center. The statute would pr ovide for the current board to be administratively attached to the commission. This structure would be much the same as the Center for Rural Health Initiatives, which has its own policy board, powers and duties, but remains attached to the Department of He alth through administrative and staff support.


The current board would retain the same level of power and control over decisions made on the Capitol in the future, but the board would receive administrative support services in a cost-effective way from GSC.

SPB will continue to budget and prepare work according to the guidelines of the Master Plan. The statute should direct SPB to begin phasing out the administrative functions it performs as soon as current project needs make this feasible. The Texas Sunset A dvisory Commission will review SPB prior to the next biennium and can make any additional recommendations for phasing out or transferring agency activities at that time.


Implications
By administratively attaching the agency to the GSC, SPB could leverage the resources of the larger agency to carry out administrative functions that are not part of SPB s primary function. These functions would include: personnel services; contract assistance; accounting activities; purchasing expertise; computer data processing; printing services; and, other support services. By giving the SPB support in these areas, the remaining staff can concentrate on the core functions.


Fiscal Impact
Savings will be realized through a reduction in staff and the agency s appropriation. The majority of staff reductions occur as a result of SPB no longer carrying out major restoration and construction activities. Limited savings will be achieved by using GSC s administrative resources. Only those positions that carry out c ore activities should remain. These savings are based on a one-third reduction in fiscal 1995 and an additional one-third reduction in fiscal 1996 for a total staff reduction of two-thirds based on the agency s fiscal 1993 current staff budget . The savings will be realized through the reduction of SPB s appropriations by $421,100 in FY 1994-95.

Savings to the
Fiscal General Revenue Change in
Year Fund 001 FTEs

1994 $ 0 0
1995 421,100 11
1996 742,000 22
1997 742,000 22
1998 742,000 22



Endnotes
1 State Preservation Board, Requests for Legislative Appropriations for Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993 (Austin, Texas, October 18, 1990).