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  Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
 Decade: 1990-1999
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
April 7, 1997 The Honorable Mike Moncrief Texas State Senate State Capitol Room 4E.2 Austin, Texas 78711 Dear Senator Moncrief: Over 3,200 state employees receive free, state-subsidized housing and utilities; live in state-owned properties for a nominal monthly rate; or receive monthly cash payments in lieu of in-kind housing benefits. Over 1,300 state employees receive some form of educational assistance from their employing agencies. We question whether there is a need for state-subsidized employee housing to the extent that it is currently provided. In many cases, agencies’ educational assistance policies are not designed to ensure that agencies receive value, such as more educated or competent employees, for the funds spent. Our observations are the result of a review, completed at your request, of supplemental employee benefits. Additional detail and recommendations are presented below.  Issues Related to the Provision of Housing and Utilities to Employees Texas state government currently provides certain employees housing benefits in the form of state-owned housing or cash payments. At the agencies reviewed, over 3,200 employees receive free housing and utilities, live in state-owned properties for a nominal monthly rate, or receive monthly cash payments of $175. (See Attachment 1.) Housing benefits were reviewed at the following four agencies: + + + +  Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation (TDMHMR) Texas Youth Commission (TYC) Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD)  The agencies’ primary justification for providing these benefits has been the need for security and emergency response. However, two of the agencies (TDCJ and TDMHMR) told us that none of their employees were required to live in agency-provided housing as a condition of employment. Additionally, three of the agencies (TDCJ, TYC, and TDMHMR) have multiple facilities with no available housing, yet employees perform duties similar to those of employees receiving housing at other sites. These observations and other information lead us to question whether there is a need for state-subsidized housing to the extent that it is currently provided.  SAO Report No. 97-049
April 7, 1997 The Honorable Mike Moncrief Texas State Senate State Capitol Room 4E.2 Austin, Texas 78711 Dear Senator Moncrief: Over 3,200 state employees receive free, state-subsidized housing and utilities; live in state-owned properties for a nominal monthly rate; or receive monthly cash payments in lieu of in-kind housing benefits. Over 1,300 state employees receive some form of educational assistance from their employing agencies. We question whether there is a need for state-subsidized employee housing to the extent that it is currently provided. In many cases, agencies’ educational assistance policies are not designed to ensure that agencies receive value, such as more educated or competent employees, for the funds spent. Our observations are the result of a review, completed at your request, of supplemental employee benefits. Additional detail and recommendations are presented below. Issues Related to the Provision of Housing and Utilities to Employees Texas state government currently provides certain employees housing benefits in the form of state-owned housing or cash payments. At the agencies reviewed, over 3,200 employees receive free housing and utilities, live in state-owned properties for a nominal monthly rate, or receive monthly cash payments of $175. (See Attachment 1.) Housing benefits were reviewed at the following four agencies: + + + + Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation (TDMHMR) Texas Youth Commission (TYC) Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) The agencies’ primary justification for providing these benefits has been the need for security and emergency response. However, two of the agencies (TDCJ and TDMHMR) told us that none of their employees were required to live in agency-provided housing as a condition of employment. Additionally, three of the agencies (TDCJ, TYC, and TDMHMR) have multiple facilities with no available housing, yet employees perform duties similar to those of employees receiving housing at other sites. These observations and other information lead us to question whether there is a need for state-subsidized housing to the extent that it is currently provided. SAO Report No. 97-049
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