Texas Department of Transportation:
An Inventory of Texas Automobile Theft Prevention Authority Meeting Files at the Texas State Archives, 1992-1995
The Texas Automobile Theft Prevention Authority (ATPA) (since 2005 the Texas Automobile Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority) supports statewide law enforcement through auto theft initiatives, education, and public awareness. The Authority was created in 1991 by the 72nd Texas Legislature (House Bill 640, Regular Session) and is composed of six members appointed by the governor, to serve staggered six-year terms. Two members represent law enforcement, two are consumer representatives, and two are insurance representatives. The executive director of the Texas Department of Public Safety is an ex-officio member. In December 1993, through interagency contract, the Authority was moved from the Governor's Office to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). The move was formalized and clarified by legislation in 1995 (74th Legislature, House Bill 2845, Regular Session). The name of the Authority was changed in 2005 to the Texas Automobile Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority (ABTPA) (Senate Bill 1874, 79th Legislature, Regular Session).
The state funds and supports automobile theft investigative task forces and crime prevention programs through the authority. An initial mandated responsibility was to work with the Texas Department of Public Safety to develop a statewide automobile registration program to help decrease auto theft in Texas. This program became known as the H.E.A.T. (Help End Auto Theft) Sticker Program. Staff developed a sticker to affix to a vehicle that would give a peace officer the owner's permission to stop and inquire as the ownership of the vehicle between one and five a.m. Through theft prevention grants the Authority has funded local and regional law enforcement programs specializing in vehicle theft investigation, recovery, prevention and prosecution. The general grant fund was established by legislation, requiring collection of an one dollar annual premium on each vehicle insurance policy issued in Texas. Currently, 30 grant programs are funded, allowing over 150 law enforcement officers in Texas to focus exclusively on the resolution of vehicle theft cases.
(Sources: Texas Department of Transportation website - http://www.txdot.gov/about_us/administration/offices/abtpa.htm , accessed May 13, 2009; the Guide to State Agencies, 10th edition; and the records of the Authority.)
The Texas Automobile Theft Prevention Authority (ATPA) (since 2005 the Texas Automobile Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority) supports statewide law enforcement through auto theft initiatives, education, and public awareness. Records are meeting files of the authority, 1992-1995. Types of materials present include minutes, agenda, notes, memos, budget data, proposals, reports, correspondence, clippings, Texas Auto Theft Task Force case reports, lists of insurers licensed to write motor vehicle insurance, interagency contracts, witness registration sheets, and other materials. Correspondents include state agencies, law enforcement agencies, and insurance companies. Topics covered include grant funding, proposed legislation, the H.E.A.T. (Help End Auto Theft) program, budget, proposed staffing plans, insurance issues concerning auto theft, motor vehicle assessment fees, regional/local Texas auto theft task forces and other issues. Minutes are not present for 1993, although there is a progress report, with supporting documents, of the Dallas County Commercial Auto Task Force (an ATPA grant-funded entity). This may have been a supporting document sent for review during a 1993 meeting. The agency itself does not hold any minutes from 1993.
To prepare this inventory, the described materials were cursorily reviewed to delineate series, to confirm the accuracy of contents lists, to provide an estimate of dates covered, and to determine record types.
Restrictions on Access
The exceptions apply to the Texas Auto Theft Task Force case reports found within some of the meeting files. Because of the possibility that portions of these records fall under Public Information Act exceptions including, but not limited to: social security numbers (V.T.C.A., Government Code, Section 552.101) and driver's license numbers (V.T.C.A., Government Code, Section 552.130); an archivist must review these records before they can be accessed for research. The records may be requested for research under the provisions of the Public Information Act (V.T.C.A., Government Code, Chapter 552). The researcher may request an interview with an archivist or submit a request by mail (Texas State Library and Archives Commission, P.O. Box 12927, Austin, TX 78711), fax (512-463-5436), email (Dir_Lib@tsl.state.tx.us), or see our web page ( http://www.tsl.state.tx.us/agency/customer/pia.html). Include enough description and detail about the information requested to enable the archivist to accurately identify and locate the information. If our review reveals information that may be excepted by the Public Information Act, we are obligated to seek an open records decision from the Attorney General on whether the records can be released. The Public Information Act allows the Archives ten working days after receiving a request to make this determination. The Attorney General has 45 working days to render a decision. Alternately, the Archives can inform you of the nature of the potentially excepted information and if you agree, that information can be redacted or removed and you can access the remainder of the records.
Materials do not circulate, but may be used in the State Archives search room. Materials will be retrieved from and returned to storage areas by staff members.
Restrictions on Use
Most records created by Texas state agencies are not copyrighted and may be freely used in any way. State records also include materials received by, not created by, state agencies. Copyright remains with the creator. The researcher is responsible for complying with U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17 U.S.C.).
(Identify the item), Texas Department of Transportation Texas Automobile Theft Prevention Authority meeting files. Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.
Accession number: 2009/052
These records were transferred to the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission by the Texas Department of Transportation on November 10, 2008.
Processed by Laura K. Saegert, May 2009
Detailed Description of the Records