Senior Legislative Liaison
Rep. Allen Fletcher (R-Tomball) filed HB 211, a bill that increases the fee charged to execute warrants on behalf of state courts from $50 to $75. In past sessions, many county representatives supported a warrant fee increase, stating that serving warrants in metropolitan areas can cost up to $125. Recent estimates have shown that in Dallas County, a $25 increase would bring in an additional $500,000 per year, and in Travis County, an additional $275,000 in 2015.
“Texas Code of Criminal Procedure provides for a fee that is intended to cover the costs borne by cities and counties for executing criminal warrants. Warrant fees are only assessed against people who have been found to have violated their court orders or who have failed to appear in court when ordered,” states a release from the Justices of the Peace & Constables Association of Texas (JPCA). “The warrant fee, currently set at $50 dollars, has not been increased since 1999. Since then, law enforcement personnel costs have nearly doubled and fuel costs have tripled. Urban county officials have all reported that their cost to execute warrants far exceeds the $50 warrant fee that was set 14 years ago.”
The state receives 20 percent of the fee when the warrant is executed by a state peace officer, so an increase would also bring in additional revenue for the state. The JPCA is encouraging all commissioners courts to pass a resolution in support of the fee increase. If your county passes the resolution, please copy TAC when sending it to the members of your delegation. For more information, contact at (800) 456-5974.