WHEREAS, Spanish-speaking Missourians and Missourians who identify themselves as Hispanic make up a vibrant and growing segment of the population of this state; and
WHEREAS, economic development within the Hispanic community benefits both members of that community and all citizens of this state; and
WHEREAS, adequate means must be provided to ensure that Hispanic Missourians have a voice within state government; and
WHEREAS, members of the Hispanic community have unique concerns and needs with regard to the services provided by state government; and
WHEREAS, appropriate and additional means should be developed to ensure that government is responsive to the crucial issues facing the Hispanic community;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Bob Holden, Governor of the State of Missouri, by the power vested in me by the Constitution and Laws of the State of Missouri, do hereby create and establish the Missouri Governor's Commission on Hispanic Affairs.
The purpose of the Commission on Hispanic Affairs ("Commission") shall be to serve as a statewide advisory body to the Governor and the General Assembly on issues of importance to the Hispanic citizens of Missouri. The Commission's responsibilities shall include, but not be limited to, gathering and disseminating information concerning matters relevant to economic, social, and cultural needs of Hispanic Missourians, monitoring legislative issues pertaining to the Hispanic community, making recommendations to state agencies and private-sector entities concerning issues relevant to Hispanic Missourians, and, where appropriate, recommending legislative initiatives to the Office of the Governor.
The Commission shall develop a unified plan of action to address specific issues of importance to the Hispanic citizens of the state. The Commission shall produce an annual report on the Commission's activities and accomplishments during the preceding year.
The Commission shall be composed of not more than fifteen citizen members appointed by the Governor and not more than seven ex officio members who are employed by and shall represent state agencies. All members of the Commission shall be legal residents of the United States and registered voters in the State of Missouri. The citizen members shall be selected with a view toward equitable geographic representation within the State of Missouri, a broad representation of national and ethnic backgrounds, and representation of persons who are fluent in the Spanish language. Not more than nine of the citizen members shall be from the same political party. One ex officio member of the Commission shall represent each of the following state Departments: Elementary and Secondary Education, Higher Education, Public Safety, Revenue, Health and Senior Services, Labor and Industrial Relations, and Economic Development. The ex officio members shall be designated by the Directors of their respective agencies.
The Commission shall, by majority vote, select one of its members to serve as its chairperson, who shall hold the position of chairperson at the pleasure of the Governor. The Commission may, by majority vote, select an additional member to serve as vice-chair if the Commission deems such a selection appropriate. The term of office for citizen members of the Commission shall be three years, and no citizen member shall serve more than two such terms. All members of the Commission shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor and shall serve without compensation, except that the members may be reimbursed for reasonable and necessary expenses arising from commission activities or business. Such expenses shall be paid by the Department of Economic Development, to which the Commission is assigned for administrative purposes.
The Commission shall conduct not less than two meetings and not more than four meetings per calendar year. The chairperson of the Commission may establish subcommittees as necessary to further the objectives and responsibilities of the Commission, and those subcommittees may meet as often as necessary.
The Commission shall convene no earlier than January 1, 2004, and no later than March 1, 2004.
This Order shall be effective immediately and shall supersede all previous Executive Orders pertaining to the same subject.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of the State of Missouri, in the City of Jefferson on this 8th day of November, 2003.
[Bob Holden's signature]
[Matt Blunt's signature]
Secretary of State