In June, Gov. Rick Perry signed a bill that requires Texas businesses receiving taxpayer-subsidized, job-creation grants and tax abatements to certify that they will not knowingly employ undocumented workers.
H.B. 1196 took effect on Sept. 1. It applies to businesses convicted of engaging in a pattern or practice of violating federal law governing the unlawful employment of illegal workers.
If convicted under the new law, businesses must repay the amount of the public subsidy—with interest, at a specified rate and term—within 120 days of receiving notice of the violation. The statute permits public agencies, local taxing jurisdictions, economic development corporations or the Texas attorney general to bring civil action to recover funds from businesses that hire illegal workers.