TEXAS INDUSTRIAL COMMISSION
TEXAS INDUSTRIAL COMMISSION. The Texas Industrial Commission, established in 1920, was composed of five members: one employer, one employee, and three persons from the general public. They were appointed by the governor for two-year terms. The original function of the commission was to aid the governor in arbitrating labor-management disputes; this function was dropped and the commission was given, in 1959, the responsibility of promoting industrial development. Also in 1959 membership expanded to nine members representing different geographical areas of the state and serving six-year overlapping terms. The commission was not funded by the legislature until 1962, when a full-time executive director was hired. In 1965 a specialist in export development was added to promote foreign sales of Texas products. In 1973 membership again increased to twelve to include three rural commissioners. In the 1970s the purpose of the agency was to foster job expansion and community development. The commission included several divisions to administer its work. The Operations Division served administrative, financial, and data-entry needs of the agency. An Industrial Development Division provided information and training regarding industrial expansion and manufacturing, and the International Development Division dealt with foreign-market information. The Community Development Division furnished assistance to local communities, and a Minority Business Enterprise Division encouraged business growth among minorities through informational programs on business financing, management, and contracting opportunities. In 1983 the Texas Industrial Commission became the Texas Economic Development Commission headed by a fifteen-member board. This commission was one of a number of state agencies that were consolidated to form the Texas Department of Commerce in 1987.