Attorney General Opinions

February 28, 2014

Legislative News

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TAC has highlighted recent Attorney General Opinions and Requests for Opinions of interest to counties. 

Attorney General Opinions

GA-1040: The authority of a county appraisal district to place excess funds in a capital improvement fund or to spend excess funds on a one-time, lump-sum payment to its employees (RQ-1143-GASummary: An expenditure an appraisal district has committed during the fiscal year to meet or secure an obligation is an expenditure that is obligated to be spent under subsection 6.06G) of the Tax Code. Only "payments made or due to be made by the taxing units" should be included in the excess-funds calculation and returned or credited back to the taxing units as required by subsection 6.060). Excess funds must be returned or credited to the participating taxing units as required by subsection 6.060). The fact that a particular line item is not prepared in the proposed budget by the June 15 deadline is not by itself fatal to the expenditure. The budget process in section 6.06 does not prevent amendments to the proposed budget after the public hearing process and before the budget is finally approved. A proposed salary increase is likely not unconstitutional under Texas Constitution Article III, Section 53 if it operates prospectively from the time of its proper authorization. An appraisal district's participating taxing units may utilize section 6.10 of the Tax Code to disapprove the amendment of a budget by an appraisal district board.

Requests for Attorney General Opinions

RQ-1180-GA: The Honorable Royce West, Chair, Committee on Jurisprudence, Texas State Senate, Whether a charitable organization formed under section 281.0565 of the Health and Safety Code is a political corporation or subdivision of the State of Texas for purposes of Article III, section 52 of the Texas Constitution.

RQ-1182-GA: The Honorable Herb Hancock, Karnes County Attorney, Whether a taxing unit may reserve mineral interests on property that is acquired through tax foreclosure and then resold pursuant to section 34.05 of the Tax Code.

RQ-1184-GA: The Honorable Vince Ryan, Harris County Attorney, Whether the County Judge is obligated to grant a petition to order an election to levy and collect an equalization tax for the Harris County Department of Education and related questions.

RQ-1186-GA: The Honorable Rafael Anchia, Chair, Committee on International Trade and Intergovernmental Affairs, Texas House of Representatives, Simultaneous service in multiple official capacities of board members of the Maverick County Hospital District.

RQ-1187-GA: The Honorable Marco A. Montemayor, Webb County Attorney, Constitutional questions related to funding of County Energy Transportation Reinvestment Zones (CETRZ).

RQ-1188-GA: The Honorable E. Bruce Curry, District Attorney, Whether a conviction that resulted in early termination of deferred adjudication is a reportable conviction or adjudication for purposes of chapter 62 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.