Recent Texas Attorney General Opinions of Interest to Cities

Note:  Included opinions are from July 11, 2018 through August 13, 2018.

KP-0211 (Councilmember Compensation): Article XVI, Subsection 40(b)(1) of the Texas Constitution prohibits current school district employees, other than schoolteachers, from receiving a salary for service on the city council.

Whether a particular employee qualifies as a schoolteacher is generally a question of fact outside the scope of an attorney general opinion. Based on the limited facts provided, a court would likely conclude that the assistant principal and special education coordinator are not schoolteachers. A court could conclude that the counselor is a schoolteacher depending on whether the employee directly instructs students in required curriculum.

KP-0210 (Property Assessed Clean Energy Act): A court would likely find that a contractual assessment imposed under a program authorized by Chapter 399 of the Local Government Code is a special assessment by the local government and, with respect to lien priority status, enforcement, and delinquencies including the recovery of costs and expenses, is treated in a manner similar to the real property taxes on the property.

KP-0209 (Economic Development Corporations): A state agency’s ownership of a fee simple determinable interest in real property conveyed to it by deed can terminate and title revert to the grantor (the Marshall Economic Development Corporation) according to the terms of the deed.