Recent Texas Attorney General Opinions of Interest to Cities

Note:  Included opinions are from April 11, 2017 through May 11, 2017. 

Opinion No. KP-0148 (Building Codes): A court would likely find that school buildings are commercial construction within the scope of Subsection 388.003(b) of the Health and Safety Code (International Energy Conservation Code).

Opinion No. KP-0147 (Residence Homestead Tax Exemption): A court would likely construe Subsection 11.13(l)(2)(B) of the Tax Code to refer to an owner’s temporary residence in an establishment set up to assist persons with overcoming illness or injury, or with needs related to physical or mental weakness or growing old, through a wide range of activities, regardless of whether the owner receives such services.

Opinion No. KP-0145 (Public Information): A court construing the plain language of Article 18.01(b) of the Code of Criminal Procedure would likely conclude that a search warrant affidavit becomes public information when sworn to and filed with the court.

Opinion No. KP-0140 (Oath of Office): A court is likely to conclude that election judges, alternate election judges, and early-voting clerks are public officers and must take the constitutional oath of office under Article XVI, Section 1 of the Texas Constitution in addition to the statutory election officer’s oath. The fact that an election judge, alternate election judge, or early-voting clerk may not have taken the constitutional oath is unlikely to affect the validity of a prior election.

Opinion No. KP-0138 (Public Office Eligibility): Under the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the United States Constitution, the State of Texas must recognize an Arkansas court’s valid order dismissing a felony charge and releasing an individual from the penalties and disabilities of that charge in Arkansas. An individual for whom the penalties and disabilities have been removed by an Arkansas court is not prohibited by Election Code Subsection 141.001(a)(4) from holding public office in Texas.