On Thursday, Governor Greg Abbott sent a letter to appointees and state agencies following the Texas Criminal Court of Appeals' ruling striking down a key provision of the Texas Open Meetings Act. In his letter, the Governor instructed his appointees and state agencies to continue to follow the spirit of the Open Meetings Act, despite yesterday’s ruling.
Dear Appointees and State Agency Heads,
Texans place significant trust in their elected and appointed officials. With this trust comes the expectation that officials will conduct public business responsibly and in accordance with the law. One such law is the Texas Open Meetings Act, which represents a commitment to the citizens of Texas that the public’s business will be conducted out in the open. Texas has long been, and will continue to be, a leader in governmental transparency. Although the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has today declared Section 551.143 of the Texas Open Meetings Act unconstitutional, all other provisions of that statute remain valid and binding.
Regardless of yesterday’s ruling, my standard and expectation is for all agencies and boards to continue to follow the spirit of the law. You should not waver in your commitment to providing transparency in the work you perform for Texans at your respective governmental entities.
Greg Abbott, Governor