Ethics Commission Responds to Lawsuit Filed in Lubbock

Published 08/24 2014 01:58PM

Updated 08/24 2014 02:03PM

LUBBOCK, TX -- The Texas Ethics Commission responded last week to a lawsuit filed against it by the Lubbock-based Texas Home School Coalition. The TEC said in court records that other federal courts have already rejected the legal theory used by the coalition.

The Texas Home School Coalition sued the Texas Ethics Commission and Lubbock County Criminal District Attorney Matt Powell in July. The coalition sought to stop enforcement of TEC rules that it called “severe and unjustifiable burdens” on the First Amendment right of free speech.

The coalition claimed that even though it spends only nine percent of its budget on political activity the TEC means to regulate it exactly like a political action committee.

But the TEC responded last week that the coalition is wrong and the proposed regulations are not final; “A proposed agency rule has no legal effect, unless and until it is formally adopted.”

he TEC also said there is a chance the proposed changes to TEC rules might never happen.

The coalition then responded in written records that TEC is trying to trick the court with “bait and switch.”

The coalition said despite claims of only proposed new rules, “the agency has already adopted and applied them.”

District Attorney Matt Powell has not yet responded with his side of the story, and the judge has yet to make a ruling in the case.

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