City shuns proposed sanctuary for unborn as contrary to Texas law

Local News

LUBBOCK, Texas — The City of Lubbock released a statement on Wednesday and said a proposed “Sanctuary City for the Unborn” ordinance was contrary to Texas state law.

The ordinance was first proposed by State Senator Charles Perry on September 9 at a news conference. After that, the city hired Houston-based law firm Olson & Olson, LLP to look into the possibility of issuing the ordinance.

According to the city, the firm found four major conflicts in the proposed ordinance: it would be contrary to Texas law, the Texas Constitution prohibits a city from passing an ordinance that conflicts with state law, the proposed ordinance conflicts with state law because it creates offenses for actions permitted or licensed by the state, and because the proposed ordinance imposes additional regulations inconsistent with existing state regulations on abortions.

The city also announced on Wednesday that a petition for a proposed Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinance was submitted to the city on Tuesday.

According to the city, if the signatures are verified and the required number is met, the Lubbock City Council will be required to either adopt or reject the proposed ordinance or submit it to a vote during the next Uniform Election Day.

Read the first press release from the city below:

During the executive session on Tuesday, October 13, the City Council received its briefing from legal counsel with the firm of Olson & Olson, LLP regarding the proposed Sanctuary City for the Unborn Ordinance and concerns relating to potential conflicts with Texas state law.

The following four major conflicts were identified by Olson & Olson regarding the proposed ordinance. 

  • The Proposed Ordinance, if enacted, would be void because it is contrary to Texas Law.
  • The Texas Constitution prohibits a city from passing an ordinance ‘inconsistent with the laws of the State.” Tex. Const. art. XI, § 5. Ordinances that conflict with State laws are void.
  • The Proposed Ordinance conflicts with State law because it creates offenses for some actions that are permitted or licensed by the State. This is prohibited by the Texas Constitution.
  • The Proposed Ordinance conflicts with State law because the State regulates abortions, including who may perform them, where they may be performed, and when they may be performed, and the Proposed Ordinance imposes additional regulations inconsistent with those State regulations.

At this time, no member of the Lubbock City Council has made a request for this Ordinance to be placed on an agenda.   

Read the second press release from the city below:

An Initiating Committee has been formed under the petition process contained in the Lubbock City Charter to bring the proposed Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinance for either approval by the City Council or to submit such to the voters on the next Uniform Election Day. The Charter requires that the Committee submit a petition signed by not less than twenty five (25) percent of the qualified voters with the City of Lubbock, as determined by the number voting at the last regular municipal election. The Committee submitted this petition on Tuesday, October 13, and the Office of the City Secretary will perform the required verification of the included signatures. The City will abide by and follow the process provided for in the Charter and welcomes the opportunity to visit with the Initiating Committee should it so desire.

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