In a decision that upends decades of open meetings law, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals held that the provision of the Texas Open Meetings Act prohibiting a government official from circumventing the Act through a “walking quorum” or “daisy chain” discussion outside of a public meeting is unconstitutionally vague.

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Freedom of speech and thought lie at the core of liberty.  Though many philosophers, statesmen, and legal practitioners have opined on the value of free speech and thought, Justice Louis Brandies best captured the value of free speech and thought in our constitutional scheme:

Those who won our independence believed that the final end of

Texas, like many other states, enacted legislation to curb meritless lawsuits whose purpose lies solely in chilling a person’s right to free speech and/or to petition his or her government.  Under Texas’ Anti-SLAPP (Strategic Litigation Against Public Participation) law, a party may file a motion to dismiss a legal action which is “based on, relates

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion addressing First Amendment protections over political speech and First Amendment challenges to the state regulation of psychological services.

In Serafine vs. Branaman, the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists ordered Mary Serafine to stop using the title of “psychologist” on her campaign website

This entry comes to us courtesy of Sim Israeloff.

Many elected officials in Texas, including most who are elected to city councils and school boards, serve as citizen volunteers without pay.  Newly elected officials are sometimes surprised to find that their actions and speech are now restricted by statutes such as the Texas Open Meetings Act (TOMA). The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has now weighed in on whether elected officials carrying out their official duties retain the same First Amendment protections on speech as private citizens.
 


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