Has any local government been sued for its disaster orders?
Yes, a resident of Harris County sued the county judge. The
lawsuit claims, among other things, that the judge’s order
mandating the wearing of a mask, washing of hands, and six foot distancing
exceeds her authority under the Texas Disaster Act. The lawsuit also
claims the order violates the Texas Constitution’s “due course of law” provision, which is similar to the due
process requirement in the U.S. Constitution.
Oddly, the poorly-drafted lawsuit pleadings also claim that the
county judge’s order violates Article XI, Section 5, of the Texas Constitution, which is
the municipal home rule section. That section has no effect on a
county whatsoever. Further updates will be provided as they come
When will we learn more about the governor’s plan to re-open
The governor said that he will unveil several new orders at a
press conference on Monday, April 27. The exact time has yet to be
announced. League staff will listen to his press conference, review those
orders, and provide additional details as soon as possible.
Who can I contact at TML with questions related to the COVID-19
Contact Scott Houston, TML general counsel, for questions about
the substance of these updates, or other legal or policy assistance, at
512-231-7464 (anytime, seven days a week) or SHouston@tml.org.
Where can I find archived issues of the TML Coronavirus Updates?
TML Coronavirus Updates are archived by date here and by subject here.