University of Texas
10:35 am
Wed May 21, 2014

This Week House Committee Working Up Articles Of Impeachment For UT Regent Hall

The Texas House Select Committee on Transportation in State Agency Operations is in unfamiliar territory with the first impeachment of a governor-appointed position in Texas history.
Credit Ryan Poppe / TPR News

Members of a Texas House committee are moving forward with the impeachment of University of Texas Regent Wallace Hall by drawing up the official articles of impeachment. Hall informed UT’s Board of Regents he would not be resigning from his post.

The Texas House Select Committee on Transparency in State Agency Operations voted 7-1 in favor of impeaching Hall. This week only those who voted for impeachment will be able to weigh in on what codes Hall violated, which will be the official articles of impeachment.

“Had I not had voted with the majority then I would’ve not have been able to be a part of the process of drawing up those articles of impeachment," said state Rep. Dan Flynn, R-Canton. "I want to be part of that process."

Just before last week’s vote, Flynn sent out a memo to the members of committee stating that impeachment might not be the right direction. But he said after consulting an attorney he wanted to be a part of the final process.  

State Rep. Carol Alvarado, D-Houston,  said the articles will center on Hall’s alleged violation of the State’s Education and Penal Code and Public Information Act.

“You have the FOIA violation, the confidential information that seems to be the one that most agree on, tampering with witnesses and the over-abundance of requested information," Alvarado said.

The impeachment centers on Hall’s pursuit to prove UT at Austin President Bill Powers and certain lawmakers had been involved in admissions fixing at the UT School of Law. An inquiry later pursued by the entire board found no wrongdoing.

Alvarado said lawmakers will hear from the Legislative Council on the process for impeachment and how to draft articles for impeachment.  

"Keep in mind none of us has ever done this," Alvarado said.

She says they will also give a time frame on how long this process will take and then the seven legislators who voted for impeachment will go into executive session behind closed doors to determine what should be on those articles of impeachment.