02 April 2020 – Forth Worth Crime Control and Prevention District allowed to run special election

Type of Intervention: Executive Order
Sectors Involved: Local Government
Level of Jurisdiction: TX
Lead People/Agency: Governor of the State of Texas

Overview: Governor Gregg Abott allowed the Forth Worth Crime Control and Prevention District to order its special election, to occur on July 14, 2020 as an emergency election on the question of whether to continue the district pursuant of to Section 41.0011(b) of the Texas Election Code. Gregg Abott further suspend Section 85.00 1(a) of the Texas Election Code to the extent necessary to allow early voting by personal appearance for the special election to begin not earlier than Monday, July 6, 2020, and to run concurrently with the early voting period for the runoff primary election. Early voting by personal appearance shall begin on Monday, July 6, 2020, in accordance with Section 85.00 1(d) of the Texas Election Code so that it runs concurrently with the early voting period for the runoff primary election.
Full details here: https://gov.texas.gov/uploads/files/press/PROC_COVID-19_moving_Ft_Worth_Crime_CPD_elections_to_July_14_2020_IMAGE_04-02-2020.pdf

Type of Justification: Perception of an increased threat
Evidence/Justification: Section 41.001(a)(2) of the Texas Election Code provides that a general or special election in this state shall be held on a uniform election date, and the next uniform election date is occurring on May 2, 2020; and on March 18, 2020, the Governor suspended Sections 41.0052(a) and (b) of the Texas Election Code and Section 49.103 of the Texas Water Code to the extent necessary to allow political subdivisions that would otherwise hold elections on May 2, 2020, to move their general and special elections for 2020 only to the next uniform election date, occurring on November 3, 2020; and on March 20, 2020, the Governor issued a proclamation postponing the runoff primary election date to July 14, 2020, and early voting by personal appearance for the runoff primary election begins on July 6, 2020, in accordance with Section 85.001(b) of the Texas Election Code; and Section 41.007(d) of the Texas Election Code provides that no other election may be held on the date of a primary election; and of the Texas Election Code provides that an election held on a date not permitted is void; and Section 85.001(a) of the Texas Election Code provides that the period for early voting by personal appearance begins on the 17th day before election day and continues through the fourth day before election day; and Section 363.25 1(a) of the Texas Local Government Code authorizes that a crime control and prevention district created by a political subdivision may hold a referendum on the question of whether to continue the district on the next uniform election date authorized by Section 41.001(a) of the Texas Election Code; and the Fort Worth Crime Control and Prevention District has ordered a special election on the question of whether to continue the district, and such election was scheduled for May 2, 2020; and Section 41.0011 of the Texas Election Code provides that a special election may be held as an emergency election before the appropriate uniform election date if a political subdivision asks the Governor for permission to do so and the Governor determines that an emergency exists; and the Fort Worth Crime Control and Prevention District desires to order a special election as an emergency election on the question of whether to continue the district pursuant to Section 41.0011 of the Texas Election Code and has asked the Governor for permission to hold such election prior to November 3, 2020; and an emergency exists under Section 41.0011 of the Texas Election Code due to the circumstances presented by the COVID-19 disaster and because the Fort Worth Crime Control and Prevention District is not able to wait until November 3, 2020, to hold a special election on the question of whether to continue the district; and pursuant to Section 418.016 of the Texas Government Code, the Governor has the express authority to suspend the provisions of any regulatory statute prescribing the procedures for conduct of state business or the orders or rules of a state agency if strict compliance with the provisions, orders, or rules would in any way prevent, hinder, or delay necessary action in coping with a disaster.