A. Lee Graham
The Texas Supreme Court has ordered the Tarrant Regional Water District to respond to a lawsuit filed by plaintiffs suing the district in an election dispute.
The water district, which provides water to Fort Worth and other North Texas municipalities, is legally required to file a response to the plaintiffs’ writ of injunction by 5 p.m. Friday March 14.
Plaintiffs John Basham and Texans for Government Transparency filed an appeal with the Texas Supreme Court on March 7, 2014 following a federal district judge’s late February ruling that declined to order the water district to hold an election in May, as the deadline for governmental entities expires.
Basham, who has run unsuccessfully for a TRWD board seat, filed the suit with Darlia Hobbs and Texans for Government Transparency, to prevent water district board members Jim Lane and Marty Leonard from serving a fifth year without an election.
Individual defendants named in the suit are current board members Victor W. Henderson, Jack Stevens, Marty Leonard, Jim Lane and Mary Kelleher.
The water district had not planned a May election because the Legislature passed a bill last session that moves the water board election from an even-year to an odd-year cycle. The legislation, sponsored by Rep. Charlie Geren, R-Fort Worth, did not address the expiring terms of Lane and Leonard – or whether they should serve an extra year until May 2015.
This story includes archived material.