Governor Abbott Vetoes HB 961
Pursuant to Article IV, Section 14, of the Texas Constitution, I, Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas, do hereby disapprove of and veto House Bill No. 961 as passed by the Eighty-Fifth Texas Legislature, Regular Session, because of the following objections:
It is essential that local voters have full opportunity to determine the junior college district board members who make property tax decisions for these districts. House Bill 961 would have authorized elections for junior college district board seats to be decided by plurality vote without a runoff election. In crowded races, this would result in the election of candidates who received a small percentage of voter support. Those very same crowded races are often the ones where voter interest is highest and dissatisfaction with the incumbent is most acute. Runoff elections ensure that every seat on the board is occupied by someone who received a majority of votes in an election. These elections have important consequences for property owners and for junior colleges. They should not be treated like second-tier elections.
Since the Eighty-Fifth Texas Legislature, Regular Session, by its adjournment has prevented the return of this bill, I am filing these objections in the office of the Secretary of State and giving notice thereof by this public proclamation according to the aforementioned constitutional provision.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have signed my name officially and caused the Seal of the State to be affixed hereto at Austin, this 15th day of June, 2017.