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NPT Capitol: Chavez doesn’t like Marquez’s “sloppy” ethics bill.

marquezSomething of a fight is brewing in Austin over the El Paso county ethics bill.

chavezThe bill, HB2301, filed by state Rep. Marisa Marquez (and by Sen. Shapleigh in the Senate), is moving forward against the wishes of state Rep. Norma Chavez, Chavez told NPT late yesterday evening that she believes the bill is rushed, “does not pass muster,” has had little public input, and may even be unconstitutional.

Earlier the same evening, Marquez told NPT the bill has been amended to address concerns raised by other state Reps, El Paso County Sheriff Richard Wiles and El Paso District Attorney Jaime Esparza. The bill is now supported by every member of the El Paso delegation…except Chavez.

Last night, El Paso County Commissioner Veronica Escobar, who spent all of Thursday running around the Capitol lobbying for the bill, said she was frustrated by Chavez’s opposition claiming the state Rep was being vague in her criticisms and was actively working behind the scenes to kill the bill.

veroescobar“Everyone we’ve talked to (about the bill) have had specific concerns because they want the bill to pass.The bottom line is she (Chavez) doesn’t want it passed,” Escobar said. Chavez maintains her concerns are legitimate.

“Everyone recognizes the need for something like this but we shouldn’t be sloppy about this. This is not Veronica’s playground, this is very serious business,” said Chavez. Despite Chavez’s opposition, Marquez is moving forward with the bill. She told NPT she has the votes to get it through the County Affairs committee on Monday.

shapleigh1Shapleigh said he was satisfied the bill is both constitutional and good for El Paso: “If there are any issues put them on the table in the light of day and we’ll deal with them. But to take shots at the bill from behind closed doors is not a fair tactic,” he said.

Full story up now

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Written by newspapertreeelpaso

April 3, 2009 at 1:00 am

Posted in Uncategorized

3 Responses

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  1. I agree, it also takes power away from the grand jury.

    Carl Starr

    April 3, 2009 at 7:39 am

  2. It’s a bad bill. Read it again please.

    Ray Valdez

    April 3, 2009 at 11:50 am

  3. Ballou v. State Ethics Commission, (Section 4 of the Ethics Act is an unconstitutional encroachment by the legislature on the Supreme Court’s inherent and exclusive power to regulate the conduct of attorneys)

    in L.J.S. v. State Ethics Commission, we addressed the separation of power doctrine in an action challenging the authority of the Ethics Commission to investigate the chief adult probation officer.

    I think in Texas the State Bar has the sole jurisdiction to regulate attorney ethics…13 already being under FBI investigation…I think the courthouse is full of attorneys, I am not sure who is left for county ethics commission to investigate if they can’t investigate Attorneys.

    Carl Starr

    April 3, 2009 at 3:34 pm


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