Released by State Rep Dan Flynn

AUSTIN -Today, the House Select Committee on Transparency in State Agency Operations held its preliminary meeting for the investigation of the contemplated impeachment of Wallace Hall, a current member of the Board of Regents at the University of Texas System. Speaker Joe Straus authorized the Committee's investigation on the last day of the first called session of the 83rd Legislature.

Committee Co-Chair Carol Alvarado (D-Houston) gaveled the meeting into order, and motioned for the Committee to formally adopt its new charges.

"These impeachment proceedings will be both thorough and impartial, and we intend to use all necessary resources and powers at the Committee's disposal to ensure an effective investigation," said Co-Chair Alvarado. "I am confident the Committee will bring new, nonpartisan insights on what has been a contentious series of events."

Co-Chairman Dan Flynn (R-Van) stated: "Transparency is very important to all Texans and this situation is certainly one in need of transparency.  I believe it is important that these proceedings be conducted with decorum and with fair and impartial intent.  This is a strongly bi-partisan committee with a strong track record of transparency success in passing transparency legislation during regular session and I am fully confident that we shall be able to continue working together for all Texans."

Speaker Straus announced today, the committee's jurisdiction has been expanded to include monitoring the conduct of appointed executive branch officers, including university regents, to ensure that these appointed officers are acting in the best interest of the agencies and institutions they govern.  The committee is authorized to investigate misconduct and may propose articles of impeachment if the committee determines that grounds for impeachment exist.

Under the speaker's proclamation and Chapter 665 of the Government Code, if the committee begins an investigation relating to a contemplated impeachment during the special session, the committee may continue its investigations during the interim. If after a full and fair investigation the committee determines that grounds for impeachment exist, the committee may recommend articles of impeachment to the full House.  In that event, the Speaker will call the House back into session for the sole purpose of considering the articles of impeachment.