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Maverick County Commissioner’s Court to possibly appoint a County Attorney under an Intra Vires act

The Maverick County Commissioner’s Court could appoint a new County Attorney to replace former County Attorney Ricardo Ramos when he invoked the Texas Constitution (Article 16, Section 65) on December 7, 2017 when he registered as a candidate for the position of 293rd District Judge.

However, Ramos remains in his office due to the Texas Constitution (Article 16, Section 17), which states “all officers within this State shall continue to perform the duties of their offices until their successors shall be duly qualified.”

As per the Texas Election Code section 202.004, candidate Ricardo Ramos, did not file within the allotted time frame to conduct an election for his replacement in the 2018 Primary for the Vacated position. (On or before December 6, 2017).

Due to this action by the current County Attorney, not filing within the allotted time frame, the position becomes vacant.

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Lastly under Local Government Code 87.041, the state law, in this case the Local Government Code allows “the commissioner’s court (to) fill a vacancy by a majority vote of the members of the court who are present and voting. The person appointed by the commissioner’s court to fill the vacancy shall hold office until the next general election.”

This particular action is in legal terms an Intra Vires act which translates to, “any action held within the powers of an organization.” Which is opposite an Ultra Vires act, “actions taken by government bodies that exceed the scope of power given to them by laws.”

Maverick County has over 50 licensed attorneys practicing law. However, few Maverick County attorneys have expressed interest in being appointed, among them local attorney Edgar Juarez, who has vast experience in criminal law.

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