CHAPTER 10

ADMINISTRATION

   ARTICLE I. GENERAL PROVISIONS OF THE CODE

   Sec. 10.01     How Code designated and cited

The ordinances in this and the following chapters and sections shall constitute and be designated the “Code of Ordinances, City of Garland, Texas” and may be so cited.

   Sec. 10.02     Headings

The heading of a section or part of this Code shall not be construed to limit or expand the meaning of an ordinance.

   Sec. 10.03     Rules of construction

In the construction of this Code, and the ordinances and resolutions passed by the City Council, the following rules shall be observed, unless the ordinance or context requires a different meaning:

Generally. Words shall be construed in their common and usual sense unless the contrary is clearly indicated. Words and phrases shall be read in context and construed according to the rules of grammar and common usage, provided, however, that words and phrases that have acquired a technical or particular meaning shall be construed accordingly. A grammatical error does not vitiate a law. If a sentence or clause is meaningless because of a grammatical error, words and clauses may be transposed to give the law meaning.

City. The words “the City” or “this City” shall mean the City of Garland, in the County of Dallas and State of Texas.

City Manager or other City officers. “City Manager” or other specified City officer or department shall be construed to mean the City Manager or such other municipal officers or departments, respectively, of the City of Garland, Texas.

Computation of time. Whenever a notice is required to be given or an act to be done a certain length of time before any proceeding shall be had, the day on which such notice is given or such act is done shall not be counted in computing the time, but the day on which such proceeding is to be had shall be counted. If the last day of any period is a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the period of days is extended to include the next day that is not a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday.

Council. Whenever the words “Council” or “this Council” or “the Council” are used, they shall mean the City Council of the City of Garland, Texas.

County. The term “County” or “this County” shall mean the County of Dallas, Texas.

Gender. A word importing the masculine gender only shall extend and be applied to females and to firms, partnerships, associations and corporations as well as to males.

Highway. The term “highway” shall include any street, alley, highway, avenue or public place or square, bridges, viaducts, tunnels, underpasses, overpasses and causeways in the City, dedicated or devoted to public use.

Joint authority. Words purporting to give authority to three (3) or more officers or other persons shall be construed as giving such authority to a majority of such officers or other persons, unless it is otherwise declared.

Month. The word “month” shall mean a calendar month.

Number. Any word importing the singular number shall include the plural and any word importing the plural number shall include the singular.

Oath. The word “oath” shall be construed to include an affirmation in all cases in which, by law, an affirmation may be substituted for an oath, and in such cases the words “swear” and “sworn” shall be equivalent to the words “affirm” and “affirmed.”

Or, and. “Or” may be read “and,” and “and” may be read “or,” if the sense requires it.

Owner. The word “owner,” applied to a building or land, shall include any part owner, joint owner, tenant in common, tenant in partnership, joint tenant or tenant by the entirety, or the whole or of a part of such building or land.

Person. The word “person” shall extend and be applied to associations, corporations, organizations, firms, partnerships, estates, trusts, and business trusts and to a government or governmental subdivision or agency, other than the City of Garland, Texas.

Preceding, following. The words “preceding” and “following” mean next before and next after, respectively.

Sidewalk. The word “sidewalk” shall mean any portion of the street between the curb, or the lateral line of the roadway and the adjacent property line, intended for the use of pedestrians.

Signature or subscription. The words “signature” or “subscription” shall include a mark when a person cannot write.

State. The words “the state” or “this state” shall be construed to mean the State of Texas.

Street. The term “street” shall include any highway, alley, street, avenue or public place or square, bridges, viaducts, underpasses, overpasses, tunnels and causeways in the City, dedicated or devoted to public use.

Tense. Words used in the past or present tense include the future as well as the past and present.

Written or in writing. The words “written” or “in writing” shall be construed to include any representation of words, letters, or figures, whether by printing or otherwise.

Year. The word “year” shall mean a calendar year.

   Sec. 10.04     Amendments or additions to Code

All ordinances passed subsequent to this Code which amend, repeal or in any way affect this Code may be numbered in accordance with the numbering system of this Code and printed for inclusion herein. When subsequent ordinances repeal any chapter, section or subsection or any portion thereof, such repealed portions may be excluded from the Code by omission from reprinted pages.

   Sec. 10.05     General penalty for violations; responsibilities of owners, managers, and occupants; agent for service

(A)     General penalty for violations of ordinances. Whenever in this Code or in any ordinance of the City an act is prohibited, or is made or declared to be unlawful, an offense or a misdemeanor, or wherever in such Code or ordinance the doing of any act is required, or the failure to do any act is declared to be unlawful, unless the offense is otherwise expressly punishable by the imposition of a civil or administrative penalty, the violation of any such provision of this Code or any such ordinance shall be punished by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000.00) for any ordinance that governs fire safety, zoning, or public health and sanitation, including dumping of refuse; provided, however, that the penalty for any other violation of an ordinance shall be punished by a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars ($500.00). If the laws of this state mandate a different penalty for the same or similar offense, then the laws of this state shall control.

(B)     Continuing or repeated offenses. Each day or portion of a day any violation of this Code or other ordinance shall continue or occur shall constitute a separate offense.

(C)     Liability of nonowner. In the case of real property for which the City has issued a certificate of occupancy or a certificate of completion with respect to improvements on the real property, neither an individual employee of the owner of the property, nor an employee of a company that manages the property on behalf of the property owner is personably liable for criminal or civil penalties resulting from the issuance of a citation or notice of violation for a violation of this Code or another ordinance if the individual provides the property owner's name, street address, and telephone number to the enforcement official who issues the citation or notice of violation, or to the official's superior. Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit the issuance of a citation for a violation of this article to an employee or contractor of the property owner, or to a management company, relating to the construction or development of the property.

(D)     Notice to owner.

(1)     If a property owner's street address is not in this state, an employee of the owner or a management company to whom a citation or notice of violation is issued is considered the owner's agent for accepting service of the citation or notice of violation for a violation of this article, and shall have the same legal effect as service on the owner for the purpose of fines against the owner of the property, including a warrant or capias.

(2)     Whenever the City is required to send a notice to an owner of real property for the purpose of enforcing a provision of this Code, the notice may include the following statement:

     “According to the real property records of [the] County, you own the real property described in this notice. If you no longer own the property, you must execute an affidavit stating that you no longer own the property and stating the name and last known address of the person who acquired the property from you. The affidavit must be delivered in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested, to this office not later than the 20th day after the date you receive this notice. If you do not send the affidavit, it will be presumed that you own the property described in this notice, even if you do not.”

(3)     The notice described in subsection (D)(2) must be delivered in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested. If the City sends a notice to the owner of the property to which the notice relates, as shown by the real property records of the county in which the property is located on or after the 10th day before the date the notice is sent, and the record owner no longer owns the property, the record owner shall execute an affidavit provided by the City with the notice stating:

(a)     That the record owner no longer owns the property; and

(b)     The name and last known address of the person who acquired the property from the record owner.

     The record owner shall deliver the affidavit in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the City not later than the 20th day after the date the record owner receives the notice. If the City receives the affidavit, the City shall send the appropriate notice to the person named in the affidavit as having acquired the property. A notice sent under this subsection (3) must include the statement authorized by subsection (D)(2). Upon receiving an affidavit under this subsection (3), the City shall maintain the affidavit on file for at least two years after the date the affidavit was received and shall deliver a copy of the affidavit to the chief appraiser of the appraisal district in which the property is located.

(4)     The City is considered to have provided notice to a property owner if the City complies with the statute, rule, regulation, or ordinance under which the notice is sent and if the City complies with the provisions of this subsection and does not receive an affidavit from the record owner or does not receive an affidavit from the person to whom the notice was sent as provided by this subsection. If the City complies with this section and does not receive an affidavit under subsection (3), the record owner is presumed to be the owner of the property for all purposes to which the notice relates. For purposes of this section, “real property” does not include a mineral interest or royalty interest.

(E)     Other remedies unaffected. The provisions provided in this section are cumulative of all other remedies and nonexclusive. Nothing in this section shall be deemed or construed to limit the availability of any remedy against any person or property otherwise provided by law including, without limitation, fines, penalties, closure, and injunction.

(F)     Culpable mental state required. A culpable mental state is required for a violation of this Code punishable as a criminal offense by a fine in excess of $500.00 and, unless otherwise specified, it is required that the offense have occurred intentionally, knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence.

(Ordinance 5445, sec. 1, adopted 3/7/00; Ordinance 6009, sec. 1, adopted 6/6/06)

State law references–Penalties for violations, V.T.C.A., Local Government Code, sec. 54.001; penalty for class C misdemeanor, V.T.C.A., Penal Code, sec. 12.23; requirement of culpability, V.T.C.A., Penal Code, sec. 6.02.

   Sec. 10.06     Severability of parts of Code

It is hereby declared to be the intention of the City Council that the sections, paragraphs, sentences, clauses and phrases of this Code are severable and, if any phrase, clause, sentence, paragraph or section of this Code shall be declared unconstitutional by the valid judgment or decree of any court of competent jurisdiction, such unconstitutionality shall not affect any of the remaining phrases, clauses, sentences, paragraphs and sections of this Code, since the same would have been enacted by the City Council without the incorporation in this Code of any such unconstitutional phrase, clause, sentence, paragraph or section.

State law reference–Severability of statutes, V.T.C.A., Government Code, sec. 312.013.

   Secs. 10.07–10.09          Reserved

   ARTICLE II. PROVISIONS CONCERNING ELECTIONS, CLAIMS, ETC.

   Sec. 10.10     Council districts

For the purpose of municipal elections, in accordance with section 1, article III, of the Charter, as amended, the council district boundary lines dividing the City into eight (8) single-member council districts, are hereby established as follows:

     Council District 1

     Beginning at the intersection of North Jupiter Road (City limit line) and Lookout Drive (City limit line); North Jupiter Road (City limit line) south to West Campbell Road; West Campbell Road east to President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190); President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190) southeast to North Garland Avenue; North Garland Avenue southwest to Spring Creek; Spring Creek southeast to President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190); President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190) southeast to Lavon Drive (State Highway 78); Lavon Drive (State Highway 78) south to East Buckingham Road; East Buckingham Road east to Country Club Road; Country Club Road south to State Highway 66; State Highway 66 east to Rowlett Creek (City limit line); Rowlett Creek (City limit line) north to Castle Drive (City limit line); Castle Drive (City limit line) northeast to Miles Road (City limit line); Miles Road (City limit line) northwest to Pleasant Valley Road (City limit line); Pleasant Valley Road (City limit line) northeast to Miles Road (City limit line); Miles Road (City limit line) north and northeast to Bunker Hill Road (City limit line); Bunker Hill Road (City limit line) northwest to Lavon Drive (State Highway 78); Lavon Drive (State Highway 78) to Murphy Road (City limit line); Murphy Road (City limit line) northwest and north to the northern City limit line; following the City limit line west back to North Jupiter Road (City limit line), the place of beginning (inclusive of the unoccupied City limits extension to the Hinton Landfill, through Rockwall County, and terminating at the Olinger Electric Power Plant in Collin County).

     Council District 2

     Beginning at the intersection of West Walnut Street and Duck Creek; Walnut Street east to Lavon Drive (State Highway 78); Lavon Drive (State Highway 78) northeast to East Buckingham Road; East Buckingham Road east to North Country Club Road; North Country Club Road south to State Highway 66; State Highway 66 east to Rowlett Creek (City limit line); Rowlett Creek (City limit line) south to East Miller Road; East Miller Road west to East Centerville Road; East Centerville Road southwest to the northern subdivision boundary of Pecan Knoll Addition; west along the northern subdivision boundary of Pecan Knoll Addition to Dairy Road; Dairy Road south to Broadway Boulevard; Broadway Boulevard northwest to South First Street; South First Street north to West Miller Road; West Miller Road west to the eastern subdivision boundary of Miller Park Shopping Center Addition; north along the eastern subdivision boundary and west along the northern subdivision boundary of Miller Park Shopping Center Addition to its intersection with the eastern subdivision boundary of Linda Ray Addition; north along the eastern subdivision boundary of Linda Ray Addition to the Kansas City Southern Railroad; southwest along the Kansas City Southern Railroad to Duck Creek; northwest along Duck Creek to West Avenue F; west along West Avenue F to South Garland Avenue; north along South Garland Avenue to Duck Creek; northwest along Duck Creek to West Walnut Street, the place of beginning.

     Council District 3

     Beginning at the intersection of Broadway Boulevard and East Centerville Road; East Centerville Road northeast to East Miller Road; East Miller Road east to Rowlett Creek (City limit line); Rowlett Creek (City limit line) south and following the City limit line at the shoreline of Lake Ray Hubbard to East Interstate 30; from East Interstate 30 continue south along the City limit line at the Lake Ray Hubbard shoreline then west, south and west with the meanderings of the City limit line to Bobtown Road; Bobtown Road south to Barnes Bridge Road; Barnes Bridges Road west then southwest to the City limit line; City limit line northwest then west to Broadway Boulevard; Broadway Boulevard north to West Interstate 30; West Interstate 30 northeast to Rosehill Road; Rosehill Road north to Bobtown Road; Bobtown Road west to Rowlett Road; Rowlett Road northeast to Rosehill Road; Rosehill Road northwest to Gatewood Drive; Gatewood Drive southwest to Broadway Boulevard; Broadway Boulevard northwest to East Centerville Road, the place of beginning.

     Council District 4

     Beginning at the intersection of Northwest Highway and West Centerville Road; West Centerville Road northeast to Broadway Boulevard; Broadway Boulevard southeast to Gatewood Drive; Gatewood Drive northeast to Rosehill Road; Rosehill Road southeast to Rowlett Road; Rowlett Road southwest to Bobtown Road; Bobtown Road east to Rosehill Road; Rosehill Road south to West Interstate 30; West Interstate 30 southwest to Broadway Boulevard; Broadway Boulevard south to the City limit line; City limit line with its meanderings north and west to La Prada Drive; La Prada Drive (City limit line) southwest to Northwest Highway; Northwest Highway northwest to West Centerville Road, the place of beginning.

     Council District 5

     Beginning at the intersection of the City limit line and West Miller Road; West Miller Road east to the Kansas City Southern Railroad; Kansas City Southern Railroad northeast to the northernmost point of the Linda Ray Addition; then south along the eastern subdivision boundary of Linda Ray Addition to its intersection with the north boundary of the Miller Park Shopping Center Addition; east along the northern subdivision boundary of the Miller Park Shopping Center Addition and south along the eastern subdivision boundary of the Miller Park Shopping Center Addition to West Miller Road; West Miller Road east to South First Street; South First Street south to Broadway Boulevard; Broadway Boulevard southeast to Dairy Road; Dairy Road north to the northern subdivision boundary of the Pecan Knoll Addition; east along the northern subdivision boundary of the Pecan Knoll Addition to East Centerville Road; East Centerville Road southwest to Northwest Highway; Northwest Highway southeast to La Prada Drive (City limit line); La Prada Drive (City limit line) southwest to Interstate 635 (City limit line); Interstate 635 (City limit line) northwest to South Garland Avenue (City limit line); South Garland Avenue southwest to Interstate 635 (City limit line); Interstate 635 (City limit line) northwest to West Kingsley Road (City limit line); West Kingsley Road (City limit line) east to South Jupiter Road (City limit line); South Jupiter Road (City limit line) north to City limit line; City limit line west and north to West Miller Road, the place of beginning.

     Council District 6

     Beginning at the intersection of the City limit line and West Buckingham Road; West Buckingham Road east to North Shiloh Road; North Shiloh Road south to West Miller Road; West Miller Road west to the City limit line; City limit line north to West Buckingham Road, to place of beginning.

     Council District 7

     Beginning at the intersection of North Jupiter Road (City limit line) and West Campbell Road; West Campbell Road east to President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190); President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190) southeast to North Garland Avenue; North Garland Avenue southwest to its intersection with Arapaho Road; North Garland Avenue southeast and south to Homestead Place; Homestead Place west to Sam Houston Drive; Sam Houston Drive south to West Buckingham Road; West Buckingham Road west to North Jupiter Road (City limit line); North Jupiter Road (City limit line) north to West Campbell Road, the place of beginning.

     Council District 8

     Beginning at the intersection of North Garland Avenue and Belt Line Road; North Garland Avenue northwest to Arapaho Road; continuing on North Garland Avenue northeast to Spring Creek; Spring Creek southeast to President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190); President George Bush Turnpike (State Highway 190) southeast to Lavon Drive (State Highway 78); Lavon Drive (State Highway 78) south to East Walnut Street; East Walnut Street west to Duck Creek; Duck Creek southeast to South Garland Avenue; South Garland Avenue southwest to West Avenue F; West Avenue F east to Duck Creek; along Duck Creek to the Kansas City Southern Railroad; the Kansas City Southern Railroad southwest to West Miller Road; West Miller Road west to South Shiloh Road; South Shiloh Road north to West Buckingham Road; West Buckingham Road east to Sam Houston Drive; Sam Houston Drive north to Homestead Place; Homestead Place east to North Garland Avenue; North Garland Avenue north to Belt Line Road, the place of beginning.

(Ordinance 3930, secs. 1, 2, adopted 1/21/86; Ordinance 4531, sec. 1, adopted 10/15/91; Ordinance 5591, sec. 1, adopted 9/4/01; Ordinance 6083, sec. 1, adopted 1/9/07; Ordinance 6839 adopted 6/7/16)

State law reference–Election precincts, V.T.C.A., Election Code, sec. 42.001 et seq.

   Sec. 10.11     Polling places

Polling places for all elections, general and special, ordered by or on the authority of the City Council shall be established by the election order calling such election or, in the case of a joint election held with another unit of election, the polling places established by the joint election agreement. (Ordinance 3931, sec. 1, adopted 1/21/86; Ordinance 4173, sec. 1, adopted 1/19/88; Ordinance 4922, sec. 1, adopted 12/5/95)

State law reference–Polling places, V.T.C.A., Election Code, ch. 43.

   Sec. 10.12     Nomination petition forms for election of Mayor and City Council

(A)     In all future elections for Mayor and City Council in the City, all nomination petitions shall be on forms prepared and furnished by the City Secretary.

(B)     Before delivering any nomination petition forms to or on behalf of a proposed candidate for Mayor or City Councilmember, the City Secretary shall first write thereon the name of the candidate proposed to be nominated, together with the designation of the office (including district number, if applicable) for which the candidate is proposed to be nominated. No petition shall be changed in any manner after delivery by the City Secretary.

   Sec. 10.13     Type and number of voting machines; signs at polling places; judges and clerks

(A)     In all future municipal elections, punch card voting devices shall be used. There shall be a minimum of two (2) voting booths at each polling place.

(B)     In all future municipal elections each polling place shall be designated by two (2) appropriate signs.

(C)     In all future municipal elections there shall be a presiding judge and an alternate presiding judge at each polling place. There shall also be no more than two (2) election clerks, the number of persons appointed thereto being at the discretion of the presiding judge.

(D)     No person shall serve as a presiding judge unless he has been certified as attending an appropriate election school.

(E)     Any provision herein which is contrary to the election laws of the state, as presently constituted or hereafter amended, are deemed ineffective.

(F)     Violation of this section shall be a misdemeanor punishable in accordance with section 10.05 of this Code. It is especially provided that violation of this section shall never vitiate or invalidate any election unless it is clearly demonstrated such violation did, in fact, change the outcome of the election.

   Sec. 10.14     Time and place of regular Council meeting

(A)     Unless otherwise established by resolution or ordinance, pursuant to article 3, section 8 of the Charter, the City Council shall conduct a regular meeting on the first and third Tuesdays of  each month, beginning at 7:00 p.m. at City Hall. (Ordinance 6324, sec. 2, adopted 7/7/09)

(B)     This section shall be applicable to regular meetings only and shall not affect emergency, called, or special meetings.

   Sec. 10.15     Procedure for conducting City business at public meetings

(A)     Orderly proceedings are necessary for the protection of the rights of local self-government, and the disruptions of any public meeting by any form of force or violence is in violation of the fundamental rights of the citizens of the City to govern themselves by their duly elected or appointed representatives. It is the responsibility of the council to keep order in all meetings of the City government and, therefore, it is ordained that each and every meeting of any board, commission, council, or other body convened to conduct the business of the City be conducted in an orderly manner. For the purpose of this section the term “body” shall be defined as any council, commission, board, or other group that is established by state statute or City ordinance. The chairman of the body meeting is hereby given the authority to rule on all points of order subject to the right of the body over which he presides and to amend or reverse any ruling or to initiate such ruling on a point of order as the body may direct. The right of the body to reverse or amend a ruling of the chair on a point of order is an affirmative right that must be exercised to be valid. The absence of the affirmative action of the body to amend or reverse the ruling of the chair will be affirmative evidence of the support of the chair's ruling.

(B)     It shall be unlawful for any person to disobey the ruling of the chair of any public body convened to do the business of the City:

(1)     By refusing to stop talking or making noise or sound when the chair has ruled for the sake of order that the person should stop talking or making noise or sound;

(2)     By refusing to be seated when the chair for the sake of order has ruled that the person should be seated; or

(3)     By refusing to leave the assembly when the chair for the sake of order has ruled that the person designated should leave the assembly.

(C)     All meetings of any body conducting City business shall be opened to the public and in due course of the meeting citizens of the City shall have a reasonable opportunity to be heard. All action taken by anybody that involves a City business shall be taken at an open public meeting, but this shall not prevent any board from meeting in executive session as permitted by state law.

   Sec. 10.16     Designation of authorized emergency vehicles

Pursuant to section 541.201, Texas Transportation Code, the City Manager is authorized to designate as authorized emergency vehicles under the provisions of the Texas Transportation Code and other laws those vehicles that are owned or operated by the City and determined by the City Manager to be necessary in responding to emergencies and providing for the public safety. (Ordinance 7008 adopted 9/4/18)

Editor's note–Former section 10.16 pertaining to city vehicles to be used for official business only and deriving from the 1989 Code, was repealed and deleted in its entirety by Ordinance 6898 adopted 2/21/17.

   Sec. 10.17     Notice of claim against City

No elected official of the City, employee, officer or agent of the City shall be authorized to waive the notice of claims required to be filed with the City by section 4, article XVII of the City Charter. It is the intention of this provision to place all persons on notice that the notice required by the Charter to be filed with the City Secretary or City Manager is a prerequisite to the validity of any claim against the City.

   Sec. 10.18     Granting permits, licenses, privileges, etc., to persons obligated to City prohibited

No person who owes delinquent taxes, delinquent paving assessments or any other delinquent debt or obligation to the City shall be granted any permit, license or privilege or paid any monies from the public treasury of the City until the debt or obligation owed by such person has been discharged by payment, or an arrangement satisfactory to the City Manager has been made for the payment of such debt or obligation. For the purposes of this section, the debt or obligation of one spouse shall be considered the debt or obligation of the other spouse as well.

   Sec. 10.19     Term “City,” City seal and other insignia restricted

No person shall use as its business name or part thereof, the word “City.” A person commits an offense if he uses the official flag, seal, shield, service mark, badge, or other insignia of the City or a department of the City or a facsimile of the flag, seal, shield, service mark, badge, or other insignia of the City or a department of the City:

(1)     For a commercial purpose; or

(2)     To signify sponsorship or approval by an agency or department of the City;

without first obtaining express written authorization from the City Manager.

   Sec. 10.20     Runoff elections

If, after the regular election a runoff election is required, the runoff election shall be held on a date lawfully determined and established in accordance with the Texas Election Code.

(Ordinance 4194, sec. 1, adopted 3/15/88; Ordinance 4582, sec. 1, adopted 4/7/92; Ordinance 6324, sec. 3, adopted 7/7/09)

State law reference–Runoff election, V.T.C.A., Election Code, sec. 2.021 et seq.

   Sec. 10.21     Disclaimer of warranties–Inspection services

Inspection services performed by the City including, but not limited to, fire, police, building, health, and code enforcement, are done solely for the purpose of obtaining compliance with the law as part of the City's governmental interests in law enforcement and public safety. All such inspections are provided “AS-IS” and without warranty, expressed or implied. No special relationship between the City and any person affected by such inspections is created or intended. (Ordinance 5483, sec. 1, adopted 8/1/00)

   Sec. 10.22     Cancellation of general elections for unopposed candidates

Where the City Council is authorized to cancel a general election for unopposed candidates under the Texas Election Code, the City Council shall declare each unopposed candidate elected to office and shall cancel the election. (Ordinance 6514, sec. 1, adopted 2/7/12)

   Secs. 10.23–10.24          Reserved

   ARTICLE III. BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS

   Sec. 10.25     Members of boards and commissions to have same qualifications as provided in Charter for City Councilmembers

The members of all boards and commissions shall possess similar qualifications and be subject to the same disqualifications as provided by the Charter for members of the City Council or the general laws of the state.

   Sec. 10.26     Membership limited to one permanent board or commission per person

No person shall be appointed to more than one (1) permanent board or commission of the City at any one (1) time, except as required by membership stipulations of said board or commission.

   Sec. 10.27     Absences of board or commission members to be limited

Any member of any board or commission appointed by the City Council shall forfeit his office if he is absent for more than three (3) meetings, or twenty-five (25) percent, whichever is greater, in one (1) appointment year, unless for medical reasons, or unless excused by the board or commission of which he is a member or the City Council. In such case, the City Council shall declare the position vacant and appoint a new member to fill the vacancy.

   Sec. 10.28     Termination of appointment of board or commission member filing for elective office

All appointments of persons appointed by the City Council on any board or commission of the City shall be automatically terminated upon the filing of such person for an elective office of the City regardless of the length of time that said appointee may have remaining in the due term of his appointed office.

   Sec. 10.29     Exemptions

Persons named to represent the City on the boards of the North Texas Municipal Water District, the Texas Municipal Power Agency, and the governing bodies of any interagency boards and commissions in which the City may participate in the future are specifically exempt from the provisions of section 10.27 of this article.

   Sec. 10.30     Reserved

Editor's noteFormer section 10.30 pertaining to the Community Development Advisory Committee and deriving from Ordinance 4197, adopted April 5, 1988, was deleted and reserved in its entirety by section 4 of Ordinance 6324, adopted July 7, 2009.

   Sec. 10.31     Cultural Arts Commission

(A)     (1)     There is hereby established a committee to be known as the Garland Cultural Arts Commission, which shall consist of nine (9) voting members who shall be residents of the City and who shall be appointed by the City Council for a term of two (2) years. Members shall serve without pay.

(2)     Provided, however, that the commission shall initially consist of five (5) members who shall serve a two-year term and four (4) members who shall serve a one-year term. Thereafter, commission members shall be appointed on the first regular meeting of the City Council in September and such appointments may be made from a list of persons who have demonstrated an interest in cultural endeavors, which list shall be compiled and presented by the commission. No person shall be appointed to the commission who currently serves on the executive board of any group or organization involved with the activities of the commission as a cosponsor or otherwise.

(B)     The commission shall annually elect a chair and a vice-chair.

(C)     The commission shall adopt such rules and regulations as it deems best to govern its actions and meetings, subject to the laws of the state, the Garland City Charter and any other ordinance of the City or action of the City Council. The commission shall meet not less than four (4) times a year, at such times as it may vote to meet. A majority of the membership of the commission shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

(D)     The Performing Arts Center shall, within staffing limitations, provide the commission with appropriate and necessary administrative support to assist it in its endeavors and in the exercise of its duties. The Director of the Performing Arts Center shall serve as secretary to the commission and shall submit, in writing, such reports and recommendations to the City Manager as the commission may direct.

(E)     The Cultural Arts Commission shall serve as an advisory board to the City in all matters involving the use of the Performing Arts Center and the Garland Historical Park, and in matters pertaining to the arts. In this regard, the City Council may refer all ordinances and resolutions concerning the Performing Arts Center or the Garland Historical Park to the commission for review and recommendation prior to consideration by the City Council.

In addition to the foregoing, the commission shall:

(1)     Review and approve the policies and operating procedures of the Performing Arts Center.

(2)     Establish criteria for, then review and approve, community-based groups applying for “cosponsor status,” as defined in the policies and operating procedures of the Performing Arts Center. An organization which has “cosponsor status” on the effective date of this section shall not be required to reapply for cosponsor status so long as such organization continues to meet the Performing Arts Center guidelines for cosponsor status.

(3)     Review and approve use agreements, policies and procedures concerning the historical park and buildings thereon.

(4)     Study and submit recommendations to the City Council for the improvement and expansion of arts and historical programs within the City.

(5)     Plan and promote cultural activities that are not covered by existing community-based groups.

(6)     Promote public awareness and appreciation of the arts and historical preservation.

(7)     Communicate with all arts groups to encourage the establishment of an ongoing cultural arts program for the City.

(F)     The commission may, upon approval by the City Council, incorporate as a private, nonprofit corporation for the purpose of soliciting and receiving grants, donations and other such monies to be used for the promotion of the arts and historical development.

   Sec. 10.32     Reserved

Editor's noteFormer section 10.32, pertaining to the utility advisory board and deriving from Ordinance 4155, sec. 1, adopted 11/3/87; Ordinance 4199 adopted 4/5/88; Ordinance 4354, secs. 1, 2, adopted 8/1/89; Ordinance 4621, secs. 1, 2, adopted 9/15/92; Ordinance 5197, secs. 1, 2, adopted 8/18/98; Ordinance 5356, sec. 1, adopted 4/20/99; Ordinance 5584, sec. 1, adopted 7/17/01; and Ordinance 6216, sec. 1, adopted 3/18/08, was repealed in its entirety by Ordinance 6446 adopted by the City on March 1, 2011.

   Sec. 10.33     Citizens Environmental and Neighborhood Advisory Committee

(A)     Creation and appointment of members. There is hereby created a Citizens Environmental and Neighborhood Advisory Committee consisting of nine (9) members appointed by the City Council. The Mayor and City Council may each appoint a member to the committee who shall serve a term to coincide with that of the appointing member of the City Council. Members shall serve without compensation.

(B)     Qualifications. The members of the committee shall possess the same qualifications as are required for members of the City Council.

(C)     Staff liaison. The Assistant City Manager for community services, or another person designated by the City Manager, shall serve as staff liaison to the committee but shall have no vote.

(D)     Responsibilities and duties. The committee shall serve the City Council as an advisory board and in that capacity the committee shall:

(1)     Initiate a Keep Garland Beautiful Program (in affiliation with Keep Texas Beautiful).

(2)     Expand the Adopt-A-Watershed and Adopt-A-Spot litter removal programs.

(3)     Trace success of and promote the City's “Stop Illegal Dumping” program.

(4)     Encourage increased citizen participation in the usage of curbside recycling and the drop-off recycling center.

(5)     Promote neighborhood quality and improvement efforts.

(6)     Promote citizen involvement in the maintenance of alleys and easements.

(7)     Interface with the City's homeowner/neighborhood association in neighborhood appearance activities.

(8)     Aid staff in promoting strategies that maintain well-kept neighborhoods in an excellent condition.

(9)     Promote the household hazardous waste (HHW) management program (through the City's membership in the Dallas Area HHW Network or through an independent program).

(Ordinance 4459, sec. 1, adopted 9/18/90; Ordinance 4794, sec. 1, adopted 8/2/94; Ordinance 5391, sec. 1, adopted 8/17/99)

   Sec. 10.34     Senior Citizens Advisory Commission

(A)     A Senior Citizens Advisory Commission is herein created to generate broad-based public awareness of and support for senior citizens' concerns. This is to be accomplished through a membership of the community interested in senior issues. The commission shall be advisory to the City Council and evaluate the current issues affecting senior citizens and bring them to the attention of the City Council.

(B)     The Senior Citizens Advisory Commission shall consist of nine (9) members appointed by the City Council. At the outset, members shall be appointed for one-year terms with appointments thereafter coinciding with City Council elections. These terms shall expire on August 31 of an election year. The membership shall include a cross-section of the community currently active in senior issues. It is recommended, but not mandatory, that members be persons who are at least sixty (60) years of age and who are active and concerned in senior affairs in the community, members of local chapters of retirement organizations such as the American Association of Retired Persons, Retired Teachers Association, National Association of Retired Federal Employees, City Employees Retirement Association, or other similar organizations or members of a senior citizen church group which has an active and identifiable seniors program.

(C)     The Senior Citizens Advisory Commission shall adopt its own internal operational and procedural rules. The officers shall be elected once annually from among its own membership.

(D)     Regular meetings shall be held each month. However, special meetings may be called by the chair-person of the commission. Five (5) members attending the meeting shall constitute a quorum. A vote of the simple majority of the quorum shall be required for any action taken by the commission.

(E)     All members of the commission are subject to removal in accordance to the City Council's current policy with regard to required attendance at City board, commission, and committee meetings.

(F)     The commission shall have the following duties:

(1)     Review the budget for the office on aging, senior centers and other senior activities and make appropriate recommendations to the council.

(2)     Advise the City Council on issues of importance to seniors living in the City.

(3)     Participate on behalf of the City on boards or commissions relating to the interests of seniors and to sponsor or cosponsor as appropriate forums and programs on senior issues and services and identifying and recommending programs and services for seniors that are needed in the community.

(4)     Raise the public awareness of seniors' needs and issues and advise the City Council as requested.

(G)     The Director of Housing and Neighborhood Services (or a designated representative) shall be an ex-officio member of the commission, and shall have the right to discuss any matter that is under consideration by the commission, but shall have no vote.

(Ordinance 4543, sec. 1, adopted 11/19/91)

   Sec. 10.35     Multicultural Commission

(A)     Creation and composition. A Community Multicultural Commission is hereby created to maximize the potential, inclusion, and quality of life of all citizen populations in the City by identifying issues and making recommendations to Council concerning the City's changing demographic composition and diverse needs. This is to be accomplished through a diverse membership representing a cross-section of the community. It is recommended, but not mandatory, that the commission include representatives of local advocacy groups.

(B)     Appointment of members. The commission shall consist of thirteen (13) members appointed by the City Council. Each member of the City Council may appoint one member, with the exception of the Mayor, who may make five (5) appointments. Members shall serve without compensation.

(C)     Term. Members of the commission shall serve a term to coincide with that of the appointing member of the City Council. Except by reason of death, disqualification or removal from office, the term of office shall continue until a successor has been nominated, appointed and qualified.

(D)     Qualifications. The members of the commission shall possess the same qualifications as are required for members of the City Council.

(E)     Ex-officio members. The City Manager (or his designated representative) shall be an ex-officio member of the commission and shall have the right to discuss any matter that is under consideration by the commission, but shall have no vote.

(F)     Responsibilities and duties. The commission shall serve the City Council as an advisory commission and, in that capacity, shall have the following responsibilities and duties:

(1)     Communicating, learning and understanding.

(2)     Economic opportunities.

(3)     Health and community services.

(4)     Public safety.

(5)     Transportation and mobility.

(G)     Operational and procedural rules. The commission shall adopt its own internal operational and procedural rules. The officers shall be elected in October of each year from its own membership.

(Ordinance 5690, sec. 1, adopted 12/3/02)

   Sec. 10.36     Youth Council

(A)     Creation and mission. There is hereby created the City Youth Council. The mission of the Youth Council is to provide a means through which the City's younger citizens may learn about the various workings of City business, and a forum which allows youth to be a voice to address their particular ideas and concerns.

(B)     Appointment of members. The Youth Council shall consist of twenty members, eighteen of which shall be appointed by the City Council. The Mayor and each member of the City Council may appoint two members. The chairperson of the Youth Council shall appoint the other two members. Members shall serve without compensation.

(C)     Term. The members of the Youth Council shall serve a term of one year but may be appointed to successive terms of one year provided the member otherwise qualifies under the provisions of subsection (D).

(D)     Qualifications. The members of the Youth Council shall be selected from an applicant pool of high school students (freshman through senior). Members should be residents of Garland and may not be more than 19 years of age at the time of appointment. Applicants shall complete a standard boards and commissions application form. An applicant applying for an initial term of service shall provide two letters of recommendation and shall submit a written essay explaining the applicant's reasons for desiring to serve on the Youth Council.

(E)     Responsibilities and duties. The Youth Council shall serve the City Council as an advisory commission and, in that capacity, shall have the following responsibilities and duties:

(1)     To serve as a means through which the City Council may be made aware of the needs and wants of youth throughout the City;

(2)     To educate the young people of the City about the local political process;

(3)     To assist the Mayor and City Council in scheduling meetings which address youth concerns;

(4)     To serve as ambassadors and messengers for the City on matters of concern to young persons.

(F)     Procedural rules; operation. The Youth Council shall adopt procedural rules governing the conduct of its meetings and activities. The Youth Council shall elect a chairperson and vice-chairperson each year from its own membership. The Youth Council shall meet once each month. The City Manager shall assign a staff liaison to assist the Youth Council in its activities.

(Ordinance 5897, sec. 1, adopted 5/3/05; Ordinance 6291, secs. 1–3, adopted 1/20/09)

   Secs. 10.37–10.39          Reserved

   ARTICLE IV. RECORDS MANAGEMENT*

   Sec. 10.40     City records

(A)     All memoranda, reports, correspondence, accounts, files, papers, plans, maps, photographs, video and sound recordings, punched cards, magnetic or paper tape, microfilm, or other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristic, which have been or shall be created, filed, received, or recorded by a City office or department or officials thereof in pursuance of law or in the conduct, transaction or performance of any business, duty, or function of public business, are hereby declared to be records of the City and shall be created, maintained, stored, and disposed of in accordance with the provisions of this article, or procedures authorized by it, and in no other manner.

(B)     All City records, as defined above, are hereby declared to be the property of the City.

(Ordinance 4294, sec. 1, adopted 1/17/89)

   Sec. 10.41     Records management program

(A)     A records management program shall be implemented to provide for the administration of the distribution, utilization, retention, storage, retrieval, protection, preservation, and final disposition or destruction of City records in an efficient and effective manner and in accordance with the legal, fiscal, administrative and archival requirements of the City.

(B)     A Records Manager shall be responsible for the implementation and administration of the records management program.

(Ordinance 4294, sec. 1, adopted 1/17/89)

   Sec. 10.42     Records retention and disposition schedule

The Records Manager shall establish and implement a records retention and disposition schedule, which shall constitute authority for the transfer, microfilming, storage, and destruction of all City records under the direction and supervision of the records manager. In accordance with the records retention program, the Records Manager shall establish policies and procedures for the preservation of historical, vital, and permanent records. (Ordinance 4294, sec. 1, adopted 1/17/89)

   Sec. 10.43     Microfilming program

(A)     In this article, “microfilm” includes microphotograph.

(B)     The Records Manager is authorized to provide, as a part of the records management program, for the accurate and permanent copying, reproduction or origination of City records by microfilm process.

(C)     The Records Manager may microfilm such City records as the Records Manager deems necessary, giving consideration to factors which indicate the necessity of microfilming; including, but not limited to, the costs of microfilming, the value of the record and the need to preserve the record by means of microfilm because of the historical or indispensable nature of the record, and the frequency of use of such records.

(D)     The Records Manager shall make and maintain an index to all microfilm records. Microfilm used in the microfilm process shall meet the requirements of the American National Standards Institute for archival quality, density, resolution and definition. The Records Manager shall check and certify that each microfilm record is an accurate duplication of the original.

(E)     A microfilm record created in accordance with this article shall constitute an original record.

(F)     Public access to microfilm records shall be as otherwise provided by law.

(Ordinance 4294, sec. 1, adopted 1/17/89)

   Secs. 10.44–10.49          Reserved

   ARTICLE V. CODE OF ETHICS*

   Sec. 10.50     Policy and general principles

(A)     Purpose. It is hereby declared to be the policy of the City that the proper operation of democratic government requires that:

(1)     Public officials be independent, impartial, and responsible only to the people of the City;

(2)     Governmental decisions and policy be made using the proper procedures of the governmental structure;

(3)     No City official have any financial interest, direct or indirect, or engage in any business, transaction, or professional activity or incur any obligation of any nature that is in conflict with the proper discharge of his or her duties in the public interest;

(4)     Public office not be used for personal gain; and

(5)     The City Council at all times be maintained as a nonpartisan body.

(B)     Principles of conduct.

(1)     The City Council further believes that an elected or appointed official of the City assumes a public trust and should recognize the importance of high ethical standards within the organization they lead or support. Essential values and ethical behaviors that an elected or appointed official should exemplify include the following:

(a)     Commitment beyond self;

(b)     Obedience and commitment beyond the law;

(c)     Commitment to the public good;

(d)     Respect for the value and dignity of all individuals;

(e)     Accountability to the public;

(f)     Truthfulness;

(g)     Fairness; and

(h)     Responsible application of resources.

(2)     In keeping with the values set forth above, and to assist in the fulfillment of responsibilities to the individuals and communities served, each elected or appointed official should subscribe to the following principles:

(a)     To conduct himself or herself and to operate with integrity and in a manner that merits the trust and support of the public;

(b)     To uphold all applicable laws and regulations, going beyond the letter of the law to protect or enhance the City's ability to accomplish its mission;

(c)     To treat others with respect, doing for and to others what the official would have done for and to him or her in similar circumstances;

(d)     To be a responsible steward of the taxpayer resources;

(e)     To take no actions that could benefit the official personally at the unwarranted expense of the City, avoiding even the appearance of a conflict of interest, or an appearance of impropriety, and to exercise prudence and good judgment at all times;

(f)     To carefully consider the public perception of personal and professional actions and the effect such actions could have, positively or negatively, on the City's reputation both in the community and elsewhere; and

(g)     To strive for personal and professional growth to improve effectiveness as an elected or appointed official.

(3)     To implement the policy and principles set forth in this section, the City Council has determined that it is advisable to enact this Code of Ethics for all City officials, whether elected or appointed, paid or unpaid, advisory or administrative, to serve not only as a guide for official conduct of the City's public servants, but also as a basis for discipline for those who refuse to abide by its terms, the overriding interest being that officers of the City shall at all times strive to avoid even the appearance of impropriety.

(4)     This section is a statement of purpose and principles only. Nothing in this section may be used to create a cause of action against an official under this article.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.51     Definitions

The following words, terms, and phrases, when used in this article, shall have the following meaning subscribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:

Ad hoc means a temporary body formed for a specific purpose and for a short duration.

Affinity means a relationship by “affinity” (by marriage) as defined in sections 573.024 and 573.025 of the Texas Government Code, as amended.

Benefit means anything reasonably regarded as a gain or advantage, including a benefit to any other person in whose welfare the beneficiary has a direct and substantial interest.

Business entity means a sole proprietorship, partnership, firm, corporation, holding company, joint-stock company, receivership, trust, unincorporated association, or any other entity recognized by law.

City Council means the legislative and governing body of the City consisting of the Mayor and Councilmembers.

Clear and convincing evidence means that measure or degree of proof that produces in a person's mind a firm belief or conviction as to the truth of the allegations sought to be established.

Compensation means money or any other thing of value that is received, or is to be received, in return for or in connection with such representation.

Confidential information includes the following information, however transmitted, provided that it is not, at the time, a matter of public record or public knowledge:

(1)     All information held by the City that is not available to the public under the Texas Open Records Act;

(2)     Any information from a meeting closed to the public pursuant to the Texas Open Meetings Act;

(3)     Any information protected by attorney-client, attorney work product, or other applicable legal privilege;

(4)     Any information deemed confidential by law;

(5)     All information pertaining to personnel matters, litigation, contractual negotiations or competitive matters, and prospective purchase or sale of property.

Consanguinity means a relationship by “consanguinity” (by blood) as defined in sections 573.022 and 573.023 of the Texas Government Code, as amended.

Frivolous complaint means a sworn complaint that is groundless and brought in bad faith or groundless and brought for the purpose of harassment to defendants.

Indirect substantial interest means a substantial interest or benefit gained through a third party, such as an individual, company, or corporation.

Just cause means such cause as is found to exist upon a reasonable inquiry that would lead a reasonably intelligent and prudent person to believe that a person has committed an act constituting an ethical violation under this article.

Officer or official means any member of the City Council, any appointed member of a board, commission, or any committee established by ordinance, Charter or state law on a permanent or ad hoc basis; except that this definition shall not apply to members of boards, commissions, or entities not operating under the direct authority of, or subject to the direct control of, the City Council.

Relative means any person related to an officer, or an officer's spouse or resident of the same household, within the first degree of consanguinity or affinity, in conformity with article 5996h, VTCS, as currently enacted or subsequently amended.

Resident of the same household means an individual who, on a continuous basis, lives in the same household and shares the common resources of life with an officer or official.

Substantial economic interest.

(1)     A person has a “substantial economic interest” in a business entity if:

(a)     The person owns 10 percent or more of the voting stock, shares, or other ownership interest in the business entity;

(b)     The person owns $15,000.00 or more of the fair market value of the business entity; or

(c)     Funds received by the person from the business entity exceed 10 percent of the person's gross income for the previous year.

     Investment or ownership in a publicly held company whose stock is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange or any other public stock exchange, in an amount less than $10,000.00 does not constitute a substantial economic interest in a business entity under this Code of Ethics.

(2)     A person has a substantial economic interest in real property if:

(a)     The interest is an equitable or legal ownership with a fair market value of $2,500.00 or more; or

(b)     The official has ownership, a lease, or right of first refusal on any real property located within the City; including any partnership; any joint or corporate ownership; or any equitable or beneficial interest as a beneficiary of a trust.

For purposes of this article, an officer is considered to have a substantial economic interest in real property or a business entity if a person related to the officer in the first degree of consanguinity or affinity has a substantial economic interest in such real property or a business entity under this article.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.52     Conflicts of interest

(A)     No officer of the City shall participate in any vote or decision where:

(1)     A conflict of interest exists;

(2)     The officer has a direct or indirect substantial interest; or

(3)     A relative of the officer has a direct or indirect substantial interest.

(B)     No City Councilmember shall:

(1)     Represent or appear on behalf of a private interest of others before any agency of the City or any City board, commission, or committee;

(2)     Represent for compensation or other benefit any private interest of others in any action or proceeding involving the City; or

(3)     Voluntarily participate on behalf of others in any litigation to which the City might be a party.

(C)     No other official shall, for compensation or other benefit:

(1)     Represent or appear on behalf of the private interests of others before the board, commission, or committee of which the official is a member; or

(2)     Appear before the City Council or other board on appeal from such board, commission, or committee concerning such matter.

(D)     No officer of the City shall accept any gift or favor from any person or business entity that might reasonably tend to:

(1)     Influence the official in the discharge of official duties; or

(2)     Influence the official in the discharge of those official duties to grant any improper favor, service, or thing of value.

(E)     No officer of the City shall use the official position of the office to improperly influence others or to secure privileges or exemptions to themselves or others.

(F)     No officer of the City shall engage in any activities which will conflict with, or be incompatible with, a position as an officer of the City, which will give the officer an advantage over others engaged in a similar business, vocation, or activity.

(G)     In any zoning matter which may come before the City Council, any Councilmember who owns a substantial interest in any property within 200 feet of the zoning request shall:

(1)     Disclose, in writing, the existence of such interest to the City Secretary and the City Attorney; and

(2)     Thereafter abstain from voting on the matter.

(H)     In the event that any matter comes before the City Council, board, or commission involving, directly or indirectly:

(1)     The interest of a present business client/customer of any officer or a person or entity who has been a business client/customer of any officer within the prior twelve months;

(2)     Funds received by the officer, or the entity for which the officer is employed, from the past/present business client/customer amount to the sum of $5,000.00 or more in gross income during such twelve-month period; and

(3)     Such fact is known to the officer.

Then that officer shall disclose the existence of such interest, in writing, to the City Attorney and thereafter abstain from voting in the matter, and refrain from attempting to influence the vote of any other officer.

(I)     No Councilmember or officer who is an officer of or serves on the board of directors of a nonprofit organization may vote on any request by that nonprofit organization to the City, unless the nonprofit organization has a board of directors or trustees appointed in whole or in part by the City Council.

(J)     A candidate for the office of Mayor or City Council shall not accept any political contribution or contributions from any person, other than the candidate or a political action committee, in any one election of more than $600.00.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04; Ordinance 6177, sec. 1, adopted 11/6/07)

   Sec. 10.53     Improper economic benefit

(A)     Economic interests affected. To avoid the appearance and risk of impropriety, a City official shall not take any official action that he or she knows will or is likely to affect particularly the substantial economic interests of:

(1)     The official;

(2)     The official's outside client;

(3)     The official's outside employer;

(4)     A business entity in which the official knows that he or she holds an economic interest;

(5)     A business entity that the official knows is an affiliated business or partner of a business entity in which he or she holds an economic interest;

(6)     A business entity for which the City official serves as an officer or director or in any other policy-making position;

(7)     The official's family member within the first degree of consanguinity or affinity;

(8)     A resident of the same household as the official;

(9)     An outside employer of the official's family member within the first degree of consanguinity or affinity, or resident of the same household as the official, but only if the official knows the family member or resident of the same household has a substantial economic interest in the outside employer;

(10)     A business entity in which the official knows that a substantial economic interest is held by his or her:

(a)     Family member within the first degree of consanguinity or affinity; or

(b)     Resident of the same household;

(11)     A business entity that the official knows is an affiliated business or partner of a business entity in which a substantial economic interest is held by his or her:

(a)     Parent, child, spouse, or other family member within the first degree of consanguinity or affinity; or

(b)     Resident of the same household.

(B)     A City official whose conduct or action on a matter would violate subsection (A) must step aside. From the time that the conflict is recognized, the City official shall:

(1)     Immediately refrain from further participation in the matter, including discussions with any persons likely to consider the matter; and

(2)     Promptly file with the City Secretary and City Attorney a written statement disclosing the conflict on a form provided by the City Secretary.

(C)     In addition to the requirements of subsection (B) above:

(1)     A board or commission member shall promptly disclose his or her conflict to the board or commission of which he or she is a member and shall not be present during any discussion or voting on the matter; and

(2)     A City Councilmember shall promptly disclose his or her conflict to the City Council and shall not be present during any discussion or voting on the matter.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.54     Conflicting outside employment

(A)     General rule. A City official shall not:

(1)     Receive any fee, compensation, or benefit for services as an officer of the City from any source other than the City, except as may otherwise be provided by law or as approved by the City Council;

(2)     Solicit, accept, or engage in concurrent outside employment that could reasonably be expected to impair independence of judgment in, or faithful performance of, official duties; or

(3)     Personally provide services for compensation, directly or indirectly, to a person or organization that is requesting an approval, investigation, or determination from the body or department of which the official is a member.

(B)     Exception. The restriction above does not apply to outside employment of a City official if the employment is the official's primary source of income.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.55     Unfair advancement of private interests

(A)     General rule. A City official may not use his or her official position to unfairly advance or impede personal interests by granting or securing, or by attempting to grant or secure, for any person (including himself or herself) any form of special consideration, treatment, exemption, or advantage beyond that which is lawfully available to every other person or organization.

(B)     Special rules. The following special rules apply in addition to the general rule set forth above:

(1)     Acquisition of interest in impending matters. A City official shall not acquire an interest in any matter if the official knows that the interest will be affected by impending official action of the City.

(2)     Acquisition of interest in decided matter. A City official shall not acquire an interest in any matter affected by an official action of the City for a period of one year after the date of the official action.

(3)     Reciprocal favors. A City official may not enter into an agreement or understanding with any other person that official action by the official will be rewarded or reciprocated by the other person.

(4)     Appointment of relatives. No person related to the Mayor or any member of the City Council, within the first degree by consanguinity or affinity, shall be appointed to any board or commission by the City Council. Provided, however, any person who, before the effective date of this article, was appointed to a quasi-judicial board or commission within the City by a City official who was either a resident of the same household or a relative within the first degree of consanguinity or affinity may complete his or her term on the board or commission.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.56     Former City officials

(A)     Duty of continuing confidentiality. A former City official shall not use or disclose confidential government information acquired during service as a City official. This rule does not prohibit:

(1)     Any disclosure that is no longer confidential government information;

(2)     The confidential reporting of illegal or unethical conduct to authorities designated by law; or

(3)     Any disclosure, not otherwise prohibited by law, in furtherance of public safety.

(B)     Time limit for lobbying. For a period of one year after termination of his or her duties, a former City official shall not represent any person, group, or entity (other than himself, herself or his or her relative) before:

(1)     The City Council or that board, commission, or body, unless the board, commission, or body of which the former City official was a member is only advisory in nature; or

(2)     City staff having responsibility for making recommendations to, or taking any action on behalf of, the City Council or that board.

(C)     Without consent from the City, a former City official shall not represent any person, group, or entity (other than himself, herself or a relative) in any litigation to which the City is a party, if the interests of that person, group, or entity are adverse to the interests of the City and the matter is one in which the former City official personally participated prior to termination of his or her official duties or is a matter substantially related to such a matter.

(D)     In connection with the representation of private interests, a former City official shall not state or imply that he or she is able to influence City action on any basis other than the merits.

(E)     Within one year after the termination of official duties, a former City official shall not have any financial interest, direct or indirect, in any contract with the City, or be financially interested, directly or indirectly, in the sale to the City of any land, materials, supplies, or service. Any violation of this subsection, with knowledge, express or implied, of the person or corporation contracting with the City will render the contract involved voidable by the City Manager or the City Council. This subsection applies only to contracts or sales made on a discretionary basis and not to contracts or sales made on a competitive bid basis.

(F)     For a period of one year after termination of his or her official duties, a former City official may not, either individually or as the officer or principal of a private business entity:

(1)     Submit a proposal, on behalf of the official or on behalf of a private business entity for any City contract unless that contract is required by state law to be competitively bid; or

(2)     Negotiate or enter into any City contract unless that contract is required by state law to be competitively bid.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.57     Prohibited political campaign activity

No Councilmember, candidate for City Council or officer shall meet with any employee, employees or group of employees of the City for political campaign purposes while such employee is on duty unless part of an approved City Council activity. (Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.58     Confidential information

(A)     Improper access. With respect to confidential information, a City official shall not use his or her position to secure official information about any person or entity for any purpose other than the performance of official responsibilities.

(B)     Improper disclosure or use. A City official shall not intentionally or knowingly disclose any confidential government information gained by reason of the official's position. This rule does not prohibit:

(1)     Any disclosure that is no longer confidential government information;

(2)     The confidential reporting of illegal or unethical conduct to authorities designated by law; or

(3)     Any disclosure, not otherwise prohibited by law, in furtherance of public safety.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.59     Public property and resources

No officer of the City shall use City supplies, equipment, facilities, or expend City funds for any purpose other than the conduct of official City business, unless otherwise provided for by law, ordinance, or City policy. (Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.60     Disclosure of interest

(A)     Any officer, whether elected or appointed, who has a substantial interest in any matter pending before the City, shall disclose, in writing, such interest to the City Attorney and shall refrain from further discussion of the matter.

(B)     In addition to the above disclosure, the officer:

(1)     Shall not be physically present when the subject is discussed in executive session unless requested by a majority of the City Council; and

(2)     Shall not vote on the matter.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.61     Disclosure of property interest

(A)     When filing for election and within thirty days of any substantial change in any required disclosure, every candidate for City Council, Councilmember, or officer shall file with the City Secretary or City Attorney, in writing, a disclosure of the existence and location of any real property in the City in which the Councilmember or officer has any substantial interest, including any interest of one percent (1%) or more in any business entity.

(B)     The disclosure shall include the identity and location of all real property within the City in which the Councilmember or officer has acquired or conveyed any interest since the filing of the last similar report required by this section.

(C)     If any Councilmember or officer has an interest in real property by way of right of first refusal, or as part of a trust, this information must also be disclosed.

(D)     If a Councilmember or officer has interest in a business entity that will not disclose to the Councilmember or officer whether or not the business entity has a substantial interest in real property located in the City, the Councilmember or officer may satisfy in the disclosure requirements of this section by stating such fact in writing to the City Secretary or City Attorney.

(E)     The Councilmember or officer must disclose the ownership interest of a business entity and real property in which the Councilmember or officer has a controlling interest.

(F)     The members of the City Council holding office or officers serving as of the effective date of this section shall file such disclosure within thirty days of the effective date hereof as provided by this section. All officers shall complete and file a financial disclosure statement in the form as set out in exhibit “A” to the ordinance from which this section derives.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.62     Complaints against Councilmembers or other officers

(A)     Who may file a complaint. Any person who believes that there has been a violation of this Code of Ethics may file a complaint alleging an ethics violation with the City Secretary.

(B)     Form of the complaint. A complaint filed under this section should be:

(1)     In writing;

(2)     Sworn to before a notary public;

(3)     Cite the specific provision of the Code of Ethics which the complainant believes has been violated;

(4)     State the approximate date of the alleged violation, or the date on which the alleged violation became known to the complainant; and

(5)     Supporting documentation, if it exists, should be included with the complaint.

(C)     Anonymous complaints will not be accepted for filing or further action. Frivolous complaints, or complaints filed in bad faith, will not be accepted for filing or for further action. A person who knowingly makes a false statement in a complaint is subject to criminal prosecution for perjury.

(D)     City Secretary's action. Upon acceptance, the City Secretary will forward a copy of the complaint to the following persons within one business day:

(1)     The officer against whom the complaint is filed;

(2)     The City Attorney; and

(3)     The City Council.

The City Secretary may not accept any complaints within ninety days prior to an election.

(E)     City Attorney's review and action. The City Attorney shall conduct a preliminary review of the complaint to determine whether:

(1)     The complaint is timely filed as set forth in this article; and

(2)     The complaint complies with the requirements of this Code of Ethics as to the form of the complaint.

If in the judgment of the City Attorney the complaint is defective as to form, the complainant shall be given an opportunity to amend and resubmit the complaint to cure the deficiencies. If, in the judgment of the City Attorney, the complaint is not timely filed in accordance with this article, the City Attorney shall forward the complaint directly to the Ethics Hearing Board with the recommendation that it be dismissed summarily. If in the judgment of the City Attorney the complaint is correctly submitted as to form and is timely filed, the City Attorney shall make these facts known in writing to the Ethics Hearing Board, and shall forward the complaint for further action.

(F)     Officer's response. The officer complained against may file a written response to the complaint within fourteen days after the complaint is filed with the City Secretary. If the officer files a response admitting to the violation, the City Secretary shall then forward the complaint, with the officer's response, to the City Council for action. If the officer files a response denying any portion of the complaint, the City Secretary shall then forward the complaint, with the officer's response, to the Ethics Hearing Board. If the officer declines to file a response within the 14-day timeframe for doing so, the City Secretary shall then forward the complaint to the Ethics Hearing Board.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.63     Ethics Hearing Board and Ethics Review Panel

(A)     Creation and composition of the Ethics Hearing Board. The Ethics Hearing Board is hereby created, to be composed of 9 members. The Mayor and City Council may each appoint a member to the board who shall serve a term to coincide with that of the appointing member of the City Council. The Mayor shall appoint the chair, and the full City Council shall appoint the vice-chair. No member of the board may be:

(1)     A candidate for public office in the City, a City official, or the spouse or resident of the same household of a City official;

(2)     A City employee or the spouse or resident of the same household of a City employee;

(3)     A person who, for compensation, represents the private interests of others before the City Council; or

(4)     A paid campaign worker or a paid political consultant of a current City Councilmember.

(B)     Composition of an Ethics Review Panel. Upon receipt of an ethics complaint, an Ethics Review Panel consisting of five members of the Ethics Hearing Board will be formed to consider and investigate the complaint. The panel shall be composed of the chair or the vice-chair of the Ethics Hearing Board, with the other four members selected by lot by the City Secretary. If the complaint was filed against a Councilmember, that Councilmember's appointee to the Ethics Hearing Board will be removed from the pool of potential panel members from which the City Secretary will select the panel. The chair must step aside from serving on the panel when a complaint is filed against the Mayor. If the chair must step aside, the vice-chair shall sit on the panel, with the other four members selected by lot by the City Secretary.

(C)     Jurisdiction. The Ethics Review Panel shall have jurisdiction to review and make findings concerning any alleged violation of this article by any person subject to those provisions, if a complaint is filed within one year after the date of the alleged violation. The panel may not consider any alleged violation that occurred more than one year before the date of the filing of a complaint. The termination of a City official's duties does not affect the jurisdiction of the Ethics Review Panel with respect to alleged violations occurring prior to the termination of the official's official duties.

(D)     Powers. The Ethics Review Panel has the following powers only:

(1)     To establish, amend, and rescind rules and procedures governing its own internal organization and operations in a manner and form consistent with this article;

(2)     To meet as often as necessary to fulfill its responsibilities;

(3)     To request from the City Manager through the City Council the appointment of such staff as is necessary to carry out its duties;

(4)     To review, index, maintain on file, and dispose of sworn complaints;

(5)     To make findings of fact as necessary for the disposition of a complain;

(6)     To make notifications, extend deadlines, and conduct investigations; and

(7)     Such other powers as are specifically granted in this article.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.64     Preliminary investigation of ethics complaint by Ethics Review Panel

(A)     Preliminary consideration of the complaint. Each complaint that is filed shall be evaluated to determine whether the complaint states an ethical violation, and whether the alleged violation is supported by just cause.

(B)     Preliminary investigation. Within 21 days after receipt of a complaint, a preliminary finding shall be made as to whether or not the complaint states a claim under this article and is supported by just cause.

(C)     Summary dismissal of a complaint after preliminary investigation. If, by the affirmative vote of a simple majority of the total members, it is determined that the complaint does not state a claim under this article or does not have just cause, based upon the statements and evidence submitted, the complaint is dismissed. Written notice of the dismissal must be sent to both the person who made the complaint and the person about whom the complaint was made, identifying the reason or reasons for dismissal. If the complaint is not dismissed, it will be fully and fairly investigated by hearing.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.65     Hearing procedures by Ethics Review Panel

(A)     Evidentiary hearing. Not less than 10 days before the hearing, written notice shall, by certified mail or personal service, be given of the hearing to both the person who made the complaint and the person about whom the complaint was made. The notice must state the specific provision or provisions of this article alleged in the complaint to have been violated.

(B)     Ex parte communications. Ex parte communications are those communications that do not involve all parties in the complaint. It is a violation of this article for:

(1)     The complainant, the person charged in the complaint, or any person acting on their behalf to engage or attempt to engage, directly or indirectly, in any ex parte communication about the subject matter of a complaint with a member of the Ethics Hearing Board; or

(2)     A member of the Ethics Hearing Board to:

(a)     Knowingly entertain an ex parte communication prohibited by the subsection above; or

(b)     Knowingly communicate, directly or indirectly, with any person, other than a member of the hearing board, its staff, or its legal counsel, about any issue of fact or law relating to the complaint.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.66     Hearing rules of the Ethics Review Panel

(A)     The rules contained in this section apply to all hearings on complaints not summarily dismissed under this article.

(B)     General rules.

(1)     A determination that a violation of this article has occurred can be made only upon an affirmative vote of a simple majority of the total members, otherwise the complaint must be dismissed.

(2)     A finding that a violation occurred must be supported by clear and convincing evidence.

(C)     Procedural rules.

(1)     A majority of the total members must be present for a hearing.

(2)     Any member of the panel who is not present at a hearing on a complaint may not participate in any discussion, voting, or disposition regarding the complaint.

(3)     All witnesses must be sworn, and the members of the panel or its legal counsel shall conduct questioning of witnesses.

(4)     The panel may consider any and all relevant, probative evidence and may establish time limits and other rules relating to the participation of any person in the hearing, subject to subsections (D) and (E) of this section.

(5)     The panel may request the presence of and hear testimony from witnesses on its own motion.

(D)     Rights of the official charged. The person charged in the complaint has the following rights:

(1)     To attend the hearing;

(2)     To make a statement;

(3)     To present and cross-examine witnesses; and

(4)     To be represented by legal counsel or another advisor.

(E)     Rights of the complainant. The complainant has the following rights:

(1)     To attend the hearing;

(2)     To make a statement;

(3)     To be accompanied by legal counsel or another advisor.

The legal counsel or other advisor to the complainant may advise the complainant during the course of the hearing, but may not speak on behalf of the complainant, except to represent the complainant while testifying. The complainant may not present or cross-examine witnesses, except with the permission of the panel.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.67     Disposition of complaints

(A)     Written decision required. All reasonable efforts shall be made to issue a written decision within 45 days after receipt of a complaint. The written decision must either:

(1)     Dismiss the complaint, with the grounds for dismissal set forth; or

(2)     Find that there has been a violation of this article and identify in the decision the particular provision or provisions violated.

(B)     Copies of the findings and decision must be forwarded to the following persons:

(1)     The complainant;

(2)     The official charged in the complaint;

(3)     The City Attorney; and

(4)     The City Council.

A copy of the findings and decision must also be forwarded to the City Secretary, who shall make it available to the public as authorized by law.

(C)     Similar charges barred. If the complaint is dismissed because the evidence failed to establish a violation of this article, another complaint shall not be accepted for filing if based upon substantially the same evidence.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.68     Referral for council action

If after a full investigation and hearing it is determined that a violation of this article has occurred, the City Council may consider the following sanctions:

(1)     Letter of notification. A letter of notification may be issued when the City Council finds that a violation of this article was clearly unintentional or when the action or conduct found to have been a violation of this article was performed by the official in reliance on an opinion of the City Attorney. A letter of notification must advise the official to whom the letter is directed of any steps to be taken to avoid future violations.

(2)     Letter of admonition. A letter of admonition may be issued when the City Council finds that the violation of this article was minor or may have been unintentional, but where the circumstances call for a more substantial response than a letter of notification.

(3)     Reprimand. A reprimand may be issued when the City Council finds that a violation of this article was committed intentionally or through disregard of this article.

(4)     Censure. A resolution of censure may be issued when the City Council finds that a serious or repeated violation of this article has been committed intentionally or through culpable disregard of this article by a member of the City Council.

(5)     Removal or suspension from office. Any officer, other than a City Councilmember, may be removed or suspended from office when the City Council finds that a serious or repeated violation of this article was committed intentionally or through culpable disregard of this article. Removal shall be in compliance with the City Charter and other applicable law. Any term of suspension shall be set by the City Council.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.69     Petition for declaratory ruling

Any City official against whom public allegations of ethics violations have been made in the media or elsewhere has the right to file a sworn statement with the City Secretary affirming his or her innocence, and to request the Ethics Hearing Board to review the allegations and make known its findings to the public. (Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.70     Violations–Councilmembers or other officers

(A)     The failure of any member of the City Council or other officer to comply with one of more of these sections shall constitute grounds for prosecution under this article.

(B)     A violation of the provisions of this article is a class C misdemeanor punishable in municipal court by a fine not to exceed $2,000.00.

(C)     Nothing contained in this article shall be deemed to prohibit any officer from serving on any board or committee appointment, or representing the City Council in any meeting or conference.

(Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.71     Adoption of state statute and changes to ordinances

Section 171.001, et seq., of the Local Government Code of the state, as amended, being the statute which regulates conflicts of interest of officers of municipalities of the state, is hereby adopted and made a part of this Code of Ethics for all purposes with the proviso that, in the case of a conflict between the provisions of this Code of Ethics and the referenced statute, the statute shall govern. (Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Sec. 10.72     Effective date; limitation

This article shall apply only to acts occurring after the effective date of the ordinance which adopts this article, and no complaint alleging a violation of this article may be filed later than one year after the alleged date of violation or the complaint is barred. (Ordinance 5813, sec. 1, adopted 3/16/04)

   Secs. 10.73–10.79          Reserved

   ARTICLE VI. FUNCTIONS AND DUTIES OF THE OFFICE OF CITY SECRETARY

   Sec. 10.80     Supervision of the City Secretary

The City Council shall appoint or remove the City Secretary. The person so appointed shall report to and be subject to the supervision of the City Manager with respect to any discretionary or non-ministerial functions, and shall perform such functions and duties of a Municipal Clerk and City Secretary as may be provided by state law, the City Charter, and this code, together with such other duties assigned by the mayor and the city manager as are not inconsistent with article IV, section 5 [article V, section 3] of the City Charter. (Ordinance 6562, sec. 1, adopted 8/21/12)