Board Approves Same-Sex Benefits After Weeks of Controversy
AUSTIN, TX, Dec. 14, 2012— Last night, after weeks of outrage by local residents over the irresponsible actions of Superintendent Charles Dupre, the elected Pflugerville I.S.D. Board of Trustees sided with Dupre and approved same-sex partner benefits for school district employees by creating a “domestic partnership” status. PISD is the first district in Texas to do so. Jimmy Don Havins was the lone board member who voted to rescind the unconstitutional policy.
Texas Values submitted a brief last week to Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, requesting that his office find the Pflugerville ISD in violation of the Texas Constitution’s prohibition on local governments creating marriage imitation statuses, such as “domestic partnerships.” The Texas Attorney General’s office has confirmed that it will officially review the matter and issue an official decision sometime before the end of April 2013.
“This new same-sex PISD policy is a blatant violation of the Texas Constitution. The PISD board’s decision to side with Superintendent Dupre puts them in serious legal jeopardy and leaves no doubt that they don’t respect the rule of law. What other parts of the Texas Constitution will PISD choose to ignore?”, said Jonathan Saenz, an attorney and President of Texas Values.
Texas voters amended the Texas Constitution in 2005 to affirm marriage as one man and one woman and to ensure that “[t]his state, or a political subdivision of this state, may not create or recognize any legal status identical or similar to marriage.”
Abbott’s opinion could have enormous statewide impact as El Paso County, Travis County, the city of Fort Worth, the city of Austin, the city of San Antonio, and the city of El Paso have also created legal statuses “identical or similar to marriage.”
The Pflugerville ISD Board has voted (5 to 1) to violate the Texas Constitution, we encourage you to contact the board. How the Pflugerville ISD Board voted:
Elva Gladney, President (elected term expires 2012) – Voted for same-sex benefits – Email
Vernagene Mott, Vice President (elected term expires 2013)- Abstained from vote – Email
Cynthia Graves, Secretary (elected term expires 2012) – Voted for same-sex benefits – Email
Mario Acosta (elected term expires 2013) – Voted for same-sex benefits – Email
Carol Fletcher (elected term expires 2013) – Voted for same-sex benefits – Email
Jimmy Don Havins (elected term expires 2014) – Voted against same-sex benefits – Email
Rob Reyes (elected term expires 2014) – Voted for same-sex benefits – Email