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Texas Local Government Code - LOC GOV'T § 54.044. Alternative Procedure for Administrative Hearing

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(a) As an alternative to the enforcement processes described by this subchapter, a municipality by ordinance may adopt a procedure for an administrative adjudication hearing under which an administrative penalty may be imposed for the enforcement of an ordinance described by Section 54.032 or adopted under Section 214.001(a)(1).

(b) A procedure adopted under this section must entitle the person charged with violating an ordinance to a hearing and must provide for:

(1) the period during which a hearing shall be held;

(2) the appointment of a hearing officer with authority to administer oaths and issue orders compelling the attendance of witnesses and the production of documents;  and

(3) the amount and disposition of administrative penalties, costs, and fees.

(c) A municipal court may enforce an order of a hearing officer compelling the attendance of a witness or the production of a document.

(d) A citation or summons issued as part of a procedure adopted under this section must:

(1) notify the person charged with violating the ordinance that the person has the right to a hearing;  and

(2) provide information as to the time and place of the hearing.

(e) The original or a copy of the summons or citation shall be kept as a record in the ordinary course of business of the municipality and is rebuttable proof of the facts it states.

(f) The person who issued the citation or summons is not required to attend a hearing under this section.

(g) A person charged with violating an ordinance who fails to appear at a hearing authorized under this section is considered to admit liability for the violation charged.

(h) At a hearing under this section, the hearing officer shall issue an order stating:

(1) whether the person charged with violating an ordinance is liable for the violation;  and

(2) the amount of a penalty, cost, or fee assessed against the person.

(i) An order issued under this section may be filed with the clerk or secretary of the municipality.  The clerk or secretary shall keep the order in a separate index and file.  The order may be recorded using microfilm, microfiche, or data processing techniques.

(j) An order issued under this section against a person charged with an ordinance violation may be enforced by:

(1) filing a civil suit for the collection of a penalty assessed against the person;  and

(2) obtaining an injunction that:

(A) prohibits specific conduct that violates the ordinance;  or

(B) requires specific conduct necessary for compliance with the ordinance.

(k) A person who is found by a hearing officer to have violated an ordinance may appeal the determination by filing a petition in municipal court before the 31st day after the date the hearing officer's determination is filed.  An appeal does not stay enforcement and collection of the judgment unless the person, before filing the appeal, posts a bond with an agency designated for that purpose by the municipality.

Cite this article: - Texas Local Government Code - LOC GOV'T § 54.044. Alternative Procedure for Administrative Hearing - last updated April 14, 2021 |

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