We’re right with it when public officials want to make sure their records are in order and open. So as we begin to look at the constable system in Texas and in Harris County in particular, we are reviewing financial disclosure forms, among other things.
Precinct 1 Constable Jack Abercia, in office since 1991, failed in his 2009 disclosure form to state his office and his source of occupational income. He is paid $130,512 a year, records show. Failing to fill that out leaves open the notion that he could be getting some side income from who-knows-where. When we called his office, though, he was quick to return our call and took note of our inquiry.
“I’ll fix that as soon as I can,” Abercia promised. “I’ve been with the county for 40 years, and I guess when you get to be my age, you forget some things.”
We appreciate his attention to such discrepancies. And trust that others are as conscientious when something like this is called to their attention.
If you'd like to take a look at any of your officials' ethics forms, check out Texas Watchdog's listing of state lawmakers' forms, our latest postings of city of Houston and Harris County officials' forms, and our ever-growing Scribd collections of forms. As always, if you see something interesting or something we should look into, we'd be delighted to hear from you. Send tips to email@example.com or call us at 713-980-9777.
Contact Steve Miller at 832-303-9420 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Photo of a constable's vehicle by flickr user E-Mans av8pix.com, used via a Creative Commons license.