in Houston, Texas
Toll road activist says San Antonio-area planning board violated open meetings law
Monday, Jul 02, 2012, 01:23PM CST
By Steve Miller
toll

Some San Antonio natives remain restless over proposed toll roads, an issue which previously landed Bexar County Commissioner Tommy Adkisson in court over an open records flap.

Terri Hall, a resident who crusades in opposition to toll roads, alleges in a complaint to the San Antonio Police Department’s white-collar crime unit that the San Antonio-Bexar County Metropolitan Planning Organization, a transportation planning group, violated the state’s open meetings act.

According to the San Antonio Express-News, Hall claims that an item on the agenda for the June 25 meeting was vague enough to violate the law.

The agenda item simply read, “Action on Additional Federal and State Funding Opportunities,” and was approved by 14 of the 15 board members. Hall claims the measure was a proposal to construct roads with various funding in areas that had both toll and nontoll lanes.

If the police find the board members remiss, the case could be referred to the Bexar County District Attorney’s office for further investigation.

The toll road issue has put Hall on the map before. She formed a group, the San Antonio Toll Party and Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom.

Hall is creating a bit of political havoc for state Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio, a seven-term incumbent facing a July 31 runoff against Donna Campbell, who is backed by Hall and her followers. The anti-toll folks along with the  Conservative Republicans of Texas claim Wentworth is a toll road advocate and outline a number of other beefs with him on this website.

Hall played a role in the 2010 open records incident with Adkisson, who had refused to hand over emails to the San Antonio Express-News in response to a request. He believed the newspaper was seeking the communications to prove that he was working with Hall in an effort to turn back toll roads.

Adkisson sued state Attorney General Greg Abbott over a ruling that the emails are public record. The case is still winding through the courts.

***
Contact Steve Miller at 832-303-9420 or stevemiller@texaswatchdog.org.

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Photo of 'toll booth' by flickr user billjacobus1, used via a Creative Commons license.

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