The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

November 20, 2012

Tawakoni ballot battle now on appeal

By BRAD KELLAR
Herald-Banner Staff

— An appeals court will be asked to determine whether a West Tawakoni City Council member, who ran unopposed for re-election on the Nov. 6 ballot, will be able to take office.

A hearing had been scheduled in the 196th District Court Tuesday morning, to consider an emergency motion seeking to reform a judgment filed last month against Carol Solomon.

Solomon was unopposed on the ballot in seeking the Place 4 seat on the council, but was ordered removed from the council  after being found guilty of official misconduct following a civil trial.

However, 196th District Judge Steve Tittle said prior to the hearing, both sides agreed to move the cast to the Court of Appeals for the Fifth District of Texas at Dallas.

Solomon’s attorney filed the motion, arguing his client should not have been immediately removed from the council, as she was never charged with a crime.

No action was taken concerning the motion during a hearing Nov. 6, as Tittle reset the case for additional arguments.

Solomon’s attorney, Timothy Brightman, is asking the court’s judgment be reformed, to require Solomon’s removal only after the civil judgment be declared final and enforceable.

Tittle ordered Solomon removed from her position on October 19, after she was found to have engaged in official misconduct. A jury found from a preponderance of the evidence that Solomon as a public servant accepted or agreed to accept a benefit from a person she knew to be subject to her regulation, inspection or investigation.

The jury’s verdict came too late to remove Solomon’s name from the ballot.