Impeach Thomas Ratliff?

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Do you know that Thomas Ratliff is a lobbyist for Microscoft?

Do  you know that according to Sec. 7.103.  ELIGIBILITY FOR MEMBERSHIP of the SBOE

(c)  A person who is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government Code, by virtue of the person’s activities for compensation in or on behalf of a profession, business, or association related to the operation of the board, may not serve as a member of the board or act as the general counsel to the board.

Do you know that the Texas Attorney General has ruled on this and confirmed that Thomas Ratliff is illegally serving as a member of the State Board of Education?

So why is Ratliff still serving as a member of the SBOE?

Because Ratliff knows he has to be impeached to remove him from the SBOE.

Because Ratliff best serves Microsoft, the company he works for and is a lobbyists for by being on the SBOE.

Because the Texas legislatures have to be pushed, prodded, shoved and called and called  before they will take a chance on doing their job.

The same reason that CSCOPE has not been removed from Texas Schools as announced by Senator Patrick–because too many legislatures want to be heroes. They want to be the knight riding in to save the day. With the CSCOPE agreement, the illegal company who designed and sold CSCOPE under the protective umbrella of the Texas Education Service Center flag, had no qualms about misleading Senator Patrick during private meetings so that the Senator announced to the world that he cleansed Texas schools of CSCOPE. Sadly the illegal company is still alive and is still producing materials that our Texas children will be taught.

FYI: The illegal CSCOPE company was called TESCCC, but this name has been dropped. Does it matter what the company name is? What matters is that the same group of people in charge of TESCCC is still in charge of the twenty largest Texas Education Agencies. Why?

I digress. But Thomas Ratliff has done everything possible to keep CSCOPE instruction materials in our public schools. Ratliff has stated that he will post the CSCOPE lessons on his on website and make sure that schools in his district have access to them. Why? Has Ratliff reviewed the CSCOPE lessons? I have reviewed many of the CSCOPE lessons. I did testify before the Senate Ed. Committee as well as the SBOE that the CSCOPE lessons need to be removed from our Texas schools. Too many errors, the constructivist (progressive) project based learning has not and will not prepare our children with an education foundation.

Following is valuable information from Donna Garner—

7.22.13

FROM DONNA GARNER — THE LAWS ON IMPEACHMENT IN TEXAS

 

*I have sent this information out in a number of different e-mails to all Texas Legislators, to many elected officials, and to my extensive e-mail list before the 83rd Legislative Session started.   Today I have combined these e-mails into one e-mail.

 

According to the Texas Government Code (http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/GV/htm/GV.665.htm), the impeachment of Thomas Ratliff, Texas State Board of Education member, must come from the House. If we could get enough people to pressure their legislators, then perhaps the House members would step out and circulate a petition among their members. The TGC is not exactly clear what the House should do if it is still in session. It says how to proceed with impeachment when not in session. However, I feel sure the Governor has lawyers who could help to interpret the TGC to satisfy that piece.

 

As someone has already suggested, the petition might need to come from the grassroots citizens first in order to prove to the House that we are serious. If you have access to some legal counsel, why don’t you see what you can find out?

 

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Here is the section that says Thomas Ratliff is ineligible to be on the SBOE because of his being a registered lobbyist who works for Microsoft.  

 

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THOMAS RATLIFF INELIGIBLE TO SERVE:

 

http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/?link=ED

Texas Education Code EDUCATION CODE

TITLE 2. PUBLIC EDUCATION

SUBTITLE B. STATE AND REGIONAL ORGANIZATION AND GOVERNANCE

CHAPTER 7. STATE ORGANIZATION

(Page 38) — Sec. 7.103.  ELIGIBILITY FOR MEMBERSHIP. 

(c)  A person who is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government Code, by virtue of the person’s activities for compensation in or on behalf of a profession, business, or association related to the operation of the board, may not serve as a member of the board or act as the general counsel to the board.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

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I also went back to Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott’s original ruling on the matter on 8.12.11:

 

Opinion No.  GA-0876

Go to: http://www.oag.state.tx.us/opinions/opinions/50abbott/op/2011/htm/ga-0876.htm

Re: Construction of section 7.103(c), Education Code, regarding the eligibility of a registered lobbyist for membership on the State Board of Education (RQ-0948-GA)

https://www.oag.state.tx.us/opinions/opinions/50abbott/rq/2011/pdf/rq0948ga.pdf

 Summary: Subsection 7.103(c), Texas Education Code, precludes certain registered lobbyists from serving on the State Board of Education (“Board”). A person who has been retained to communicate directly with the legislative or executive branch to influence legislation or administrative action in or on behalf of a profession, business, or association on a matter that pertains to or is associated or connected with any of the statutorily enumerated powers or duties of the Board is not eligible to serve on the Board. Thus, a registered lobbyist who has been paid to lobby the legislative or executive branch on a matter relating to Board business is ineligible to serve on the Board. The question of whether any person engaged in lobbying activity is ineligible under subsection 7.103(c) is a fact question that is inappropriate to an attorney general opinion.

 

Absent a mechanism to cure a violation in subsection 7.103(c), we cannot advise that a member of the Board may cure his or her ineligibility under the subsection.

 

[As soon as the TAG issued this ruling, I had two well-known lawyers who immediately called me and explained that the “cure” statement meant that there was nothing Ratliff can do to fix his situation. He is what he is – a registered lobbyist who lobbies the legislature and also whose client(s) do business with the SBOE (e.g., Microsoft).

When Ratliff testified glowingly before the Senate Education Committee on 3.29.11 about SB 6 – HB 6, which he said he just “loves,” he did not bother to mention the fact that he had been a registered lobbyist for Microsoft for 12 years.  He introduced himself as a member of the Texas State Board of Education which gave the legislators the distinct impression that he was representing the SBOE at the hearing which he certainly was not.  SB 6/HB 6 contained language that transformed the payout of the Permanent School Fund, and Microsoft has derived millions of dollars from these changes. – Donna Garner]  

[I find it hard to believe that the Texas Legislatures are so uninformed. How is that I know that Ratliff is a lobbyist for Microsoft and no one on the Senate Education Committee was aware of this? Another interesting question is that no one on the Senate Education Committee knew anything about CSCOPE, which had been in our public schools for six + years and was sold to the schools by state agencies-- the 20 Education Service Centers? Janice VanCleave]

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In my research, I then found the section in the Texas Government Code (Section 665.001, Impeachment Proceeding, and Section 665.004) that tells how a person who is a member of  a “state institution” can be impeached: http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/GV/htm/GV.665.htm

 

Donna Garner

Wgarner1@hot.rr.com

 

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  1. [...] writing that Ratliff isn’t eligible to serve on the SBOE, because he’s also a lobbyist. CSCOPE critics have taken up the Ratliff impeachment cause, despite the fact that Attorney General Greg Abbott clarified the [...]

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