DEAR DAWG: Our board members always get blasted during TASA/TASB. What to do?

Dear Dawg: I’m concerned about our trustees attendance at the TASA/TASB Convention this fall. In the past, we have had trustees party more than they should. You know there are plenty of receptions and free lunches and dinners to be had. I understand that there is a new law that authorizes a judge to remove a school board member from office if the trustee is intoxicated “on or off duty.” So if I understand this correctly, even if a trustee attends all sessions at the convention, he or she can be removed from office for having a few too many at a reception after hours. Am I reading this right? NEW SUPERINTENDENT, WANTING TO AVOID EMBARRASSMENT FOR OUR TRUSTEES.

DEAR NEW SUPE: Yes, you are reading it right. But perhaps you did not read the entire law. There is a loophole! Section 87.012 of the Local Government Code does indeed add school board members to the list of officials who might be removed from office for a variety of offenses. And yes, intoxication “on or off duty” is one such reason. But subsection (b) of the law provides a loophole: it says that the trustee cannot be removed “if the intoxication was caused by drinking an alcoholic beverage ON THE DIRECTION AND PRESCRIPTION OF A LICENSED PHYSICIAN PRACTICING IN THIS STATE.” So how bout that! You just need a doctor’s prescription and then you can get as snockered as you’d like. No problem!

We happen to know that the Walsh Gallegos law firm hosts a reception during the convention at which alcohol is dispensed. Being a “full service” firm, Walsh Gallegos always has a team of physicians on hand, ready to write ‘scripts as necessary!

We also noticed that removal of the trustee can occur only if the trustee got intoxicated on “an alcoholic beverage.” Thus there is no problem with getting high smoking pot, snorting cocaine, ingesting huge quantities of mouthwash, sniffing glue or getting “high on life.” It appears that the trustee could save his seat on the board by acknowledging that “Yes, Your Honor, I was blotto that night, but it was the pot—not the booze.”

This is a good time for us to remind you that much of what appears in The Daily Dawg is not to be taken too seriously. The Dawg does not endorse any of these nefarious activities, and we are kidding about the law firm providing compliant doctors. We are just trying to provide accurate information about the law…and that is what the law says.