Commissioners Court declines Turner contract

The Brown County Commissioners declined to vote on a contract with Bob Turner of Rural Issues Consulting for legislative consulting services during their regular meeting held Tuesday morning at the Brown County Courthouse. Precinct 4 Commissioner Larry Traweek made the motion to renew Turner’s contract, but the motion died for lack of a second.

The meeting marked the second time that a local entity has declined to renew Turner’s contract. Last month, the Early City Council declined to renew a contract with Turner after a similar motion died for lack of a second.

With Brown County and Early dropping out of the contract, the City of Brownwood, the Brown County Water Improvement District and the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce could be on the hook for a greater share of Turner’s $44,000 fee for serving the local area in the Texas Legislature.

Brownwood city officials say that as the area’s legislative liason, Turner works to defeat any legislation that would have a negative impact on the area, while promoting legislation that would benefit the area. Opponents of the contract say that the agreement amounts to taxpayer-funded lobbying, by which local governments use taxpayer funds to pay a lobbyist who lobbies for their ability to raise taxes.