Newspaper clipping headlined "White to appeal Justice's rulings," April 21, 1981
Newspaper clipping headlined "White to appeal Justice's rulings," April 21, 1981, regarding orders from Judge Justice on the prison and education system.
Clippings (information artifacts)
Justice, William Wayne, 1920-2009
Prisons--OvercrowdingPrisons administrationEducation, Bilingual
"Texas Governor Term 1, 1979-1982"
The Dallas Morning News
Texas A&M University
Cushing Memorial Library and Archives
"Governor William P. Clements, Jr. Official State Papers, 1st Term, 1979-1983"
General Counsel | 1st term
Texas State library and archives commission
Mark WhiteRuiz v EstelleEducation Reform
Clements Texas Papers
THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS TUESDAY. APRIL 21, 1981 White to appeal Justice's rulings By George Kuempel Austin Bureau of The News AUSTIN — Atty. Gen. Mark White, as expected, said his office will seek to delay implementation of a federal court order that he said would "redesign the whole Texas Department of Corrections." "I think he has exceeded his authority," White said of the final order Monday by U.S. Dist. Judge William Wayne Justice of Tyler in connection with a 9-year-old lawsuit by Texas prison inmates. White also said he will appeal the Friday ruling by the same judge that the state expand its bilin- gual education program through the 5th-grade by next fall and through the 12th-grade over the next five years. The state now offers the program in kindergar- ten through the 3rd-grade for students with defi- ciencies in English. WHITE SAID he will ask the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals to delay implementation of Justice's prison order, pending appeal, just as soon as his attorneys can complete the paperwork. He said that would take about two weeks. The attorney general said the state also will pro- test Justice's appointment of a special master to oversee the implementation of that order. White said he has no objections to the man Jus- tice named as master, Toledo, Ohio, attorney Vin- cent M. Nathan, 43, but questions the need for one. White said he met with Nathan on Monday and was "favorably impressed with him." "We're not prepared to make specific objection to him (Nathan). Irs to the nature of the need for appointment of a special master," White said. White said that the judge's order, which calls for a massive overhaul of the state prison system, is "unprecendented" in that it tells the state "where to build prisons and how big to build them." HE ALSO OBJECTED specifically to a portion of Justice's order calling for the state to expand its prisoner work-release program to help alleviate overcrowding. Many inmates are confined three to a cell and "We're not prepared to make specific objection to him (Nathan). It's to the nature of the need for appointment of a special master." —Mark White are having to. sleep on the floor, prison officials confirmed. Citing the massive overcrowding, the judge said that prisoners must be provided single cells or cells with at least 60 square-feet of space per occu- pant by August 1983. Justice also ruled that any new prisons must be built within 50 miles of a city with a population of at least 200,000 and that no new prisons will house more than 500 inmates. White said, however, the order will not affect a new prison authorized in Grimes County. WHITE SHRUGGED off suggestions by Gov. Bill Clements and Texas Education Commissioner Al- ton Bowen that he hire outside counsel to assist in appeals of the two cases. White said he already has hired a University of Texas law professor to assist in the prison suit and will hire outside counsel to assist in the bilingual education case if he believes "it's in the best interest of the state." White and Clements have been feuding for some time about the way the attorney general's office has handled the litigation. White, a Democrat, is known to harbor ambitions of running against Clements, a Republican. White said he has no idea what it will cost the state to implement Justice's prison order, but has heard estimates that it would cost $3 billion just for new construction. He also said he will advise school officials that they will be meeting their constitutional obliga- tions if they offer bilingual education only through the 5th-grade, "with intensive English courses for all others who need it." "If they (school officials) do these things, I think it would meet constitutional standards," be said.