Newspaper clipping headlined, "White blames Clements veto," April 21,1981
Fort Worth Star Telegram clipping headlined, "White blames Clements veto," April 21,1981, concerning Bill Clements veto of prison construction funds and Mark White's appeal in response.
Clippings (information artifacts)
White, Mark, 1940-Clements, William P., 1917-2011Texas. Board of CorrectionsJustice, William Wayne, 1920-2009Smith, William French, 1917-
Prisons--Overcrowding--Law and legislationCriminal Justice, Administration of
"Texas Governor Term 1, 1979-1982"
Fort Worth star-telegram
Texas A&M University
Cushing Memorial Library and Archives
"Governor William P. Clements, Jr. Official State Papers, 1st Term, 1979-1983"
PR Press Office | 1st term
Cushing Memorial Library & Archives
Mark WhiteCriminal Justice ReformRuiz v Estelle
Clements Texas Papers
White blames Clements veto Attorney general says quick appeal of prison ruling planned By ANN ARNOLD Star-Telegram Austin Bureau AUSTIN — Texas Attorney Gener- al Mark White, escalating the verbal fusillade between him and the state's Republican governor, said Monday that Gov. Bill Clements' veto of prison construction funds was "devastat- ing" to the legal defense of the state's prison system.. White said U.S. District Judge Wil- liam Wayne Justice told him private- ly that the governor's action two years ago vetoing $29.5 million in pro- posed spending for prison construc- tion was an important consideration in the decision declaring conditions at the state correctional system un- constitutional. " "The court remarked the other day in our private conversation that veto was very devastating to the state's case," White said Monday after Jus- tice refused to allow the state any more time in the case. White called a late afternoon news conference at his Austin office to de- • cry Justice's decision and discuss plans to appeal the Tyler judge's or- der to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans "as quickly • as the motion can be prepared." The attorney general also took % time to take out after the governor. Clements, for his part, snidely sug-: • gested the Democratic attorney gen- eral should speed the appeal and hire an outside expert to handle the case. "We need to appeal this case with all haste," Clements said in a state- ment issued through his Capitol off- Associated Press MARK WHITE ... planning rapid appeal ice. "I sincerely hope that our Texas attorney general is moving full speed with the appeal process and that he is retaining outside counsel as has been requested by the Board of Correc- tions." Clements, taking matters into his own hands, scheduled a meeting in Washington on Wednesday to confer with U.S. Attorney General William French Smith to urge feder- al officials to take a position more favorable to the state in the land- mark case over inmates' civil rights. The governor released a letter Fri- day from the U.S. attorney general indicating the Reagan administra- tion is ready to relent on some of the stands taken by federal lawyers in the case. "We did have the promise of sup- port from the Department of Justice but it was lukewarm at best," White said Monday of the impact of Clements' efforts on Justice Depart- ment lawyers at the hearing before Justice. White said federal lawyers merely read a letter from Smith indicating the Department of Justice is willing to take time to negotiate a possible settlement of the 9-year-old case. "It was less than enthusiastically pre- sented," White said. The attorney general said he has hired an outside lawyer to assist his office in the appeal of the case but has no intention of relinquishing control. "We have already retained outside counsaprior to the time of the gover- nor's request," White said. White said Michael Shallot, a Uni- versity of Texas Law School profes- sor who specializes in constitutional law, will review some of the issues and precedents. • David Dean, the governor's legal counsel, said the high stakes at issue ,in the prison suit make it especially important that White turn to outside experts to handle the appeal. "If we lose on any of these points it's going to be extremely costly to the state," Dean said, noting three major items on which Justice ruled against White. Dean noted the directors of the Texas Board of Corrections has asked the attorney general to retain outside counsel to handle the case. "I hope the attorney general will grant their request or at least be in a position to assure taxpayers he's not going to lose this case on appeal," the governor's legal counsel said. "It's the governor's position that with proper legal representation, the state can win this case." Dean said costs of implementing Justice' order would be "a tremen- dous burden on taxpayers" and far more than it would take to hire ex- pert lawyers. "There's abundant legal talent that has been developed over a period of years — it's high priced, but it's avail- able — the state of Texas would be foolish not to take advantage of it," Dean said. White in the past has suggested Clements could have saved taxpayers some expenses and made his job de- fending the lawsuit easier if he had not vetoed the $29.5 million in funds for new prison construction from the two-year spending plan adopted by the 1979 Legislature. . Clements this year requested a $35 million emergency appropriation to build dormitory-style barracks in a crash program to alleviate over- crowding so severe some inmates are housed three to a cell. The Legislature has approved the outlay. fair AkirTM ff111 7W641114 " cl; CI- e-• z (-3 - cna) • re.) e"•.,D (1) mcn CD cro.-fteptAti'me-' et, tn ii-ss • (-3 c •-• z eD - CA fr) •-• cn •-•n ci) 00 a) fD _ zOct (135. g:05.! tze'R 28 30 .5%1:7 acn 0. :70: 46' • ". r. .1 • (1) g ea — et, 2 ° fLe°- •-• a 0 •-• G P, e". O'S • 0 (D.o rs ohTmc • < 0,9 et) Er -11. 7, re. CD b. z ',1° 0 eD—Z • 6" ‘: c Be b -7 <5 CD rt, ..••• •-1 0 1.7.7.."----1111111111111111111111111mmommuimmm--.....-..