Duties Administrative Duties
Various statutes affect the administrative operation of the commissioners court.
In order to carry out certain responsibilities, the commissioners court is authorized to issue bonds for certain purposes. Commissioners are also responsible for management of debt incurred by the sale of such bonds.
Commissioners have the general business responsibility for the county as well as contracting authority. Counties may enter into contracts or cooperative agreements with other local governments to accomplish mutually beneficial purposes, with the state for various services, and with private entities for services or supplies.
The commissioners court is responsible for the holding of general and special elections of the county. Special elections include those authorizing creation of special districts, issuance of bonds, and other purposes.
The commissioners court has financial responsibility for the county, setting the tax rate, authorizing expenditures, and issuing bonds. This enumeration includes other statutes related to the commissioners' responsibility for fiscal operation of the county.
The commissioners court has certain responsibilities to the judicial operations at the county level.
Offices, Boards & Commissions
Commissioners create offices, boards, and commissions to carry out certain purposes.
Commissioners court is also responsible for providing buildings for use as offices and other operating facilities for the county.
Commissioners appoint certain officers to handle other personnel-related duties, such as, fire marshall, constable, additional deputies and librarian.
Public Health & Welfare
A general responsibility of the commissioners court is to provide for the public health and welfare. Provision for public welfare may include social services, libraries and parks and recreation. Specific statutes affect some activities in this general area.
The commissioners court has responsibilities in regard to water supply, irrigation and drainage, waste disposal, clean air and agriculture.
Counties have statutorily specified regulatory responsibilities. Additionally, in some cases they have an advisory role with state agencies.
The Texas Government Code Chapter 418 gives the County Judge the power to declare a local disaster within the county “if the threat of disaster is imminent.” Declaration of such disaster authorizes the imposition of controls on activities which tend to increase the likelihood of fires and such controls, once implemented, have the potential of protecting lives and property by mitigating the threat of dangerous fires. A declaration issued under Section 418.108 of the Texas Government Code include a prohibition or restriction on the sale or use of fireworks within the county. A local disaster declaration expires 7 days after its issuance, unless the Commissioners Court consents to its renewal or continuance. To the extent that a declaration includes a provision related to fireworks, any portion of the provision that exceeds the restrictions authorized by Local Government Code Subsection 352.051 is effective only for 60 hours, unless the County Judge requests and the Governor authorizes an extension of the broader fireworks restriction.