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TAGG to seek change despite DA’s lawsuit

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DIANA BUCKLEY
Ellis County Press
WAXAHACHIE - In spite of a lawsuit filed by District Attorney Joe Grubbs, the Taxpayers Alliance for Good Government decided to move forward in its effort to effect changes in county government.

Grubbs filed what County Judge Al Cornelius called an 'answer' to a suit brought by Roy Callender Sr., Roy Callender Jr., and Clint Tims in an effort to stave off personnel cuts after the recent tax rollback election.

'The Plaintiff's suit is frivolous, misleading, vexatious, and brought for harassment purposes,' stated Grubbs in his more than 20-page document, which also called for sanctions against Attorney Todd Phillippi.

Grubbs defended his conclusion Callender's suit was filed with harassment in mind. 'If I sued you because you ran into my car, you'd say ‘Wait a minute, Joe, I never ran into your car!' and you'd be right,' he explained. 'If there's no basis in law or in fact, why did you bring the suit?'

Callender has indicated his intent was only to stop the layoffs long enough for county officials to review the budget more thoroughly and determine whether or not other measures could be taken instead.

In a meeting on Tuesday, April 3, TAGG members elected officers and mapped out a strategy.

'The Taxpayers Alliance will proceed on two avenues simultaneously,' stated a TAGG press release. 'To continue to seek short-term solutions to the current crisis in Ellis County government, and to seek a long-term solution through the political arena, (growing) as an organization seeking like-minded citizens to join us so that we become a sustained, powerful voice for common sense cost-effective government.'

The group will monitor commissioners' court meetings, continue its research into county finances, and 'Bring public opinion to bear on actions by county officials which are contrary to principles of sound management and responsible government.'

Officers are Kenneth Haskovec, chairman; Marshall Evans, vice chairman; Troy Stone, treasurer; and Jennifer Evans, secretary.

Key committee heads were also selected: Henrietta Borden, membership; Judge Milton Gallagher, candidate screening and recruitment; Duff Hale, research, reform, and issues development; Jimmie Simmons, public relations; and Everett King, commissioners' court oversight.

The next meeting of TAGG will be held on Tuesday, April 24 at 7 p.m. at the Waxahachie Civic Center. The public is encouraged to attend.

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