This week, Harris County Commissioners Court approved a move to form a working group with the Sheriff to determine the feasibility of setting up a polling location at the county jail.
The proposal came from Commissioner Adrian Garcia, who said that it stemmed from his work with State Rep. Harold Dutton providing ballots for those in custody. “From what I recall from that conversation, it’s their constitutional right so we need to make sure we’re following that particular law,” he said.
The location would be for those awaiting trial, not yet convicted of a crime, and any visitors they may have, which was brought up by Commissioner Rodney Ellis who seconded the motion.
County Clerk Diane Trautman urged caution, “I would recommend waiting until 2020, because were ready to go for this November already with locations,” but Garcia “respectfully disagreed.”
Though there was no advanced notice of this move, the county said that it wasn’t in violation of the open meetings act because it fell under the confines of the posted agenda item to set polling locations for the upcoming election.
The measure calls for the working group to determine the feasibility and then Trautman will come back to the court with a final determination on whether or not it’s is able to be pulled off for this November’s election.