1995 Texas Attorney General Reports and Opinions 1 (1995)

handle is hein.sag/sagtx0059 and id is 1 raw text is: @ffice of the (ttornep general
6tate of Texas
ATTORNEY GENERAL                       January 11, 1995
Mr. Robert Giddings                     Open Records Decision No. 631
The University of Texas System
Office of General Counsel               Re: Whether a consultant's report con-
201 West Seventh Street                 cerning a university's overall faculty hiring
Austin, Texas 78701-2981                and retention policies is excepted from
required public disclosure by section
552.111 of the Government Code (formerly
V.T.C.S.   article  6252-17a,   section
3(a)(1 1)) (RQ-589)
Dear Mr. Giddings:
On behalf of The University of Texas at Arlington (the university), you have
asked this office to determine whether a particular report is excepted from required public
disclosure under the Texas Open Records Act, chapter 552 of the Government Code
(formerly V.T.C.S. article 6252-17a).' The report was produced by an outside consultant
hired by the university, rather than an officer or employee of the university, and addresses
allegations of systematic discrimination against Black and Hispanic faculty members in the
retention, tenure, and promotion process at the university and allegations of discrimination
against one particular faculty member. You assert that the report contains confidential
interviews, 'findings' that are really the opinions of the consultant, as well as advice,
opinions and recommendations to the university for future action. You ask whether this
information is excepted from disclosure by section 552.111 in light of the court's decision
in Texas Department of Public Safety v. Gilbreath, 842 S.W.2d 408 (Tex. App.--Austin
1992, no writ).
Your request requires us to consider whether, in light of the court's decision in
Gilbreath and our decision in Open Records Decision No. 615 (1993), section 552.111
may be applicable to information created for a governmental body by an outside
consultant.2 This office first concluded that the language now in section 552.111 may
encompass information prepared by an outside consultant in Open Records Decision No.
192 (1978) at 2. In Gilbreath, however, the court criticized our interpretation of section
IThe Seventy-third Legislature codified the Open Records Act as chapter 552 of the Government
Code and repealed article 6252-17a, V.T.C.S. See Acts 1993, 73d Leg., ch. 268,  1, 46. The
codification of the Open Records Act in the Government Code is a nonsubstantive codification. Id.  47.
2By outside consultant, we mean a person other than an officer or employee of the
governmental body.

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