Athens Review, Athens, Texas

April 14, 2014

Texas grand jury to be seated in Perry ethics case

Associated Press
Associated Press

AUSTIN —  A Texas judge is expected to seat a grand jury in an investigation into whether Republican Gov. Rick Perry abused his power by vetoing funding for public corruption prosecutors.

Special State District Judge Bert Richardson is expected to impanel the grand jury Monday in Austin.

The investigation began after Perry vetoed $7.5 million in funding last summer for a public integrity unit under Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.

Perry called on Lehmberg to resign after the Democrat was convicted on drunken-driving charges. When she refused, Perry pulled state funding for the unit.

Richardson hired a special prosecutor to investigate following a complaint from a public watchdog group.

Aides to Perry didn't return calls seeking comment. His office has previously said Perry was within his right to veto any bill.