Texas Attorney General Opinion

An Attorney General Opinion is a written interpretation of existing law. The Attorney General writes opinions as part of his responsibility to act as legal counsel for the State of Texas.

Attorney General Opinions clarify the meaning of existing laws. They do not address matters of fact, and they are neither legislative nor judicial in nature. They cannot create new provisions in the law or correct unintended, undesirable effects of the law. Opinions interpret legal issues that are ambiguous, obscure, or otherwise unclear. Attorney General Opinions do not reflect the AG's opinion in the ordinary sense of expressing his personal views. Nor does he in any way "rule" on what the law should say.

Unless or until an opinion is modified or overruled by statute, judicial decision, or subsequent Attorney General Opinion, an Attorney General Opinion is presumed to correctly state the law. Accordingly, courts have stated that Attorney General Opinions are highly persuasive and are entitled to great weight. Ultimate determination of a law's applicability, meaning or constitutionality is left to the courts. For this reason, the Attorney General generally does not write opinions on issues that are in pending litigation.

Below are selected Texas Attorney General Opinions addressing water law issues.  The selection of opinions for inclusion on this page is subjectively determined by Mark McPherson. There are additional opinions relating to water rights. 
All Attorney General opinions may be reviewed here:  https://www.oag.state.tx.us/opin/

Op No. Date Regarding



Authority of the Sandy Land Underground Water Conservation District to transfer certain assets to an individual or other entity



Whether the conflict of interest provisions of chapter 171, Local Government Code, required two board members ofthe Uvalde County Underground Water Conservation District to disclose their respective interests and abstain from voting on a District rule



Jurisdiction over land that is annexed by two separate special districts



Status of particular tracts of land annexed into one groundwater conservation district and subsequently included in special legislation creating a different district



Whether a water supply corporation has the option of refusing to extend service under sections 13.2501 and 13.2502, Water Code



Whether certain Bandera County River Authority and Groundwater District directors' interests constitute conflicts of interest under chapter 171 of the Local Government Code or other law



Application of conflict of interest law and the Open Meetings Act to the governing board of a groundwater conservation district



Whether a county clerk may charge a fee for posting an Open Meetings Act notice



Whether a well that was installed prior to September I, 2002, but that was capped and will not be used to produce water until some indefinite time after that date, is a "public water supply well" exempt from regulation by the Trinity Glen Rose Groundwater Conservation District



Whether a component committee of the Edwards Aquifer Authority is subject to the Open Meetings Act when a majority ofthe members of the Authority's Board attends a meeting of the committee



Validity of rule relating to location of water wells



Whether Water Code section 49.072, which provides that a water district director who becomes a candidate for another office is no longer qualified to serve as director, violates article XV, section 7 of the Texas Constitution, and related questions



Regional water planning groups established by section 16.053, Water Code



Whether the Franklin County Water District may require a fishing guide licensed by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department to pay a fee and obtain a permit from the district before operating as a fishing guide on Lake Cypress Springs, and related questions



Authority of an underground water conservation district to assess annual permit and registration fees (RQ-2193)



Re: Authority of a municipal utility district operating under chapter 54 of the water Code to acquire real property for use as a park, and related questions (RQ-2056)


Back to Top