Hays County Courthouse.
Hays County officials are reiterating that the county courthouse grounds are open to everyone after a rumor spread that commissioners were not going to let a local group protest there.
A group that wants to hold a “tea party” on April, 15, also tax day, in protest of the rising national debt and corporate bailouts, was told that the county requires a license agreement and insurance to hold its event on the courthouse lawn. Many took this as a sign that the county was prohibiting the use of public space for the protest.
However, a release by the county said, “Since 2007, Hays County has requires a license agreement for groups that wish to hold an ‘event’ on Courthouse grounds. An event, under the agreement, includes reserving space, using a sound system, etc. The agreement also includes an insurance agreement.”
Furthermore, it read, “If a group chooses to not sign the license agreement and provide insurance, then its members are welcome to gather on and around the Courthouse in a more informal manner, so the right to gather, picket, etc, – as long as it is peaceful in nature – isn’t an issue to the county.”Email | Print
The requirement for insurance came directly from the judge’s office, not the Commissioner’s Court.