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Sunrise from Cowboy Hill near Noelke, Texas in Irion County, Texas.

Howdy! So Glad You're Here.

George Noelke approaches rural Texas from a unique perspective. 

Growing up, he attended Irion County ISD in Mertzon, Texas (population less than 1,000) and worked on his family's ranch. Professionally, he was employed for 24 years as an Assistant Attorney General in the Texas Attorney General's Office, and about half of those years he worked in the Administrative Law Division.  While there he provided legal counsel on open government laws to governor appointed agency board members and agency executive staff. He attended all of his client agency's public board meetings, both open and closed sessions, and advised his clients as a general counsel, including how to manage constituents who chose to speak during open forum at the meetings.

A key takeaway from his state government work is that our experiment in democracy, as described by our Founders, continues only if our citizens take advantage of our open government laws.  Justice Brandeis said it best when he said that sunlight is the best disinfectant.  Citizens should not fail to take advantage of public documents and public meetings.  And, equally important, they cannot leave public meetings unattended so that elected officials are free to do as they wish.

A key take away from his rural ranch upbringing is be good to your neighbor, especially those on the down side of the draw.  If that fence water gap gets flooded and the livestock cross the property line, both sides are going to need a good neighbor to help sort and return the livestock.

George Noelke believes that Irion County ISD and the City of Mertzon are unique microcosms for the health of our country's experiment with democracy. Abraham Lincoln said, "The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next."  What this is about will become more transparent in time as more blog posts are written and more comes to light.  

For more about this website, search for "About" in the search bar.

Here are the disclaimers:

George Noelke is is a taxpayer, landowner and graduate of Irion County ISD.  He is also the school's next door neighbor in Mertzon, and he attends virtually all of the school board meetings from beginning to end. He also regularly attends the City of Mertzon city council meetings.  He is a licensed Texas lawyer, but he isn't accepting or soliciting clients. Do not take anything you read on this site as legal advice.  Open government laws are complex and change regularly.  Seek the advice of a lawyer if you need one. The best resources for self study are available free online.  (Search the internet for "Texas Attorney General Open Meetings Handbook" and "Texas Attorney General Public Information Handbook".)  This site represents the personal views of George Noelke.  He is self-employed, and he has no children or relatives attending or working at Irion County ISD. So, he is more free than most in the community to speak his mind...and he is known to do so at public meetings, when he is permitted.  His only association with state and local government is that he is a taxpayer and a voter.

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