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The Texas Secretary of State is one of the six members of the executive department of the state of Texas, in the United States. Under the Texas Constitution, the appointment is made by the Governor, with confirmation by the Texas Senate. Ruth Ruggero Hughs is the incumbent secretary of state.
In the United States, a state is a constituent political entity, of which there are currently 50. Bound together in a political union, each state holds governmental jurisdiction over a separate and defined geographic territory and shares its sovereignty with the federal government. Due to this shared sovereignty, Americans are citizens both of the federal republic and of the state in which they reside. State citizenship and residency are flexible, and no government approval is required to move between states, except for persons restricted by certain types of court orders.
Texas is the second largest state in the United States by both area and population. Geographically located in the South Central region of the country, Texas shares borders with the U.S. states of Louisiana to the east, Arkansas to the northeast, Oklahoma to the north, New Mexico to the west, and the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas to the southwest, and has a coastline with the Gulf of Mexico to the southeast.
The Governor of Texas is the head of the executive branch of Texas's government and the commander-in-chief of the state's military forces. The governor has the power to either approve or veto bills passed by the Texas Legislature, and to convene the legislature. The governor may grant pardons in cases other than impeachment or in the case of treason, with permission by the legislature. The current Governor is Greg Abbott.
The secretary of state is the chief elections officer, the protocol officer for state and international matters, and the liaison for the governor on Mexican and border matters.
The Secretary of State offices are in the James Earl Rudder State Office Building at 1019 Brazos Street in Austin; the main building handles business and public filings, statutory documents, administrative code open meetings, and the UCC. The SOS elections office is on the second floor of the James Earl Rudder Building. The executive offices are in Room 1E.8 in the Texas State Capitol.
Austin is the capital of the U.S. state of Texas and the seat of Travis County, with portions extending into Hays and Williamson counties. It is the 11th-most populous city in the United States and the 4th-most populous city in Texas. It is also the fastest growing large city in the United States, the second most populous state capital after Phoenix, Arizona, and the southernmost state capital in the contiguous United States. As of the U.S. Census Bureau's July 1, 2018 estimate, Austin had a population of 964,254 up from 790,491 at the 2010 census. The city is the cultural and economic center of the Austin–Round Rock metropolitan statistical area, which had an estimated population of 2,168,316 as of July 1, 2018. Located in Central Texas within the greater Texas Hill Country, it is home to numerous lakes, rivers, and waterways, including Lady Bird Lake and Lake Travis on the Colorado River, Barton Springs, McKinney Falls, and Lake Walter E. Long.
The Texas State Capitol is the capitol building and seat of government of the American state of Texas. Located in downtown Austin, Texas, the structure houses the offices and chambers of the Texas Legislature and of the Governor of Texas. Designed in 1881 by architect Elijah E. Myers, it was constructed from 1882 to 1888 under the direction of civil engineer Reuben Lindsay Walker. A $75 million underground extension was completed in 1993. The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 and recognized as a National Historic Landmark in 1986.
Under the Texas Constitution the secretary of state is, with the governor, the lieutenant governor, the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, the commissioner of the Office of General Land and the attorney general, one of the six members of the Executive Department. Of these offices all are elected by the voters in statewide elections except the secretary of state, who is nominated by the governor and confirmed by the senate.
The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts is an executive branch position created by the Texas Constitution. As with nearly every other executive branch head in Texas, the Comptroller is popularly elected every four years concurrently with the governor and the other elected executive branch positions. The current Comptroller is Glenn Hegar, who took office on January 2, 2015.
The Texas General Land Office (GLO) is a state agency of the U.S. state of Texas, responsible for managing lands and mineral rights properties that are owned by the state. The GLO also manages and contributes to the state's Permanent School Fund. The agency has its headquarters in the Stephen F. Austin State Office Building in Downtown Austin.
The secretary of state administers the Texas Election Code, maintains public filings, and is the keeper of the State Seal of Texas.The secretary of state also issues appointments for notaries public.
A notary public of the common law is a public officer constituted by law to serve the public in non-contentious matters usually concerned with estates, deeds, powers-of-attorney, and foreign and international business. A notary's main functions are to administer oaths and affirmations, take affidavits and statutory declarations, witness and authenticate the execution of certain classes of documents, take acknowledgments of deeds and other conveyances, protest notes and bills of exchange, provide notice of foreign drafts, prepare marine or ship's protests in cases of damage, provide exemplifications and notarial copies, and perform certain other official acts depending on the jurisdiction. Any such act is known as a notarization. The term notary public only refers to common-law notaries and should not be confused with civil-law notaries.
The first secretary of state of the Republic of Texas, Stephen F. Austin, was appointed by Texas president Sam Houston in 1836.
Stephen Fuller Austin was an American empresario. Known as the "Father of Texas", and the founder of Texas, he led the second, and ultimately, the successful colonization of the region by bringing 300 families from the United States to the region in 1825.
Samuel Houston was an American soldier and politician. An important leader of the Texas Revolution, Houston served as the 1st and 3rd president of the Republic of Texas, and was one of the first two individuals to represent Texas in the United States Senate. He also served as the 6th Governor of Tennessee and the seventh governor of Texas, the only American to be elected governor of two different states in the United States.
Since then, Texas became a state of the United States in 1845 and there have been 109 secretaries of state.
The Texas Legislature is the state legislature of the US state of Texas. It is a bicameral body composed of a 31-member Senate and a 150-member House of Representatives. The state legislature meets at the Capitol in Austin. It is a powerful arm of the Texas government not only because of its power of the purse to control and direct the activities of state government and the strong constitutional connections between it and the Lieutenant Governor of Texas, but also due to Texas's plural executive.
Secretary of state is an official in the state governments of 47 of the 50 states of the United States, as well as Puerto Rico and other U.S. possessions. In Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, this official is called the secretary of the commonwealth. In states that have one, the secretary of state is the chief clerk of the state, and is often the primary custodian of important state records. In the states of Alaska, Hawaii, and Utah, there is no secretary of state; in those states many duties that a secretary of state might normally execute fall within the domain of the lieutenant governor. Like the lieutenant governor, in most states the secretary of state is in the line of succession to succeed the governor, in most cases immediately behind the lieutenant governor. In three states with no lieutenant governor as well as the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico, the secretary of state is first in the line of succession in the event of a gubernatorial vacancy.
District 1 of the Texas Senate is a senatorial district that serves all of Bowie, Camp, Cass, Franklin, Gregg, Harrison, Lamar, Marion, Morris, Panola, Red River, Rusk, Titus, Upshur, Wood and Smith county in the U.S. state of Texas. The current Senator from District 1 is Bryan Hughes.
Kirk Preston Watson is an American attorney and Democratic politician from the capital city of Austin, Texas. He served as Austin mayor from 1997 to 2001. He ran unsuccessfully for Texas Attorney General in the 2002 election, when he was defeated by the Republican Greg Abbott, later governor of Texas. In 2006, Watson was elected to the Texas State Senate from District 14.
Jerry Emmett Patterson is the former Commissioner of the General Land Office of Texas and a former state senator. He was the second Republican since Reconstruction to serve as land commissioner, a post which he held from 2003 to 2015, serving three terms. He served from the Houston area in District 11 in the Texas Senate from 1993 to 1999.
The Secretary of State of Wisconsin is a constitutional officer in the executive branch of the government of the U.S. state of Wisconsin, and is second in the line of succession to the office of Governor of Wisconsin. Twenty-eight individuals have held the office of Secretary of State, two of whom have held non-consecutive terms. The incumbent is Doug La Follette, a Democrat first elected for a single four-year term in 1974 and reelected since 1982.
The government of Texas operates under the Constitution of Texas and consists of a unitary democratic state government operating under a presidential system that uses the Dillon Rule, as well as governments at the county and municipal levels.
The government of the U.S. State of Oklahoma, established by the Oklahoma Constitution, is a republican democracy modeled after the federal government of the United States. The state government has three branches: the executive, legislative, and judicial. Through a system of separation of powers or "checks and balances," each of these branches has some authority to act on its own, some authority to regulate the other two branches, and has some of its own authority, in turn, regulated by the other branches.
The Secretary of State of Oregon, an elected constitutional officer within the executive branch of government of the U.S. state of Oregon, is first in line of succession to the Governor. The duties of office are: auditor of public accounts, chief elections officer, and administrator of public records. Additionally, the Secretary of State serves on the Oregon State Land Board and chairs the Oregon Sustainability Board. Following every United States Census, if the Oregon Legislative Assembly cannot come to agreement over changes to legislative redistricting, the duty falls to the Secretary of State.
Earl Jeffrey Wentworth, is a Republican former member of the Texas Senate from San Antonio. He represented District 25 in the upper legislative chamber from January 1997 to January 2013. In addition, from 1993 to 1997, he represented District 26, having been initially elected to the state senate in 1992 to succeed fellow Republican Cyndi Taylor Krier, when she became the county judge of Bexar County. District 25 included northern portions of Bexar County, all of Comal, Guadalupe, Hays, and Kendall counties, and a part of southern Travis County.
The Texas Ethics Commission was established in 1991 to "provide guidance on various public ethics laws" within the state of Texas. The agency is headquartered on the 10th Floor of the Sam Houston State Office Building at 201 East 14th Street in Downtown Austin.
The Texas Attorney General is the chief legal officer of the State of Texas. The current Attorney General Ken Paxton has served in this position since January 5, 2015.
The Secretary of State of Vermont is one of five cabinet-level constitutional officers in the U.S. state of Vermont which are elected every two years. The Secretary of State is fourth in the line of succession to the office of Governor of Vermont.
The Office of the Secretary of State is located at 128 State St. in Montpelier. The current Secretary of State is James C. Condos, a Democrat.
Harvey Ray Hilderbran was a Republican member of the Texas House of Representatives from District 53, which includes fifteen counties in central Texas. Hilderbran resides in Kerrville west of San Antonio.
Samuel Philip "Phil" Wilson was the Texas Secretary of State, the state's chief elections officer, from 2007 to 2008. He was appointed effective July 1, 2007, by Republican Governor Rick Perry. Wilson was the 106th person to hold the position and the fifth individual to have served since Perry assumed the governorship in December 2000. On June 11, 2008, Wilson announced his resignation, effective July 6, to "pursue other opportunities."
The James Earl Rudder State Office Building is a historic office building in downtown Austin, Texas, USA. Built in 1918, the five-story structure features 18-foot ceilings and terrazzo and marble flooring.
The Secretary of State of Indiana is one of five constitutional officers originally designated in Indiana's State Constitution of 1816. Since 1851 it has been an elected position. The Secretary of State oversees four divisions, and is the third highest constitutional office of the state government. The Secretary serves as the State's chief election officer, enforces state securities regulations, regulates automobile dealerships in Indiana, and manages the state business services division. The current office holder is Connie Lawson, who was appointed by Gov. Mitch Daniels to serve out the term of former Secretary of State Charlie White, who was removed from office due to felony convictions. The annual salary of the Secretary of State of Indiana is $74,580.
The Secretary of State of Nevada is a statewide elected office in the State of Nevada. The secretary of state post is common to many U.S. states. In Nevada, it is a constitutional office.
Christi Leigh Craddick is one of three members of the Texas Railroad Commission, the elected regulatory body over oil, natural gas, utilities, and surface mining first established in 1891. She is a Republican. The commission ended all controls over railroads in 2005 but is still known as the "Railroad Commission" for historical reasons.
Rolando Burgoa Pablos is an American executive, attorney, and Republican politician from the U.S. state of Texas. He was sworn in as Secretary of State of Texas on January 5, 2017. On December 6, 2018, Pablos announced his resignation as Secretary of State effective December 15.