Blake Farenthold

Blake Farenthold resigned from Congress on April 6 amid sexual harassment complaints.

Calhoun Port Authority board members will have a special meeting Thursday to discuss former congressman and recently hired legislative liaison Blake Farenthold.

The meeting comes two days after attorneys representing the Victoria Advocate filed a lawsuit against the port authority. The lawsuit claims port officials broke the Texas Open Meetings Act by failing to properly announce discussion of Farenthold’s hiring at a May 9 meeting.

Port officials hired Farenthold after he resigned from Congress in April amid sexual harassment complaints that resulted in an $84,000 settlement paid for by taxpayers. Although Farenthold initially promised to repay the money, he has stated he no longer intends to.

Wednesday, port representatives responded to a public information request by the Advocate, releasing employment documents and internal communications regarding his employment.

Farenthold began his new job as legislative liaison on May 14. His salary is $160,000 a year.

Although port officials have decided to discuss Farenthold and his new job during the meeting’s closed session, which is secret from the public, any decision must by law occur during the meeting’s public portion. Discussion of the port’s employee manual is scheduled to occur after that decision before the public.

During the meeting’s closed portion, board members also will discuss the Advocate’s pending lawsuit and purchase of real estate.

Jon Wilcox reports on courts for the Victoria Advocate. He may be reached or 361-580-6515.

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Jon covers crime, public safety and the courts at the Victoria Advocate. Born in Huntsville, Ala., he grew up in Atlanta, Ga. and obtained a bachelor's degree in journalism at Texas State University.

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