District Judges Appoint Aaron Thomas County Auditor

By Gloria Roemer

 

District Judge Chap Cain, 253rd District Court and District Judge Randy McDonald, 344th District Court, held a meeting pursuant to Texas Local Government Code Section 84 on Friday, December 17, 2021, at 8am in the 253rd District Courtroom of Chambers County, Texas.  Even though the agenda did not state that the district judges were going to discuss and take action on appointing Aaron Thomas to the position of County Attorney, they proceeded anyway under item #3 “Such other business as may come before the meeting”. In the past four county auditor appointments, which is every two years, the District Judges held a meeting with the county auditor appointment stated specifically as an agenda item and not referred to as “such other business that may come before the meeting”. Texas Local Government Code Sec. 84.003 states PROCEDURE FOR APPOINTMENT: (a) The district judges shall appoint the county auditor at a special meeting held for that purpose. Thomas will officially take over as county auditor on January 2, 2022 to December 31, 2023. It is a two year appointment with the district judges deciding to reappoint or not at the end of the two year term. Texas Local Government Code Sec. 84.006 states:.  QUALIFICATIONS.  (a)  A county auditor must be:

(1)  a competent accountant with at least two years’ experience in auditing and accounting; (2)  thoroughly competent in public business details; and (3)  a person of unquestionably good moral character and intelligence.

(b)  Before making an appointment the district judges shall carefully investigate and consider the person’s qualifications.

Though he does not have a college degree, Thomas has a history of working in the county auditor’s office. He started working for the county parttime in 2012 -2014 for former county auditor Jerry Sparks. “When Jerry Sparks retired and Tony Sims was appointed county auditor in 2014, Tony hired me fulltime to work in the auditor’s office,” said Thomas. “I worked for him for about a year until I went to work for County Judge Jimmy Sylvia’s office. Since working for Judge Sylvia I assist with working on budgets, help with discovery, and reimbursements for disaster recovery.”

Thomas also stated that he did not seek the appointment. “I was approached by Judge Cain and we discussed the possibility. I then met with Judge McDonald,” said Thomas. “It was an opportunity that I simply could not turn down so on Friday morning, the district judges officially appointed me County Auditor.” He continued, “The auditor’s office has a really good team, and I am excited to be a part of it. I look forward to better enhancing the operations of the office.”

Thomas is 30 years old and lives in Mont Belvieu. He graduated from Barbers Hill High School and attended Stephen F. Austin State University. In 2017, Thomas was named one of the “20 Under 40” to watch by The Baytown Sun.

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