That's 100% correct. Pope's August 2 directive on pepper spray went through no public process at all. It wasn't published in the Texas Register, there was no opportunity for public comment, and it was implemented before anyone outside the agency was informed. (I learned of it when I received an anonymous copy in the mail.) If legislators knew about it, they were told behind the scenes. But the decision, to use this season's catch phrase, was anything but "transparent."
The suit alleges that [TYC executive commissioner Dimitria] Pope changed the policy in violation of a state law that requires public notice of such changes. [Austin attorney Jim] George said the agency "went behind closed doors and enacted a policy that is detrimental to the kids."
George said a hearing on the lawsuit is set for Oct. 2.
"Just as the children in TYC need to learn how to follow the rules, the administrators of that agency also need to follow the law," he said.
Not only did Ms. Pope clearly violate posting laws by changing the pepper spray rules without public process, I think the policy itself is vulnerable to attack because it violates the Morales v. Turman settlement, not just the administrative code rules that reflect it. Certainly changing those policies, as George says, would require a public process that never occurred.
I'll be interested to see the full complaint that was filed.
UPDATE: Here's the original petition in the lawsuit, a TX Appleseed press release, and initial Dallas News coverage.