In Texas, the Local Government Code outlines a municipality's authority to enact ordinances within its jurisdiction. There are different types of municipalities (e.g., home rule, general law), and they each have specific procedures for enacting ordinances. These ordinances are usually enforced by local law enforcement agencies such as city police departments.
Counties also have some authority to enact ordinances, but a county's authority is generally more limited than that of a municipality. To access a county's ordinances, first check the county's official website because some counties publish their ordinances online. Otherwise, the county clerk, county judge, county commissioners, or your local public library may be able to provide access to county ordinances.
How to Locate Ordinances
Many municipalities publish their ordinances online, but not all do. If a municipality's ordinances are not online, you may need to access them in person.
If not online, you may need to go through the city clerk's office, city secretary, or in very small municipalities, through the governing body itself (e.g., councilpersons, mayor, aldermen, commissioners). Your local public library may have a print copy of the ordinances.
The websites below are digital libraries for the codes and ordinances of many municipalities. If you do not find a municipality's ordinances on one site, check the others. Some municipalities may publish their ordinances on their own website rather than on a third-party site.
- American Legal Publishing — ordinances of about 45 Texas municipalities
- Franklin Legal Publishing — ordinances of over 200 Texas municipalities
- Municode Library — ordinances of over 200 Texas municipalities
Ask a Librarian for assistance if you are having trouble locating ordinances.