Blog

The First Pay-to-Play Endorsement Is In

  On Friday, the American Council of Engineering Companies of Houston (“ACEC”) endorsed Sylvester Turner for a second term.  The endorsement letter read, in part, “Mayor Turner has demonstrated his commitment to investing in and improving the infrastructure of...

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Turner’s Pothole Misinformation Campaign

  Sylvester Turner’s press conference on potholes this week was masterful misdirection.  Most of the media headlines were that Turner claimed the City was repairing 100% of its potholes.  But if you read the fine print, the City is only repairing 100% of the...

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City Continues to Skimp on Street Spending

  The recently issued annual financial report (“CAFR”) for the City once again shows that it is continuing to cut back on street reconstruction and repair, a fact that is of no surprise to Houston drivers. The CAFR shows that the amount of asphalt used in street...

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City’s Net Assets Plunge by over $1 Billion

  A few days before Christmas, the City of Houston released its Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) for FY2017-2018.  In recent years, the City’s standard operating procedure has been to release the CAFR over the holidays to minimize the attention it...

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Rapes in Houston Up 121% in Last Four Years

The Texas Department of Public Safety recently released its annual report for crime in Texas for 2017.[i]  There are several troubling results for Houston but the number that jumps off the page is that rape was up by 13% in 2017, increasing from 1,210 to 1,366 rapes. ...

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The Testimony of Major Brent Taylor on Election Day

  Brent Taylor was the mayor of North Ogden, Utah.  He was also a major in the Army National Guard.  He was killed last week in Afghanistan on his fourth tour of duty there.  He was 39 and left behind a wife and seven children. Shortly before his death, Major...

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City has Shortchanged Rebuild Fund by Nearly $250 Million

The more I study the Rebuild Houston program, the more apparent it becomes that the City’s administration of the program is a complete fraud.  The most recent discovery we have made is that the City has been using a legal loophole to shortchange the amount of money...

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A Hurricane Michael Would Be Houston’s Worst Nightmare

  In 2006, I chaired a regional task force that made recommendations on redrawing evacuation plans after the disastrous Hurricane Rita evacuation.  There was one storm scenario in the historical record that haunted our task force: a fast-moving hurricane that...

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Closing Argument on Proposition A – Rebuild Houston

Early voting on the City's proposition A, which would reauthorize the failed Rebuild Houston program, begins tomorrow. Since no one at the City had the intestinal fortitude to debate Proposition A, I am left to make the closing argument directly to Houston voters. In...

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There is no “New” Lockbox in Proposition A

I spoke to someone last night who had attended the City’s townhall meeting in Kingwood on the propositions on the ballot.  The person with whom I spoke left the meeting with the impression that the ballot provision represents a new and improved lockbox.  This is...

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Ted Oberg Story Exposes Rebuild Houston for the Fraud It Is

In case you missed it, Channel 13 ran a story by Ted Oberg that exposes what a fraud the Rebuild Houston has become. Oberg obtained documents from the City that showed spending on streets and drainage is down by 7% and 4%, respectively. How in the world can the City...

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National Debt Up by $1.2 Trillion This Year

The federal government just finished up its fiscal year on September 30.  It was not pretty.  We added $1.27 trillion to the national debt.  That is nearly double the increase last year.  The debt grew about twice what GDP grew for the year. So far, the promised...

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How Much Will Proposition B Cost?

I have had a number of people ask me if I could tell how much it will cost the City if Proposition B passes.   It is not an easy thing to sort out because the cost could vary significantly based on exactly how it would be implemented. For example, the proposition...

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Town Hall Misinformation

  There is so much misinformation being disseminated at the current round of “town hall” meetings it is hard to keep up with all of it.  If you have been subjected to this mendacious onslaught, let me set the record straight on a few issues. There Is/Will Be No...

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How Much Did the City Cut Pension Benefits

Recently on What’s Your Point and in my blog, I have cited estimates of how much the City cut pensions in the 2016 pension changes.  Specifically, I said in my blog last week that the pensions were cut by about $140,000 for fire fighters, $90,000 for police officers...

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Unpacking the Fire Fighters’ Pay Ballot Proposition

Many of you have heard by now that Houstonians will be voting on a proposition on the November ballot to mandate a pay raise for Houston fire fighters.  The history of how we got to this point is long and contorted.  The issues regarding the merits of the proposition...

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Don’t Leave Anything Visible in Your Car!

I had dinner last week with some friends at a restaurant in the River Oaks area.  When I went to my car, I noticed the driver’s window was cracked in a couple of places.  It was dark, and I assumed that I picked up some debris off our awful streets.  But when I got...

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Back from Touring U.K & Ireland

I recently returned from nearly three weeks of touring the United Kingdom and Ireland. Some of you that followed my posts about the trip on Facebook seem to have the misconception that this was a pleasure trip. I can assure you that was not the case. During the entire...

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I Am Voting for the County Flood Bonds

Early voting on the proposed $2.5 billion of new bonds for the Harris County Flood Control District begins on Wednesday (August 8). The regular election day is Saturday, August 25. You can find the schedule for early voting and early voting locations [here] and a list...

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