Harris County Commissioners Court today voted unanimously to endorse the Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County proposal on the November 6 ballot regarding the General Mobility Program. Listen
“It’s gotten a lot of publicity, but it’s important for the public to know that the commissioners court is united behind this proposal,” said County Judge Ed Emmett.
“I want to commend Commissioner (Steve) Radack for his perspicuity and…,” began Commissioner Jack Cagle.
“Tenacity,” interjected Commissioner El Franco Lee.
“I think it was your own bird dog that said, Commissioner Radack, that only Nixon could go to China and I think that you, in representing us in this endeavor, have done us a stellar job and I want to commend you for your leadership and ability to bring about a positive resolution of what could have been a very negative situation,” Cagle said.
METRO Chair Gilbert Garcia, who attended the meeting to support the resolution, also had praise for Radack for spending most of an entire weekend working out details of the proposition that will be put before the voters.
“I will tell you what really changed was when he said, ‘Gilbert, what does METRO really need?’” Garcia said. “We rolled up our sleeves and we really looked at it and there were two primary areas, which is to pay down the short-term debt that has been building over the last couple of years, and to expand the bus system and shelters. And that’s when things came together.”
The commissioners court voted unanimously to approve two items related to the Texas Department of Transportation project to develop, finance, construct and operate a toll project along and/or within the State Highway 288 right of way between United States Highway 59 and the Brazoria County Line, and TxDOT proposals concerning connectors between the Texas Medical Center and Highway 288. Listen
“Over the past few months (there has been) staff work among the project’s stakeholders, and there’s a lot of them, concerning the Texas Medical Center, City of Houston Parks, City of Houston Public Works, Engineering and Traffic, and Harris County,” reported Art Storey, executive director of the Harris County Public Infrastructure Department. “That staff work has now confirmed TxDOT’s intent to construct those supporting projects in ways that will not adversely impact the Texas Medical Center, the City of Houston street system, Hermann Park, county interests, or very importantly nearby residential neighborhoods.”
The commissioners court voted unanimously to reappoint Tom Hamilton to the Mental Health Mental Retardation Authority Board of Trustees.
The commissioners court voted unanimously to reappoint Dale Wortham to the Harris County Hospital District Board of Managers.
The commissioners court voted unanimously to appoint David Riddle to the Harris County Housing Authority Board.
The commissioners court voted unanimously to reappoint Kent A. Schaffer to the Harris County Public Defender Board.
The commissioners court voted 4-0-1, with Jack Morman abstaining, to authorize the county judge to execute a fee agreement with Malouf & Nockels, LLP as special counsel for Harris County to assist in prosecuting suit(s) against various defendants arising out of the Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc., matter.
The commissioners court approved awards to several nonprofit agencies as non-metered transit providers, but removed the American Red Cross from the list.
The commissioners court unanimously approved a request by Constable May Walker for a $1,000 payment to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education in connection with an application for the Licensed Training Provider School, subject to review of the Budget Management Department.
The commissioners court unanimously approved $4,217,235 for expenses in connection with the November 6 elections, subject to review of the Budget Management Department.
The commissioners court discussed a proposed change in the rules governing the operation and regulation of alarm systems in the county, but the item was held for consideration at a future meeting. Listen
The proposed expenditure of $7,500 to compel compliance with environmental laws and regulations in Precincts 1 and 3 in connection with a case in the 215th District Court was held by Radack for consideration at a future meeting.
An item dealing with an $85,000 contract with the SWA Group, Inc. in connection with construction of Phase 2 of the Buffalo Bend Nature Park was withdrawn from the agenda and was not considered for action by the commissioners court.
Proposed revisions to the Harris County Building Regulations that were prepared in collaboration with the District Attorney’s Office and the County Attorney’s Office, were withdrawn from the agenda.
The commissioners court unanimously approved a resolution congratulating Candy Walker Howard on the occasion of her retirement from the County Judge’s Office.
The commissioners court unanimously approved a resolution congratulating the Harris County Historical Commission on receiving the 2011 Distinguished Service Award from the Texas Historical Commission.
All other agenda items were unanimously approved.