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Houston Maritime Museum
Harris County
Houston City Council
by Garrett Bryce w/photos courtesy City of Houston
Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Houston City Council today voted unanimously, following lengthy discussion, to approve an ordinance temporarily suspending city requirements in order to facilitate the placement of manufactured homes and recreational vehicles for victims of flooding related to Hurricane Harvey.

Council members voiced concerns regarding an “exit strategy” to remove trailers and recreational vehicles from properties after the temporary measure expired, and regarding matters involving deed restrictions and other rules.

Council Member Mike Knox began discussions regarding his concerns for ending the program.

“I think we have an unclear idea about how at the end of the temporary period, how we're going to enforce the removal of those trailers from various properties,” Knox said. Listen (1 hour 13 minutes)

After discussion with staff, consensus was reached by the city council to request staff to include language in forms for permitting the location of trailers regarding the eventual removal of them from the property.

During the discussion, Mayor Sylvester Turner stressed that the program was temporary, and that the city is not superseding deed requirements.

Knox agreed that the program was needed, and “a useful tool.”

Council Member Mike Laster stated that he intended to tag the item, and noted his concerns as well.

Council Member Dave Martin discuss conditions in his district, and asked Laster to remove his tag.

“The longer we wait on this, the more damage you're doing to people and their lives,” Martin said.

Turner also asked that the process not be delayed.

“This was the worst natural disaster in Houston history in terms of water falling on the city of Houston,” Turner said, noting the number of families in Houston with damaged homes. “These are exigent times, exigent circumstances.”

Laster released his tag following the discussion, allowing the vote to take place.

The city council voted unanimously to confirm the appointment of Philip Hilder to the Houston Forensic Science center Board of Directors for a three-year term.

The city council voted unanimously to nominate Theldon Branch for reappointment to represent the city on the Port of Houston Authority Port Commission. No other nominations were offered.

The city council voted unanimously to nominate Alfonso “Al” Maldonado, Marsha Fisk, Julie Marinucci Grothues, and David Goldberg to the Houston Ethics Commission. Fisk would be a reappointment, while all others would be new appointments.

The city council took no action regarding an amendment to a contract with the Houston Arts Alliance, the Houston Museum District, Miller Theatre Advisory Board, Inc. and Theater District Improvement, Inc. for the support, advancement and promotion of the arts. The item was tagged by council members Larry Green and David Robinson.

The city council voted 16-1, with Amanda Edwards opposed, to amend the city's ordinance regarding the acquisition of fee simple or easement interest to nine parcels of land, to include the acquisition of a redesigned parcel for the Houston Heights, John Brashear and Memorial Heights Paving and Drainage Project, by gift, donation purchase and eminent domain.

The city council took no action regarding an amendment to the grant agreement with the Federal Highway Administration for the Houston Intelligent Transportation System Project. The item was tagged by Edwards.

The city council voted to delay for one week a motion setting a date to receive nominations for Position One and Two, and two alternate at-large positions on the Houston-Galveston Area Council Board of Directors.

All other items were approved by unanimous vote. All members were present. Agenda

During his report, Turner thanked the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership for his recognition in receiving the Quasar Award, which he received at a ceremony last week.

“I want to thank people in the Bay Area, it seemed the entire leadership in that area showed up,” Turner. “The solidarity and the unity, the organization, out there was simply amazing.” Listen (7:00)

Fellow council members, including Martin, noted the achievement and thanked the mayor for his efforts.

Turner also presented a proclamation to Dennis Storemski, who is retiring from his position as director of the Mayor's Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security. Listen (13:18)




BayTran
Remembering Jim Guidry Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership


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