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Public Safety

Houston Maritime Museum
Harris County
Houston City Council
by Garrett Bryce w/photos courtesy City of Houston
Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Houston City Council today voted unanimously to appropriate $2,048,164 from the equipment acquisition consolidated fund for the purchase of flood response vehicles and related equipment for the Houston Fire Department.

The item prompted discussion regarding the placement of equipment such as boats to perform rescues during flood events within each council district.

Council Member Mike Laster stated the need for a boat in District J, and discussed flooding during Hurricane Harvey and instances where residents stranded in the flooding who were unable to be assisted.

“We just didn't have the boats in District J,” Laster said. Listen (31:14)

Mayor Sylvester Turner noted that the city in general did not have enough assets for previous events, including Hurricane Harvey.

“We never know where the water is going to come, or land, but one thing we can all agree is that we need more, and the City of Houston itself will never be able to have enough assets on its own, but we do need to have access to where those assets are,” Turner said.

He said that while a boat or equipment may not be in a district, Turner stated that assets will be city assets, and distributed to where they are needed during an event.

The city council took no action regarding the purchase of Bell 412 helicopter replacement parts, component overhaul or exchange and engine repairs for the Houston Police Department by Arrow Aviation Company. The item was tagged by Amanda Edwards.

The city council took no action regarding the purchase of chemicals, liquid gaseous chlorine, from Brenntag Southwest, Inc. The item was tagged by Edwards.

The city council took no action regarding a master contractor agreement for residential construction repair services for disaster recovery with several contractors. The item was pulled form the agenda.

The contractors included James W. Turner Construction, LTD; Allco, LLC; Core Construction Services, LLC; SLSCO, LTD; DSW Hoes; TKTMJ, Inc.; Lemoine Disaster Recovery; Tegrity TH 1, LLC; Thompson Construction Group, Inc.; Roy Anderson Corp.; A&G Restoration Services, LLC; T.L. Wallace Construction, Inc.; Brizo Construction, LLC; W.G. Yates & Sons Construction Company; DRC Construction, LLC; and Lamar Constractors, LLC.

The city council took no action regarding a Hurricane Harvey Mutual Aid Agreement with the Houston Housing Authority for the Federal Emergency Management Agency Direct Lease Program. The item was pulled from the agenda.

The city council took no action regarding an amendment to the restated agreement for recycling services with Waste Management of Texas, Inc. to extend the terms of the agreement. The item was tagged by Jerry Davis.

The city council took no action regarding an amended and restated SafeClear Freeway Towing and Emergency Road Service Agreement with varous vendors. The item was not presented to the council table in time for a vote.

The city council voted 16-1, with Edwards opposed, to approve an ordinance authorizing a Public Improvement Development Agreement with the Westchase District for right-of-way acquisitions.

The city council voted 16-1, with Dave Martin opposed, to authorize the transfer of $18,347,224 from the Northeast Water Purification Plant Expansion -Swift Fund into the Northwest Water Purification Plant Construction Fund for services associated with the project, and appropriating $39,610,027 from the Water Authorities Capital Contribution fund for the plant project.

Martin questioned the costs of project and matters regarding the firm serving as technical advisor on the project. Listen (12:57)

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

During his report, Turner introduced George T. Buenik, who will be starting in his position as director of the Mayor's Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security on Thursday.

Buenik is a retired Houston Police Department Executive Assistant Chief and chair of the 2017 Houston Super Bowl Public Safety Committee.

“He's quite familiar with public safety, homeland security, doing everything to keep our city safe,” Turner said. Listen (8:51)

Several council members applauded Buenik's appointment.

Buenik thanked the city for selecting him for the position.

“My number one priority will be to keep this city safe,” Buenik said, and acknowledged his family, thanking them for their support.

Turner also recognized Council Member David Robinson on being appointed to the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects, who was selected for appointment in recognition of his public service.

Remembering Jim Guidry Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership

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