January 01, 2006
Looking ahead in City Council

The Chron takes a look at the new makeup of City Council.

After Tuesday's inauguration, the ideological makeup on the council will switch — from a slight edge of Republican members to one favoring those who, like White, are Democrats.

This new council — which also is, for the first time, majority female — will work with the mayor to implement his far-reaching agenda during the next two years.

White said he plans to focus on several familiar issues: fighting a recent spike in violent crimes, improving traffic congestion, and protecting and revitalizing neighborhoods.

He'll set about doing this knowing that more than 100,000 Hurricane Katrina evacuees have changed the region's makeup — and that some of his time will be spent ensuring that the city receives "every penny" of reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

"We have a big city that's grown dramatically," said White, who is, weather permitting, set to be sworn in with City Controller Annise Parker and council members Tuesday morning at the Houston Police Officer Memorial. "And we have all the issues — infrastructure, public safety, housing — that we are going to have to deal with."

I wonder if City Council redistricting will be an agenda item. I wouldn't call it a top priority, but I think it at least needs to be brought up for discussion, if for no other reason than to schedule it for future study. I'll be very curious to see where Council members come down on this.

Here's an earlier piece profiling Jerry Wood, who did a lot of heavy lifting on the previous Council redistricting. Seems like the kind of person you'd like to have involved in something like this. Link via Houtopia.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on January 01, 2006 to Local politics | TrackBack