I know I'm on sabbatical, but I got this press release about David Mincberg's official filing for Harris County Judge in the mail today.
The public has lost confidence in Harris County's leadership, which is out of touch, indebted to big donors who "pay to play" for County contracts, and raises taxes via appraisals while pretending to cut tax rates. There is a no focus on the critical issues of growth, jobs, and quality of life. That is why today I filed to run for Harris County Judge, the chief executive officer of the County.
I will campaign on competence, not conservatism or liberalism. I am pro-business, pro-growth and pro-quality of life. I founded and ran one of the largest real estate companies in Texas. As a businessman, I understand budgeting, payrolls and business risks. The County Judge needs to know how to make a budget, prioritize, work with people on complex transactions, and improve the world around him.
Harris County is an enterprise with a budget of more than $1.3 billion a year, much of it spent mysteriously. No-bid contracts for expensive professional services are awarded primarily to big donors. That approach is not a business environment that will bring new companies and new jobs to Harris County. Instead of pandering to the worst in people, I will help Harris County be the best place in the world to do business, because that is what will make our people prosper.
I want to reform the Harris County Judge's office, making it a place where leadership, responsibility and ethics prevail. I will mount a strong, issues based, year-long campaign to win this most important post in the 2008 General Election.
The voters of Harris County are demanding a leader; someone with a vision, willing to roll up his sleeves and make a difference. I am a first generation American. I grew up in an immigrant household, with parents who could not speak English when they arrived here shortly before my birth and who labored long and hard, teaching me that looking ahead, working hard, and playing by the rules is the way to success. They were right, and I will work hard to apply those lessons to lead Harris County.
I want to restore the words "fair, honest, and hardworking" to the office of County Judge. The Judge's office will not operate in secrecy, and if elected, I will do everything in the Judge's power to open up government to the voters. Budgets, appointments, contracts - they will be available online to any individual who wants to participate in a government for and by the people. I will make decisions based on facts, in consultation with my fellow Commissioners, and decide solely on the basis that every vote I cast will benefit the residents of Harris County.
In filing for my candidacy for Harris County Judge, I am sending a strong message that it is time to run the County more like the major business it is. I will push for higher ethical standards, provide stronger oversight of managing future growth, and make environmental quality commonplace at the courthouse.
There is much work to do at the Courthouse and given Harris County's mounting problems--from mobility to emergency management, from juvenile justice to health care--there is no time to waste! We can learn from the past, and I am excited about moving Harris County forward. I invite every resident of Harris County to join me in this exciting endeavor.