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The Radack way

You have to admire the single-minded focus, I’ll say that much for the man.

Allen Watson may have figured his role as a member of Metro’s board of directors occasionally would dent his political capital, but a vote he cast last Friday may cost his company cash.

Watson was one of five city of Houston appointees who approved a November ballot proposal that would give tens of millions of dollars more to Houston for roadwork at the expense of Harris County and most of the 14 small cities in Metro’s service area.

Tuesday morning, Harris County officials pulled a contract with Watson’s engineering firm, Cobb, Fendley & Associates, off Commissioners Court’s agenda.

“If somebody that wants to work for Harris County goes out and figures out a way to deprive Harris County’s unincorporated area out of tens of millions of dollars in Metro funding, I really don’t think they need to be doing business with the county,” said Commissioner Steve Radack. “Is it reasonable for him to say, ‘Well, by the way, I continue to want to get millions of dollars of work at the county?’ Is that reasonable?”

If he pulls a knife, you pull a gun. If he sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue.” I can’t be the only one who thought of this, can I?

Of course, Steve Radack isn’t anything like Sean Connery. He’s a petty little man who likes to throw his weight around, and unfortunately he has a lot of it to throw. What this comes down to is a simple question: If the Metro General Mobility proposal truly is a “cash grab” for the city, then is it the case that the current arrangement is fair to the city, and to all other parties? Or is the case, as Christof Spieler has suggested, that the city of Houston has been getting screwed by the GMP all along, to the benefit of Harris County and the small cities? If the latter is the case, then how are the complaints by Radack and Hedwig Village et al anything but the whining of those about to lose a privilege they didn’t deserve? I don’t really expect an answer to that question, but there is an answer for Radack’s problem, and that’s for him and anyone who feels the same way as him to vote against the Metro referendum, which will end the GMP as we now know it and give Gilbert Garcia and the Metro board the opportunity to redesign the program in a way that would be fairer to everyone. Simple enough solution if you ask me. Campos has more.

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  1. Ross says:

    Is there a source for sales tax data by area? I would be interested to know how much sales tax is collected in the skinny parts of Houston that run along the commercial corridors in the County, like FM1960. The taxes collected in those area count as Houston, but are almost entirely paid by County residents. With the proposal up for a vote, that money will go to benefit the people who live inside the Loop (like me) rather than the people who paid them. But, I need data to confirm that.

  2. Mark P. says:

    Steve Radack is the real “power behind the throne” for Commissioners Court. It’s said that people won’t look up from lunch for fear of catching his eye. I think we call this bullying.