Tag Archives: Commissioners Court

Hardy Toll Road connector approved

It’s a very different project than what was first proposed. A planned extension of the Hardy Toll Road through the Near Northside into downtown Houston will proceed, but with various community-driven design elements. Harris County Commissioners on Tuesday approved a … Continue reading

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The ITC fire five years later

We learned some things from this. The Intercontinental Terminals Co. fire that broke out March 17, 2019, did not just lead to a massive black plume of smoke lingering for days over east Harris County, before spreading 20 miles to … Continue reading

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The Hardy Toll Road Connector is back

This has been in the works for a long time. The plan for the Hardy-Downtown Connector began in earnest in 2003, but the project stalled for many years due to budget concerns. The basic plan is a four-lane highway that … Continue reading

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On the Ogg loss

I have three things to say about this. Kim Ogg’s campaign for a third term as Harris County district attorney suffered a blowout loss in the Democratic primary election on Tuesday. In the final election night tally, challenger Sean Teare … Continue reading

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Mayor Whitmire appoints a new Metro Chair

Congratulations and welcome aboard. Mayor John Whitmire on Tuesday announced CenterPoint Energy executive Elizabeth Brock would lead the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s board of directors. If approved, Brock would be the first Hispanic woman to lead the transit agency. “She brings … Continue reading

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January 2024 campaign finance reports – Harris County offices

PREVIOUSLY: State offices Lina Hidalgo Rodney Ellis Adrian Garcia Tom Ramsey Leslie Briones Kim Ogg Sean Teare Dan Simons Ed Gonzalez Vergil Ratliff Joe Inocencio Mike Knox Joe Danna Paul Day Glenn Cowan Christian Menefee Umeka Lewis Jacqueline Lucci Smith … Continue reading

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More on why we need a split primary

Votebeat fills in some blanks. Some Texas election officials are running out of time before the March 5 primary to find sufficient polling locations, equipment, and election workers mandated by a new Republican-backed election law, and may not be able … Continue reading

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Is this the end of the DeLorean dream?

Maybe? Bexar County Commissioner’s Court pulled the plug Tuesday on an incentives package for DeLorean Motors Reimagined, an electric-vehicle startup that pledged to create 450 jobs if it got tax breaks to locate its headquarters in San Antonio. The commissioners … Continue reading

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We will have a joint primary this year

This solves a problem we had only begun to realize we had. Harris County Republicans and Democrats plan to hold a joint election during the upcoming March primaries after years of the parties conducting separate contests, County Clerk Teneshia Hudspeth … Continue reading

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Where are we going to count the primary votes?

I’m a little puzzled by this. With the March primaries around the corner, Harris County still does not have a confirmed location to run its election operations. Two of the county’s regular sites – NRG Arena and George R. Brown … Continue reading

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Fifth Circuit does its thing with Galveston redistricting

Death, taxes, and the Fifth Circuit being terrible. The U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has blocked a new political map imposed on Galveston County by a lower court from taking effect. Plaintiffs are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to … Continue reading

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Galveston ordered to use its current map for 2024

Pending the Fifth Circuit, of course. A federal judge ruled Galveston County must keep its old commissioner precinct map in place for the 2024 election while a federal appeals court mulls overturning its precedent and allowing new maps which do … Continue reading

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“Solar For All” grant

From the inbox: Earlier this year, the Biden Administration announced a $7 billion national “Solar For All” grant competition via the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to help expand solar energy production across the country. Harris County leaders enlisted a coalition … Continue reading

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I have basically no idea who’s running for office right now

Candidate data, where are you? Next year’s primary campaigns are starting to take shape after numerous candidates filed for office on Saturday, the first day to sign up for a spot on the March 2024 ballot. Voters will weigh in … Continue reading

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Fifth Circuit upholds (*) Galveston redistricting ruling

With an asterisk, as noted in the title. A federal appeals court Friday ruled that Galveston County commissioners violated the U.S. Voting Rights Act by eliminating the only majority-minority district in its latest redistricting process. The 5th Circuit Court of … Continue reading

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Filing season for 2024 begins today

Happy First Day of Candidate Filing to all who celebrate. The Democratic and Republican slates will begin to take shape this weekend once candidates start filing their paperwork to run. Several Harris County officials plan to file for re-election, such … Continue reading

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Galveston redistricting ruling paused

The Fifth Circuit strikes again. Less than a week after a federal judge ruled Galveston County’s precinct maps violated the Voting Rights Act, the U.S Fifth Circuit Court issued a stay on the order. U.S. Circuit Court Judge Jeffery V. … Continue reading

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Galveston County redistricting ruled illegal

Good news. Galveston County Commissioners Court violated the Voting Rights Act when it approved a 2021 map that greatly limited voting power for Black and Latino voters in the county, a judge ruled Friday. In his ruling, U.S. District Judge … Continue reading

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Judge Hidalgo returns

Welcome back. Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo thanked Harris County residents for their support Monday in a statement announcing her return to work after an extended leave of absence to receive mental health treatment. Hidalgo said in the statement that … Continue reading

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From the “Idiots file dumb lawsuit” department

I hesitate to give this any attention, but I feel it needs to be noted. Five people filed a lawsuit with Harris County District Court on Friday to remove Judge Lina Hidalgo from office, days before she is scheduled to … Continue reading

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New criminal courts coming online

Good. Three new felony courts with a $9.2 million budget are expected to open next week, in what officials say is the final stretch in tackling a backlog of criminal cases that have piled up over the past six years. … Continue reading

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Harris County libraries are now “book sanctuaries”

It’s great that they’re doing this, and terrible that they have to. As book bans and challenges occur across the state and nation, Harris County libraries have joined a movement dedicated to preserving people’s right to decide for themselves what … Continue reading

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Judge Hidalgo to return to work October 2

Glad to hear her recovery is going well. Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo is extending her leave of absence for treatment of her clinical depression until Oct. 2, her office announced Thursday. Hidalgo will be discharged Saturday from the out-of-state, … Continue reading

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Connecting Buffalo Bayou Park and Memorial Park

I approve of this. Two popular Houston parks may finally be bridged together after Harris County Precinct 4 unveiled a $13.5 million Buffalo Bayou Greenway Connector project to join the recreation areas. Harris County Commissioner Lesley Briones announced $170 million … Continue reading

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Harris County election duties return to County Clerk and Tax Assessor

Welp. Elections Administrator Cliff Tatum will not be involved in Harris County elections operations after Friday, as he will not be hired by the county clerk’s or tax assessor-collector’s offices as part of a massive reorganization. Harris County’s elections operations … Continue reading

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Harris Health bond officially on the ballot

Good. Harris County voters will be asked to approve a $2.5 billion bond issue from the Harris Health System to fund the rebuilding and upgrading of several hospital district facilities, including an expansion of Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital. Harris County … Continue reading

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Galveston redistricting lawsuit gets underway

This could be a big one. n the home of Juneteenth, the culmination of Galveston County’s decade-long effort to undermine the political power of Black and Latino voters is on trial. In the only county-level redistricting case which the federal … Continue reading

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Harris Health moves closer to a bond issue

Almost certainly coming soon to a ballot near you. Harris County Commissioners on Tuesday briefly discussed a $2.5 billion bond proposal from the Harris Health System to fund the rebuilding and upgrading of several hospital district facilities, including the replacement … Continue reading

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Judge Hidalgo takes leave of absence for depression

I wish her well. Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo has taken a temporary leave of absence to receive in-patient medical treatment for clinical depression, according to a statement from her office Monday. The statement notes she has been at an … Continue reading

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July 2023 campaign finance reports: Harris County

Previously: Congress SD15 City of Houston, part 1 January 2023 reports are here. Not all of these people are on the 2024 ballot. I am not including JPs and County Court candidates. Some potential opponents have already filed finance reports, … Continue reading

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The sidewalk situation

We have a lot of work to do. Growing up in Gulfton, Sandra Rodriguez walked just about everywhere. Her father took the family’s only vehicle to work, so Rodriguez and her four siblings got used to the southwest neighborhood’s patchy … Continue reading

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How Harris County has spent COVID relief funds

A lot of good stuff here. Harris County has received around $1.8 billion in federal aid to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, a staggering sum that provided struggling residents with immediate emergency relief, has kept county services running and is fueling … Continue reading

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Supreme Court upholds Abbott’s mask mandate ban

Welp. Settling a heated pandemic-era debate between Gov. Greg Abbott and leaders of the state’s major urban areas, the Texas Supreme Court ruled Friday that the governor had the legal authority to forbid local officials from requiring residents to wear … Continue reading

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Another look at Texas redistricting litigation after the Alabama SCOTUS ruling

An explainer from the Trib. The state faces an assortment of legal challenges to its congressional and statehouse maps, including allegations of intentional discrimination, vote dilution and racial gerrymandering. For example: In the Rio Grande Valley, the plaintiffs allege map-drawers … Continue reading

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