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Foulard announces in G, Khan for Controller

With the Legislature out of session (hopefully till 2011) and the District H special election about to wrap up, it’s time to refocus on the November elections for Houston. I think we will have a pretty good idea of who all the candidates are going to be very shortly, modulo a potential surprise or two. One newcomer to add to the mix is a fellow named George Foulard, who becomes by my count the fourth candidate for District G. I actually became aware of him a couple of days ago when he followed me on Twitter, and now I’ve gotten the more traditional press release about him, which I’ve reproduced below. We may get a couple more announcements like this in the next few weeks, but I’d say the window for a serious candidate rollout won’t be open much past July 4. Other than Rick Rodriguez, the former District H candidate who is reportedly looking at At Large #1, anyone hearing of new possibilities out there? Leave a comment and let me know.

Meanwhie, District F City Council member MJ Khan made the formal announcement of his campaign for City Controller in an email to supporters, which I’ve reproduced below as well. Khan’s interest in this office has been known for a long time, so this was just a confirmation of it. He joins fellow Republican Pam Holm, the outgoing City Council member in District G, and Democrat Ronald Green, who is term-limited out of At Large #4, in the race. I find it interesting that there are more Republicans running for Controller than Democrats, given that no prominent Republicans are running for Mayor (sorry, Roy). Bill King, at least, didn’t think that it was winnable for a Republican like him. I think Green is the clear favorite here, but we’ll see if the Controller’s race is any different.


Foulard’s announcement

Life-long Houston resident George Foulard announced his candidacy today for the open District G seat on the Houston City Council. “I have no special interest or narrow agenda to serve; I am running simply because I love the City of Houston and know that I can have a very positive impact on the Council,” said Foulard, who went on to say, “I have great passion for the energy and spirit of this city and feel that I can bring a fresh voice to the City Council along with a quest for fiscal responsibility and crime reduction that will benefit all Houstonians.”

Foulard is running for City Council to ensure that Houston continues to be a city of opportunity for future generations by ensuring that is it a place where:

  • Houstonians can all safely live, work and raise their families.
  • Houstonians can all get to work, home and school easily and efficiently.
  • Houstonians have energetic, thoughtful and hard-working political leadership in City Hall.

Safe neighborhoods, fiscal responsibility, flood control and traffic mitigation are issues of particular interest to Foulard’s campaign. “I look forward to bringing a high level of energy and innovation to Houston city government, ensuring that no option goes unexplored and that effective and innovative solutions are the rule, rather than the exception,” Foulard said. In this difficult economic climate, Foulard embraces the challenge of restoring fiscal responsibility to City Hall. Foulard is eager to represent the concerns and needs of District G’s residents as their City Council member.

While a neighborhood volunteer firefighter, Foulard had firsthand experience serving alongside some of Houston’s bravest. Captain Patrick Mahoney, formerly of Southside Place Fire Department, said, “George has a knack for getting the job done. He is quick and articulate, which allows him to be a powerful presence on any team. He is exactly the lead-by-example, results-oriented guy who strengthens any organization he is a part of.” George hopes to have the privilege of continuing to serve Houston as the City Council member for District G.

A graduate of Georgetown University with a Bachelors of Arts in History, George has also studied international relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science. While at Georgetown, George was a founding member and Chief Information Officer of the Higher Learning Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides college and university scholarships and application counseling for Washington D.C. students who could otherwise not afford the costs of a higher-level education.

In 2008, George worked in the London offices of Glencore International, one of the world’s largest suppliers of a variety of commodities. In this capacity, George assumed a number of diverse roles. He managed day-to-day tanker operations while also coordinating refueling and berthing logistics for the firm’s tanker fleet.

George’s great-grandfather was the proprietor of Two Brothers Café in downtown Houston. George’s grandfather, Chef Edmond Foulard, was the owner of Foulard’s, the restaurant that brought French haute cuisine to Houston. Recently, George has joined his father in the small business that he founded and continues to operate. George’s family has made a living through owning and operating small family businesses in Houston. As City Council member, George will work hard to encourage small business growth and development throughout District G.

For more information or for interview opportunities, please contact Jackson Holahan, Chief of Staff, George Foulard Campaign – Houston City Council District G at 713.229.0673/jackson@georgefoulard.com.

Khan’s announcement

Dear Friend,

It’s official, I am formally announcing my candidacy for City Controller of Houston.

As the City of Houston faces challenging economic times, it is vital to have a taxpayer’s advocate to serve as City Controller. The citizens of Houston deserve a City Controller who is dedicated to making sure our tax dollars are spent wisely. The citizens of Houston deserve a dedicated civil servant, who knows how to run government like a business. Moreover, we need a City Controller who has the necessary professional knowledge and experience to understand the intricacies of city financial management.

For the past six years, I have been honored to serve the citizens of Houston as their City Council Member for District F. I have worked tirelessly to streamline city spending and championed for fiscal responsibility. Now it is time to take my knowledge and message of responsible fiscal management to the next level by running for City Controller of Houston.

While serving on City Council, I have diligently advocated for fiscal responsibility. I proposed the requirement that all city departments must submit a zero-based budget; fought for reductions in the property tax rate; sought an incremental increase in Capital Improvements Projects (CIP) from a 5 year rolling cycle to a 7-10 year rolling cycle; requested each city department to establish a balanced scorecard system to align its business activities and to measure its performance against strategic goals; and requested each city department to establish a 5 year operational planning process and a 2 year budget. I have also proposed that each city department should establish a base budget that can be adjusted up or down by 2.5% depending on the state of our economy. In addition, I have sought the requirement that unfunded retirees’ health benefit liabilities should be reported, which currently is a $3.23 billion liability.

In 2007, I was honored to be a recipient of an Outstanding American by Choice Award presented by the USCIS and the U.S. Department of State. My professional background complements my work on the City Council. I have an MBA from Rice University and have successfully managed my own real-estate firm.

I encourage you to visit my website, www.mjkhan.com, to learn more about me and my campaign. You can help in getting me elected by telling others about my campaign as well as considering becoming involved by giving me your endorsement, hosting a coffee session, making a donation, or requesting a yard sign and bumper sticker.

It is my hope that you join my campaign, so that together, we can bring fiscal responsibility to build a stronger future for the City of Houston and its citizens.

Regards,

M.J. Khan; P.E., MBA

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