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Posts Tagged ‘Paul Bettencourt’

Endorsement watch: Belatedly for Whitmire

The Chronicle makes its recommendations for the State Senate. Senate District 15 (D) In 1973, a 23-year-old college dropout named John Whitmire hopped aboard a wave of voter disgust with ethically challenged incumbents and won a seat in the Texas House. More than four decades later, that same Houston lawmaker is still in the Legislature, […]

January campaign finance reports for Harris County legislative candidates

This could take awhile, and that’s with me limiting myself to contested races. First, the Senate. SD04 Brandon Creighton Steven Toth SD07 Paul Bettencourt James Wilson Jim Davis SD15 John Whitmire Damian LaCroix Ron Hale SD17 Joan Huffman Derek Anthony Rita Lucido Here’s a summary chart. For the record, Davis, Whitmire, LaCroix, and Lucido are […]

Patrick is in for Lite Gov

And then there were three challengers to David Dewhurst. Citing the need for “authentic conservative leadership” in Texas, state Sen. Dan Patrick announced on Thursday that he would run for lieutenant governor against incumbent David Dewhurst. “Today begins roughly 18 months of hard work,” said Patrick, a Houston Republican who was joined by his wife […]

More on Hall’s announcement

Here’s the full Chron story from the weekend about Ben Hall’s announcement that yes, he really is running for Mayor this year. “Hall is a formidable challenger but is a long shot to unseat the mayor,” University of Houston political scientist Brandon Rottinghaus said in an email. Rottinghaus noted Hall’s funding capability, his vision and […]

Endorsement watch: Martin and Sullivan

The Chron can’t quite believe that Steve Stockman is on the verge of being foisted on us again as a member of Congress, so they do what they can by endorsing his opponent, Max Martin. Max Martin is a credible, if long-shot, candidate. Martin, a retired pilot who now owns an education software business in […]

30 Day finance reports, Harris County candidates

Here’s a look at the 30 day campaign finance reports for Harris County candidates. All reports can be found by going to the Harris County Clerk campaign finance reports page. Candidate Office Raised Spent Loans Cash ========================================================== Garcia Sheriff 192,670 120,957 0 388,197 Guthrie Sheriff 158,700 48,633 171,000 98,152 Alessi Sheriff 1,019 2,007 700 1,719 […]

Bond concerns

Early reactions to the HISD bond proposal that was unveiled last week. “I think in the long run any anti-tax opposition will make it a close race,” said state Sen. Mario Gallegos, D-Houston, predicting that Hispanics could swing the vote. Gallegos said he was worried about HISD’s timeline. The Houston Chronicle reported this month that […]

I got those can’t get my car registration done on time blues

I have three things to say about this. The Harris County tax office is paying 32 clerks overtime on weekends to eliminate a large backlog of unprocessed auto registrations, a potentially serious problem that could force some motorists to drive with expired decals. Drivers can receive costly tickets and civil penalties for lapsed vehicle registration […]

Houston area transit preferences in 2012

The 2012 Houston Area Survey is in the can, and though the data has not been published to their website yet, there have been a few preview tidbits tossed out to whet everyone’s appetite. One of them has to do with attitudes about transit and neighborhoods. But perhaps the most dramatic change, [Rice professor Stephen] […]

Adjusting to the new Council

This is kind of a fluff story about the new Council – apparently, having two more seats at the table could cause some problems – but I couldn’t pass this up: “This infusion, effectively of new blood – of a whole bunch of people at one time – is going to change the dynamics,” said […]

Precinct analysis: The 2011 Mayor’s race

I finally have a draft canvass of the 2011 Harris County vote. You know what that means. Here’s the breakdown in the Council districts for the Mayor’s race: Dist Simms Ullman Wilson Herrera Parker O’Connor ===================================================== A 4.41% 1.28% 16.31% 18.03% 41.89% 18.09% B 22.41% 3.02% 11.92% 12.71% 43.80% 6.14% C 1.65% 0.83% 9.11% 11.21% […]

Drainage madness

I have three things to say about this. A year ago, Taxpayers for Financial Accountability campaigned against Houston’s Proposition 1, which called for a pay-as-you-go fund to shore up the city’s drainage infrastructure in part through a monthly fee on homes and businesses. They lost. The measure narrowly passed and the first bills went out […]

“Hire Houston First” passes

One of Mayor Parker’s signature policy items is now law. Houston City Council passed Mayor Annise Parker’s Hire Houston First initiative by a 13-1 vote Wednesday, allowing and sometimes requiring city departments to choose the second lowest bid for purchases and contracts if the runner-up company is from the eight-county greater Houston area and it’s […]

City wins again on Rebuild Houston lawsuit

As you know, shortly after the Renew Houston proposition passed last fall, the usual suspects led by Paul Bettencourt filed a lawsuit seeking to overturn the result on the grounds that they believed the voters were too stupid to know what they had just voted for. That lawsuit was dismissed on summary judgment in May. […]

Lawsuit filed against Harris County redistricting

Hot off the presses, here’s a release from CM Ed Gonzalez: Today, Council Member Ed Gonzalez joined as a plaintiff in a lawsuit versus Harris County over the proposed Commissioners Court redistricting map. “The proposed map cracks communities of interests and dilutes the voting strength of Latinos in Precinct 2. Despite the fact that Latinos […]

Look at me! Look at meeeeee!

I have one thing to say about this. With three months until election day, attorney Benjamin Hall still hasn’t declared whether he’s running against Mayor Annise Parker. “I have not taken myself out of the contest,” Hall told me late last week. He also told me, “I’ve decided, but I’ve just not announced.” Hall is […]

Those darned propositions

I have three things to say about this. Houston voters can be forgiven if they feel a bit confused. They voted down red-light cameras, but the cameras are on. They may have heard the mayor say that voting for a drainage fee would result in a typical $5 monthly bill that everyone should pay, but […]

Eight, not five

Mayor Parker says that initial estimates of how much the average homeowner would pay for the new drainage fee were understated. Mayor Annise Parker acknowledged Tuesday that her administration erred in telling voters that the average homeowner’s monthly Proposition 1 drainage fee would be $5. It is actually closer to $8.25, she said. Parker said […]

More on that Rebuild Houston push poll

Remember that push poll on Rebuild Houston? The results are out and they’re pretty much what you’d expect. A state district judge could decide this week whether to hold a trial on the validity of November’s election in which voters approved a new pay-as-you-go program for improving Houston’s drainage. Opponents say voters were misled about […]

Mayor Parker officially kicks off her re-election campaign

We were out of town over the weekend, so I missed this. An Easter weekend campaign event replete with rousing speeches, dogs of both the hot and four-legged variety and a kids’ Easter egg “scramble” kicked off Mayor Annise Parker’s re-election bid Saturday at Discovery Green. With no announced opposition so far, Parker’s bid to […]

Bettencourt and Hotze lose in court again

If there’s a lawsuit against the city over a matter of how money is raised or spent, you can be sure that Bruce Hotze and Paul Bettencourt are involved. Thankfully, they have a lousy record of getting what they want by these means. An Austin appeals court on Friday upheld an earlier ruling that increased […]

Locke and Lanier endorse Parker

More support for Mayor Parker’s re-election bid. Mayor Annise Parker on Wednesday scored the endorsements of her 2009 opponent Gene Locke and former Mayor Bob Lanier, two of Houston’s most prominent power brokers, as she prepares to ask voters for a second two-year term in November. [...] “She’s bringing the city together,” Locke said Wednesday. […]

The “Dan Patrick thinks you’re too stupid to know what you’re voting for” bill

Ugh. A bill that would remove churches and schools from the drainage fee Houston voters narrowly approved last November as part of Proposition 1 is scheduled for a public hearing Wednesday before the Senate Intergovernmental Relations Committee. Dubbed Rebuild Houston, the measure amends the city charter to provide for the improvement and renewal of Houston’s […]

So will we have a Mayor’s race or not?

We’re now more than a month into the city election fundraising season, and as of this week the only person to file a declaration of Treasurer for the office of Mayor is the incumbent, Annise Parker. As of this time two years ago, all four major candidates had not only filed Treasurer’s reports but had […]

Quittencourt

I have one thing to say about this: Many things about Paul Bettencourt have been true for as long as he has inhabited public life. The former Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector hates when public money is spent on professional sports stadiums. The self-proclaimed “Taxman” always has advocated for lower taxes and fees, often in the […]

Prop 1 opponents file “We think the voters are stupid” lawsuit

I’m really angry about this. Opponents of Proposition 1, Houston’s recently-passed drainage fee, filed a civil lawsuit Wednesday against Mayor Annise Parker and the City of Houston. The lawsuit calls Prop 1 “illegal” because “the ballot language does not accurately describe the object and effect of Proposition 1, causing the voters to be intentionally misled.” […]

No voter registration for you

The following email, sent from the League of Women Voters registration address to its membership, was forwarded to me. I present it below in its entirity: From: LWV Voter Registration Sent: Sunday, December 05, 2010 3:19 PM Subject: Voter Registration at Naturalization Ceremonies To our Voter Registration Volunteers: It is my sad duty to inform […]

Who cares about the will of the voters?

Prop 1 opponents don’t. Opponents of Proposition 1 are planning to lobby the state legislature to strike down the controversial drainage fee, even after voters narrowly approved it earlier this month. Don Hooper, who organized a political action committee blasting Prop 1, said the effort is underway. Last week, a group that included real estate […]

The anti-Prop 1 factions gear up

The usual suspects have gotten the band back together to ensure that no action is taken to mitigate flooding in Houston. Former Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector Paul Bettencourt has teamed up with anti-tax advocate Bruce Hotze and conservative activist Norman Adams, significant players in a previously successful effort to scuttle a drainage fee during the […]

Interview with Diane Trautman

Diane Trautman was the Democratic nominee for Harris County Tax Assessor in 2008 against then-incumbent Paul Bettencourt. With Bettencourt announcing his resignation approximately five minutes after he won re-election, the office is on the ballot again this year, and Trautman is back to run again. Trautman worked as a trust asset manager and energy lender […]

City gets OK on water rate hike

One obstacle cleared. In a letter to lawyers representing the city and conservative activists Bruce Hotze and Paul Bettencourt on Monday, state District Judge Stephen Yelenosky said the rate increases do not violate a charter amendment approved by voters in 2004 that limits increases to the combined rate of inflation and population growth in any […]

Emmett calls for “elections czar”

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett thinks we could use a dedicated elections supervisor. Proponents of an elections czar say an appointee would be insulated from accusations and lawsuits alleging partisanship in carrying out the duties of the office. In late 2008, the state Democratic Party said in a lawsuit that then-Tax Assessor Paul Bettencourt, a […]

And the bitching about the water rate hike begins

It took a little longer than I might have thought it would take, but as the sun rises in the east, the kind of person who gets outraged when the government does something other than lower taxes is outraged about the city’s water rate hike. Republican activist Paul Bettencourt plans to challenge the city of […]

Vasquez and Carrillo

Newly-unelected Tax Assessor Leo Vasquez makes the same complaint about why he is headed for the unemployment line as Victor Carrillo did. Carrillo started the ethnic angst with an e-mail to supporters indicating racial bias had cost him re-election. That was followed up by Vasquez’s campaign manager and girlfriend, SuZanne Feather, sending out an e-mail […]