Charles O’Hara road

May 15, 2019

The Tuesday, May 14, 2019 city council agenda has an item on it seeking approval of a resolution that indicates the city’s support for four road projects.

One of them is a project that would connect loop 375 to NM404 at I-10, through what we call the Anthony gap.

The slide evidently came from the Texas department of transportation.

If built the bypass would allow 18 wheelers to bypass I-10 through the city.

This would be better

Brutus


Directory of your state elected officials

April 23, 2019

Take a look at this handy web page:

https://wrm.capitol.texas.gov/home

Enter your address and you will see who your elected officials are at the state level.

You can then click on the official’s name and see various ways to contact them.

More of us need to take the time to tell these people what we are thinking.

We deserve better

Brutus


Call your state representative

April 18, 2019

A regular reader posted a comment the other day that deserves promotion.

S/he wrote:

BRUTUS: On page 9A of today’s El Paso TIMES, there is a short clip titled “Property tax bill clears Senate over backlash by big cities.”

This might be a TOPIC for tomorrow, since it’s an effort to CAP yearly property tax increases to 3.5% for cities and 2.5% for school districts.

Could not find this article on the TIMES website, but did find it at the Texas Tribune and other Texas newspaper websites.

Since some posters on your website have such galactic ‘shit fits’ over local taxes; it might be HELPFUL for those Texas legislators OUTSIDE El Paso pushing this bill, to hear from El Paso taxpayers who like the idea. Also let the Texas Governor and LT. Governor know.

Of course our local elected officials are ‘scared shitless’ over this initiative! Remember: “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.”

******************************************

The bill has different house and senate versions but has passed in the senate.

It was filed back in November of 2016.  It appears as though it will be considered during this congressional session.

Hope springs eternal.

We deserve better

Brutus


Contradictory goals

April 16, 2019

Our state senator recently wrote a guest column for the El Paso Times.

In it he stated that the new UTEP president “is not representative of this community”.

What is he saying?

Is it because she is from out of town?  Is it because of her political party affiliations?  I hope that he does not mean that her ethnicity should disqualify her.

He further stated that he looks forward to working to see “that the campus remains free, open and embracing of El Paso’s diversity.”

It seems to be that these two points contradict each other.  Doesn’t diversity require variety in who works there?

It is troubling to me that the senator chose to vent publicly instead of through channels.  What do we gain when our state senator openly attacks our university president simply because he thinks she is not representative of our community?

We deserve better

Brutus


Texas open meetings

March 11, 2019

The Times published an editorial the other day that I agreed with.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals evidently invalidated the portion of the Texas Open Meetings Act that specified criminal penalties for members of government boards that arrange meetings with less than a quorum in order to avoid the requirement to make the meeting open to the public.

The Times editorial told us that our Texas Governor has written a letter to state board appointees and state agency chiefs telling them to “continue to follow the spirit” of the Texas Open Meetings Act without regard to the appeals court ruling.

Unfortunately our local governments are now free to meet in private and discuss public business as long as they do not have a quorum present.

We hope that our Texas legislature will take action soon to shore up the Open Meetings Act.

We deserve better

Brutus


EPISD disappoints again

February 19, 2019

The EPISD school board president just resigned.

He evidently told the Times that he no longer lives within the district.

From the district’s policy manual:

A person elected or appointed to serve as a board member must
remain a resident of the district throughout the term of office. A
board member who ceases to reside in the district vacates the office.

Tex. Const., Art. XVI, Sec. 14;

Prince v. Inman, 280 S.W.2d 779 (Tex. Civ. App.—Beaumont 1955, no writ);

Whitmarsh v. Buckley, 324 S.W.2d 298 (Tex. Civ. App.—Houston 1959, no writ)

It appears that the Texas constitution, Texas statutes, and local board policy make are clear.

Question

When did the trustee move out of the district that he represented?

Did he participate in decisions that he had no right to be involved in?

We deserve better

Brutus


Executive session participants

February 12, 2019

Rich Wright over at elchuqueno.com wrote the other day about the city’s continuing use of executive session.

I don’t attend many city council meetings so I don’t know who goes into the executive sessions.

For those of you who do attend be on the lookout for who goes in.

Texas law only gives city council members the right to attend executive sessions.  The city attorney must also be present.

Note that the city council members have the right to attend and cannot be kept out unless the issue is about them.

On the other hand city council has the right to request the presence of any of the city officers or employees as long as their presence “is necessary to the matter under consideration”.

In other words the city officers and employees should only be in the meeting as long as it takes to discuss the particular subject that they are involved with.

We deserve better

Brutus

 


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