Mayor Annise Parker announced the new City Council committees and their chairs and vice chairs (see below or here). There are some interesting points to note about the new committees.
First, Council Member Mike Sullivan is no longer the chair of the Ethics, Elections, and Council Governance Committee, and he is not the chair or vice chair of any committee. While there are fewer committees this time, he is an experienced member who knows how to effectively run a committee. Although CM Sullivan is known as the conservative vote of “no”, Mayor Parker has picked conservatives to be in powerful positions before. Council Member Anne Clutterbuck was picked to be the Mayor Pro-Tem by Parker, and Parker also chose her to be the chair of the Budget and Fiscal Affairs Committee. Clutterbuck later resigned as Mayor Pro-Tem, perhaps at the request of Parker? Maybe that was a bit of foreshadowing for what was to come.
Other items to note: Council Member Stephen Costello is the new chair of the Budget and Fiscal Affairs Committee. In general he might be a neutral pick – not too far to the left or the right. Before I get hate mail on that comment, yes, I know he was the driving force behind Rebuild Houston. What I mean is that in general terms, he doesn’t seem to side with one party or the other. He appears to vote issue by issue. This will be good in some situations and bad in others. We will have to wait and see. I am uneasy with him being on the TRANSPORTATION, TECHNOLOGY & INFRASTRUCTURE (TTI) Committee. While he has valuable expertise with this subject, he should not be allowed to vote on anything in the committee that benefits his company. Finally, Bradford isn’t the chair of the Public Safety Committee? He used to be the Chief of Police, so his expertise might have been useful there, but at least he is on the committee.
See anything else interesting about the committees? Comment below, or send me an e-mail.
BUDGET AND FISCAL AFFAIRS (BFA)
Vice Chair: Bradford
Members: Brown, Davis, Cohen, Adams, Sullivan, Hoang, Pennington, Gonzalez, Rodriguez, Laster, Green, Burks, Noriega, Christie
Will Review: Finance, Human Resources, Office of Business Opportunity and Fleet Management Departments, TIRZ budgets.
ETHICS, ELECTIONS AND COUNCIL GOVERNANCE (EECG)
Members: Brown, Davis, Cohen, Adams, Sullivan, Hoang, Pennington, Gonzalez, Rodriguez, Laster, Green, Costello, Burks, Noriega, Christie
Ad Hoc Committee to Review: Chapter 18, Chapter 2 and any issues related to the conduct of local elections on an as needed basis.
HOUSING, SUSTAINABLE GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT (HSGD)
Vice Chair: Laster
Members: Davis, Sullivan, Pennington, Gonzalez, Rodriguez, Green, Costello, Burks, Noriega, Christie
Will Review: Administration & Regulatory Affairs, Solid Waste Management, Housing & Community Development, Planning & Development Departments, Homeless Initiatives, Veteran’s Affairs and items related to both domestic and international economic development.
PUBLIC SAFETY (PS)
Vice Chair: Cohen
Members: Brown, Davis, Adams, Hoang, Pennington, Laster, Costello, Bradford, Noriega, Christie
Will Review: Houston Police Department, Houston Fire Department, Houston Emergency Center, EMS, Mayor’s Office of Homeland Security, and Municipal Courts.
QUALITY OF LIFE (QoL)
Vice Chair: Hoang
Members: Brown, Davis, Cohen, Adams, Sullivan, Pennington, Gonzalez, Green, Costello, Burks
Will Consider: Department of Neighborhoods, Parks and Recreation Department, Houston Public Library, Health and Human Services and items related to Houston’s local International Community and Cultural Affairs.
TRANSPORTATION, TECHNOLOGY & INFRASTRUCTURE (TTI)
Vice Chair: Pennington
Members: Davis, Adams, Sullivan, Hoang, Gonzalez, Rodriguez, Laster, Green, Costello, Christie
Will Review: Information Technology, General Services, and Public Works and Engineering Departments, Rebuild Houston Water & Sewer, Rebuild Houston Streets & Drainage, and water resources and conservation.