New Committees​, New Power, Same Problems

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)
Chair: Costello
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)
Chair: Bradford
Vice Chair:
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)
Chair: Adams
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)
Chair: Gonzalez
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)
Chair: Rodriguez
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)
Chair: Noriega
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.

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3 Responses to New Committees​, New Power, Same Problems

  1. JoAnn McCracken says:

    Hi: I certainly disagree with your comment about Costello. During his first campaign he ran around to all the Republican events telling us how conservative he was…. how he lied. I understand that he is now running around to all the Democrat meetings telling them he is just like them. He doesn’t know who he is, but we do and he can’t pull the wool over our eyes again. We believed his lies….NOT AGAIN.

    • peckblog says:

      JoAnn,
      I agree with you for sure that he portrayed himself as a republican and doesn’t appear to be one. All I meant by my comment about him is that if you look at his voting record, he usually votes issue by issue and doesn’t usually align with either party as a whole. This can be good sometimes because it means he is open to make changes. It is also bad because we really don’t know how he will vote on any given issue. That’s all I meant. Thanks for posting your comment!
      – Amy

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