Archive for December 1st, 2015

On Turnout

Former ‘Stro Billy Wagner is on the MLB Hall of Fame ballot. How many times did he go to the All Star game wearing a ‘Stro uniform?

Some 65-year old plus voters have already sent in their mail ballots. Many of us will start voting Early in Person tomorrow.

Predicting the H-Town runoff voter turnout is a guessing game at this point. There really are no indicators to speak of.

For instance, last night Commentary spent an hour in traffic driving to a mayoral debate over at HBU on Fondren off the Southwest Freeway. The debate was sponsored by HBU, the Asian Chamber of Commerce and other organizations. There were only 150 folks or so in the auditorium. Is last night’s crowd size an indicator? I thought there would be more folks in attendance.

It is a close mayoral race. I have not really heard any neutral observers making a pick. Does a close race drive turnout?

There certainly are a lot of TV and radio commercials airing from both candidates. Does that help turnout?

There is no HERO on the ballot. Who stays home?

There is no Adrian Garcia on the ballot. Do Latinos stay home?

Conservatives? African Americans?

Do issues like public safety, Rebuild Houston, and pension reform boost turnout? I don’t think so.

How about boats? Nope.

How about the folks that want real change at City Hall? Are they more fired up?

We will probably see some indicators after Day 2 of Early Voting in Person so stay tuned.

I will say this. How the city addresses neighborhood needs is a topic that has been raised this campaign season. Here is from the Chron:

Houston’s 311 call records show the city’s poor to lower-middle-class neighborhoods are more likely to report missed garbage pickups or illegal dumping compared with communities where residents earn significantly more. 

Using a combination of Census data and city of Houston’s 311 data from the past four years, a Houston Chronicle analysis found most 311 calls for missed pickups come from communities with median incomes or incomes per capita lower than $50,000.  

For example, 61 percent of all calls for missed garbage pickups originate in City Council districts where more than half of residents have incomes below the city’s median average – just below $50,000. Those council districts include B, D, H, I, J and K. More than half of those calls are from districts B, D, H and K. 

The remaining districts, A, C, E, F and G, make up the remaining percentages with G, the wealthiest district, recording the least number of calls. Records also show that on average it takes longer to resolve a resident’s missed pickup call in a poorer neighborhood once a call has been made.

I also will say this. Folks in low income neighborhoods know they are not getting the love they deserve from the City.

Billy Wagner made the NL All Star team as a ‘Stro in 1999, 2001, and 2003 of course.

I don’t have anything from The Yard this morning?

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