Archive for the ‘Port of Houston Authority’ Category

Everyone knows that The Dean is Commentary’s good friend. The Dean is The Dean because there are no term limits for state legislators.  Here is from today’s Chron:

State Sen. John Whitmire said he plans to propose a substitute to a bill filed Wednesday that calls for a "total membership change" to the influential Port of Houston Authority commission.

The bill as introduced contains recommendations that the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission approved in November, including a controversial proposal to sweep the seven-member board this September and transfer appointment power from local government to the governor, who would choose five commissioners from a locally compiled list of candidates.

It also would impose 12-year term limits on commissioners.

Whitmire, D-Houston, said his substitute bill also will include 12-year term limits and will force commissioners who had served longer than that in their current roles as of last November to step down in September.

But he said it will leave the current appointment process intact, including having a chairman who is jointly appointed by the city of Houston and Harris County.

"It goes a long ways toward addressing some of the concerns we had when we placed them under Sunset," Whitmire said.

Four current commissioners would lose their jobs under the bill. The term clock for Janiece Longoria, who served as a commissioner for a decade before being appointed chairman last month, would start over.

Whitmire, who has criticized local government agencies for failing to make timely appointments, said his bill also would hand appointments to the governor if the local appointing bodies don’t appoint or reappoint someone within 30 days of an expired term.

Commentary is really not a fan of term limits.  If The Dean’s substitute becomes law, Port Commissioners Burkes, Fonteno, Phelps, and Lawal would be immediate goners.  Lawal has already announced that he’s not interested in being reappointed so it wouldn’t bother him.

All the appointing authorities would still retain their appointing power, so any resistance to this will have to come from Burkes, Fonteno, and Phelps.  Here is the question.  Do the City of H-Town, Harris County, Pasadena, and Port lobbying teams fight The Dean to protect three individuals? 

On the term limit proposal, Hunker Down said it "certainly doesn’t cause me any heartburn."

Stay tuned!

Name the former ‘Stro pitcher that dinged the most batters all time as a ‘Stro

According to the Chron, HISD might raise our taxes.  Of course we voted ourselves a tax increase when we supported the bonds last November.  Now the administration says more taxes are needed to cover shortfalls.  The Superintendent was pretty good at selling the bonds last fall. He needs to get out in the community and sell the taxes.

Here is the Chron piece on the proposed tax increase.

Early Voting started yesterday and HCC shut down an hour and a half early because a water main break shut off water pressure in the area.

Darryl Kile of course dinged 72 batters as a ‘Stro and that makes DK the all time ‘Stro leader.

The ‘Stros first Spring Training game is this Saturday against the Phillies.


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Commentary has never been to Cooperstown even when My Brown Eyed Girl was featured a few years ago.  If B-G-O, Baggy, or both get the call today that they make the Hall of Fame, I’ll be there this summer for the ceremonies.  I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed all morning.

Where does B-G-O rank in all time career total bases?  Is he in the Top 50?

My good friend Janiece Longoria was appointed yesterday to Chair the Port Commission.  Congrats to Janiece.

She will set a high standard over there.  Here is what she had to say yesterday after getting the nod:

“We can and will strive to do better, to look for alternative ways to finance our infrastructure, to be more open and transparent, to build the template for future generations of prosperity, to include all stakeholders, to act always with integrity and honesty and to align public perception and re-establish public trust.  This will be done.”

It’s a new day over at the Port.

The Chron E-Board did a duel endorsement yesterday in the SD 6 Special.  Carol Alvarado was one of the duel recipients. 

Early Voting starts today and at Ripley, our opponent has a fellow out there making personal accusations about Carol Alvarado.  Oh, well.  I don’t see how that works as it only gets our folks fired up and gets voters upset. 

At Ripley they are also handing out that bridge mailer.  The bridge they supported.  Ditto on oh, well!

B-G-O is 33rd all time in career total bases of course with 4,711, just 1 behind Hall of Fame great Roger Hornsby and 5 ahead of Hall of Fame great Ernie Banks so I don’t want to hear that B-G-O isn’t worthy today!

Oh, I forgot.  The Big Puma will be here on Opening Day sitting in the visitors’ dugout.



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This from my pal Robert Miller:

Janiece M. Longoria is expected to be elected Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of the Port of Houston Authority next week.  A joint meeting of the Harris County Commissioners Court and Houston City Council is planned for January 8 at 9:30 a.m. at the County Administration Building.  Mayor Parker and Judge Emmett will preside over the meeting.  If Commissioner Longoria is elected, she will be the first woman to Chair the Port Commission as well as the first minority.

An H-Town Latino community historic milestone indeed!

In 2002 One of My Best Friends, then H-Town City Council Member Carol Alvarado nominated my friend Janiece Longoria to the Port Commission.  Carol led the fight to get Janiece appointed by the H-Town City Council.  It happened during the administration of Mayor Lee Brown.

In 2010, a well documented major play was made to replace Janiece and H-Town CM James Rodriguez led the effort to keep Janiece on the Port Commission.  Carol was there with James to help lead the effort on Janiece’s behalf.

Tomorrow morning Janiece Longoria will become the first female and Latina to Chair the Port Commission.

A big THANK YOU goes out to the H-Town City Council and Harris County Commissioners Court.

Congrats to State Representative Carol Alvarado and Council Member James Rodriguez for all their work to get us to this milestone!

Way to go Janiece!

Here is Robert Miller’s take.

Alan Ashby spent 17 years playing in the MLB including his last 11 years in a ‘Stros uniform.  Did Ashby ever reach the 100 career dinger plateau?

It will be an all about the Texans this week in H-Town

There will be some mention of the legislative session that begins tomorrow.

Early Voting in the SD 6 Special begins in a couple of days.

Alan Ashby never reached the 100 career dinger plateau of course and ended up with 90 – oh well. 

From the ‘Stros website:

Alan Ashby, the former Astros catcher who became a popular broadcaster with the club and for the last six seasons has announced games for the Blue Jays, is coming home.

Ashby resigned from his position in Toronto and has agreed to terms to join Houston’s television broadcast team alongside Bill Brown next season, replacing Jim Deshaies.


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I’m thinking HoustonChronicle.com won’t last very long.  Heck, it is a hassle for a subscriber like me to navigate through.  I don’t understand the point of having both Chron.com and the new HoustonChronicle.com.  Why do I have to visit both sides to look for one article or E-Board take? Are they even running E-Board takes on Chron.com anyway?  If the Chron isn’t careful, I just might stick to reading the hard copy and avoiding their sites. 

Who was the last closer to win the Cy Young Award?

The Chron E-Board did a take on the deregulation of food trucks here in H-Town.  Here is a taste (no pun intended):

But the regulations do not stop downtown, with mandatory 60-foot spacing between food trucks and a ban on trucks providing their own tables and chairs putting the kibosh on the sort of food truck festivals that have become popular in other cities.

The Greater Houston Restaurant Association has supported these stifling regulations, arguing that loosening them would give food trucks an unfair advantage. So where were downtown restaurants when it came time to serve festival goers? Well, a lot of them were closed. Downtown shuts down on weekends. There were a few vendors to feed the festival, including Good Dog Hot Dogs, which moved operations from its truck to a table for the day.

You can check out the entire take on HoustonChronicle.com if they will let you or if you know the secret password here.

I smell a food fight!

The E-Board also had a take on the Port.

I like “Two and a Half Men” and I actually thought the kid was a good actor for playing a good dumbarse.  It turns out he’s not a good actor but just playing himself – a dumbarse.

Eric Gagne of course of the LA Dodger snagged the NL Cy Young Award in 2003 – hey, he had 55 saves!

Nothing from The Yard except the exec responsible for “Root, Root, Root” has left.


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There isn’t a whole lot to talk about this Friday the 16th other than to say the Port of Houston Authority is back in the cruise business down at Bayport.  That’s a good thing.  Here is this from the Chron:

"Securing this cruise business helps fulfill our commitment by building the cruise terminal to spur job creation and economic development for the entire greater Houston and Pasadena region," Jim Edmonds, chairman of the authority’s commission, said in a statement.

The Port critics have one less issue to go after.  Now if we can just settle on a new Port Chair.

Check out the entire article here.

The Cy Young Award was first handed out in 1956.  From 1956 through 1966 (11 seasons), the award was a combined leagues award.  Name the league that won it the most during the 11 seasons?

Romney keeps getting deservedly pounded by his fellow GOPers and now the late night talk show hosts for his “gifts” remarks.    GOPers just want him to go far, far away and stay away.  I wonder how it is going to feel in the Romney living room on Christmas Day when Tagg and the rest are exchanging “gifts?”

“Lincoln” leads this weekend’s movie buzz and folks are now predicting another Oscar for Daniel Day-Lewis.  I’m actually looking forward to “Hitchcock” next week.  Of course, most young folks don’t know about Alfred Hitchcock and his great films.  They also don’t know that he was nominated five times for Best Director at the Oscars but never won. 

From 1956 through 1966, the National League snagged the Cy Young Award seven times of course and the American League snagged it four times.

I don’t have anything from The Yard – sorry.


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The Texas Sunset Commission is recommending that locals shouldn’t be appointing their own Port Commissioners.  I don’t know about that.  That’s not a good idea.  Here is from the Chron:

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett responded that the proposal "doesn’t make sense."

"I think this caught a lot of people by surprise," Emmett said. "I mean, you have people who claim to be conservative Republicans suddenly proposing taking away local control of a port."

Here is the entire piece.

Nats skipper Davey Johnson won NL Skipper of the Year honors.  When was the last time a skipper from the Nats franchise won skipper of the year?

The President told folks yesterday in a meeting that immigration reform would be a major priority next year.  Si se puede!

Check out the story here.

KCOH is changing its format – bummer.  They’re going to a religious programming that targets Latino souls.  Here is from the Chron:

The station for decades has billed itself as the city’s only talk-oriented station focusing on issues of interest to African-Americans.

With its disappearance, (talk show host Ralph) Cooper said, "You lose a piece of this city that helped make Houston what it is."

This is going to kind of impact how you reach African American voters.  I don’t know about that. 

Here is the entire Chron story.

There are only about 17 radio stations locally that target the Latino audience.  Hey, if the market is there, what can I say?

Nats/Expos skipper Felipe Alou of course won the NL Skipper of the Year Award in 1994 with a 74-40 record and no playoff spot because of the strike.

The General finally got around to putting the Texans at the top of his power rankings.  Here is what he had to say:

“They’ve still got 10 more games to play.”

That would mean their season ends on Sunday, February 3, in NOLA – yikes! 

Sir Paul will be at The Yard tonight.


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Did I mention the so called Texans Hangover?  Now what we saw last night was a national embarrassing arse whipping.  It was ugly!  It was a mugging.  What a letdown!  Oh, well!

The Chron E-Board weighs in on the idea of going to single-stream recycling.  Here is part of what they say:

The biggest road bump for the project is the initial investment. Houston is taking all the right steps by looking for private grants and studying what other cities have done, but the city needs a private-sector partner.

Here is the entire E-Board take.

What is the cost?  Do we now get a garbage fee?  Can folks on the lower end of incomes afford this?  Stay tuned!

Yankee great shortstop Derek Jeter is done for the year.  How many World Serious rings does Jeter have?

Here is what the County put out Friday evening:

As of this evening we have approved 74,105 applications and sent out 71,192 ballots.  We have received 24,094 voted ballots returned.

26,150 have been generated by the GOP and 21,203 by Dems.

Commentary checked out “The Revisionaries” the other night.  It is a good movie so go check it out this week at the Sundance Theater Downtown.

The Mayor and H-Town City Council are recommending Port Commissioner Janiece Longoria for Chair of the Port Commission.

Here is the Chron story.

Commentary saw a “Vote No” sign on the METRO initiative yesterday.  I haven’t seen a “Vote Yes” sign.  I’ve seen a couple of “Vote Yes” signs for the HISD bonds. 

Derek Jeter has five World Serious rings (1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2009) of course.

I’m guessing new skipper Bo Porter is reporting to work today at The Yard.


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Best Politics Blog: Marc Campos‘s Daily Commentary!


“There are plenty of good political blogs that cover the issues of the day, but nothing puts you inside the machinations of Houston politics like this literally daily blog from longtime political consultant Marc Campos. His insights into the grind of local and state politics are as fascinating as they are entertaining.”……Houston Press, June 27, 2012.

Check out my fellow recipients here.

Let me introduce you to the Award Winning Commentary!

Tonight Commentary will be the recipient of the Best Politics Blog at the 2012 Second Annual Houston Web Awards presented by the Houston Press.  Let me thank the members of the Academy, oops, wrong group!

Other recipients include Houston Texans linebacker Connor Barwin (Best Local Sports Bar Twitter) and Lance Zierlein (Best Sports Fan/News Twitter). 

I’m going to practice my acceptance remarks with you if you don’t mind:

Let me thank the 2012 Houston Web Awards for this outstanding honor.  Like Sally Fields once said “I can’t deny the fact that you like me!  You like me!”  Or as George M. Cohan used to say “my mother thanks you, my father thanks you, my sister thanks you, and I thank you.”

Actually it is a pretty cool deal because awards and Commentary don’t have much of a history together.  Now I can call myself the Award Winning Commentary, at least until next year – very cool.

Of course I couldn’t get this honor without a lot of help.  I really want to thank all the wonderful material out there I have to work with including the GOP bashing of paperless folks, Tea Baggers, POTUS, The H-Town Mayor for not ducking the tough issues, Guv Dude, and the Lone Star State Dem Party for failing to engage the Latino vote.

I also want to thank some of my outstanding clients like CM James Rodriguez, HISD Trustee Anna Eastman, SBOE candidate Traci Jensen, and former constable candidate Joe Martinez who all give politics around these parts a richer flavor.    

Let me thank the Municipal Channel for bringing the H-Town City Council meetings into my office every week where I pick up ideas from CMs like Costello, Bradford, Gonzalez, and Boss Ma-am.  Oh and I forgot CM Sullivan.  Let me thank other key folks and entities like the H-Town GLBT PAC, The Dean, The DREAMERS, Kuffer, Robert Miller, CNN, Burkablog, Serge, Hector, Chris Moran and Chron.com, who fight the good fight or let me know about the good fight.

Let me thank all the folks – whether I agree with you or not on issues – for stepping into the public square and trying to make a difference.  Often times you interest me, sometimes you p__s me off, sometimes you do great things, sometimes you make me sad, sometimes you puzzle me, sometimes I feel sorry for you, and sometimes you come off looking like total dumbarses.  Let me thank CEWDEM for snatching me up every day and sending it out.

Let me say this.  All I do is a Commentary sometimes tongue-in-check about stuff that is happening with our politics.  As I’ve said before, I don’t do talking points, I don’t exaggerate the facts, and I don’t play games (except for my MLB question of the day).  I try to be candid and direct.

Some folks like Ty Wiggintonner’s Brother and Edgar will send me a friendly comment or two on something I said.  Some folks will send me a critical comment or two and it hurts my feelings for around 15 seconds.  Some folks will send me stuff wanting me to do a political hit on someone that I just ignore. 

I’m not into scorch-the-earth political takes because I believe it contributes to global warming.  I don’t think it is healthy to have political enemies because you never know if you’ll be standing by them at The Yard in the St. Arnold line. 

I forgot to mention the ‘Stros, the ‘Stro media guide, MLB, and the greatest game ever invented.  Sometimes I’m able to segue from the politics into baseball, most times I can’t though.  There are always interesting baseball facts to be found in my desk drawer.

So there you have it!

Finally let me thank MariGirl for being herself and making sure stuff like being named Best Politics Blog doesn’t go to my head.  She is not the same MariGirl that walked into my shop five years ago this summer ago, but that’s a good thing.  She makes sure our product is as advertised.

Name the ‘Stros with twitter accounts?

Hope the Supremes don’t mess up my high with a lousy health care ruling today – that’s all I have to say about that!

It looks like we will have us a new Chair of the Houston Port Authority.  Current Chair Jim Edmonds won’t seek reappointment.

Here is the Chron story.

Meanwhile, Port Commissioner Jim Fonteno, Jr. was reappointed by the County on a 3-2 vote.

Congratulations to CM Ellen Cohen for getting the $5 fee passed yesterday.  I don’t know why they call those places “gentlemen” clubs.   My idea of being a “gentleman” doesn’t include sticking a ten into – well you know what I’m talking about. 

Speaking of Edgar, I wonder if he saw my pal Nick Anderson’s cartoon today in the Chron.  It depicts the Dome as a big trash can for all those Dome studies.   I don’t think the Texans or Rodeo would want the Dome to be the first indoor landfill.

Check out the cartoon here.

The following ‘Stros have twitter accounts of course:

Chris Snyder (@hyphen18), Chris Johnson (@cjastros23), @BudNorris20, @brianbogusevic, @JordanSchafer,   Jason Castro (@J_Castro15), @lucasharrell34, @Carlos45Lee, Wesley Wright (@realweswright), Brett Myers (@theoutlaw39, @jordanlyles41 , and @JDMartinez14.

It looks like the new ‘Stro owner is thinking about doing away with the choo choo train and Tal’s Hill.  I wonder what they will do with the choo choo train and Tal’s Hill.  Maybe they ought to let folks bid on them at an auction.

Well what do you know!  A ‘Stro pitcher threw another complete game.  That’s two in less than a week –wow!  It’s too bad only 15,012 showed up last night.


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HISD Trustee Anna Eastman is trying to become the next Board President and Texas Watchdog has a piece on Anna’s bid.  Check it out here.

One would hope that Anna would get the nod to serve as Board President.  FYI:  Anna is Commentary’s client.  Stay tuned!

The Feds are recommending banning cell phones, hands free, and other electronic devices while driving.  That suits me fine!  Check out the story here.

Of course, as usual, Lone Star State policy makers aren’t willing to embrace this.

This is from State Rep.  Gary Elkins, R-Houston

"There’s just no will in Texas to do that.  I just don’t see it happening.  As far as a statewide ban, I don’t see the Legislature doing it.  The public clearly wants to be able to talk on the phone and drive, and I don’t think we should take that right away from them.”

What else can you say!

Commentary and other prominent MLB observers generally believe that that the First Round of the 1987 MLB Amateur Player Draft produced two future MLB Hall of Fame members.   Who am I talking about?  Hint:  They were picked 1st and 22nd.

From the There Is No Crying at the Port Department, it seems like the Port crybaby, err outgoing CEO didn’t like the rough-and-tumble of politics….awww!  Here is what he said in the Chron today: 

"The frustrating part of it is – and maybe I was a little naive on this, I don’t know – I can see what needs to be done, but I can’t get those things done because of the politics.  I wanted to apply some business techniques, some things I’ve done in the past and been successful at. We’ve done a lot of that, but fighting the constant battle of politics … is just not something I want to do."

Throw this fella a box of Kleenex, please!

Commentary has known Port Commissioner Elyse Lanier for over 20 years and being politically correct isn’t in her DNA.  Here is what she said:

"When you’re in the private sector, you do things differently," (Here) it’s not just politics. You have seven commissioners that want to be involved. We’re here to set policy and I think our opinions have to be considered. There was a point at which that didn’t happen."

On the crybaby’s, errr CEO departure she added: "It’s probably good for him.  It’s probably good for us."

Nice play by Commissioner Lanier.

Of course, Commentary’s good friend, Port Commissioner Janiece Longoria, who is for sure one of the smartest and savviest players in these parts, also gets a way to go!  Here is the Chron piece.

Former State Rep. Al Edwards filed for his old seat again. 

The Chron’s Lisa Falkenberg has a nice column about the principal from Bellaire High trying to ban a Latino food cart vendor from selling his goodies to student during lunch.  We don’t want your stinking chicharrones!

Here is a piece of the column:

Just after 11:30, a smallish street vendor in a ball cap wheels his bicycle to the corner of Maple and South Rice, and opens for business. Minutes later, when lunch begins, students stream from Bellaire’s doors and head in every direction.

Dozens of them cross Maple and head for the food cart, where they order up items outlawed on campus such as Coca-Cola. Other options among the eclectic fare range from rainbow popsicles to chicharrones with lime juice and salsa, to fresh mango.

In the eyes of Principal Tim Salem, this scene around the cart isn’t at all befitting of Bellaire. Last month, he asked the city manager for an ordinance banning such street cart vendors. In seeking the change, Salem argued in a letter that the vendor poses a threat to the "character and quality of the community" of Bellaire.

"Many of the neighbors who live here selected this community because it represents the values, ideals and standard of living that they want for their families," stated Salem’s letter, first reported last week by the Bellaire Examiner. "Allowing street vendors to roam the streets of Bellaire will diminish the reputation of this community and damage the vision that most have of this being a safe and secure environment."
Here is the entire column.

It looks like the City of Bellaire doesn’t think this is a problem.

Here is what the Bellaire City Manager says:

"We got a lot of problems in the world today.  I just can’t see where this is one of them."

It also looks like the Bellaire principal looks kind of stupid.

Future Hall of Fame great Ken Griffey, Jr., was picked #1 in the 1987 MLB Draft and future Hall of Fame great Craig Biggio was picked #22 of course in the same draft.  B-G-O is celebrating his 46th BD today!  Happy Birthday B-G-O!

There is nothing else to report from The Yard.


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The Chron has another take on Saturday’s election and what it means at the City Council table.  Check it out here.

One thing is for certain.  Commentary is still being read.  Here is what I said yesterday:

C-O-L-L-A-B-O-R-A-T-I-O-N ought to be the theme at City Hall over the next two years if you ask me but they don’t ask me but they better start asking me – got it!

I guess they are sort of asking me because here is what the Chron said:

Councilwoman Sue Lovell, who will not return to office because of term limits, said that competition for finite city resources could limit productivity, but a larger issue will be whether the new council can collaborate.

Kuffer has a more expanded take on the election here.

We have to do a better job of getting folks to the polls period.  A 6% voter turnout is embarrassing.   We can’t allow ourselves to let this become the norm. 

Liberal/progressives were the losers this past Saturday.  We let the GOPers and Tea Baggers out work us.  We can’t say that we were outspent because we weren’t.  We just didn’t effectively communicate with our base. 

We have to do more and better than just trotting out the list of all those leaders and groups that endorse.  We have to get their folks to the polls.  I haven’t seen the precinct returns yet but I’ll bet you $10,000 that White Dems and Latinos stayed home on E-Day.  Complacency took over if you ask me.   I don’t know why we would have reason to be complacent.  Oh well!

I will say this, City Hall just needs to focus on providing services and not start getting fancy with us with a bunch of regulations and stuff and new parking rules and stuff.  Stop pi__ing folks off!

On June 30, 2011, this AL MLBer hit his 300th career dinger.  The next day (July 1, 2011), this NL MLBer hit his 300th career dinger.  Who am I talking about?

The Harris County DA cleared the Port CEO of any wrong doing this past Friday.  The Port CEO says he’s leaving.  Here is from Chron.com:

“I came to the Port of Houston to apply my business experience in public service. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished,” Dreyer said, noting the port’s preparations for growth with the widening of the Panama Canal. “This experience, however, has shown me that the political arena is not where I want to be.”

Don’t let the door hit your arse on the way out, fella!  Oh no, the dreaded political arena!

I guess you can score one for Port Commissioners Janiece Longoria and Elyse Lanier!

Maybe by the end of the day, we will have some sort of clarification on when the primaries will be held.

On June 30, 2011, Yankee great Mark Teixeira hit his 300th career dinger and the next day (July 1, 2011) Cubbie great Aramis Ramirez hit his 300th career dinger of course.  Aramis will stay in the NL Central and play with the Brewers next season.

Well what do you know!  Texans Head Coach Gary Kubiak is capable of smiling. 

‘Stros catcher Jason Castro got hurt again and will get a late start at Spring Training – drats!


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