Cy-Fair Edition | October 2023





State approves $14.2B for future Houston-area road projects Texas State Highway Fund, the Texas Mobility Fund, tax revenue and federal sources, accord- ing to TxDOT Media Relations Director Adam Hammons. 2024 UTP Houston-area projects include:

2 Harris County courts to study eviction diversion Two Harris County courts are aiming to ll two new full-time positions by the end of October focused on nding new ways, under Texas law, to strengthen eviction diversion eŸorts and improve

Harris County ocials adopt $2.7B budget Harris County will be operating scal year 2023-24 on a $2.7 billion budget, a $500 million increase from last year’s budget, after commissioners unanimously approved the amount on Sept. 19. Digging deeper According to o–cials, the budget includes the most signi cant investment in public safety in the county’s history. • $119 million to law enforcement • $5 million to provide body-worn cameras to jail staŸ • $7.8 million in additional jail medical costs Other countywide funding includes $128 million for Harris County Flood Control District and $888 million for Harris Health.

Harris County eviction lings Since funding for county and city rental pandemic protections ended in 2022, eviction rates in Harris County have skyrocketed.

The state of Texas will invest $142 billion in transportation projects focused on safety improve- ments, congestion, connectivity and road preser- vation over the next 10 years. “This plan will not only connect Texans from every corner of our state; it will also bolster our economic growth and ensure Texans and busi- nesses continue to thrive for generations to come,” Gov. Greg Abbott said in an Aug. 17 news release. The overview The Texas Department of Transportation’s 10-year plan, known as the Uni ed Transporta- tion Program, is updated annually and includes funding for initiatives across the state. The Texas Transportation Commission unan- imously approved $100 billion for the 2024 UTP during its Aug. 16 meeting—a $15 billion increase over the $85 billion 2023 UTP. The other $42 billion, which will fund develop- ment and routine maintenance, comes from the

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“This plan will help the lives of all Texans for years to come as we work to move people and goods safely and e–ciently in our rural, urban and metropolitan areas,” TxDOT Executive Director Marc Williams said in the release. “TxDOT is already putting these resources to work with a record number of projects aimed at improving safety and saving lives on our roadways.” The 2024 UTP includes $14.2 billion in projects for the Houston region. By the numbers The Texas A&M Transportation Institute reported over the next 10 years, the 2024 UTP will: • Create 70,500 new jobs. • Add $18.8 billion to the state economy annually.

• $4.42B for the North Houston Highway Improvement Plan, which will improve I-45 from Beltway 8 to I-10 W. and reroute I-45 through Houston along I-10 and Hwy. 59 • $1.14B for the I-10 W. Inner Katy project to add four nontolled managed lanes between downtown Houston and Loop 610 in Houston • $730.6M to add two managed lanes and two general-purpose lanes, and extend frontage roads for the I-10 W. project from FM 359 to Mason Road • $555M for the I-10 bridge replacement at the San Jacinto River • $343.5M for a new location roadway on Hwy. 35 from I-45 to Dixie Drive • $150M to improve traf‹ic and safety along Hwy. 105 from the Grimes County to the San Jacinto and Liberty County lines

housing stability. What happened

Funding for the new positions was awarded in September by the National Center for State Courts’ Eviction Diversion Initiative to Justice of the Peace courtrooms covering Harris County Precinct 1-2— represented by Judge Steve Duble—and Precinct 2-2, represented by Judge Dolores Lozano. The joint application by the two judges was one of 10 to be approved nationally for the funding. The courts cover northwest and far southeast Houston. Why it matters Since January, more than 57,800 eviction cases

*2023 DATA IS AS OF SEPT. 20


have been led in Harris County, totaling more than $131 million in claims, according to consulting rm January Advisors. As of September, the county was on track to return to prepandemic historical averages for evictions. The approach With this grant, Duble said the two courts could connect people with social and legal services.


HUFFMEISTER 8945 Hwy 6 N (281) 859-5879 SPRING CYPRESS 22508 Hwy 249 (281) 379-7383

BARKER CYPRESS 17996 FM 529 (281) 656-4200 JONES ROAD 17414 NW Fwy (713) 983-8827

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