CITY & COUNTY
News from Harris County & Jersey Village
HIGHLIGHTS HARRIS COUNTY In an eort to reduce the county’s jail population, ocials announced an expansion of the Harris Center’s Jail-Based Competency Restoration Program at a Feb. 9 press conference. Commissioners approved the $645,000 eort to support individuals through therapy, substance abuse education, peer support services, case management, discharge planning and medication management. The program will provide services to individuals found incompetent to stand trial— typically due to an active mental illness or intellectual disability, according to a news release. Harris County Commissioners Court will meet at 10 a.m. March 14 at 1001 Preston St., Ste. 934, Houston. 713-274-1111. www.harriscountytx.gov Harris County ESD No. 9 will meet at 6 p.m. March 23 at 10710 Telge Road, Houston. 281-550-6663. www.cyfairfd.org Jersey Village City Council will meet at 7 p.m. March 20 at 16327 Lakeview Drive, Jersey MEETINGS WE COVER
Flood control district granted $64.8M for bond funding shortfall HARRIS COUNTY On Jan. 31, Harris County commissioners granted $64.8 million in trust funding to the Harris County Flood Control Dis- trict to be used for 2018 ood bond projects, while also asking the district to prioritize using existing funding for the projects. funding obtained and funding needed, largely due to expected partner funds falling through. The 2018 bond program was created and presented to voters as being composed of $2.5 billion in ood control district bonds plus an additional $2.5 billion BY EMILY LINCKE BOND PROGRAM FUNDING Since the inception of the 2018 bond program,
Commissioners split up $1.1B in bond funds
Warren, Fields running for Jersey Village mayor seat; 2 council seats uncontested
BY DANICA LLOYD
JERSEY VILLAGE Two names will be on the May 6 ballot in the Jer- sey Village mayor race: incumbent Bobby Warren and James Fields. Fields is a longtime Jersey Village resident who regularly attends City Council meetings. He ran against Council Member James Singleton in the May 2022 election and lost by 49 votes, according to Harris County Elections Administrator’s Oce archives. Warren was elected mayor in 2021 after serving two consecutive terms as a council member in Jersey Village. He has a bachelor’s degree in com- munication from the University of St. Thomas in Houston and has been a licensed attorney since 2005, when he graduated from the University of Houston Law Center. He serves as an oil and gas compliance manager for a large company in Houston.
BY EMILY LINCKE
from planned federal, state and local partners. So far, HCFCD has completed 25 projects under the 2018 bond program and closed two because the district “was not able to identify any benets,” Petersen said. During the Jan. 31 meeting, commissioners also tasked HCFCD with returning to court with a plan for completing the remaining projects with the funds currently available to HCFCD. The motion passed asked HCFCD to take a “worst-rst” approach to the projects and to consider equity, Judge Lina Hidalgo said. “What this is going to do is force the issue of prioritization, that we’re going to complete some projects. ... This motion means we’re going to do what we can do with what we’ve got,” Precinct 3 Commissioner Tom Ramsey said. HCFCD’s 2018 bond was passed by voters on the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Harvey and included a total of $2.5 billion in funding for ood reduction projects countywide. Hannah Brol contributed to this report.
secured funding for projects has reached $3.9 billion. Twenty-ve of the bond’s 181 projects have been completed as of a January report.
HARRIS COUNTY At a Jan. 31 meeting, Harris County commis- sioners unanimously opted to divide $1.1 billion in bond funding from November propositions for road and parks projects according to each precinct’s ooding and natural disaster vulnerability. Commissioners voted unanimously to allocate $175 million of proposi- tions B and C to each county precinct and, in addition, the remaining funds will be divided among the four precincts based on the federal government’s Social Vulnerability Index metric. Precinct 2 had the highest number of citizens with an SVI over 75, total- ing 533,289, followed by Precinct 1 with 425,532, Precinct 4 with 288,736 and Precinct 3 with 56,687.
The ood control district is currently looking at a $667 million gap between the cost of projects that have been planned under its 2018 bond pro- gram and the money remaining for these projects, HCFCD Director Tina Petersen said. This gap is due to “cost escalation” and is likely to increase, she said. “[A] $667 million gap is not insignicant, and I ... would ask [HCFCD] to come back with a plan and tell us how we’re going to approach the bond with the existing resources we have,” Precinct 2 Com- missioner Adrian Garcia said during the presenta- tion at the Jan. 31 Harris County Commissioners Court meeting. Commissioners unanimously granted HCFCD access to $64.8 million in funding from the Harris County Flood Resilience Trust, which was created in June 2021 to help with HCFCD’s funding gap for the 2018 bond. At the time, HCFCD had a $1.3 billion gap between
In addition to the mayoral seat, two council member positions will also be on the May 6 ballot with no opponents. Incumbent Sheri Sheppard is running for re-election for Place 2, and incumbent Michelle Mitcham is running for re-election for Place 3, according to documents from the city. The city is contracting with Harris County in a joint election, meaning residents may cast ballots at any polling place countywide. April 6 is the deadline to register to vote in this election, and early voting will take place April 24-May 2.
$2.5B in voter approved funds secured
$1.4B in grants and local partnerships secured
$174M spent in 913 voluntary buyouts
FUNDING SPENT BY STAGE • Feasibility: $55M • Preliminary engineering: $63M • Design: $93M • Right of way: $441M • Construction and turnover: $497M
Village. 713-466-2100. www.jerseyvillagetx.com
SOURCE: HARRIS COUNTY FLOOD CONTROL DISTRICT COMMUNITY IMPACT
HUFFMEISTER 8945 Hwy 6 N (281) 859-5879 SPRING CYPRESS 22508 Hwy 249 (281) 379-7383
JONES ROAD 17414 NW Fwy (713) 983-8827 BARKER CYPRESS 17996 FM 529 (281) 656-4200
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