FYI, this communication was sent out by Tom Ramsey, Precinct 3 Commissioner.
June 25, 2021
I want to make you aware of two important issues developing at Harris County Commissioners Court this Tuesday, June 29, 2021.
Today, the County Judge submitted an agenda item (Item 454) requesting to create a County Administrator position and realign County department operations under a streamlined organizational and reporting structure. To further explain, each Texas County has four Commissioners and a County Judge who serve on Commissioners Court. Harris County is divided into four precincts, and the voters of each precinct elect a Commissioner to serve a four-year term. All the voters of Harris County elect a County Judge to a four-year term. With this new structure, services now provided by a precinct, directly responsible to the voters of that precinct, could become centralized and managed similar to the City of Houston.
The appointment of a County Administrator by three members of Commissioners Court could effectively remove the responsibility from your elected official(s) and strip residents of their ability to have local representation.
These recommendations stem from a study conducted by an out-of-state consultant, PFM Consulting Group, Inc. This consulting firm, run by an executive who advocates for defunding of law enforcement (https://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/ny-oped-of-green-eyeshades-and-blue-walls-20200610-7x6p6fvnb5f6jbeksawifvkzwm-story.html), has been paid more than $5M to study Harris County. The firm is critical of the ability of local elected officials and law enforcement to serve constituents. PFM also favors eliminating the county’s rollover program—an initiative that encourages fiscal responsibility.
I also have an item on the agenda (Item 442) requesting the court restore the rollover for law enforcement agencies, that was taken away in Commissioners Court by a divided vote, in light of state legislative action banning defunding of police.
As Commissioner Cagle and I have said before in Commissioners Court, there are three B’s surrounding these issues. BUREAURACY does not add to efficiency. It is best practices for Harris County to focus on the BASICS and the BALLOT BOX holds us accountable to these responsibilities.
If you have an opinion on these matters or other matters that may appear before the court I encourage you to make your voice heard by calling my office at 832-927-4444, emailing me at CommissionerCagle@hcp4.net, or by having your voice heard in Commissioners Court by signing up in the link below:
If you wish to express your opinion on these issues, you may also contact your county elected officials:
- County Judge Lina Hidalgo, who also represents you in these matters. You may call her at 713-274-7000, email her at JudgeHidalgo@cjo.hctx.net, or write her at 1001 Preston, Suite 911, Houston, TX 77002.
- Commissioner Ellis. You may call him at 713-274-1000, email him at Comm_Ellis@cp1.hctx.net, or write him at 1001 Preston, 9th Floor, Houston, TX 77002.
- Commissioner Garcia. You may call him at 713-755-6220, email him at Adrian.Garcia@pct2.hctx.net, or write him at 1001 Preston, Suite 924, Houston, TX 77002.
- Commissioner Tom Ramsey. You may call him at 713-755-6306, email him at Pct3@pct3.com, or write him at 1001 Preston, 9th Floor, Houston, TX 77002.
Tom S Ramsey
Commissioner Pct 3