Image: Funeral Director Tim McNutt looks back at Gilbert Jalomo, Montgomery County government Purchasing Director, as Jalomo didn’t know whether there was any agenda item pertaining to McNutt on the Commissioners Court agenda on June 26, 2018.
Conroe, June 26 – Montgomery County Judge Craig Doyal and County government Purchasing Director Gilbert Jalomo revealed their complete befuddlement regarding Purchasing items Doyal had just voted to approve and Jalomo had placed on the agenda under “Purchasing” during the June 26, 2018, meeting of the Montgomery County Commissioners Court. Since Jalomo would have requested placement of the item on the Commissioners Court Agenda and since Doyal, as County Judge, is responsible for preparation and posting of the Agenda, one might hope that Jalomo and Doyal would have some idea was actually was on the Agenda under the Purchasing Department.
It all started when longtime Conroe funeral director Tim McNutt signed up, in accordance with Doyal’s latest procedures, to give a citizen comment about an agenda item concerning a contract bid McNutt’s company had submitted to the County government in March to provide transportation services for deceased bodies. The agenda item was near the top of the agenda, but Doyal and the Commissioners Court proceeded to vote on the item without permitting McNutt to provide a citizen comment first.
Two hours later, near the end of the Commissioners Court meeting, McNutt still sat in the audience waiting to give his citizen comment. A few minutes before noon Doyal called McNutt to the podium.
In a very low key manner, McNutt said, “We bid a contract as some of you are aware on transportation of deceased bodies which we submitted in March but nothing has been done except for extensions after extensions.” McNutt referred to the fact the Commissioners Court has repeated voted to give interim contracts to another company rather than determining whether to award the full contract to the lowest bidder.
Doyal politely responded to McNutt, “I’ll ask you to get in touch with [Purchasing Director] Gilbert Jalomo.”
Recognizing his constituent from Commissioners Precinct 1, Commissioner Mike Meador added, “We can’t respond Tim, because it’s not an item on the agenda.”
Doyal chimed in, “We can’t respond today because it’s not an item on the agenda.”
McNutt responded, “It’s on the agenda.”
The one member of the Commissioners Court who apparently reads the Commissioners Court Agenda before voting on policy items, Precinct 3 County Commissioner James Noack, explained, “We did. We renewed a contract…Did you put that on the agenda today, Gilbert?”
Sadly, the Purchasing Director shook his head, said “no,” and shrugged his shoulders.
The item was on the Commissioners Court Agenda under “Purchasing,” but the Purchasing Director had no idea what he had placed on the Agenda. Doyal was responsible for putting the item on the Agenda and voted for the extension of the interim contract, but also had no idea that he had already voted for it.
Could the explanation for the massive spending increases over which Doyal has presided be that he just never knew on what he was voting?!