Shenandoah, May 6 – In what is undoubted a sign that citizens throughout Montgomery County are sick and tired of the political “establishment” and its arrogant tax-and-spend ways, all three insurgent candidates challenging the political “establishment” in the City of Shenandoah won their elections today. The election is a major rebuff to the incumbent City Council and their decision to alter the City Ordinances to give City Manager Greg Smith a contract which violates both the previous Shenandoah City Ordinances as well as provisions of the Texas Local Government Code that restrict city manager employment arrangements to “at will” relationships.
In Position 2, incumbent John Houston received 305 votes but lost to challenger Ted Fletcher, a Montgomery County Tea Party-endorsed candidate, who received 307 votes. Jason Camara received 24 votes.
In Position 3, popular challenger Byron Bevers received 352 votes to Nancy Smith’s 288 votes.
In Position 4, incumbent Jean Teague lost with 315 votes to Charlie Bradt’s 327 votes. Brady had served on the City Council previously and received the backing of the Montgomery County Tea Party as well.
Both incumbents who lost – Houston and Teague – had voted for the “golden parachute” contract for Smith which would ostensibly provide him with a 2-year payout if the City Council terminated him.
At the conclusion of a fiery meeting in front of a large crowd of angry Shenandoah citizens, the Shenandoah City Council voted 3 to 2 to give City Administrator Greg Smith an employment contract with a “golden parachute” of two-years severance pay if the City terminates his employment without cause on April 13, 2017. Two members of the City Council argued that the employment agreement violates Section 25.028 of the Texas Local Government Code, which mandates for general rule cities like Shenandoah:
“The city manager is appointed by and serves at the will of the government body of the municipality.”
The last City Councilman, who spoke before Mayor Ritch Wheeler’s final comments before the Council’s vote, was Houston who admitted:
“The whole idea of the contract with [City Administrator] Greg Smith was to keep people who don’t like a particular person from being able to run him out if they get elected to the city council.”
Houston’s final statement in the meeting was clearly a portent that anti-“establishment” reformers would, indeed, “get elected to the city council.”
It happened this evening.