Conroe, February 26 – Precinct 4 Commissioner Jim Clark and Precinct 3 Commissioner James Noack have again jointly placed their proposal to shift County Department management away from County Judge Craig Doyal and back to the full Commissioners Court. Doyal also tucked a bizarre spending proposal on the “Consent Agenda” which the Commissioners Court usually passes without any discussion. The meeting will begin Tuesday, February 28, 2017, at 9:30 a.m.
Also on the Consent Agenda, Doyal and Commissioner Mike Meador hid item 9A4 which establishes a secret “budget review committee” consisting of the free-spending County Judge Craig Doyal and Commissioner Meador, along with County Auditor Phyllis Martin. Both Noack and Clark should demand that this agenda item be moved to the open agenda so that they may have open discussion rather than setting up a secret budget review committee that will continue the irresponsible County spending that Doyal and Meador have thrust upon Montgomery County citizens for many years.
The agenda is a bit shorter than that for the previous Court meeting two weeks earlier. Doyal placed Clark’s and Noack’s County management proposal towards the end of the meeting.
The meeting also includes an Executive Session which presently is to include a discussion of County Human Resources Director Dodi Shaw. Shaw’s feud with County Treasurer Stephanne Davenport over the Treasurer’s proposed reorganization of her 7-person department erupted into the open when Shaw distributed a letter, dated February 13, to County Judge Doyal and the Commissioners during the afternoon of February 16. The Golden Hammer broke the story about Shaw’s letter on February 18. In the letter, Shaw discussed the circumstances with Davenport and also addressed her concerns as a member of Doyal’s “Hit List” of County employees against whom Doyal seeks retribution for supporting his 2014 electoral opponent, former County Infrastructure Director Mark Bosma.
Near the top of the agenda is the approval of the Commissioners Court minutes. The Golden Hammer takes this opportunity to compliment County Clerk Mark Turnbull, Chief Deputy County Clerk Darrin Bailey, and their entire team for superb and detailed work on the February 14, 2017, Commissioners Court Minutes.
Under the Consent Agenda:
- Several million dollars of budget amendments
- Precinct 1 Commissioner Mike Meador is moving $324,000 out of his road and asphalt Precinct 1 fund into machinery and equipment for the Constable Precinct 1. Precinct 1 citizens who require road work might want to take notice of this use of funds.
- A $6.183 million reduction in debt service thanks to the defeasance analysis and work of Precinct 3 Commissioner James Noack
- A giant budget amendment and group of payroll change requests that reflect Montgomery County Sheriff Rand Henderson’s reorganization of his Department, as he had promised to voters during the 2016 Republican Primary Election
- Payment of $12,987 to Halff Associates, Inc., the engineering firm of Bobby Adams, Craig Doyal’s best friend and business partner
- Payment to engineer John Holzwarth of $27,135.18. Holzwarth performs the functions of County Engineer Mark Mooney who, statutorily is the County’s Road Transportation Engineer
- $163,194.83 to engineers and attorneys, all of whom contributed politically to County Judge Craig Doyal and Commissioner Charlie Riley for the $100 million Tx-249 3.6 mile Decimation of Hope Highway expansion at the far southwest edge of Montgomery County. This unbudgeted expenditure has no purpose other than providing cash to Doyal’s and Riley’s cronies.
- Appointment of Kate Laukien to serve on the Conroe North Houston Regional Airport Advisory Board (Item 9F1f). Commissioner Mike Meador has proposed the appointment.
Doyal’s Hearty Confusion
- The Commissioners Court is confusing itself with the Montgomery County Toll Road Authority. The Commissioners Court agenda contains an item, 9I2 which authorizes an expenditure from the Toll Road Authority, which County Judge Doyal has asked the Toll Road Authority to pay but the Commissioners Court to approve. That doesn’t make any sense. The next agenda item, however, is worse.
- Doyal has asked the Commissioners Court to approve on its “Consent Agenda” a $6,000 expenditure to Tomball ISD with no backup or explanation. What’s even worse is that Doyal has failed to name a funding source. Therefore, under the appropriate budgeting procedures, the Commissioners Court would need to name a funding source in the open Commissioners Court meeting. Since Doyal placed this item on the Consent Agenda, it cannot have a funding source! (Agenda Item 9I3)
Doyal has tripped himself up twice over his attempts to pass secret agenda items that he has hoped no one would notice. The problem is that neither Agenda Items 9I2 or 9I3 make any sense!
BETWEEN THE THREE OF COUNTY ATTORNEY JERRY DON “ICE MAN” LAMBRIGHT, COUNTY JUDGE CRAIG DOYAL, AND “chief of staff” jim fredricks, YOU’D THINK ONE OF THEM WOULD KNOW HOW TO WRITE AN AGENDA THAT COMPLIES WITH TEXAS LAW!
More Ethics Challenges; Massive Spending
The Agenda, Item 11A, refers to a proposed amendment to the Code of Ethics, but there is no amendment contained within the backup materials. As usual, the public and most of the members of the Commissioners Court are completely in the dark with respect to what Doyal, Lambright, and their cronies intend to do at an allegedly public meeting of the Commissioners Court.
Doyal has desperately attempted to remove attention from the County spending abuses he’s overseen. At the February 14, 2017, Commissioners Court meeting, Doyal attempted to argue that taxpayers shouldn’t pay attention to the spending abuses he’s overseen, because our local school districts are much greater perpetrators of abusive government spending. Doyal promised to the public and the Commissioners Court that he would return on February 28 with a proposed resolution calling for a reduction of spending abuses by Montgomery County’s local school districts. Instead, in Agenda Item 10C, Doyal wants to turn the Commissioners Court into the Texas Legislature and address remote school finance issues across the entire State of Texas. Doyal has no proposals. Doyal wants to increase County government spending. Nevertheless, he wants to fool all of us into thinking he’s a “fiscal conservative” because he wants other taxing authorities to trim their budgets.
Sorry, Judge Doyal, it won’t work. You and your “chief of staff” jim fredricks should focus attention on County government spending and stop trying to divert attention over to the school districts. SHOW SOME LEADERSHIP!
One of the greatest of Doyal’s and Meador’s spending abusers among County Departments is the Montgomery County Airport, grandiosely renamed “The Conroe-North Houston Regional Airport.” Doyal and Meador are seeking cell phone allowances for the maintenance technicians working at the airport. Could that be because they spend most of their time in “North Houston”?
Doyal and Meador are proposing spending $5,069.49 to upgrade a bathroom at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds. No explanation of the upgrade is among the paperwork attached to the Commissioners Court Agenda.
The Purchasing Department seeks to spend the following money on additional engineering and road contracts: $88,590 to Midtown Engineers, LLC, for work at Walden Road at Grand Harbor Boulevard. He also seeks to spend $554,600 for Property Acquisition Services, LLC, for the Keenan Cutoff road project.
The Purchasing Department also seeks to purchase two Kentworth dump trucks for $246,217.64 for Commissioner Jim Clark and a Chevy Silverado for $51,110.00 the Building Maintenance Department.
The Lone Star Convention Center also seeks to spend an unbudgeted $50,000 to replace their existing fire alarm and evacuation control panels. When playing with “other people’s money” the money feels unlimited! Woo hoo!