Montgomery County Commissioners Court to engage in spending free-for-all (except not free taxpayers) on June 25

Montgomery County Budget Director Amanda Carter has done nothing for the taxpayers of Montgomery County other than cost money and act as a front to rationalize government spending abuse. Her salary is $108,921, with benefits of approximately $43,895, for total payments from the taxpayers of approximately $152,816. She’s little more than another PR person to act as a front for the members of the Commissioners Court who hide behind her as they increase government spending farther and farther out of any semblance of efficiency.

Conroe, June 24 – The Montgomery County Commissioners Court will embarrass County citizens by meeting on Tuesday, June 25, 2019. While Precinct 4 Montgomery County Commissioner James Metts’ motion to remove Montgomery County Republican Party Vice Chairman Reagan Reed from the so-called “ethics committee” will likely receive the most attention during the meeting, the four Commissioners and County Judge will continue their explosive government spending on the backs of local taxpayers. Budget Director Amanda Carter is little more than a rude figurehead.

The Metts motion to remove Reed will likely fall towards the end of the meeting, unless Metts and his anti-ethics allies can’t wait to move the item forward closer to the beginning of the conflagration. A family of convicted felons, who write two pro-Metts blogs, have pushed Metts to remove Reed. Reed made the mistake of reporting, in an Empower Texans blog, the fact that the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) has notified Precinct 4 Constable Rowdy Hayden and four of his Deputies that they face six-month suspensions for falsifying continuing education documents. Hayden and his Deputies have fought the allegations and have asked for administrative review of the proposed 6-month suspensions.

The Hayden investigation had risen to the level of a criminal investigation. Montgomery County District Attorney Brett Ligon recused himself from the case. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton took over the investigation but ultimately decided not to prosecute criminally after a TCOLE investigator allegedly committed wrongdoing during the course of the investigation.

Hayden is a popular Constable who is at the front line of the war against drug trafficking in the United States as a result of the location of Precinct 4 along Highway 69. His potential 6-month suspension poses severe problems for County taxpayers who will have to pay Hayden’s salary and the salaries of his Deputies, even if they’re not performing their job duties.

While members of the Commissioners Court may attempt to couch the move to remove Reed as something else, clearly what it comes down to is that a citizen who dares to raise an ethics issue concerning a member of the political elite cannot be a part of the “ethics committee” in Montgomery County, known as the most corrupt County in Texas.

While members of the Commissioners Court may attempt to couch the move to remove Reed as something else, clearly what it comes down to is that a citizen who dares to raise an ethics issue concerning a member of the political elite cannot be a part of the “ethics committee” in Montgomery County, known as the most corrupt County in Texas.

County Treasurer’s Payroll Errors

Montgomery County Auditor Rakesh Pandey completed an Internal Audit Report for the Montgomery County Treasurer, Melanie Pryor Bush. Pandey found two hundred and ten (210) payroll errors for the months of January, February, and March, 2019. Pandey classified 76 of those errors as “payroll processing” and forty-one (41) of those errors as from the employee’s department.

Pandey concluded, “During the course of the audit, we observed while the vast majority of checks are ultimately processed correctly, a number of conditions support that the payroll process requires added internal controls throughout the County.” The County Auditor made clear in his analysis that the errors spring both from the County Treasurer’s Office as well as from individual County Departments.

Budget mess

The Commissioners Court, without any oversight, approvals, or investigation will approve $8,795,076.87 in spending.

The Commissioners Court will also approve $1,325,000 in budget amendments of which $705,000 is a transfer of funds by Meador from his off-budget “slush fund” and $280,000 is a transfer of funds by Metts from his off-budget “slush fund.”

They’ll approve renewing the following contracts without any information with respect to the prices:

  • Mowing the grass at the money-losing airport;
  • A blanket 5.3% increase for the services of RC Smith Company with no justification for the increase. RC Smith conducts road repair services for the County government;
  • A public relations contract, with no limit to the amount of the charges, to provide public relations to Commissioner Precinct 3 to make us all appreciate how wonderful our County government is (see contract immediately below!);
  • A contract for recorded books for the outdated Library System with no analysis of the reasonableness of the cost or any information about the cost whatsoever;
  • Renewal Project #18-54 Remote Administration of IBM AIX UNIX System with Nohup Corporation for Information Technology. (exercising the first of five renewal options) with no pricing or terms provided.
Public relations contract with no limit to cost to the taxpayers for Commissioner Precinct 3.

Hiring medicolegal investigator and creating new position in the middle of the budget year

The Commissioners Court is considering this proposal again: “Please consider and approve opening new position 6303-7803-3, Medicolegal Death Investigator I, with an annualized salary of $54,665.02, effective June 29, 2019.  An additional $19,462.07 including benefits is needed for the remainder of the fiscal year.  Please name a funding source.”

There are only three four months left in this Fiscal Year. It is unclear why the County government would need to create this new position prior to full consideration of this position and the association cost during the formal budget process for the County government.

Justice of the Peace Precinct 3

The County government will take $134,400 from the Justice of the Peace Court Technology Fund for various charges, including “services and switches.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

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