Riley torches the citizens, his political career during April 24 Commissioners Court meeting (The Golden Hammer ratings)

Perpetually befuddled, Precinct 2 County Commissioner Charlie Riley mumbled about something during the April 24, 2018, Commissioners Court.

Conroe, May 6 – During the April 24, 2018, Montgomery County Commissioner Court meeting, Precinct 2 County Commissioner Charlie Riley torched his political career by continuing to vote for the $95 million, 3 mile, TX 249 Tollway, also known as the Decimation of Hope Highway. The citizens of his Precinct 2 voted more than 91% in favor of requiring a voter referendum before proceeding on any tollroad project, especially one as unpopular as the TX 249 Tollway.

Riley’s true constituents, however, are not the citizens of his Precinct 2. Rather, he works for the engineering firms and construction contractors who have provided the money for his criminal legal defense fund.

The Golden Hammer‘s ratings measure Commissioners Court votes that affect spending in comparison to the provisions of the Republican Party of Texas Platform. Points are good. The number of points depends upon the amount of money involved in each vote.

Commissioners Court meeting, April 24, 2018, 9:30 a.m. All Court members were physically present.

Agenda Item 9A1: Payment of Accounts. The Commissioners Court spent $9.8 million in funds over 101 single-spaced pages of expenditures that are totally unaccounted for and have no backup whatsoever.

The payments included over $1,100,000 of unaccounted-for credit card charges on the County’s Citibank credit card. There was no discussion, no deliberation, and no investigation. 25 points. A proper vote would be “No.”

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK Yes

CLARK Yes.

Agenda Item 9A2 and 9A3: Spend $1,608,09 at the request of Wayne Mack and $650 at the request of James Meets to make improvements to the troubled operations of the NetData database program in the JP courts. The database program and the expensive collection system that goes along with it is failing to collect over $880,000 in fees and fines per year in comparison to the outstanding collection system in Precinct 3 Justice of the Peace Edie Connelly, who utilizes the County government Collections Department.  Mack and JP James Metts are costing the County a fortune but claim that NetData is “free.” Here’s an expenditure just to try to make this “free” computer program somewhat usable. 25 points. A property vote would be “No.”

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK Yes

CLARK Yes.

Agenda Item 9A6: Budget Amendments, because the Commissioners Court failed to do it the right way the first time. Under the Texas Local Government Code, the Commissioners Court should adopt its budget with due care after public hearings to allow citizen participation. The citizens have followed the budget, while the members of the Commissioners Court, especially Doyal and Riley, have slept. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that the Commissioners Court must continuously amend the budget on an “emergency” basis, in violation of the public hearing requirements of Texas law, because they failed to pass a proper budget at the inception. There were over $8 million of budget amendments which will receive no oversight or discussion from the freespending Commissioners Court. Riley took $6.6 million out of his “slush fund” to pay for road projects that are no in this Fiscal Year’s Budget.

Major vote. 25 points. A “no” vote is appropriate.

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK Yes

CLARK Yes.

Agenda Item 9E: The Commissioners Court approved purchasing decisions covering a completely unknown amount of purchases from 23 vendors for unidentified Departments. The total expenditures are just under $10,000,000. The citizens seem to know just as much as the Commissioners Court, because the four Commissioners and County Judge vote blindly. Major vote. 25 points. “No” vote appropriate.

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK Yes

CLARK Yes.

Agenda Item 11: Approve $5 million more in general revenue fund payments for the $95 million, 3 mile, TX 249 Tollway project. The taxpayers are bearing these costs while Doyal and Riley are pretending to finance a tollroad. Ten citizens – Dale Fessenden, Dennis Tibbs, Carl Aubrey, Larry Rogers, Bill O’Sullivan, John Wertz, John Oder, Ginger Russell, Calvin Russell, and Reagan Reed – spoke against the project. Doyal threw Reed out of the Commissioners Court, because Doyal didn’t want to hear Reed, one of the most influential people in the Montgomery County Republican Party and the likely next Montgomery County Republican Party Chairman, speak. Doyal receives a 1,000 point deduction for violating the civil rights of Reed. Noack and Clark objected to Doyal’s heavy-handed tactics and each receive a 250 point bonus. Riley and Meador spoke in favor of Doyal’s anti-Constitutional action and each receive a 500 point deduction.

It’s no surprise that the Commissioners Court voted in favor of proceeding with spending $5 million of “other people’s money” in this manner. This vote was as significant as the passage of the entire budget. 1,000 points. A “NO” vote was appropriate.

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK No

CLARK No.

Agenda Item 15B: The Purchasing Director asked the Commissioners Court to approve a $231,365.68 expenditure for the Information Technology Department for something about which the Purchasing Director he knew nothing. At least Noack asked the question. Noack receives a 100 point bonus. Doyal put the item on the agenda and clearly also had no idea what it concerned. Doyal receives a 100 point deduction.

There was, thankfully, no vote.

Agenda Item 19A: Consider, discuss, and take action to terminate the agreement between Montgomery County and TxDOT for Montgomery County to construct the TX 249 Tollway. Major vote. 500 points. “Yes” vote is appropriate.

DOYAL No

MEADOR No

RILEY No

NOACK Yes

CLARK Yes.

Tollroad Agenda Item: Vote a second time to spend $5,000,000 of County taxpayer funds for the TX 249 Tollway. Major vote. 500 points. “No” vote is appropriate.

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK No

CLARK No.

Tollroad Agenda Item: Amend interlocal agreement with Harris County Tollroad Authority to allow them to administer the tolls for the TX 249 Tollway. Major vote. 100 points. “No vote is appropriate.

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK No

CLARK No.

Tollroad Agenda Item: Award contract for construction of 3 mile TX 249 Tollway, which will be the most expensive road built in American history, at a cost of $107 million, or almost $36 million per mile!

Major vote. 500 points. “No” vote is appropriate.

DOYAL Yes

MEADOR Yes

RILEY Yes

NOACK No

CLARK No.

 

Commissioners Court ratings for April 24, 2018, meeting:

DOYAL -1,000/2,800. Grade F.

MEADOR -500/2,800. Grade F.

RILEY -500/2,800. Grade F.

NOACK 2,850/2,800. Grade A+.

CLARK 2,850/2,800. Grade A+.

The following are the cumulative scores for Fiscal Year 2018, which began October 1, 2017.

DOYAL -1,835/5,249. Grade F.

MEADOR -490/5,249. Grade F.

RILEY -490/5,249. Grade F.

NOACK 4,251/5,249. Grade B-.

CLARK 4,760/5,249. Grade A-.

The citizens must remain vigilant.

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