Conroe, January 15 – The Golden Hammer announced that it was giving Texas Monthly magazine its “Bum Steer” Award right back. The Golden Hammer Publisher Eric Yollick explained, “In 2000, TM gave a local group, the Republican Leadership Council, a ‘Bum Steer’ Award for their 1999 rating of the Montgomery County Commissioners Court as ‘too liberal’ and not Republican enough. Since that time, under the leadership of the all-Republican elected officials – one county judge and four commissioners – county government spending has exploded. I consider liberal media outlets, such as Texas Monthly, and, of course, County Commissioner Mike Meador, the primary enablers of the reckless government spending in our community. The Golden Hammer hereby gives Texas Monthly a ‘Bum Steer’ right back for enabling and condoning the un-Republican and blatant liberal behavior of the Montgomery County Judge and Commissioners.”

Texas Monthly’s “Bum Steer” cover, 2016.

In the January 2000 issue of Texas Monthly, the magazine presented its annual “Bum Steer” Awards, one of which went to the Republican Leadership Council (RLC), of which Yollick was the founder and first President. The Council numbered more than three thousand local members before Yollick left the organization to pursue other activities. Texas Monthly presented the “Bum Steer” to the RLC as follows:

“No Wonder They Disapproved. The ultraconservative Republican Leadership Council of Montgomery County rebuked the all-Republican commissioners’ court for voting ‘Republican’ only 34 percent of the time…”

At the time of the 2000 “Bum Steer” Awards, the Republican Party of Texas Platform contained specific provisions calling for reductions in government spending at the local, state, and federal levels, including a major Platform Plank entitled “5, 5, & 8 by 2008” calling for specific amounts of spending reductions by 2008. None of the spending reductions occurred. Montgomery County GOP Chairman Walter Wilkerson, Jr., and Congressman Kevin Brady (R-The Woodlands) endorsed the “5, 5 & 8 by 2008” Platform Plank, which had originated from precinct and senatorial district conventions in Montgomery County in 1998 and which Yollick had originally drafted.

County Commissioner Mike Meador, Precinct 1, accused the RLC’s calls for spending control “disruptive” in a discussion he had with RLC President Yollick and one of its board members immediately after the Republican State Convention in Fort Worth adopted the “5, 5, & 8 by 2008” Platform Plank on June 13, 1998.

The population of Montgomery County has grown by approximately eighty-four percent (84%) since 2000, from approximately 297,000 to 547,000, largely as a result of the growth of The Woodlands and other real estate developments. Meanwhile, Montgomery County government spending has exploded four hundred and twenty-eight percent (428%) primarily due to the decision of the County Judge, currently Craig Doyal, and the County Commissioners to approve massive spending increases each year to spend all revenues collected, as a result of Appraisal District valuation increases. County Attorney JD Lambright has diligently worked with Doyal and the County Commissioners to implement policies to hide spending increases, conflicts of interest, and nepotism from public view.

The County Judge and Commissioners work closely with the Appraisal District to ensure that tax dollars continue to increase in order to feed their enormous hunger for government spending. Two current County Commissioners, Meador and Charlie Riley, and one former County Commissioner, Ed Chance, comprise a majority of the Appraisal District board of directors.

Despite protests by Doyal and his Chief of Staff Jim Fredricks that the Montgomery Central Appraisal District (MCAD) is a separate entity from the County government, for approximately forty-eight (48) hours from Wednesday, January 11, to Friday, January 13, MCAD website users attempting to log on were directed to the Home Page of Montgomery County, www.mctx.org. Clearly, even the websites of the County government and MCAD are closely joined.

Yollick concluded, “I won’t say ‘I told you so back in 1998 that our county government was out of control and un-Republican,’ but…”



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