Image: Elitist Montgomery County Judge Craig Doyal made one of the most offensive comments ever uttered in a Commissioners Court meeting on Tuesday, February 27, 2018, which revealed utter carelessness about the human suffering and families’ losses of property during Tropical Storm Harvey in 2017. Doyal goal as County Judge is to bring as much money into the County government’s coffers which would explain why he’s raised taxes as much as he has while in office.
Conroe, February 28 – To the hushed shock of the audience in the Montgomery County Commissioners Courtroom, County Judge Craig Doyal, a consummate elitist, uttered one of the most insensitive and downright cruel comments ever during a Commissioners Court meeting. Doyal made clear that his priority as far as the Harvey storm, which caused the loss of life in this community, destroyed thousands of homes, and caused billions of dollars of property damage, was making sure that the County government profited financially from the disaster.
“Did Hurricane Harvey in the end with that insurance settlement help us a little bit?” Doyal asked an incredulous Sheriff Rand Henderson who turned red-faced when the disgusting words came out of Doyal during the Tuesday, February 27, 2018, Commissioners Court meeting.
Tropical Storm Harvey, and the San Jacinto River Authority’s terrible management of water releases from the Lake Conroe Dam on August 31, 2017, and the days thereafter, resulted in the loss of at least three Montgomery County lives, flooding destruction of more than 5,000 homes downstream, flooding and destruction of hundreds of homes upstream of the Lake Conroe Dam as well due to SJRA’s poor management of Lake Conroe water levels, and the loss of several billion dollars in property damage to residences and commercial properties. Those losses only cover Montgomery County and do not include additional communities farther downstream.
Doyal’s focus, however, was whether the County government was able to bring in more money to support the massive government spending increase over which Doyal and Precinct 2 County Commissioner Charlie Riley have presided.
Sheriff Henderson made a presentation to the Commissioners Court about a Motorola communications tower the County has under construction for this community’s law enforcement and emergency services. The total cost of the Motorola tower project is set at $2,213,104.00. The insurance settlement, according to Sheriff’s Office Finance Director Carol Thompson and Montgomery County Auditor Phyllis Martin, will be approximately $2,087,000.00. Henderson requested Commissioners Court funding for the shortfall, so the Sheriff’s Office could proceed with the completion of the tower construction.
The tower construction is occurring on leased land from a subsidiary of Johnson Development, the real estate developer of Woodforest and Grand Central Park.
The Sheriff explained that the construction is ongoing but “it got wacked by Harvey.” He requested that the Commissioners Court fund the shortfall in the construction costs which aren’t covering the full replacement cost of the tower construction which had occurred before the storm. The Commissioners Court voted to fund the shortfall from the County’s capital improvements funds.
After the Commissioners Court vote on the matter, Doyal made his offensive comment, “Did Hurricane Harvey in the end with that insurance settlement help us a little bit?”
Sheriff Henderson briefly repeated that the insurance didn’t cover the full replacement cost but concluded his response, “Harvey didn’t help anything or anybody.”
Republican leader John Wertz, who is Chairman of Republican Precinct 69, later commented during the meeting, “I have to admit, Judge, that I was a little puzzled by your comment to Sheriff Henderson about whether Hurricane Harvey helped Montgomery County.”