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Fort Bend County, At Large
By Cheryl Skinner

This column expresses the personal opinions/views of the writer. If you would like to express your opinions/views regarding the column, write a SIGNED letter to the editor. Name can be withheld by request with a valid day time phone number.


Commissioners are in Bastrop

If you are looking for a county commissioner this week, it may be hard to find one. They will be at the Hyatt Regency at the Lost Pines Resort in Bastrop for three days this week. No, they aren’t on a vacation (yeah, right)—they are attending a series of workshops on local issues.

The “educational workshop” is being sponsored by the Greater Fort Bend Economic Development Council. The agenda includes discussion on county freight and commuter rail, a session on the 80th Legislative Session, education, updates on the progress of the University of Houston, and lots of discussion on the food and beauty of the Texas Hill Country. No, the last two items aren’t on the agenda, but with such a really nice place to do county business, you can bet the commissioners and other officials will be enjoying this series of meetings.

It will probably be a lot cheaper than the usual Las Vegas or the recent Hawaii seminars and a lot more relaxing than the benches in the courtroom at the Travis Building. It just seems a tiny bit unfair that public officials don’t have the wherewithal to provide a media room for these special meetings, workshops and seminars.

Last year I suggested this very thing when a couple of the court members left for Hawaii. So far, I am assuming, this request is simply being studied. After all, if public officials think more clearly and have more productive sessions in a luxury hotel with all the amenities offered by the same, just think of how clear-headed the local media would be in such an environment.

I am sure all the reporters would be able to write glowing reports of the strenuous schedule and hard work our dedicated public officials are doing at various exotic venues. It would be informative to the public, most of whom think these representatives are just relaxing and enjoying another perk.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas

The word “Christmas” is back in. Last year, if you recall, some retailers and other entities attempted to do away with the Christmas season. Instead it was the “holiday season.” Apparently a few ill-advised, politically correct, advocates of “don’t offend anyone” determined that mentioning the name Christmas was offensive to some. What most of these politically correct numb nuts found out was that NOT mentioning Christmas was offensive to most, so it appears from the advertising campaigns this year that Christmas is back. That is refreshing to say the least.

The malls and other retail establishments in Fort Bend County looked like they were off to a bang up season this year. With virtually every conceivable type of store located here in the county, it is probably silly to mention “shop locally” as we once did years ago when “Mom and Pop” stores competed with large retail chains in Houston and elsewhere. Shopping locally is still important. The sales tax dollars generated locally go to providing the cities in Fort Bend County with funds that, in turn, allow them to provide better services to the citizens who pay the taxes and help the citizens keep a few extra dollars because they are not taxed for some of the services they are provided.

So, for the record, have a very merry Christmas and a happy holiday season, regardless of what type of traditions or religious beliefs you have. And, shop locally for convenience and support of the community. Don’t forget that many Mom and Pop stores still operate in the shadows of the big guys and places like Rosenberg’s Historical District offer unique shopping venues and a relaxed walk in the past.


Contact skinnerc1@ev1.net, if you would like to express your opinions/views regarding the column. Write a SIGNED letter to the editor with valid day time phone number--name can be withheld by request.

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   Last Update:  December 27, 2006