2006 in review
OK—I started to do one of those year in
review things that all media outlets do each year to take up
space and to allow reporters a day off for Christmas and New
Year celebrations. But as I reviewed my stories for the
year, I figured instead of 200 inches of copy, I could sum
it up right here.
Year in review: primary elections;
Congressman Tom DeLay chosen as Republican candidate; DeLay
announces he will retire someday; DeLay announces he will
probably retire in May or June; District 22 goes to court;
District 22 falls apart; DeLay finally makes it official;
District 22 falls apart—big time; Shelly whoever chosen as
write-in candidate; Lampson wins real election; Shelly goes
to Washington—for a couple of weeks.
In the meantime, residents of Richmond
fight jail noise; residents of Fresno fight landfill
expansion plans and prices for housing inmates out of county
rise. That and tons of crime captured the headlines
throughout the year. So, there it is in a nutshell.
With that said.....
With that detailed wrap-up now behind us,
I want to wish everyone a very happy and prosperous New
Year. Where has the time gone? It seems like yesterday we
were bringing in 2006 and here we are celebrating another
new year and another new beginning. This year promises to be
interesting and there will, most likely, be a lot of
fireworks as cities, the county and the school districts
decide on how to spend bond money or get more bonds approved
for various major projects. There is still the jail noise
issue, not to mention some of the finer points brought up by
neighbors who question the safety of a multi-story facility
should a fire break out where inmates are housed.
Harold Mathis noted that a courthouse
fire last week prompted the evacuation of the facility and
it was quite a while before citizens and employees were
allowed to return to the building. He asked how 800 plus
inmates (now) or 1800 inmates (once the tower is
constructed) could be safely and quickly evacuated in case
of a fire and where they would go while awaiting clearance.
I certainly can’t answer that one, but it is a good
The folks out in the Fresno area will, I
am sure, continue to fight the planned expansion of the
landfill. Their fight is somewhat of an uphill battle
because the landfill already exists, already has a permit to
operate and already has agreements with the major
governmental entities that pretty much stipulates they won’t
oppose any expansion plans.
While the stench of garbage is listed as
one of the concerns, the safety of the water and other
long-lasting environmental concerns should be the focus of
the state regulatory agency. One of the opponents pointed
out that it was only after the Fort Bend Star published a
story saying that the state had received only a handful of
complaints over the past years that suddenly letters of
complaint started popping up at the state’s website. It’s
funny how things like that happen.
I admire all of these citizens for
standing up for their beliefs, the safety of their
communities and the sanctity of their neighborhoods. They
may not win, but they certainly are making a difference.
Happy New Year to all and keep the
letters and information coming.