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Bev's Burner
Some's Hot, Some's Not 

By B.K. Carter

"Bev Carter is the owner/publisher of the Fort Bend Star, winner of numerous state and national awards. She has been a voice of Fort Bend's largest circulated newspaper for 30 years."


 

They still don’t get it.....Several speakers at Monday night's Missouri City Council meeting took up the issue of the city buying Quail Valley Country Club as a park and a public golf course. They complained that the city had done nothing for their area, specifically businesses along FM 2234 and areas east of that roadway. They seem to forget that the city has long spent money hiring economic development staff to entice businesses to that area.

And they don’t get the fact that if the country club is allowed to close with no buyer in the future, everyone’s taxes, including their own, will increase substantially because the over 5,000 homes in Quail Valley will decrease in value.

It’s like this: the assessed value of Missouri City is, say, $100, and that $100 yields $10 in tax revenue to run the city, including police and fire protection.

But the values drop to $75, although the city still needs the same $10 because it still has the same number of citizens to protect with police and fire safety.

THEN the taxes have to increase on that $75 to raise the $10. Everyone’s taxes--taxes on houses in Hunter’s Glen, Quail Green West, Hunter’s Park, etc. will have to increase.

If the city purchases the country club to use as a park and public golf course, taxes may have to be increased until the public golf club could start paying most of its way.

It’s not like the citizens of Quail Valley and the members of the Quail Valley Country Club are getting a free ride. Those country club memberships will be null and void. Those homes on the golf course will lose some of their cachet as the private country club becomes a public golf course.

Before the end of the evening, the complainers about the lack of city interest in their area on FM 2234 and east, were joined by someone who wanted the city to do something about Murphy Road, complaining that it was stagnant also.

Hey, people, I’ve got some news for you. Except for Sugar Land/Highway 6 and on U.S. 59 at 99, most of the rest of Fort Bend is not developing as fast either. One might even say it is “stagnant.” There’s little the city can do about it. Those other areas are “hot” right now.

One thing the city can do is to make sure that its premier facility, the golf course, stays open and even becomes a magnet for people to come to Missouri City. The city buying the course as a public park is something that will benefit all the citizens of Missouri City, not just the few who live on the golf course.

Just the rumor about the closing of the course has caused a decrease in home prices in Missouri City in recent months. I know, because I have a house for sale there and it’s not on the golf course. Yet the uncertainty about the club has the home market in Quail Valley jittery.

So wake up and get over it. The city is not trying to buy a country club for a privileged few. It is trying to buy a public park for everyone--a park that will keep up the values of the city. There are few reasons to come to Missouri City unless you live there. An excellent public golf course is a reason.

It’s laughable.....FBISD trustee Stan Magee complaining about the board ignoring the Texas Open Meetings Act is a joke when one considers the number of times the fearsome four--i.e. Magee, Laurie Caldwell, and former board members Lisa Rickert and Ken Bryant had private meetings without benefit of an open meeting.

GrandStaning Stan also complains that district personnel should get larger raises. Now that is the prime example of why one should not elect board members who are married to district personnel. Stan’s wife still teaches so any nickel the teachers get is a nickel in Stan’s pocket. Remember that every time GrandStaning Stan tries to eke out another raise.

Please, somebody run against this fool!

Another fool.....The reason Stan was complaining was that the board had met in executive session with its attorneys to set policy about the “new” Charlie Howard law that promises anti-discrimination religious freedom in our schools.

I put quote marks around “new” because it has been my experience that students have always been free to express their religious beliefs in the school to other students. For example, my granddaughter, who is of the same faith as Charlie, wears a cross. No one has ever told her to take that off. Now if she had gotten on the loudspeaker and preached a little sermon about the joys of being Baptist, I think someone would have stopped her. They still will--even with this “new” bill.

Christian clubs could and did meet at the school, long before this “new” bill.

So while our legislature was grappling with taxes, budgets, CHIPS, etc. Charlie was busy lining up support for a bill that was unnecessary to begin with. But it certainly played to his base.

We have been singularly unsuccessful in finding someone to run for Charlie’s state representative seat. No one wants it except Charlie, who enjoys pushing his narrow agenda of bible and home schooling.

It doesn’t pay well and no one can afford to take off several months every other year.

So I guess we are just stuck with Charlie until Andy Meyers can retire from the county. Then he can run for Charlie’s seat and build up a large state retirement there.

State representatives can get state retirement after only a few years, and it is based on the salary (as many offices are) of state district judges.

There’s nothing like sucking on two public teats.

Sorry, I’m in the mood this week of thinking the whole human race is foolish. I see too many examples of it every day and usually it doesn’t bother me that much. Maybe I’ve been in the newspaper business too long.

 

Contact bkcstar@earthlink.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:  September 27, 2007