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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."


 

Just in time for something....I noticed that I got a “legislative update” from my state representative Charlie Howard this week. Charlie mailed this six-page epistle at my (taxpayer’s) expense to me to tell me what happened in the last legislative session, which ended on May 28. So Charlie has had four whole months to send this to me, but he waits until he gets an opponent before he mails it out. That’s what I call “Johnny on the spot with the news!”

If Charlie is this quick with the answers to my legislative questions, one can almost wonder if the session, which only lasts from January to May, is almost over before Charlie can get back to any of us to help us with our problems.

Coming out swinging.....Republican County Chairman Gary Gillen held a party last week where he announced his intention to run for re-election as party chair.

And he didn’t do it mildly.

Gillen recalled the antics of a small group of Republicans to take over the local party. Gillen said that when he ran for party chair, he ran to fight Democrats, but seems to spend all of his time and energy fighting a small, vocal group of Republicans who have an agenda different from the rest of the party.

He told how his attempts to have a vice-chairman of the party to help him were stymied. In his own words: “Any chairman of any organization should be able to pick his own vice-chair and should not be forced to accept his former opponent as his partner in leadership. A chairman should be able to trust his vice-chair and how can you trust the very person who ran against you for election? But that’s exactly what they did.

"They forced my former opponent on me. And she then went on to sue me personally, and is now the Treasurer of my current opponent’s campaign.”

Gillen was talking about Linda Howell, who was not even a precinct chair, who lost the election to him, had herself appointed as precinct chair, then was foisted on Gillen as his second in command.

Gillen also told how these so-called Republicans didn’t want to combine any county voting precincts in order to save money. Gillen told how the Elections Administrator came out with a plan to reduce the number of voting precincts through consolidation.

According to Gillen, when it was presented to Commissioner’s Court, it was clear to him that this idea followed the true conservative philosophy of reduced government when not needed. He said the plan could have saved the taxpayers some $300,000 through this consolidation but instead, this little group and their chosen elected officials blocked the effort and cost taxpayer’s money. Gillen said it was in order for six of their precinct chairs to retain their title for one additional month. “They have placed their own agendas ahead of those of the taxpayers,” he said.

Gary said he didn’t want to see happen in Fort Bend what has recently happened in Dallas where Dallas County lost every Republican judge on the ballot. He wants to elect Republicans, and wants to stay in office to continue to do just that.

After the party, I got a sweet little note from Gary which thanked me for my donation and said, “I know you feel I should give up on the Party, but there are some really good people who deserve better than they are getting and for them I have to stay and fight.”

And then there were the protestors.....You’ve probably read about this before right here in these pages, but a funny thing happened when I was at the courthouse last week.

A group of protesting roofers were picketing and asking District Attorney John Healey to either bring them to trial or dismiss their case. You may have even seen them on Channel 11.

The protestors were former Holden Roofing employees who were indicted for such things as money laundering and engaging in a criminal conspiracy. They were accused of ordering extra shingles when they worked for Holden, then stashing them away and using the shingles for their own roofing company which they started after quitting Holden.

Well, come to find out, Mr. Holden made a large donation to the campaign of Assistant District Attorney Mike Elliott’s wife, Rebecca Elliott, who was running for District Clerk. Shortly after, ADA Elliott escorted Holden to Rosenberg Police department to make a complaint, then allegedly personally presented the case to the grand jury.

After the roofers hired attorneys and raised a ruckus, DA John Healey removed Elliott from the case and Rosenberg took another look at the case.

Rosenberg police decided there wasn’t much to it, but still the District Attorney has refused to dismiss the cases.

There’s just something nasty there.

But then there’s always something nasty going on at that courthouse, including one judge’s wife who just had to have a sudden job in the district clerk’s office. Of all the jobs available in that courthouse, why did she have to go to work for a department so closely associated with the judicial branch? Maybe she has to keep her eye on him.

But back to the Holden Roofing situation. I usually refer to things like that as “you may beat the rap, but you can’t beat the ride.” In other words, all those guys had to hire attorneys to represent them in criminal matters, so while they may not have done anything wrong except quit Holden’s employ, they’ve certainly had to spend a lot of money defending themselves.

 

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:  October 10, 2007