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This One is a Doozy
This morning I stumbled across a whopper *business* deal coming from Harris county’s commissioners’ court transcripts. I must say, it is quite phenomenal how greedy and emboldened these crooks are in my county. Though, I guess when you are holding the DA’s office budget hostage, control the criminal court judges, alongside some of our police, and the media. You can just do whatever you want.
In April 2020 (a month after covid hit our county) It appears that Goldman Sachs and some lawyers were in talks with the Democrat Commissioners and possibly Judge Hidalgo over the toll road financial *restructuring* in our city. For some strange reason, the Republican commissioners were left out of these talks, intentionally. I’m sure the Republicans being left out of the talks had nothing to do with them possibly wanting to involve the public about this enormous transaction (at the time) of our toll roads. These talks eventually led to a controversial plan that shifted the toll road system funds into county coffers and circumvented original restrictions on how tollway revenues may be used. It ended up becoming the largest transaction our county ever saw, though barely anyone knows about it. Crazy, right? It only came out to be 2.7 billion dollars.
If you’re not privy, the commissioner’s court agenda is normally 40 pages long and is dropped on a Friday afternoon with a ballpark of 400 requests for proposals (RFPs) on them. The following Tuesday morning, commissioners’ court is held to vote on all of the RFP agenda items. You’d need a small army to go through the entire agenda in time, but unfortunately for the 2 Republican commissioners, they have no army, so their staff has to suffer through the weekend to make sure all the agenda items are on the up-and-up. In which, I can tell you, they barely are. Therefore, making these double-dealing democrats’ dreams come true.
The commissioners normally try to find the RFPs which are the worst of the worst in order to attempt to reduce the reckless spending occurring by the counties democrats. For example, the vaccine outreach contract for 11 million to a one-person company. That one got canceled after Lina Hidalgo was busted for it.
Here is a tiny snippet from the former County Commissioner Raddack busted the democrats for holding back-office meetings and not involving the Republicans. You should read further, it’s quite hilarious.
- LINA HIDALGO: OPPOSED?
>> Commissioner Raddack JUDGE, I WAS GOING TO CONTINUE ALONG THIS LINE.
IS PETER STILL LISTENING? MR. SWORD WE HAVE ON THE AGENDA -- THIS IS THE COVID THING, BUT WE ARE DEALING WITH TOLL ROAD FINANCE.
I WOULD LIKE TO MAKE A COMMENT IF I MAY, MR. SWORD.
>> I'M FINE WITH THE COMMENT.
>> PETER, ARE YOU THERE?
>> I AM, SIR.
>> WOULD YOU INFORM THE COURT, PLEASE, ABOUT THE SECRET MEETINGS THAT YOU HAVE BEEN HAVING IN REFERENCE TO SOME TYPE OF REFINANCE OR SALE THAT WAS GOING ON THAT HAS NOT BEEN SHARED WITH ME, BUT I THINK IT HAS BEEN SHARED WITH SOME MEMBERS OF THE COURT DEALING WITH **GOLDMAN SACHS AND OTHER INDIVIDUALS AND LAWYERS** THAT WORK WITH THE TOLL ROAD AND CONTRACT.
CAN YOU EXPLAIN TO ME WHAT YOU ARE DOING?
>> COMMISSIONER, I WOULD NOT CHARACTERIZE IT AS MEETINGS -- AS SECRET MEETINGS.
I HAVE BEEN ON THREE PHONE CALLS TRYING TO FORMULATE A *PLAN* THAT COULD BE PRESENTED
TO COMMISSIONER'S COURT ON REFINANCING ACTIVITIES FOR THE TOLL ROAD AS WELL AS FORMULATING A *PLAN* FOR HOW THE TOLL ROAD CAN HELP THE COUNTY BETTER FINANCIALLY.
AND WHAT HAS BEEN PRESENTED ON THREE PHONE CALLS IS A CONCEPT.
>> THERE ARE SOME MEMBERS OF COMMISSIONER'S COURT THAT THIS HAS BEEN DISCUSSED WITH, CORRECT?
>> THAT IS CORRECT.
>> STEVE RADACK: OBVIOUSLY -- I MEAN I FOR ONE -- NO ONE SAID A WORD TO ME.
I DON'T KNOW IF THEY TOLD THE COUNTY JUDGE.
I DON'T BELIEVE THEY TOLD COMMISSIONER CAGLE.
JACK CAGLE: THEY DID NOT.
STEVE WELL SOME >> STEVE RADACK: SOME PEOPLE KNOW ABOUT IT AND SOME PEOPLE DON'T.
AND YES, PETER KEY, SOME PEOPLE WERE **TOLD NOT TO TALK ABOUT THIS**.
WHEN PEOPLE ARE TOLD NOT TO TALK ABOUT SOMETHING IT MEANS IT IS SEE -- SECRET SO I WILL TAKISH -- TAKE ISSUE WITH YOU ON THAT.
MY POINT IS WHY WASN'T THIS SHARED PUBLICLY? OBVIOUSLY THERE IS GOING TO BE TREMENDOUS AMOUNTS, TENS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS OF FEES ATTACHED TO WHAT YOU ALL ARE TALKING ABOUT, AND I WANT TO KNOW WHY? WHY HAS THIS GONE ON WITHOUT PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE OR EVEN BEING SHARED WITH MEMBERS OF COMMISSIONER'S COURT.
>> WHAT HAS BEEN SHARED WITH ME IS A CONCEPT, COMMISSIONER AND WHAT NEEDS TO BE FORMULATED FOR COMMISSIONER'S COURT IS A PLAN VETTED BY COUNTY STAFF.
WE ARE STILL IN THE *PROCESS* OF WORKING THROUGH NUMBERS TO EVEN SEE IF SUCH A PLAN WAS FORMULATED FOR COURT.
I TAKE ISSUE WITH THE ASPECT OF SECRET MEETINGS.
THIS IS A CONCEPT THAT WAS GIVEN TO US AND WE ARE WORKING THROUGH IT.
>> STEVE RADACK: I TALKED TO BOB COLLEAGUE LAST NIGHT AND I BELIEVE IT IS **MORE THAN A CONCEPT.
HE SAID I HAVEN'T TALKED TO EVERYBODY ABOUT IT AND I WAS INQUIRING WHY, BUT WHEN YOU ARE DEALING WITH SOMETHING LIKE THIS, THIS SIGNIFICANCE, THIS IS PATHETIC THAT CERTAIN COMPANIES ARE INVOLVED IN THIS.
COMPANIES ARE INVOLVED IN THIS THAT STAND TO MAKE A TREMENDOUS AMOUNT OF MONEY.
THAT'S MORE THAN A CONCEPT WHEN THIS IS NOT BEING SHARED PUBLICLY.
I’ll be investigating this transaction further in order to figure out where the hell the revenue is going. It does not make much sense to me that our county is digging into the Public Improvement Contingency funds for COVID expenditures, when they have a treasure trove of revenue coming in from our toll roads. It truly is frightening to me that this kind of stuff is happening right under our noses and barely anyone I know seems to be aware of it.
Here is the hyperlink for the commissioner’s court session: Link
A few Q’s and Facts about this business deal:
They sold it under the pretense to fund covid expenditures, but they have only been using our PIC funds. Why?
They were clearly in talks long before COVID hit our county, this was no small deal. How would they have known that our country would have such low-interest rates?
Why did Lina Hidalgo and the Democrats rush this contract through? Was it to shield the public from the shadiness of this deal?
They also claimed they needed to rush the vote through because interest rates “were so low” yet, the Federal Reserve said rates would stay this way for a while.
They knew that less money would be spent on infrastructure, which our county badly needs. Why would they do that?