As the elected Controller, Chris Brown is Houston’s financial watchdog – a watchdog that apparently no one at City Hall was watching very closely.
Documents obtained by FOX 26 News indicate a local developer who obtained a low interest, $3.5 million loan through the City’s Housing and Community Development Department used the proceeds to purchase Commerce Street property owned by Brown.
It was a big payday for Brown, but also a big potential problem because the City’s “financial watchdog” never disclosed to City Council he stood to profit from the publicly funded deal.
So, let me get this straight. The guy vetting a low interest loan of taxpayer money gets an above appraisal price on a piece of property he owned by selling it to the person that borrowed said taxpayer money. Naw, no conflict there boss! Sheesh.
But wait, he says! I got Sylvester Turner’s appointed City Attorney to approve the deal!
Can’t make this stuff up, folks.
Brown’s opponent in the November election, Orlando Sanchez, was quick to offer a solution to the current system whereby crooked mayors appoint crony people to “serve” as City Attorney.
October 10, 2019
Orlando Sanchez calls for change in City Charter
In light of news reports of City of Houston City Controller Chris Brown’s shady real estate deal and his claim that the City Attorney approved it, candidate Orlando Sanchez has called for a change to the City Charter, requiring that the City Attorney be elected, rather than appointed by the Mayor.
“It is clear that the people need an attorney down at City Hall working in their best interest, not the Mayor’s and City Controller’s”, said Sanchez. “To get a rubber stamp approval from Administration insiders only adds to the distrust voters have in our leaders”, he added.
Harris County already has a County Attorney that is elected. That individual answers directly to the people. Houstonians deserve the same representation to protect against this corruption that has come to light.
Normally I would be against adding another elected position but in this case, it sounds like a good idea. When you have the shenanigans going on in government like the City of Houston does under Slyvester Turner (please click that link for a look), someone needs oversight.