Are Fort Bend County mayors and councilmembers meeting in violation of the Texas Open Meetings Act? They meet regularly in various sites across Fort Bend County. Do they discuss, supervise and control public business while being supported in whole or in part with public funds? Oh, and unless you’re a mayor, city councilmember of city secretary in Fort Bend County, your attendance is not welcome. “They” are the Fort Bend County Mayor & Council Association.
What governmental bodies are members of the FBCMCA?
FBCMCA RES No. 15-01 re SB 182
According to publicly available documents, the Fort Bend County Mayor & Council Association members are the Fort Bend County cities of Arcola, Beasley, Fulshear, Katy, Kendleton, Meadows Place, Missouri City, Needville, Orchard, Pleak, Richmond, Rosenberg, Simonton, Stafford, Sugar Land, Town of Thompsons, Village of Fairchilds, Weston Lakes and Fort Bend County Judge & Commissioners.
Where & how frequently did the FBCMCA members meet last year?
An examination of records for the year 2015 revealed they planned to meet on eight occasions that year in the City Center at Quail Valley, the Meadows Place Community Center, the Kendleton Church of God Multipurpose Building, the Arcola Community Center, Constellation Field, the Stafford Center, the Weston Lakes Country Club, and the Fort Bend County Fairgrounds.
06 – Fort Bend County Mayors Council As…5th – Constellation Field_Redacted.pdf
What public business might they have discussed, supervised or controlled?
Everything from an update on emergency management from the Fort Bend County Office of Emergency Management to criminal and mental health issues, USDA rural development programs, passenger rail and the development of the former Texas Instruments property in Stafford, and a presentation on drones.
07 – FBCMCA MEETING_Redacted.pdf
There was also a nice soiree at Constellation Field where members were invited to watch a game between the Sugar Land Skeeters and the Long Island Ducks plus a pre-Fort Bend County Fair social at the Fort Bend County Fairgrounds.
Are meetings of the FBCMA open to the public?
I made a request with Missouri City to be added to the distribution list so I might receive notifications of future meetings of the FBCMCA and received the written response below:
“you must be a Mayor, City Councilmember or City Secretary in Fort Bend County. Therefore, the FBCMCA will be unable to fulfill your request”
However an examination of the email distribution list for FBCMCA meeting notifications found the Fort Bend ISD Superintendent, members of the Greater Fort Bend Economic Development Council, State Rep. Alma Allen, State Senator Joan Huffman’s assistant, State Senator Lois Kohlhorst’s assistant, Congressman Pete Olson’s assistant and State Reps. Ron Reynolds, John Zerwas, Phil Stephenson, Rick Miller were invited to the pre-Fort Bend County Fair event and Dominga Salazar of the FBISD Superintendent’s office was invited to the Skeeters/ Ducks game at Constellation Field.
While we’re on the subject of secret meetings’ I came across this video.
How did Sugar Land mayoral candidate Joe Zimmerman know to testify before the Senate Finance Committee AGAINST Senate Bill 182 ? Yours truly submitted an open records request to the City of Sugar Land for this exact information and as has happened previously, the COSL is stonewalling.
Guess I’ve been placed on double-secret probation.
Oops, this could be awkward.
Seems that minutes of this Harris County Republican Party meeting reflect support FOR Senate Bill 182!