Thanks, as always, for checking in on the blog over the past year.
Life intruded somewhat at the end of the year, so posting slowed down a bit (okay, more than a bit), but we hope to get back to more regular posting this year as the City of Houston’s precarious financial condition becomes something that feckless municipal leaders (or those aspiring to lead, with municipal elections coming in the fall) can no longer ignore.
In some ways, as Neal Meyer’s post and John Williams’s fine article on Bob Lanier remind us, officials who emerge from the City’s November 2015 elections will be facing challenges similar to those that Houston’s last great mayor was able to resolve: deteriorating municipal finances, poor infrastructure maintenance and improvement, an unaccountable and irresponsible regional transit agency that has no clue what its core mission should be and has drifted towards the “Houtopianism” Lanier himself headed off many years ago, key public safety agencies that seem to be guided more by union preferences and adherence to outdated approaches than by Houston’s allegedly strong mayor (or other officials elected and entrusted with leadership responsibility by voters), and generally, a sense that many Houston leaders simply are not telling the truth about the state of the City.
We hope that those who aspire to lead Houston starting NEXT year will start talking soon about how they intend to address these and other challenges that await. Houstonians deserve better than insipid radio ads or efforts from a career politician to turn the mayoral election into his coronation. For our part, we’ll try to do a better job this year pointing out those aspiring leaders who ARE engaging these issues, proposing solutions, and treating voters seriously.