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Posts published in “Day: September 17, 2019

Community voices concern about Concrete Plant at TCEQ Hearing

State Representative Armando Walle gave welcoming remarks, and set the tone for a constructive, informative meeting. At left are two representatives of the Rocket Materials LLC company wanting to build the concrete batch plant; at right are two reviewers from the TCEQ, and the TCEQ facilitator Diana Avalos stands beside Walle.

East Aldine residents turned out in large numbers last Monday night, to voice their concerns over a concrete batch plant that is proposed for a site at 914 Pinafore Lane, near East Hardy frontage road.

The meeting was an official hearing by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, and run by their facilitator, Diana Avalos. The meeting was held at BakerRipley, and lasted over an hour.

Opening comments were made by the facilitator, and State Representative Armando Walle. Walle said that although he wasn’t against small businesses, that a concrete plant emits particulate materials into the air, and has heavy truck traffic on the surrounding roads.

The comments started out with questions and answers, but as the meeting continued the residents became more expressive of their concerns and displeasure that the company wanted to locate in Aldine.

Steve Adame spoke about the dangers of heavy, slow moving trucks exiting onto East Hardy, and concrete spills on the roads and overpasses in the area, which no one seems responsible for.

In a surprising revelation that was an answer to Adame’s comment, the permit reviewer for TCEQ, Don Nelon, stated that he was only allowed to review the application for air quality, and not for traffic problems or water pollution.

METRO $3.5 Billion Bond on November Ballot

METROnext includes a new type of vehicle, a BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) that will drive on dedicated roadways, such as this artist’s view of a development on Post Oak Road in the Galleria.

HOUSTON – Moving to the Future, a political action committee formed to pass the METRO Proposition on the November 2019 ballot, launched its campaign today. Carrin Patman, chair of the Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County (METRO), said:

“The METRO Proposition is a bold new plan for sustainable transit solutions that will provide more transportation choices for more people, connecting them to jobs, education and healthcare – all while improving our economy, environment, quality of life, and competitiveness with other urban areas.”

The METRO Proposition provides funding to implement the METRONext Moving Forward Plan, which increases high-capacity rapid transit services, including:

– Providing more than $4 billion over 20 years to fix our streets and sidewalks

– Extending existing light rail lines and adding a light rail line to Hobby Airport

– Expanding park & rides and commuter service on most major freeways

– Improving service on 260 miles of bus routes

– Creating new Metro Rapid high-speed bus lines which have many of the same advantages as rail

The funds would be provided by the sale of up to $3.5 billion in bonds over 20 years with no new taxes. METRO would also apply for federal matching funds – up to an additional $3.5 billion – to increase METRO’s investment to a potential $7 billion for transit improvements.

Walle appointed to state School safety committee

Armando Walle

Speaker Bonnen Appoints 13 Members to House Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety

AUSTIN, Texas – Speaker Dennis Bonnen today appointed 13 members of the Texas House of Representatives to serve on the newly-formed Select Committee on Mass Violence Prevention and Community Safety. The House Select Committee was formed in response to the recent tragedies in El Paso, Midland, and Odessa, and will be tasked with studying and recommending effective legislative solutions and other measures to help prevent mass violence and improve community safety in Texas.

“Words alone will not deliver the bold solutions Texas needs in order to defeat the violence that has become far too commonplace in our state,” said Speaker Bonnen. “The Texas House is putting words into action by forming this committee, and it will be well-served by the range of backgrounds, skillsets, and expertise these particular members provide. While the charges before this committee will be no simple undertaking, their importance cannot be overstated. I am grateful for the service of each of these members and know their readiness to take on the challenging work before them will translate into thoughtful, life-saving solutions for the State of Texas.”

The following members have been appointed by Speaker Bonnen to the select committee:

Castlewood hears plans for flood mitigation

A FULL HOUSE of Castlewood Residents attended the Flood District’s meeting last Tuesday, held at the offices of the East Aldine District.

Harris County Flood Control District and the Harris County Engineering Department have partnered to implement some of the flood control projects included in last year’s $2.5 Billion bond program.

As part of the process, they held an informational meeting with the Castlewood Civic Club last Tuesday, September 10th. The meeting at the offices of the East Aldine District were at full capacity, as residents are very interested in what these projects might accomplish to reduce future flooding in their area.

The civic club president, Connie Esparza, welcomed the HCFCD and the HCED representatives, including Marcus Baskin the project manager of the HC Engineering Department, and Melvin Spinks, consultant with CivilTech Engineering, Inc.

The program consisted of a presentation of the study, a video of the general overview of the Harris County Engineering Department, and then an Open House for comments and interaction with the project team and local residents.

ENGINEER’S DRAWINGS presented at the Castlewood meeting indicated the existing drainage conditions at the top, with asphalt paved roads and ditches used to remove flood water, and the new proposal at the bottom, of a wider concrete street and a deep concrete box drainage culvert below the surface.