Civil Affairs: Houston issues

CIVIL AFFAIRS

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This past Thursday, I was lucky enough to be standing in the press box at the Wortham Center to watch Annise Parker’s third and final inauguration. I would be remiss if I did not note that other officeholders –namely City Controller Ronald Green– also took their oaths, but considering how strong the Mayor in Houston is, it truly is a non-issue.

The Mayor, in this case Parker, unilaterally sets the agenda and determines when to vote on things. She also has extremely broad powers to take any number of executive actions on her own. We saw this recently with the issue of full benefits to the same-sex spouses of City employees. We have also seen Parker continue to act more decisively in enacting major ordinances and presiding over the Council with an iron fist.

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