As you may have noticed recently, I haven’t been writing much about local El Paso politics. In regards to county issues, the children’s hospital continues to be burden upon the taxpayers. That will not change in the near future and therefore there is nothing more I can add to that dialog. Veronica Escobar and cohorts… Read More City Meetings Every Other Week is a Corruption Tool
All of you who have been following the San Jacinto Park debacle have been made to believe that the contractor on the project is at fault for the delays in the opening of the park. The city has been creating this notion going so far as to state that the contractor is being assessed a… Read More City Negligent on San Jacinto
City council yesterday discussed and approved a request for the city attorney to draft a change to the process by how city representatives put items on the agenda. Item 23.2 “Discussion and action to give direction to the City Attorney to develop a resolution changing the rules concerning placing an item on the agenda” was placed by Ann… Read More City Council Requires Three Representatives to Post Agenda Items
Politicians are known for contorting themselves into so many positions on a political issue that in no time they are so twisted out of shape that a pretzel looks straight compared to them. Last Tuesday, city council in their continued pandering for public attention once again took up the San Jacinto bathroom issue. As is… Read More The San Jacinto Bathroom
The recent public debacle between city council and the city attorney’s office led me to file open records requests asking for information for amounts paid to outside law firms for legal work for the city. As expected, the largest expenditure paid by the taxpayers to outside law firms involves the issue regarding emails and open… Read More City Payments to Outside Law Firms
As you probably already know, the recent questions about Sylvia Firth-Borunda’s employee evaluation is nothing more than a power struggle between Oscar Leeser and some members of city council. However, it is important to note that this is speculation at this point. We are forced to speculate because the city is notorious for keeping relevant… Read More City Attorney Caught in Power Struggle
The discussion on taxes and fees disguised as taxes have been the focus of community discussion the last few months as a result of the sobering fact that city and county revenues are not enough to pay for the public agenda that is being led by Veronica Escobar and cohorts. The city implemented a fee… Read More City Manager and Taxes
This City of El Paso issued a press release about an Appeals Court ruling on the pending case by Stephanie Townsend Allala in regards to emails that have not been released. Below is the press release. I have posted the court documents for your review. The links follow the press release. Press Release August 4,… Read More City Issues Press Release About Townsend-Allala Appeal
Attempting to circumvent processes usually results in errors. These errors can range from simple mistakes that can eventually rise all the way to criminality. The announcement of Tommy Gonzalez as a finalist in the search for El Paso’s next city manager has become embroiled in a comedy of errors bordering on legal chaos. Errors, especially… Read More Comedy of Errors: City Manager Appointment
The City announced earlier today the four finalists for the city manager position. Two are from El Paso and two are from Fort Worth. The two from El Paso are both current city employees. David Almonte is the current Deputy City Manager. The city’s Chief Financial Officer, Carmen Arietta-Candelaria is also a finalist for the… Read More City Manager Candidate Finalists 2014
How is it that those involved in the ballpark debacle seem to be able to land lucrative jobs in government work even after bungling their previous job? Last week, the city announced the appointment of Veronica Soto as the new Community Development Director. The city issued a press release announcing the appointment. I immediately posted… Read More Veronica Soto’s Appointment: Bungle One Job and Get Another?
One of things that has always bothered me about El Paso is the mentality that you have to be connected in order to remain in business. Professional business in El Paso is not about the best service or the best price rather it is about who you know and who’s wallet is being stuffed. Although… Read More Russell Vandenburg’s and TVO’s Condominiums In Foreclosure
UPDATE: (2:30am MT) I have now confirmed that the “direction” city council gave the City Attorney is to appeal to the 3rd Court of Appeals the judge’s order to retain jurisdiction over the Stephanie Townsend Allala’s case. The city’s action is only the second time an open records case is appealed in Texas, the first… Read More Stephanie Townsend Allala Email Update
It all started out as a simple attempt to confirm whether a rumor that Steve Ortega may have used city property to run his mayoral campaign was true or not. The sixty-three day odyssey turned into a search for an elusive picture of a city representative and the County Judge that when I finally got… Read More Is The City Hiding Public Records?
For many years now, Eddie Holguin has publicly complained that Joyce Wilson and her staff have provided incomplete or erroneous information to city representatives on action items before city council. My own recent experience with my open records requests has forced me to question whether city staff has purposely providing me the wrong information or… Read More Is Oscar Leeser Beginning to Question Joyce Wilson’s Sincerity?
I have been a critic of the local news media for too many years, more than I can count. Even with that, the latest malfeasance of the El Paso news media is such that I’m at a loss of words to express my disgust. Disgust is not even strong enough to describe the utter stomach-sickening… Read More The Malfeasance of the News Media
There has been a lot of activity on the ongoing email scandal between the city and Stephanie Townsend Allala. With the city’s sustained campaign of disinformation and the El Paso Times continued journalism dysfunction I thought it important to set the record straight on a few issues and fill in some blanks. First and foremost… Read More The Latest on the Email Scandal
As much as El Paso’s city government tries to create the illusion that it’s all good, the fact is that; “El Paso.It’s Not all good”. On one hand we are led to believe that the city is transparent and releasing all of the emails as requested by citizen activists, and then just as quick we… Read More Email Scandal: It’s Not All Good
As usual, the local English media does not completely inform the community about the ongoing issues at city hall. Even issues that are controversial and important to the community go unreported because the local reporters are too lazy to sit through the city representatives’ meeting to properly inform the taxpayers. Last Tuesday, September 10, 2013,… Read More Another Example of El Paso News Media Incompetence
I have been writing consistently about the people who are driving public policy in El Paso and how they have been relying on various levels of useful idiots to manipulate public perception with the help of an incompetent news media. The political undercurrent they create is designed to manipulate the electorate into voting into office those who… Read More The Motives of Useful Idiot David Karlsruher
As you all know the city was finally successful in selling the ballpark bonds. The ballpark is also under construction. What you may not know is, as they say; the rest of the story. There are two reasons for this; the first is the inability of the El Paso Times to properly and effectively keep… Read More The El Paso Baseball Fiasco Bonds: The Rest of the Story
As with all litigation, it is common practice for all involved parties to keep publicity of the ongoing events as quiet as possible in order to retain the upper hand in the proceedings. It is therefore difficult to discern what exactly the next step is in regards to the ongoing battle between the city and… Read More Email Gate: More to Come?
After an approximate one and a half hour executive session, city council voted unanimously to release the previously unreleased emails that were collected pursuant to Stephanie Townsend Allala’s open records request. They also voted to have the Public Information Officer formally request that those current, and immediate past city representatives that have not already given… Read More City Council Releases Emails and Asks Ortega For His Emails
Today, city council is once again expected to revisit the continued saga of their refusal to release the emails requested by Stephanie Townsend Allala. As is normal for the city, who continues to ignore the will of the voters, the session will both be behind closed doors, in Executive Session, and it will cost the… Read More City Council Revisits the Emails and Here’s What Standard & Poor’s Thinks of the El Paso Ballpark Bonds
As you will recall, in a previous post I attempted to dissect the city’s bond documents called the “Preliminary Official Statement”. This document, basically, is a loan document explaining to the investors how they will be paid by the city. As you will also remember, the city had to go back to city council and… Read More City Tells Investors It Needs to Offset HOT Tax and Team Payments Shortfalls
Yesterday, city council discussed the ongoing withholding of emails in executive session. As you may remember, the city, under the John Cook administration decided to sue the Texas Attorney General’s office because the State Attorney had directed the city to release the emails under the open records law as requested by Stephanie Townsend Allala. For… Read More Update on Email Gate
According to the city council agenda for Tuesday August 6, 2013, the city representatives are expected to discuss the city’s lawsuit against Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott. Discussion item EX-5, under the Executive Session portion was put on by the city attorney’s office. Although there is no back up material or more information on this… Read More Email Disclosure Back on Agenda
Mona, a member of the Quality of Life Voters for Democracy group, forwarded me the following three email exchanges between herself and John Cook. She contacted me via the El Paso News Facebook page after reading the John Cook open records requests that I posted last week. As you read these three email exchanges you… Read More New Batch of John Cook Emails Show More Uncertainty Over Ballpark Deal
Later today, city council is expected to discuss the status of the lawsuit the City of El Paso filed against the Texas Attorney General’s Office after it opined that the city should release the private emails requested by Stephanie Townsend Allala and others. There is no question that the Chucoleaks website has provided enlightening information… Read More Open Records Confusion and is the City About to Release the Private Emails?
Yesterday’s city council meeting was nothing more than an exercise in bureaucratic smoke-and-mirrors by Oscar Leeser and Joyce Wilson. As excited as many were about the two items; 1A and 1B, in the Additions to the Agenda that basically added Oscar Leeser to the workflow in authorizing additional rental, and or purchases for city hall… Read More Mayor Leeser: Smoke and Mirrors
The voters have clearly spoken and given Oscar Leeser a mandate. Although it is extremely difficult to jump from being a candidate to actually assuming office, unfortunately the new administration has to immediately take action to both allay the fears of the electorate and restore trust in the city government. As difficult as it may… Read More Three Items for the New City Council
I have been busy finalizing my book; “NarcoWar; the Rise and Fall of the Mexican Cartels” which is scheduled to come out next month and therefore I have been neglecting my blog. But unfortunately for my friends in El Paso the corruption continues to perpetuate across the city rather than it being eradicated. So, although… Read More Veronica Escobar and Joyce Wilson further exemplifies why corruption continues to be rampant in El Paso
by Gene Pando, El Paso Metro The City of Socorro is slated to vote on a new Charter on November 6, 2001. The Charter is framed on the City of El Paso charter with important differences. Socorro’s City Charter calls for a City Manager. While some consider this an important move forward, the charter also… Read More City of Socorro to Vote on Charter