Rebuild Houston

Rebuild Houston Legally DEAD after Court Ruling

Other Mayoral Candidates Continue to Support Voided Funding Mechanism

Businessman and mayoral candidate Bill King joined State Senator Paul Bettencourt, Council Member Michael Kubosh, businessman Joe Slovacek, and attorney Andy Taylor on Thursday to declare Rebuild Houston legally dead following an unprecedented ruling that voided the results of the 2010 election that created the program.

King’s statement follows, and you can watch it here.

“While the Rebuild Houston program was found to be misleading in a court of law today, it was frankly found that in the court of public opinion long ago,” King said. “All during this campaign I have asked people ‘After five years paying an additional $100 million, are your streets and drainage any better than they were five years ago?’ I have yet to find a single person that thinks that is the case. Look, I don’t want to mislead anyone. It costs money to do infrastructure. We are going to have to find a revenue stream to do this. But it needs to be one that is fully transparent, where the voters decide how much we’re going to spend, and what projects we’re going to spend it on — not some revenue stream the administration can use to try to balance the budget. By the way, there are now 550 full-time employees paid out of the dedicated street and drainage fund. It needs to be transparent. The voters should decide what the projects will be, and not decided — literally — in the basement of City Hall by a bunch of City Hall insiders and bureaucrats. We’ve got to get back to basics. We need to get out of the courtroom, and we need to get our streets fixed.”

Fox 26 led both their 5 pm and 9 pm news with a story on the impact of the ruling, which Senator Bettencourt described as “an atomic bomb for the city’s budgeting process” due to the lost revenues it entails.

Yesterday’s judgment marked the fifth consecutive legal defeat for the Parker administration, which nevertheless said they believe the ordinance remains in effect. It is expected that the city will appeal the ruling, which would delay the new election called for in the ruling for a year or more.

Bill King Denouncing Rebuild Houston after Court Ruling

Bill King with Sen. Paul Bettencourt, CM Michael Kubosh, businessman Joe Slovacek, and atty Andy Taylor Denouncing Rebuild Houston after Court Ruling

At the last televised debate of the 2015 election — also on Fox 26 last night — each of the other major mayoral candidates except King continued to express support for the Rebuild Houston program despite the court ruling. Council Member Costello, who has referred to himself as the “godfather” of Rebuild Houston, was not invited to the debate and has yet to issue a statement on the ruling.