On Wednesday, January 3, 2018, Mayor Sylvester Turner wants Houston City Council to approve the secretive recycling contract with a foreign company FCC.
This $37 million-dollar, twenty-year deal is riddled with secrecy. The Mayor has illegally withheld public records, even from his own e-mails.
Dolcefino Consulting and ECOHUB filed a lawsuit to compel production of the records. The Mayor is spending tax money to fight the Judge’s order. The Mayor has refused to release the scoring sheets, or the names of the City employees who chose the company the Mayor wants. The proposed contract with FCC is being kept secret too.
ECOHUB isn’t the only company raising questions. Waste Management has headquarters here. 1,000 employees. They want to know how the world’s largest recycling company lost out in experience to FCC.
New court documents show the Mayor’s confidante, Maya Ford ignored legal requests to see her records. Ford called the court motion “silliness.” Ford e-mails already show she made allegations of possible ethics violations against City garbage boss, Harry Hayes. A court hearing to compel the records is set for January 30, 2018.
“Any City Councilmember who votes to approve this contract while the Mayor fights to keep this smelly deal secret is making a choice that will haunt them.” That is a promise, says Wayne Dolcefino of Dolcefino Consulting. “Council should delay this vote until the records are made public. Taxpayers have a right to know the truth, whatever it is.”
Dolcefino Consulting has confirmed the FBI has begun interviewing former city employees involved in the recycling case, including the Mayor’s former Press Secretary, Janice Evans who fielded questions from the media about possible bid rigging in the contract.
ECOHUB was finalizing a contract to save the city up to $40 million dollars a year in garbage costs by recycling all the trash into new products when Turner came into office and killed the tax saving contract. There is evidence the Mayor wanted the company to be cut out of a new bid.
ECOHUB had almost $800 million dollars in private financing to build their plant, at no cost to Houston taxpayers, and promised to share profits.
“We will watch to see if any member of Council moves to delay this vote until the Mayor comes clean with the records”, says Dolcefino. “It is time to see who has the ethics to fight for taxpayers.”