On July 28th, 2015 a private company called STORM issued a written warning to the State of Texas.
STORM said their company now controlled 23,000 acres of Galveston Bay, not the people of Texas, and they announced they would stop any other fishermen from harvesting oysters. The acreage represents about half the total oyster population in Galveston Bay.
Before the week ended, the State filed a lawsuit, warning STORM they would pay for the potential damage to the natural resources of Texas, calling their claim to the bay bottom totally illegal.
Now the real showdown begins.
Prestige Oysters has already accused STORM Boats of harassing their boats, delaying the rescue of tens of thousands of baby oysters which have now died. Game wardens have already been monitoring the growing oyster battle.
Prestige has now announced plans to plant the rocks needed to cultivate new oysters on a lease they have from the State of Texas. The lease is in territory STORM claims it now controls.
“My family will not be intimidated. We will guard our investment and we count on the game wardens to protect us,” says Lisa Halili.
STORM owners claim they are now the bosses of the bay, citing a lease they got from the Chambers Liberty County Navigation District. The state sued the navigation district too. The navigation district board members are appointed by local politicians. The owner of STORM is a local judge, who is on the taxpayers’ payroll in Chambers County even though he rarely goes to a courtroom.
Dolcefino Consulting has also filed a lawsuit, accusing CLCND of violating Texas transparency laws. CLCND also refuses to release an audio tape of a public meeting.
“The silence of the Chambers County attorney and District Attorney to this smelly deal is embarrassing,” says Dolcefino.
Last April, the Waller County District Attorney asked for the files of the special prosecutors in the Highway 6 landfill case. Those Fort Bend County prosecutors closed their investigation last year without calling a single county official to the grand jury.
That was before sworn testimony in the landfill civil trial. That was before a jury found commissioners violated transparency laws which have criminal penalties.
That is why Elton Mathis wanted to start a new investigation. The special prosecutors said no.
Now Dolcefino Consulting has learned the special prosecutors have been asked again to turn over their files, but this time a District Judge is asking.
In the letter to Fort Bend DA John Healy, Judge Buddy McCaig wrote the Waller County DA is back in charge.
“Please ask those gentlemen to return all such investigative and case files, the Fort Bend D.A. has already had months to make this happen and hasn’t,” says Wayne Dolcefino, President of Dolcefino Consulting. “You have to start wondering what they are afraid of. Are they protecting their shoddy investigation or something else?”
It is time for a real investigation. The people of Waller County deserve it. In recent days we have learned the 15-story garbage dump was going to be dug through two feet of precious ground water. That is the environmental disaster landfill opponents have been warning about for years.
We already knew some Waller County officials didn’t tell the truth about their dealings with garbage giant Green Group.
It is time to get to the real bottom of this deal.
For months, oyster fisherman have been waging war to stop the smelly oyster deal hatched by the politicians in Chambers County and their friends.
A company called S.T.O.R.M, owned by a Chambers county political power broker and his son the Judge, cut a smelly deal with the Chambers Liberty County Navigation District. STORM was given sole rights to 23,000 acres of Galveston Bay bottom for exclusive oyster production.
No one else got to compete. S.T.O.R.M paid a fraction of what they should have. If allowed to stand, STORM would become the godfather of the bay, deciding who could oyster, even on public reefs that belong to all Texans. S.T.O.R.M. would control half the oyster production in Galveston Bay, one of the biggest oyster spots in the entire country.
Oyster fisherman along the coast have been screaming for the State of Texas to help.
Tonight the cavalry has arrived. The Parks and Wildlife Department have filed a major lawsuit against the navigation district and S.T.O.RM saying the lease is illegal, amounting to a virtual poaching of public oysters.
“Galveston Bay belongs to the People of Texas and I speak for fisherman all along the coast. Thank God the Parks and Wildlife Department has joined the fight.”
Halili says her oyster boats have been harassed by S.T.O.RM. boats, leading to the death of tens of thousands of baby oysters.
The State of Texas, on behalf of the people of Texas, says the Chambers County Navigation District and S.T.O.R.M. must now pay taxpayers for the value of all the wildlife unlawfully killed, caught, taken, or even injured.
For further information, contact Wayne Dolcefino at email@example.com.
They aren’t elected, even chosen by property owners in Uptown. Now we know they virtually appoint themselves or politicians pick them. They spend tens of millions of your tax dollars without financial disclosure.
Uptown gets to keep a lot of tax money in just one neighborhood that used to go to City Hall to be spread around to the whole city. Maybe that explains why the head Uptown guy makes more than the Mayor does.
Maybe $200 million doesn’t seem like that much money to spend on a plan to tear up Post Oak for two exclusive bus lanes, even if they aren’t needed. Maybe taxpayers shouldn’t be suspicious that some of the members of the board stand to make millions on the deal. Maybe we shouldn’t worry that the ridership projections Uptown has been using to sell the project are just plain wrong. It wasn’t until Dolcefino Consulting proved they were bogus that Metro, not Uptown agreed to check the math.
Uptown doesn’t like the stuff Dolcefino Consulting has been exposing. It is one of the reasons they have hired a big public relations firm to convince you about this bizarre bus project. And they are getting you to pay for your own convincing! The contract with Edelman was for up to $165,000 for just three months.
Want a glimpse of some of the advice you paid for? After Dolcefino Consulting exposed potential conflicts of interest, an Edelman executive suggested the increased secrecy approach.
“…We should continue to take this issues offline. Dolcefino is going individually after your board members and
requesting information already provided to find inaccuracies and inconsistencies. Let’s take things offline…”
In other words, don’t create records.
“People already think this deal smells, and now we find out that taxpayers are paying this company to tell Uptown to keep secrets from the taxpayers. I don’t know about you, but that makes me feel a lot better. NOT.”
Uptown has ignored calls to survey business owners in Uptown to see if their employees want buses. Uptown has ignored calls to delay the project until the Texas Attorney General rules if it is even legal.
“A piece of free advice to my friends in Uptown,” says Dolcefino. “Let the sunshine in.”
Several of the religious leaders who led the right to repeal the “ HERO” ordinance have announced their endorsement of Ben Hall for mayor.
The endorsement cites Hall’s steadfast commitment to the right to vote for all Houstonians and principled opposition to the ordinance on grounds of public safety.
Steve Riggle, Pastor of the mega Grace Community Church, stated, “Ben Hall is the only choice to support in this year’s mayor’s race. He stood with us bravely when no other mayoral candidate would. He has shown courage under fire and is the type of faith-based leader this city needs in the mayor’s office.”
Rev. Dr. F. N. Williams, Sr., one of the named plaintiffs in the HERO suit, said his endorsement of Hall for mayor “is based on more than two decades of watching this man.”
“He has been uncompromising in his convictions and is resolute in letting others know where he stands,” says the respected Acres Homes pastor. “Hall is bold, courageous, intelligent and a born leader.”
Williams is a well-respected leader who marched with the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and pastors the historic Antioch Missionary Baptist Church located in Acres Homes.
Learning of the endorsement, Hall wrote, “This is a Gideon Moment in my life. The endorsement of these great champions of faith renew in me confidence that the Almighty is pleased with our stance on issues. I will always strive to be humble when accepting the support of such giants of faith.”
Some of the endorsing leaders are: Reverend Dr. F.N. Williams, Sr., Pastor Steve Riggle, Dr. Hernan Castano, Dr. Wendy Castano, Bishop Prince E. Bryant, Bishop Delegrantis, Reverend Elmo Johnson, Reverend Charles Ingram, Reverend Ed Small, Bishop Mark Smith, Pastor Luis Larrinaga, Pastor Joel Montes, Reverend Carl Matthews, Pastor Juan Carlos Jimenez, Pastor Cris Tetzintla, Pastor Jorge Gamboa and Pastor David Garcia.
The Hall campaign invites all 54,000 HERO petitioners to join the growing Hall campaign at www.benhallforhouston.com, through e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or via Ben’s facebook page or twitter @benhall2015.
Uptown Officials want to tear up beautiful Post Oak Blvd so they can add two exclusive bus lanes.
It will cost more than $200 million. Your money.
Part of the cost is apparently the sales job to convince you that this project is not the total waste of tax dollars it appears to be.
You know who’s paying for that? You are. That’s right.
Records obtained by Dolcefino Consulting show Uptown agreed to spend more than $150,000, in the last three months, to put on the “let’s convince the taxpayers” show. The professional agreement with Edelman Associates includes fees charged for that ceremonial groundbreaking in June.
So if you saw the Mayor and her Uptown friends shoveling fake dirt on TV, just remember. You paid for it.
Your tax dollars at work.
“We know some Uptown officials stand to make bank if this project goes through and they don’t even have the decency to spend their own money to sell the deal,” says Wayne Dolcefino, President of Dolcefino Consulting. “Is that nerve or what?”
Big Jolly Politics writes a post about how Dolcefino Consulting wants to see Cypress Creek EMS public records — and panic ensues:
If you’ve followed the Fox 26 website then you know Cypress Creek EMS –with a budget of more than $20 million dollars to operate 15 ambulances for the District— is openly defying a ruling from the Texas Attorney General to tell YOU how THEY spend that $20 million in taxpayer money.
And if you read his blog then you also know Cypress Creek EMS is going to court this Friday to stop Dolcefino Consulting from seeing the public records and from getting Brad England, the head of Cypress Creek EMS under oath.
The safety commissioners of ESD#11 have scheduled a special meeting Thursday.
On the agenda, a vote to file lawsuits against the 911 ambulance provider for half a million folks from Tomball to Spring.
Cypress Creek Emergency Medical Services doesn’t mind taking 20 million dollars from the public for 911 service, but ask them tough questions about the way the money is spent, and they slam the door shut.
The Harris County District Attorney has filed criminal charges. The response, delay the trial.
The Texas Attorney General rules they have to turn over public records. The result, Cypress Creek has filed three separate lawsuits against the State of Texas. And they using your money.
Elected ESD Commissioners ask for payroll records, the use of ambulances you bought, and financial records of a gun toting ambulance squad. The response. You may pay for it, but you can’t see it.
“This is just no way to run the taxpayers business. The head of Cypress Creek Brad England makes more than the county judge, and systematically fights the public right to know,” says Wayne Dolcefino, President of Dolcefino Consulting. “It is time for Mr. England to stop wasting public money or resign. This money should be spent on medical supplies, not a campaign of secrecy.”
CCEMS is also going to court Friday to stop Dolcefino Consulting from seeing public records and getting Mr. England under oath.
The ESD#11 meeting is scheduled Thursday morning, July 30th at 10:00 am at 7111 Five Forks in Spring.
Ben Hall stood firm with Houston’s voters from the beginning.
As former Houston City Attorney, Ben knew Houston Mayor Annise Parker broke the law when she denied over 54,000 Houstonians the right to vote on HERO.
Ben didn’t make a political calculation. He followed the law and his faith.
Then there is Bill King, who sat on his hands and said nothing.
He did not voice opposition to the HERO ordinance nor the blatant suppression of voter rights. He did not protest when pastors’ sermons were subpoenaed as part of a campaign to silence critics.
He said nothing while Houstonians had to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars just for their day in court.
But now that the Texas Supreme Court has spoken, Bill King has suddenly found his courage. King now says the HERO ordinance was never needed and that voters should have the right to vote.
Where were you Mr. King when it mattered?
Typical politician! Aren’t you tired of career politicians?
Whatever our position on the HERO ordinance, we should all fight for the right to vote.
Ben Hall took a stand, regardless of the consequences, from the very beginning.
That’s the kind of true leadership Ben Hall will bring to Houston City Hall.
Veteran crime victim’s rights lawyer Kim Ogg says District Attorneys should immediately implement changes in the way they review criminal charges of resisting arrest or assault on a police officer.
“Sandra Bland’s death in the Waller County Jail has made international news, but if prosecutors had viewed the Texas Department of Public Safety dash-cam video at the same time they were presented with the arresting officer’s sworn statement, they would never have approved criminal charges against Bland. Absent a criminal charge, Sandra would never have been jailed,” says Ogg.
Ogg says she has the ‘fix.’
Ogg says in cases where police seek to file charges against a citizen for resisting arrest or assaulting a police officer, they could and should be required to produce any existing dash cam or body cam video footage in their custody to prosecutors within 24 hours. This would require prosecutors to review this material in time to assess whether the charge is valid or whether the offender should be released without charges filed. Bland was in jail 72 hours before she died.
Prosecutors say it was a suicide.
“This is a simple solution that will protect citizens and police officers. Scene videos will either be supportive of an officers’ allegations or not, and a quick review by prosecutors charged would protect Harris County citizens from injustices like Sandra Bland suffered.”
Ogg’s further suggests that best practices would invite and encourage third-parties who videotape these encounters to have access to providing digital recordings they make at such scenes to the District Attorney directly during this same time period or even later. Prosecutors would be obliged to review that additional evidence.
Ogg is available at her law office for comment.
3215 Mercer, Suite 100 – Houston, Texas 77027
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