I hope everyone one has the facts about the May 6 bond election in Galveston. I know not everyone gets a water bill and not everyone gets the newspaper, and not everyone can attend a public meeting to hear about the details of the proposition.
But everybody can see the activity we have had on the island in these recent months. Forty-third Street is rebuilt and a million potholes were lost in that action. Fifty-third Street has been redone and is being fine-tuned by drivers and bike riders. Sealy Avenue is now safe for your automobile’s front-end. Drainage on my cross-street 18th south of Broadway has been modified to eliminate debris traps. Sixth-ninth Street has had an amazing restoration.
Just about everybody has seen the progress, whether you get a water bill or not. Everybody has seen the work being performed (and had to drive or pedal around it). And everybody should know that this work, and other projects I have forgotten, signal that the city is now working with a competent and effective management team that knows what it takes to get work done and to get it done right. They are focused, inspired and willing to take on the list of projects that were objectively quantified by outside consultants as the priorities for streets and drainage for the island.
Using the current bond proposal to meet the needs we have today to ensure we grow in the future makes sense to me. The independent study the city requested to assess all the streets in Galveston did state the obvious on some streets. Some streets everybody knew had to be fixed. But this study put a value on all the streets; from top to bottom; and told us which of the streets to focus on first. If you don’t want another study gathering dust on a shelf somewhere at city hall, as we all so often complain about, it is up to you and to me to pass this bond issue.
The landlords are against this election. They don’t want to pay any more taxes. Who does? But if we are going to live in a proper city, one that properly maintains the infrastructure we all depend upon, we are going to have to pay for it.
Some of my best friends are landlords. We have had some lively discussions. And after I have carefully explained that what they knew about the numbers was wrong, they still disagreed with me. But I don’t want to live in a city that is diving toward the lowest common denominator of the poorest person in town. I want a city that stands up proud and gets the job done. I want a city hall that knows what they are doing and are not afraid to do it. For too long we have ignored the Capital Improvement Plan because we barely had enough money to fill pot-holes on Sealy and 43rd streets. It is time we stood up and did the job we are supposed to do.