Residents should look out for multiple road closures and special rules in place for the next two weeks as the annual Mardi Gras festival kicks into gear.

Keri Heath: 409-683-5241; or on Twitter @HeathKeri.

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(2) comments

mark jones

City council denies all opportunity for public input for Mardi Gras and the motorcycle event. Millions go to Mike Dean and motorcycle organizer in terrible deals by city manager Maxwell. Maxwell gives all fees from charging motorcycles to organizer, not the city. The city uses $250,000 in hotel taxes to pay Dean's expenses and he keeps fees, not the city. No written consent is asked for by city from citizens or businesses. Dean charges taxpayers to eat and shop local. Dean and motorcycle organizer puts vendors in front of local businesses. Taxpayers have no idea how much Dean and motorcycle organizer make.

Wayne D Holt

Mark, even putting aside the very real questions about who gains and who loses on the deals, the fundamental issue is the one you raise in your first few words here. What I find most troubling are the lengths City leadership will go to when avoiding meaningful public input on these events. It is literally like we don't exist. This is especially so regarding input from downtown businesses and residents who, after all, bear the largest impact from these events.

I cannot for the life of me understand how the situation was allowed to fester like this. A significant number of folks want these practices discussed and good faith negotiations following to address them.

Instead, $90,000 of residents' money is set aside to wage a courtroom fight that could have been resolved for free with dialog. If this makes sense to someone, I'd like to hear it.

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