Upon returning to the island after a summer vacation, I found many pedestrian lights are once again malfunctioning along Seawall Boulevard.

As is my habit of many years, I placed three phone calls to public works with no results and then contacted Mayor Craig Brown. He began communication with the city manager’s office.

I was eventually informed that they're “looking for funding for this project.”

Shocked, I asked about the hotel tax revenue, this year’s being the largest collection in our history. I also asked about the seawall parking funds. I was informed that those monies are ear-marked by the state and can "only" be used to generate more tourism.

The funds are self-perpetuating and circular. Their only object is to create more tourism and build more seawall bathrooms.

The city has apparently found no funding for basic street-light repair because the lights remain malfunctioning even after six weeks of phone calls and emails. I walk and ride a bike regularly. When I stop to talk to neighbors, I hear the same mantra repeated, “Residents aren't important to this city.”

I couldn’t agree more.

Jo Soske




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(4) comments

C. Patterson

Ignorance begets ignorance. Karen needs to take a deep dive into understanding what the income revenue base is for the city, where it comes from and what the yearly operating budget is. The lions share goes towards the Fire and Police Department , perhaps you wouldn’t mind slashing that budget down to pay for more lights? How about waiting 20 minutes for the fire department to arrive? Surly you’d understand if the ladder truck didn’t actually work anymore because the equipment is outdated and run down but how about those lights right? And have you noticed “we don’t care enough” to pay our Mayor or City Council representatives either? The bucket of money you’re referring to comes from taxes paid by tourist and not the property owners. The road you’re referring to is state highway and a not city road. Maybe you could reach out to TXDOT and petition them to pay for street lights?

. I think you should run for city council in your district that way you can see first hand how much fun it is, solve these simple problems and how appreciative the residents are…

George Laiacona

For years I have been trying to convince Mayor after Mayor by e-mailing in reports and videos of pedestrian crosswalks all over our country. I have come to the conclusion that tax paying pedestrians don’t have any say as to just how our city council members decide just what is a priority. While we are here when do the crosswalks all around the schools get repainted? We already know the two state highways have different priorities, but local residents still use those streets as well as tourists. Yet they continue to be non-user friendly. Limited use crosswalks and lack of lighting problems have been on our island for many years, expect them to stay until we have a city council that places pedestrian problems on their priority list.

Leigh Gottlob-Cowart

Meanwhile we get curbs and medians that are dangerous and bike, walk lanes that aren't big enough... Stewart Rd,...roads that still flood after reconstruction all thru town. Wowza.

Call Center point or Reliant (don't remember which one) about the seawall lights and the causeway being out...btw.

Roy Hughes

Written by Lynne Springer

I cannot believe what I am reading. Continuing to have malfunctioning crosswalk lights? Is safety not on the top of the list? Wait, I know safety is not on the top of the list with all the folks (tourists) who ride the golf carts without wearing a seatbelt. I saw one marshal pull a person over. During my weekly drives during the summer months I would see about 5 people daily without a safety belt. And I do not take the back roads. First we had the trash trucks that were not being maintained. We only had enough trucks to handle all the routes. None of the trucks could take a day off without a route being missed. So, unless maintenance occurred between 6 P.M. and 4A.M. then, there was none. Now, we have all had to put in a few extra dollars to fix our (the) problem. What will we need to do to get lights in the crosswalks repaired? No money in the budget has been earmarked for this? You all sound like a family that spends all their money on cars, furniture, and clothes and none on food. I would think that this would have come up in Accounting 101 and the importance of necessities. In public school this was covered in Homemaking under Budgeting for the Household. Some people have it in Basic Math. So, the people set the budget did not study the importance of maintaining? How could this be overlooked?

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