As a member of the city planning commission, I would like to explain my vote to not abandon public easements south of the seawall. During the commission hearing, I learned that the city had granted a Beachfront Construction Certificate to the developer of Porretto Beach on May 5, 2017.

The city’s abandoning of the public easements is therefore the last big hurdle that will be cleared before the sale of Porretto Beach can be finalized and the construction plan, as presented by the applicant, can move forward.

Despite the curious aspects of the issuance of the construction certificate, a very real conundrum remains: How, in all honesty, can we, as a community that has felt the ravages of Hurricane Ike, allow valuable economic development to be placed in harm’s way in such a narrow and unprotected area as Porretto Beach?

How can we remain credible as a community, vying for state and federal financial support for storm surge protection, when we ourselves are unwilling to manage development that exacerbates storm risk?

The location of the proposed development will be a direct consequence of easement abandonment and is not in the public interest or a benefit to our community.

Carol Hollaway



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(14) comments

Bill Cochrane

I, like everyone else responding to the Porretto Beach issue have not seen the developer’s plans. I have no idea if the structure plans are for building on the sand, or if it will be built 16’, and even with the top of the seawall? But it does look like Carol Hollaway’s comments are a cop-out. She is obviously against commercial development. Me thinks that if it had been a Mitchell or Vertitta development, it would not have even made the paper, or at the least everyone would be praising those developers.

Kelly Naschke

Isn’t a member of the planning commission supposed to follow the law and not her own personal opinion and interests? This member just let us all know that her position on Porretto Beach is directly related to her emotions.

Don Schlessinger

You must have not reading the paper recently if you don' know commissioner Lisa Blair's regarding Porretto beach, she's owned it for quite a while. She's absolutely no interestd in Galveston's history or future. It's all $$$$$ to her.

Mindy Lakin

Mr. Schlessinger,
Do you know Lisa Blair?
Have you done due diligence to back up your accusation that Mrs. Blair is the owner of that beach property that has been at the center of much controversy? I think not. Lying about a persons character on the GDN forum may be considered slanderous.

Kitty Allen


Don Schlessinger

OOPS my typing isn't the greatest today.

Don Schlessinger

So someone at the GDN doesn't mind a Poster commenting on Carol Holloway, but when someone replies using the fact that Lisa Blair has done the same thing their post is rejected. I'd say Lisa has friends in GDN. Lisa's all for the money, and not ashamed of it

Ana Draa

Mr. Schlessinger, your comments about Lisa Blair are completely untrue. You know, it's possible to disagree with someone respectfully and truthfully. Example:

Ms. Hollaway, first, thank you for your volunteer service. I respectfully disagree with your position on this matter. While I understand your concerns, we must respect private property rights.

See?! It's not that hard. Shame on you Mr. Schlessinger for personally attacking someone who has done so much for the island!

Don Schlessinger

Ana, we can have differing view on Porretto Beach and what happens there.I'll stick with my last comment. Also you don't read the paper much if you haven't read Ms. Blair's comments in GDN.

Debra Criss

Don, your comments concerning Ms. Blair are untrue.

Lisa Blair

Be nice Don. Remember that I also own the causeway. 😉

Don Schlessinger

You're right Lisa, but the chance of you giving it to developers is less likely than Porretto Beach.
We both have our differences Lisa, and I'm okay with that, but please don't give the away causeway.

Steve Fouga

This is almost like a Facebook thread. 😂

Debra Criss

nice try Don. Both Carol and Lisa are members of the planning commission. I appreciate them and the other volunteers who serve on planning. I happen to agree with the planning commission members who voted for the abandonment and followed the rules. I like Ms. Holloway, I happen to disagree with her decision on this vote. As you know, planning makes recommendations, but the elected council and mayor are the decision makers.

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