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Harris County
Houston-Galveston Area Council Board of Directors
by Jim Guidry
Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Houston-Galveston Area Council Board of Directors today voted unanimously to renew contracts with Goodwill, Gulf Coast Trades Center, Inc. and SER-Jobs for Progress to train out-of-school youth for jobs, but to not renew a contract with the Houston Area Urban League for the training.

Director of Human Services Rodney Bradshaw said that HAUL had not performed as well as the others last year, explaining that it was attempting to work with youth outside of Harris County.  Listen: MP3 RealPlayer

“The Houston Area Urban League has had a tremendous relationship with the H-GAC,” said Judson Robinson, president and CEO of the Houston Area Urban League.  “It goes back many, many years.” Listen: MP3 RealPlayer

Robinson said HAUL would have performed better if assigned to work with youth in Harris County.

“Had we focused on Harris County, our results would have likely been different, but our challenge was far more difficult than working in our own back yard,” Robinson said.  “My hope is that our ambition to work with H-GAC is not viewed as a failure on the part of HAUL, but instead a mutual business decision to terminate the contract in a professional manner once both parties agreed.”

“That was one of the classiest things I think I’ve seen from somebody who is losing a contract,” said Harris County Judge Ed Emmett. 

The H-GAC board voted unanimously to approve a Type V municipal solid waste transfer station and material recovery facility application from Nexus Continuum, LLC.

“The proposed facility is located outside of the city of Houston’s city limits,” Senior Environmental Planner Amy Boyers, had explained earlier to the Projects Review Committee.  She said that the site is near the intersection of Highway 290 and Beltway 8.  “Land uses within a one mile radius are predominately commercial and industrial. 
MP3 RealPlayer

Although the vote by the full board was unanimous, Iowa Colony Council Member Kay Mudd had voted against the facility during the committee meeting.

The board met in executive session, to evaluate Executive Director Jack Steele, then voted unanimously to give him a two percent pay raise.

The board also paid tribute to Chief Operating Officer Steve Howard, who is retiring from the H-GAC.

All other agenda items were approved.  All votes were unanimous.  Agenda

Galveston County Commissioner Ken Clark, Walker County Commissioner B.J. Gaines, Jr., Friendswood Council Member Michael Barker,  La Porte Council Member Chuck Engelken, Jr., Texas City Commissioner Dee Ann Haney and Meadows Place Alderman Terry Henley were absent and not represented by alternate members.  Houston Mayor Annise Parker did not attend the meeting but she was represented by Council Member Jerry Davis and Lake Jackson Council Member Joe Rinehart was represented by Council Member Scott Schwertner.

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