Harris County Commissioners Court approved an agenda Oct. 9 that included $400 million in combined Harris County Flood Control District and Harris County Engineering Department items related to flood prevention, with another $1.4 billion in projects initiated to date, officials said.
Because the items were spread throughout the consent agenda, which commissioners unanimously voted to approve, Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle asked HCFCD Executive Director Russ Poppe to elaborate on the work approved at this meeting.
Poppe said HCFCD items included $7 million—$6 million of which is provided by the federal government—in agreements for resiliency studies on the Addicks-Barker Reservoir system and downstream Buffalo Bayou. The agenda also included negotiations with engineering consultants to begin regional detention in some watersheds as well as about $4.5 million in repair work.
“If you add everything up, [there is]soon to be initiated $200 million worth of effort on this court agenda alone,” Poppe said.
Harris County Engineer John Blunt said his department also plans to start about $200 million in projects with the approval of today’s agenda.
“We have $929,000 worth of preliminary engineering reports, covering $50 million worth of subdivision projects. Additionally, we have authorizations to negotiate for approximately $2 million worth of contracts covering about $165 million in work,” Blunt said.
Cagle asked Poppe to estimate the amount of work initiated since the Aug. 25 bond referendum for $2.5 billion was approved by voters.
“If you look at actions that are initiated and are in some sort of progression moving forward we are at $1.4 billion dollars, with a ‘B,’” Poppe said.
In other business, commissioners unanimously approved the 2018 tax rate for Harris County, Harris County Flood Control District, Port of Houston Authority and Harris County Hospital District.
The combined tax rate for these county entities remains the same as in 2017, at $0.62998, or about $0.63 per $100 valuation.