Harris County takes closer look at mobility funds

(Evelia Gramajo/Community Impact Newspaper)
(Evelia Gramajo/Community Impact Newspaper)

(Evelia Gramajo/Community Impact Newspaper)

For the first time in its history, Harris County is taking an inventory of the condition and life expectancy of every county-maintained road before deciding how mobility funds should be distributed in 2020.

The study, launched this summer, is expected to take about one year to complete. However, county officials said they plan to make some funding recommendations in February based on early findings to allow county commissioners to set their budgets before the start of the new budget year in March.

Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle, who voted against the study in July, said he fears it could be used as a “power play” to divert funds from Precincts 3 and 4 under the guise of improving efficiency.

Several road projects are being studied in Precinct 4, such as the Gosling Road Segment 3 expansion, and previous goals for the design and construction timelines for those projects have been put in question as precinct officials wait to see how the mobility study could affect funding, Cagle said.

“We’ll have to wait and see what occurs with regard to the raw grab of money,” Cagle said. “If the raw grab of money occurs, then we’re going to have problems in terms of how we take care of the responsibilities that we need to take care of.”


Based on the previous funding formula, in 2019 precincts 3 and 4 combined to make up 52% of the population, 65% of the lane miles and 62% of the thoroughfare miles, which resulted in those two precincts getting about 59% of mobility funds.

The study will include new data obtained through an analysis of every road maintained by Harris County, which will be included in the county’s new formula going forward.
By Shawn Arrajj
Shawn Arrajj serves as the editor of the Cy-Fair edition of Community Impact Newspaper where he covers the Cy-Fair and Jersey Village communities. He mainly writes about development, transportation and issues in Harris County.


MOST RECENT

Hospitals in the Greater Houston area are adapting to accommodate a surge of coronavirus cases. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Report offers first glimpse at hospital readiness across Houston area

Hospitals within the Texas Medical Center system in the Greater Houston area have plans in place to increase the number of ICU beds available by as much as 80%.

Dr. Campbell talks about the effect of the coronavirus on mental health.(Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Q&A: Kelsey-Seybold doctor talks about mental health amid the coronavirus pandemic

Dr. Stefanie Campbell discusses the coronavirus’ effect on mental illness.

The Willowbrook Hospital is located on Hwy. 249. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Here's how Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital is responding to the coronavirus

CEO Keith Barber shares how the hospital has changed protocols, adapted staffing and freed up beds to prepare for coronavirus.

Texas Central claims the $12 billion construction process would be privately funded, and the train would transport 6 million annual riders by 2029. (Courtesy Texas Central Partners/Community Impact Newspaper)
State legislators request federal officials halt activity on Texas Central's high-speed rail project

Dozens of elected officials representing Texas requested the U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao put an end to activity related to Texas Central’s high-speed rail project between Dallas and Houston.

The amicus brief is in support of an April 7 lawsuit filed by the Texas Democratic Party seeking legislative action to allow voters who fear exposure to the coronavirus to vote via mail-in ballot. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Harris County Attorney's Office authorized to file amicus brief supporting mail-in ballots amid coronavirus outbreak

The amicus brief is in support of an April 7 lawsuit filed by the Texas Democratic Party seeking legislative action to allow voters who fear exposure to the coronavirus to vote via mail-in ballot.

Graphic by Ronald Winters/Community Impact Newspaper
Harris County in ‘standoff’ over proposed inmate release to curb coronavirus spread

Hidalgo said the county is now at a crossroads having to weigh the lesser of two evils: releasing nonviolent inmates back into society or risking coronavirus spreading rampant through the county jail and filling the county’s hospital beds.

Dr. Maria Elena Bottazzi is the associate dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. (Courtesy Baylor College of Medicine)
Q&A: Dr. Maria Elena Bottazzi discusses vaccine development

Dr. Bottazzi is the associate dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and co-director of the Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development.

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo signed an order April 8 to temporarily close all parks countywide throughout the upcoming Easter weekend, April 10-13, in hopes of discouraging social gatherings. (Hannah Zedaker/Community Impact Newspaper)
Harris County to close parks countywide for Easter weekend, April 10-13

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo signed an order April 8 to temporarily close all parks countywide throughout the upcoming Easter weekend, April 10-13, in hopes of discouraging social gatherings.

Companion Animal Hospital is now offering curbside service for clients and their pets. (Courtesy Companion Animal Hospital)
ROUNDUP: Coronavirus coverage in North Houston continues

Read some of the latest coronavirus updates from communities in the North Houston area.

Installing orange meshes across local buses is one of the measures METRO is taking to ensure appropriate social distancing between bus operators and passengers. (Courtesy Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County)
METRO heightens preventative COVID-19 measures

The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County has begun taking more aggressive measures to halt the spread of COVID-19, the transit authority announced April 7.

Lone Star College System has moved about 97% of its more than 9,000 class sessions online since mid-March as facilities have closed during the coronavirus pandemic, LSCS Chancellor Stephen Head said. (Anna Lotz/Community Impact Newspaper)
Pandemic changes move Lone Star College System to enhance online, workforce education long-term

Lone Star College System has moved about 97% of its more than 9,000 class sessions online since mid-March as facilities have closed during the coronavirus pandemic, LSCS Chancellor Stephen Head said. He foresees LSCS continuing to enhance its online options even after stay-at-home orders are lifted.

Companion Animal Hospital is now offering curbside service for clients and their pets. (Courtesy Companion Animal Hospital)
Spring, Klein veterinary clinics utilize curbside services to reduce risk of exposure

Veterinary clinics are offering curbside assistance in an effort to continue providing medical attention for pets with respect to social distancing measures.