The Woodlands Township board voted to appoint Director Bruce Rieser to serve a two-year term on The Woodlands Road Utility District No. 1 during its regular meeting Thursday night.
Although the township board expressed concerns earlier this year regarding the small number of voters in the district and the legality of serving on another board with taxing powers in the same geographical area, it decided to revisit the issue this month.
“After having a conversation with some other people who have greater knowledge of the RUD situation, and specifically former state Rep. Steve Toth, who proposed the legislation that put us in a position where a board member could, in fact, be appointed to RUD in order to allow us more transparency … I am willing to go and serve on the board for the new term coming up,” Rieser said.
The RUD is a special purpose district created by House Bill 2818—authored by then-state Sen. Kevin Brady—in 1991 that levies a commercial property tax to construct and fund major thoroughfares and collector streets in The Woodlands.
From its inception until 2014, the RUD board consisted of five members elected by voters in the district. However, the change in legislation allowed for the appointment of two additional directors, one from The Woodlands Township and one from Montgomery County. At that time, the township selected former township Director Mike Bass to serve on the board.
However, when Bass lost his bid for re-election in the November 2016 township election, it created a vacancy on the RUD board that the township had an option to fill. The other countywide elected official serving on the board is Montgomery County Judge Craig Doyal.
During the public comment portion of Thursday’s meeting, Bass encouraged board to appoint a director to serve on the RUD board.
“Since the RUD has a limited number of voters, the appointment of a township board member to the RUD board will assist in broadening the RUD’s electoral representation and help ensure the RUD serves all of our community,” he said.
Rieser will serve on the RUD board from May 2017 through May 2019.