Team Fractal is trying to debunk the latest rumor about Kendall Scudder from the Keith Olson camp — that he was a little surprise Patricia Allen presented to hubby Ronald 22 years ago. But, knowing that Ward 3 wasn’t good enough for their precocious bundle of political ambition, Mom and Pop left Kendall Pooh, in swaddling clothes and 5-inch suspenders no doubt, on a doorstep in Ward 1. Maybe Tommy Cole’s, who knows? And now that Scudder’s grown up and become so artic—I mean he speaks so well, Mom and Pop Allen hardly recognize their boy. But the blood ties are there. Or so says Olson. Because if Olson is afraid of anyone, it’s not Kendall Pooh, it’s not even Ronnie. It’s Patricia. There’s nothing like a smart broad who actually knows where the bodies are buried to scare the bejesus out of elected officials with big secrets and roiling scams.
Olson is at least one of those on council who thinks Patricia is using her husband to get revenge for political payback. That night we were stealth slumming together at One-Legged Crow, didn’t we hear Olson say, “Why doesn’t Patricia Allen just pull up a chair next to Ronnie?” Yes, we did. Olson also wants you to know that even if she didn’t raise him, Patricia, former city comptroller and current county auditor, might as well be the mother of all Scudder’s ideas on public finance. Just like she is for her Honey Badger Man. And if Kendall gets elected, it’ll be Honey Badger and Honey Boo Boo Badger working together on PA’s agenda.
The revolution will be televised unless they cut the feed
Hope you are watching city council on TV. You should, because once the greed puppies fend off Kendall Scudder-Allen and Joe “Fitch 2” Rodriquez on Election Day, a future round of budget cuts will leave you with dead air on Tuesday nights. Betcha ass!
Don’t believe me? Consider that two weeks before Councilman Joe Emmett threw an epic shit fit at a planning and zoning commission meeting, the city cut funding to televise P&Z. Unless you were at the meeting, you didn’t see Sloe-Eyed Joe turn into a superhero and tear down the dais with one hand.
Cutting the feed to P&Z could be one step in an incremental approach to more government secrecy. It also saved the city more than $4,000. And that was before the ink was dry on the fake 2013 budget, the one they’ll give you if you file an Open Records request. (Better be saving up for your next one — the city has also decided to raise cash by charging for your right to public information.)
Scudder and Rodriquez, if they win, probably won’t serve with the monster truck show panache of a Ronald Allen. Expect Scudder to be controlled and scripted and Rodriquez well mannered and rational, both capable of the civility Huntsville’s electorate so admires.
But expect Scudder and Rodriquez to be Allen’s allies in his fundamental quest to get straight answers to simple questions — just as Olson, Tish Humphrey, et al. rush inarticulately to Don Johnson’s defense of any “win-win” scheme to generate revenue.
Recognize: Council found out last week that Public Utilities levied its own rate on the city’s sole raw water customer, Elkins Lake, where golfers will settle for several million gallons a year from the municipal drinking water supply to keep their lush links green. Allen demanded to know why staff had not brought the water sale agreement to council for approval. Ya see, the Big CC says city staff no can levy rates; council does that — a fact basic enough even for council’s lesser minds to grasp. But even as Allen pounded on PU Director Carol Reed, Mayor Mac Woodward, and City Attorney Leonard Schneider, no one would cop to it, not even after Fitch stepped in to do his “what Rain Man really means” schtick to make Allen’s questions more palatable.
Finally, after Allen pushed Woodward into a public snit, Schneider stepped up, still managing to throw Reed under the bus where, many students of the city’s water policy would agree, she belongs. Schneider said he approved the Elkins Lake rate under the assumption that when Reed told him what the rate should be, she was quoting with council authority.
Woodward overreacted, natch, announcing his intention to subject fellow council members, staff, spectators, and the media to further discussion of the idiotic event at an All Hallows Eve workshop. Johnson cut the legs out from under Allen by praising staff for raising revenue through a water sale — fuck the charter. Neither Fitch nor Allen questioned the use of water from the city’s aquifer field even though much of the rest of drought-stricken Texas irrigates golf courses with treated sewer plant effluent. It’s also important to note that well water needs very little treatment to be potable — unlike water from the Trinity River. Meanwhile, Elkins Lake — note the name of the subdivision — has a lake from which it can and already does irrigate the golf course. This is how they chose to keep it extra green in off-peak months without lowering the level of their lake.
Not to worry, though. You’re getting a bigger and better water treatment plant and enough water to sell to you and all comers.
The biggest disappointment for Allen and Fitch fans on Tuesday should have been this: Remember that $18 million in bonds you’re paying for in increased water rates to fund a now $24 million upgrade of the surface water treatment plant? Neither one of these guys pointed out that the city had just admitted we didn’t need it.
Wouldn’t it be cool if council and city staff understood the issues it’s dealing with — like water supply management in a semi-arid climate? Wouldn’t it be cool if Allen was more than a one-note-at-a-time dissenter? Wouldn’t it be cool if Fitch would jump in with both feet rather than simply translate for the Badger before trying to shepherd him out of the way? Wouldn’t it be cool if Woodward would grow up and lead? (He can, you know.) Wouldn’t it be cool if council valued accountability over civility? (They don’t, you know.)
Whoever raised Kendall Scudder no doubt taught him how to be civil, and that may be all the Olson camp needs to know to debunk its own rumor. But we bet Honey Boo Boo Badger can call it like it should be rather than just how it is. Wouldn’t that be cool?