Monday, November 26, 2007

The TCID Board 2007

Voting YES on the November ballot for the two proposals is equivalent to voting for each member of the Town Center Improvement District (TCID) board for an interim varying from one year to three years depending on the remaining tenure of office of each individual.

In order to vote YES, residents should know their representatives, their roles on the board and their positions on critical matters relating to governing the villages. The article is designed to bring forward their platforms and experience in related matters, specifically to describe what qualifications they have to help us achieve our governing goals. I include some references to the political sponsors of these proposals at the end. Anticipating several updates on this topic, I plan to fill in on missing information as the TCID board provides it. This topic is open to comments. However, I do moderate this blog, and it is possible that I will ask you to change something before I post your comment, but only if it seems offensive or slanderous. Also, I rarely will post links to other sites within the comments. If you have a link that you believe is useful for voters to make decisions, and I have not yet posted it as a resource, please email me.

Position Statements and Bios

1. CHAIRMAN Nelda Luce Blair (Appointed by Precinct 3) End of term May 2008

Thank you for attending the Town Center Improvement District Public Forum. We were pleased that it answered many residents’ questions, and provided basic information to disseminate in the community.
I will respond to your inquiry, but I first need to address a few statements in the preface of your email. For example, your statement “Since you were appointed, the normal electoral public processes were bypassed.” I would respectfully disagree that appointment is a bypass. Per the creating legislation, the TCID Board is partially elected and partially appointed, to insure that the impact area (as the legislation defines) is represented on the Board. One of the appointments is made by the elected County Commissioners Court to represent all of Precinct #3 (South County), and I was selected for that. Yes, it is an appointment, but it is also a representative capacity.

I do appreciate and understand your interest in the qualifications of an interim governing body, and applaud you for researching those. But, I also urge everyone to look at the broader, more long-term concept of the future of one governing body for The Woodlands, with a Board that will have elections every 2 years.
Editorial for November 6th Voting
Short Resume

2. VICE-CHAIRMAN Lloyd Matthews (Appointed by The Woodlands Association) - End of term 2010
Attached as requested is my bio. As supplemental information upon retirement I moved to The Woodlands in August 1998 and attended my first Village Association meeting during September. After being active with the Indian Springs Village Association, Don Braun suggested that I consider running as the Indian Springs Director to The Woodlands Association. The residents elected me as their first representative to that Board in February 2000 and I continue to serve (Secretary, Treasurer or Vice President since 2000). During my election campaign against three other candidates, I listed my objectives as director. All of those objectives have been accomplished except protecting The Woodlands from Houston annexation. This last objective was changed to allow the residents to decide what they wanted on local governance. The election on November 6 allows residents to decide on the future of governance for The Woodlands.
As a response to the urging of others and me, the Community Association of The Woodlands began reviewing local governance options during 2001. I have been on every governance committee since then. My input has helped guide this process. On May 10, 2002 I received a continuing education certificate on Cooperative Governance in Metropolitan Areas from the University of Houston.
Biographical Part A
Biographical Part B

3. TREASURER / ASSISTANT SECRETARY Fred O’Connor (Appointed by the City of Oak Ridge North) - end of term May 2008

I would love to answer all your questions, which are valid and necessary for the candidates to account themselves. I certainly could give you answers which would qualify me, however, not being a resident, I will complete my term in time for the resident directors to take their positions. I wish your community the very best in your endeavors and stand ready to assist if requested.

4. SECRETARY Kemba DeGroot (Elected) - End of term 2010
Thank you for being an active participant in the current Governance issues. Providing factual information to the residents of The Woodlands is everyone’s responsibility and I, for one, appreciate those efforts. As a long-term resident and business owner in The Woodlands, I have always maintained a committed interest in all aspects of this area’s urban growth.

Experience and Background
My husband and I bought a home in Autumnwood, Grogan’s Mill and moved to The Woodlands from Houston in 1988. At that time the population was 22,000 with only two restaurants and not a Mall in sight. We watched the community grow and develop and looked forward to being the FIRST family to actually buy, move into and live in the Lofts on The Waterway in Town Center. We accomplished this in December 2003. To make that experience complete, we relocated our business, Sales Training International, to the new Mall expansion. So now we truly do work and live in The Woodlands Town Center and enjoy the urban life-style more every day.

5. DIRECTOR Bob Kinnear - End of term May 2008.
Thanks for the interest. This is the most important decision that citizens of The Woodlands have had to make since its beginning in the middle 70's. For myself, I'm not sure it is necessary to give you much info about me personally. My term on the TCID Board is up next May and I will not seek to be re-elected. I have served the community and Town Center for 12 years and will be 65 next May. It is time for me to step aside and let those that wish to serve the community step forward. However, if you want more personal info on me, I will be glad to furnish it.

Now, why this is so important. George Mitchell in his original vision wanted The Woodlands to be part of Houston following its development. As we all know, that sentiment has changed. But most of our citizens don't truly understand that just because they don't want to be part of Houston means that Houston will go away. State Sen. Williams and State Rep. Eissler have done yeoman's work in getting the legislation passed for us to be able to make our own future governance decisions. We must go through the interim form of government(The Woodlands Township) before we can get there. In all my involvement throughout this process, I don't know of any other alternatives that would result in the same outcome.
Simply put, if you don't want Houston to control The Woodlands' destiny, then vote for the propositions. I know that it is important to know something about those that will reside on the future board and represent your interests, but that decision doesn't come before the voters until next May. Before then, everything that is in place will continue as is.
Thanks again for your interest.


Bob Kinnear has been a resident of The Woodlands since 1992 Since his transfer to The Woodlands with Chevron, Mr. Kinnear has been very active in a number of community projects

Mr. Kinnear is a Past-Chairman of the Board of Directors, Town Center Improvement District
Mr. Kinnear has also served TCID as its Chairman of the Special Projects Committee and the Chairman of the Convention Center Task Force, which worked to fund the new $52 million Convention Center on The Woodlands Waterway.
Through his leadership, The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Convention Center was completed in 2002
Director Kinnear currently serves as Chairman of the TCID Committee on Governance and Nominations and Co-Chairs the joint transition team for TCID and the Community Associations
Mr. Kinnear has also served as member of the Board of Directors for the Center for Performing Arts in The Woodlands, otherwise known as The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
Mr. Kinnear holds a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Lamar University

6. DIRECTOR Vicki Richmond (Elected) - End of term 2010

I am happy to provide you some information about my qualifications to serve as a director of Town Center Improvement District and if the voters so decide The Woodlands Township. A brief bio is attached.

When I ran for re-election to the TCID board in May 2006 I told the voters that I would like to see TCID
* Remain Financially Responsible
* Provide Enhanced Security
* Invest in Important Infrastructure
* Connect with Residents.
I feel those will be important factors in serving the entire Woodlands community.

One of the personal reasons I am so interested in the future of The Woodlands is that there are 4 generations of my family living here. My parents live in Indian Springs, my son, daughter-in-law and grandson live in Alden Bridge, and my husband and I and two children live in Grogan's Mill. I care deeply about the quality of life and financial viability of The Woodlands. I have 30 years invested in this community through my job, through my community involvement and raising my family. I plan to continue to watch it grow and flourish.

7. DIRECTOR Alex Sutton (Elected) - End of term 2010
In my view, the primary consideration in the November election is that residents have a one-time opportunity to insure that The Woodlands will not be annexed into the City of Houston or the City of Conroe. The history of the application of municipal annexation law shows us that there is no other practical way to achieve that outcome. There is also no guarantee that there will ever be another such opportunity. As a qualified voter in The Woodlands, I support all three propositions on the ballot and I am grateful that Senator Tommy Williams and Representative Rob Eissler worked so hard to secure this opportunity for us in the legislature.

Although stopping annexation is the primary consideration in the election, approval of the propositions provides another opportunity - that is, to consolidate the roles of the community associations and the current TCID into one governmental entity, if the residents choose. Based on the recent actions of the community associations in approving a Memorandum of Understanding between the associations and the TCID, and, anticipating approval by the TCID, it appears that the residents, acting through their representatives, have so chosen. I perceive it as my job, through the end of my term in 2010, to assist in making that transition as seamless s possible.

You asked about my qualifications. I hold Bachelor's and Master's Degrees in Civil Engineering from Rice University and a Master's in Business Administration from the University of Houston. I am licensed both as a Professional Engineer and a Certified Public Accountant. Throughout my career I have managed complex projects and organizations involving both private and public participants. A brief resume is attached.

As a TCID Board Member, I have followed and been consulted on the development of the Memorandum of Understanding and believe it is a sound document. In the next few months I expect to personally gain what every resident of The Woodlands will gain - that is, certainty with respect to stopping annexation and, also, the opportunity to establish an efficient consolidated local government while maintaining the high quality residential and commercial environment which brought us here. I believe that I bring knowledge, judgment and enthusiasm to this process, characteristics I find in abundance among my fellow board members. Mr. Scott, I have helped to develop The Woodlands, both as an employee of The Woodlands Development Company and as a consultant for over 20 years. My family has lived in The Woodlands over 13 years and two of my four adult children have made The Woodlands their home with their families, including all of my four grandchildren. I am committed to doing what I can to make The Woodlands a great place to live and work for generations to come.

Biographical Information

8. DIRECTOR Les Tarrance, Sr. (Elected) Position apparently open after resignation

9. DIRECTOR Dr. Ed Robb III (Appointed by the Woodlands Commercial Owners Association) - End of term 2010

Waiting for first response.

10. DIRECTOR Peggy Hausman (Appointed by the Woodlands Community Association) - end of term May 2008

First I would like to thank-you for your efforts in trying to get out candidate information to The Woodlands residents. As you are very aware, information sharing in The Woodlands is lacking. I appreciate the fact that you need information about all the candidates, their opinions, history, affiliations and future desires for our hometown. I am pleased to present my credentials to all outlets in hopes that the residents will get all the facts they need to make informed decisions. I am sending this to you, at your request, because I trust that there will be no editing or culling of my information.

11. DIRECTOR Ken Smith (Appointed by City of Shenandoah) - end of term May 2008

First of all, thank you for your interest in this monumental issue. The following are my personal viewpoints, and I do not speak for the Board of Directors of Town Center Improvement District. I became interested in the affairs that shape our community back in the mid 1980’s and was appointed to serve on the planning and zoning commission for the City of Shenandoah in 1986. I subsequently decided to run for the city council and was elected in 1988. I have been reelected to that position for 9 terms and currently serve as Mayor Pro-tem. A little over two years ago, the city council nominated me as the representative to serve on the board of directors for Town Center Improvement District. My nomination was accepted by T.C.I.D. and I began serving as a representative of Shenandoah which is in the “impact area” of the Town Center.

Additional Resources
TCID Board
- Each member of TCID and their current role
Profile of Texas Senator Tommy Williams - precinct 4 , resident of The Woodlands, sponsor of enabling legislation for self governance
Profile of Texas Representative Bob Eissler - district 15, Montgomery county, resident of The woodlands, sponsor of enabling legislation for self governance