Texas Watchdog posts White/Finger correspondence
Those public-information-request junkies over at Texas Watchdog finally got Mayor White to turn over email correspondence with developer Marvy Finger today (how the Chronicle got those documents first, yet cited Texas Watchdog's request, remains a mystery, but as news consumers we like the results of competition!).
We were amused by this warning from our mayor, cited in the Texas Watchdog story:
“I do believe the success of this project is important for the continuing renewal of downtown Houston,” White wrote Jan. 14.
Discovery Green’s part in that renewal is apparent in a Oct. 25, 2007, e-mail in which White outlines the course the city should take against vagrants sleeping or panhandling in the park.
“I don’t want to over-dramatize, but this has been a flash point in other cities, and if we are not clear and on top of this issue from the very beginning we could put at risk the manner in which Discovery Green is perceived,” White wrote. “No citizen, whatever their background ‘owns a bench’ or a chair.”
Now, if you want to write a check to put a nametag on the bench or chair, that might be a different story!
Some 99 pages of correspondence obtained by Texas Watchdog through this request have been posted to their website, and they are asking for help from the crowd in picking through the documents to see if anything interesting pops up. So if you have a little spare time and like that sort of thing, by all means go help 'em out!