The Bastrop Independent Experiment

When we asked the Commissioner’s Court to appoint independent minded Democrat and longtime community volunteer, Pati Jacobs, as Interim County Judge (the position vacated by Ronnie McDonald), the court composed of two Democrats and two Republicans, instead circled the wagons.  They unanimously appointed Jim Wither (no offense to Mr. Wither who served as County Auditor 1984-2002), who, so far as we can tell, has never run for public office.  Why would they do that — and spend less than 2 minutes explaining themselves?  Welcome to the good ol’ boys and gals of Bastrop, y’all.

This is precisely why Shelley Cartier is running for County Judge and Phil Cook is running for Commissioner Precinct 3 (against John Klaus, a Democrat, who made the motion) as independents (no party affiliation).

Bastrop has a major challenge facing residents after the fires that destroyed a significant portion of the tax base.  Will the Commissioners start cutting jobs?  If they do, where will they start?  Will they take a pay cut themselves, before laying off those at the bottom of the totem pole?  What will they do to raise the funds they need to run the county?  Will the appraisal district treat residents fairly and not expect us to pick up the tab for a natural disaster?  There are lots of questions that cannot be easily answered.  We are going to need a Commissioner’s Court that will work WITH citizens, not behind closed doors in the protectionist fashion we just witnessed.

It’s time for Bastropians, of all persuasions, to work together and get involved — this isn’t us against them folks.  It’s about we, the people, working together to solve the problems.  Our officials must be held accountable or we should replace them with those who will listen and participated WITH citizens.

There’s more to discuss and we will at the next meeting on Monday, April 30th at 6:30 pm at the Bastrop Public Library at 1101 Church Street.

If you want to help.  Contact us by phone or email at 535-0989 or at ljcurtis@indytexans.org, and we’ll send you a petition you can sign and ask your friends and neighbors to sign.  Shelley needs 500 signatures and Phil needs 206.  We want to file by the primary on May 29th, though we have until June 29th.


Pre-Holiday Quick Things To Do & Good Tidings!

*  After hearing your input, we have decided to join with We Texans, TURF (Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom) and TAG (Texans for Accountable Government) to call for hearings of the Land and Resource Management Committee in the Texas House on the plan to bring the Keystone XL (TransCanada) pipeline across the NE portion of our state.  We have questions, not yet answered, about the use of eminent domain to seize private property for this project.  We also have serious concerns about this pipeline crossing the Carrizo-Wildox aquifer that 12 million people depend on.

TO DO:  Please click here to sign the petition/letter to the Chair, Vice-Chair and Texas House Speaker Strauss asking for hearings.

*  The Texas fling deadline (not to mention this election) is up in the air!  The filing deadline is going to reopen sometime, likely, in mid or even late, January.  Therefore there’s still time for reform candidates to run on any party line or independent.  Does anyone not yet get that politicians should not be able to draw their own district lines?  If you know good folks interested in running for office (on any party line or independent), who support redistricting reform, have them contact us asap.

*  The Texas water wars continue.  A great organization that is challenging in court how precious groundwater is mismanaged in Texas, is Environmental Stewardship.  Please consider making a tax deductible contribution to ES here.

THOSE AFFECTED BY THE BASTROP FIRE:  Please click here to go to the Bastrop County Taxpayers Association to learn about how you can get a reduction in your property taxes, if your home has been harmed, by joining with others similarly affected.

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year & good tidings to all and however you celebrate this time of year!

Linda Curtis, Independent Texans


Galveston Recall or Rethink?

Galveston Mayor, Joe Jaworski has requested that Galveston residents weigh in on a petition circulating for his recall.  We met Joe when he was running for Texas Senate and really enjoyed hearing about his views and efforts.

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Where Our School Tax Dollars Really Went: The Texas Growth Machine

        The recent “Save Our Schools” rally at the Capitol, with 12,000 attendees from across Texas, was a different kind of education rally. First, Texas Association of Business’ Bill Hammond, a Rick Perry ally lent his support.  More importantly, the rally organizers turned from the typical “no cuts” ballyhoo to focus on one important underlying question – where did the $27 billion shortfall in our state budget come from?  Our school tax dollars got gobbled up by the Texas growth machine.

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Pati Leads But Loses, the People Win…The Local Story

            The great news about Pati Jacobs is that though she lost this election for State Representative House District 17, her candidacy played a critical role in putting a really bad water deal for Bastrop and Lee counties on the back-burner and thoroughly embarrassing her opponent, Reppublican Tim Kleinschmidt.  Whether the “Trans-Texas Water Highway”[1] in Bastrop and Lee counties can be officially killed is now up to the people of this district who Pati has awakened and brought together, and we trust Pati will continue to lead.  Pati is an independent voice in the Democratic Party who reached out across and beyond the aisle.

            In a brief interview following the election, Pati put it like this, “The difference between surface water (streams, rivers and lakes) and groundwater (aquifers) in Texas is a convenient fiction. We understand the urban areas need water.  Rural interests need just as much protection to ensure the viability of sustainable agriculture.” 

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Austin is Not Developers’ Monopoly Board

Sign it, if you live in Austin

Austin is Not Developers' Monopoly Board

Dear Mayor Adler and Austin City Council Members:


Why don't you share this with your friends, please:

Make Growth Pay for Itself

No Vista Ridge/San Antone Hose