Council Member Dave Martin's

District E Newsletter

Issue 30

June 2015 



Dave Martin

Council Member

District E 





900 Bagby

First Floor

Houston, TX 77002


17629 El Camino Real

Suite 415

Houston, TX 77058



Office: (832) 393-3008

Fax: (832) 393-3279 




Lauren Laake

Chief of Staff 


Evan Austin

South Sector Manager


Jessica Beemer
North Sector Manager


City Contacts
City of Houston 311
(713) 837-0311

Mayor's Citizens Assistance Office
(832) 393-0955

Community Center
District E Community Contacts


Northshore Super Neighborhood Council

Meadowbrook/Allendale Super Neighborhood Council

Clear Lake Super Neighborhood Council 

Residents of District E,


Over the Memorial Day weekend and through last week, our city experienced widespread, historic flooding from Brays Bayou all the way to Kingwood. Areas saw an unprecedented 10+ inches of rain in a short amount of time. We are still tracking areas that are seeing high waters including the Forest Cove and Northshore subdivisions on Lake Houston. As cleanup efforts continue, I ask all those that can and are willing to help with the efforts to donate items to the American Red Cross or volunteer their time with the Houston Volunteer Disaster Assistance Initiative. This initiative has been designed to coordinate and support the efforts of Houston's many volunteer groups so they can more quickly identify and assist elderly, disabled and low-income residents who are least likely to be able to handle disaster clean-up themselves.


The initiative will utilize a network of faith-based organizations to identify the homes of elderly or disabled people who are unable to clean up flood debris or remove flood-damage carpet and furniture from their homes.  Once the homes have been identified, volunteer crews will be dispatched to do the work. The effort will continue as long as there is need.  Then the network will remain on call through the hurricane season, which begins today, Monday, June 1, 2015.  All persons who need help with flood clean-up should call 3-1-1.


I also want to take the time to thank each of the city's first responders who worked tirelessly to ensure the safety of all Houston residents. From HPD and HFD to PWE and SWMD, thank you to all of the "essential" employees who have worked overtime to respond to every call that has come in. My office will continue to communicate information as it relates to the flooding and any aide relief efforts that are available.


Lastly, Mayor Parker released her Fiscal Year 2016 budget last month, with an overall budget of $5.1 billion. To prepare for the vote on the budget, my city council colleagues and I began to sit in on a series of "Budget Workshops" that are scheduled for the next two weeks. Each city department will present an overview of their department and proposed budget, which will help us determine efficiencies and areas that may be cut. Please continue to check my Facebook and Twitter pages to stay updated with the latest discussions. The workshop schedule is also posted on the Budget and Fiscal Affairs Website here. As always, we are available to answer any questions, and I encourage you to reach out to my office with any comments or concerns you have. 




Dave Martin


Tour of San Jacinto River Flooding

Water levels in the San Jacinto River rose quickly following the historic rainfall amounts which fell in the greater Houston region last month, causing communities near the river's west fork in the Lake Houston Area to flood.  To survey flood damage and identify needs, Council Member Martin took an aerial tour of the affected area with the Houston Police Department (HPD) on Wednesday, May 27. Joining Council Member Martin on the tour were At-Large Council Members Jack Christie, David Robinson and Michael Kubosh. Following the aerial tour, Council Member Martin joined HPD's Lake Patrol Division for a boat tour, where he observed homes in the Northshore and Forest Cove subdivisions which had experienced flooding.


Kingwood Area Mobility Study Final Report

The final report of the Kingwood Area Mobility Study, completed following the final public stakeholder meeting held in April, is now available online here. In the report, residents will find a presentation of the mobility data gathered and analyzed by the study, in addition to a number of proposed capital improvement projects which will enhance mobility in the Kingwood area in the coming years. Earlier versions of the report have been available to the public since March 15 of this year. 


Moving forward, the District E office will keep members of the public informed about upcoming mobility improvement projects planned for the Kingwood area.


Lake Houston Transportation Outlook Luncheon

On Thursday, June 28 Council Member Martin spoke as part of a panel at the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce's Transportation Outlook Luncheon. Joining Council Member Martin on the panel to discuss mobility in the Lake Houston Area were Quincy Allen, P.E., the Houston District Engineer for the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT); John A. Elam, P.E., the TxDOT Area Engineer for North Harris County; Darrell Boeske, City Manager for the City of Humble; and Jeremy Phillips, the Senior Director of Infrastructure for Harris County Precinct 2. 


At the luncheon, Council Member Martin spoke about the Kingwood Area Mobility Study as well as the recent flooding that affected the City of Houston last month. He thanks the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce for the invitation to speak and participate in the panel.


Fundraiser for Officer Vern Whitworth

In March of this year, a fire tragically claimed the house, vehicle and possessions of Officer Vern Whitworth of the Houston Police Department's Kingwood Division. In an effort to help Officer Whitworth and his two young daughters rebuild, Kingwood residents held a fundraising event on Saturday, May 16 and also set up a website to facilitate donations to the Whitworth family. To date, the fundraising efforts have raised nearly $30,000. Residents interested in contributing to the cause can access the site online here
Support for HPD Dispatcher 

A dispatcher for the Houston Police Department's (HPD) Kingwood Division recently lost all of her possessions in the flood which hit Houston on May 25. Items lost to the flood included food, a car, clothing, shoes, appliances, electronics and furniture. 

As a result,  HPD Kingwood is asking for donations to support the dispatcher and her family. Donated items can be dropped off at the HPD Kingwood substation, which is located at 3915 Rustic Woods Drive.

Items of immediate need are:
Dispatcher (female)
  • Shoes (size 9)
  • Clothing (size 18)
Dispatcher's son
  • Shoes (size 11)
  • Pants (size 54 waist)
  • Shirts (size 45)
HPD Lake Patrol Update

This month, the District E office received an update on improvements the Houston Police Department's (HPD) Lake Patrol Division has been able to undertake with the surplus funds Council Member Martin donated from his Fiscal Year 2014 office budget. As a result of the donation, Lake Patrol has increased the size of its protective carport, which is now 120 feet by 30 feet. The division is also in the process of installing jet ski lifts for the jet skis it was able to purchase with the donated funds, which have been used to patrol Lake Houston. 

The Lake Patrol Division is one of four HPD divisions within District E that Council Member Martin has been able to support over the past two years with surplus office funds. 

Humble ISD Excellence in Education Award

On Sunday, May 3 the Humble Independent School District was named the 2015 Large District winner of the H-E-B Excellence in Education Awards program. The announcement took place during H-E-B's annual awards dinner, which highlights top educators from across the state. Humble ISD Superintendent Dr. Guy Sconzo accepted the award on behalf of the district, and was joined at the dinner by members of the Humble ISD Board of Trustees.


Humble ISD was among six large districts statewide in the running for the title of 2015 H-E-B Large District Winner, which came with a cash prize of $100,000. The $100,000 prize will be dedicated to innovative education grants which are awarded to teachers through the Humble ISD Education Foundation. The Humble ISD Board of Trustees was also honored this year as one of five statewide finalists in the School Board category.


Council Member Martin congratulates Humble ISD on the amazing honor and thanks the district's 5,138 employees for making the Humble Independent School District one of the very best in the State of Texas.


Kimberely Brusatori TIRZ 10 Appointment

On Wednesday, May 27 City Council confirmed the appointment of Kimberely Brusatori to the Board of Directors of the Lake Houston Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone, also known as TIRZ 10. A longtime resident and community leader in the Kingwood area, Mrs. Brusatori is the founder and CEO of The Village Learning Center, a nonprofit organization which provides a range of programs to educate, support and promote independent living for persons with disabilities in the Northeast Houston area. Council Member Martin congratulates Mrs. Brusatori on the appointment and looks forward to working with her in her new role on the TIRZ 10 board. 


Clear Lake Flood Cleanup

In response to the unfortunate flood event which hit the Clear Lake area on May 12-13, the District E office worked with several city departments and concerned residents in Clear Lake to facilitate a cleanup effort. Immediately following the storm, crews from the Public Works and Engineering Department (PWE) surveyed the area to ensure drainage systems were operating as designed and made repairs to affected infrastructure such as malfunctioning traffic signals. In addition, during the week of May 18 the city's Solid Waste Management Department (SWMD) undertook a special debris pickup on streets which experienced flood damage to residences. Council Member Martin thanks all city staff members involved in the cleanup effort as well as the engaged residents in Clear Lake who worked with the District E office to facilitate a timely response to the flooding. 


Clear Lake Marketplace Update

Construction remains underway on the Clear Lake Marketplace, the commercial development being constructed by Fidelis Realty Partners at the intersection of Clear Lake City Boulevard and El Dorado Boulevard. The extension of Clear Lake City Boulevard associated with the project is scheduled to begin by the end of June, with the extension of El Dorado Boulevard currently nearing completion. In addition, H-E-B recently approved a further lowering of the signs which will advertise its anchor store and other retailers in the development along Clear Lake City Boulevard. The signs will now be 10 feet in height, an additional reduction from the previously approved height of 15 feet and a significant decrease from the originally planned height of 31 feet.


Fidelis is additionally in the process of negotiating leases with potential retail tenants of the Clear Lake Marketplace. A list of tenants who have already signed leases to occupy space in the development is available, along with additional information on the project, here


Jade Green Way Variance Request

On Thursday, May 14 the City of Houston's Planning Commission granted a variance request submitted by Trendmaker Homes to not extend or connect Jade Green Way, a stub street in the Pine Brook subdivision of Clear Lake. As a result, Jade Green Way will not be extended into Section 7 of the Reserve at Clear Lake City, the residential development currently under construction at the intersection of El Dorado Boulevard and Clear Lake City Boulevard. Prior to the granting of the request, the city's Planning and Development Department was requiring that the street be extended.


Council Member Martin spoke at the May 14 commission meeting to support the variance request on behalf of Pine Brook residents, who have vocally opposed the street's extension at a number of public meetings held by the District E office over the past two years. Residents' primary concern about the extension of Jade Green was its potential to create cut-through traffic in the community which could pose a threat to public safety. Leading up to the May 14 meeting, the District E office received over 60 emails in support of the variance in addition to a resolution of support passed by the Pine Brook Home Owners' Association representing 1,083 homeowners in the subdivision. Susan Bobrick, President of the Pine Brook HOA, additionally spoke at the commission meeting to voice her community's concerns.


Council Member Martin thanks all of those Pine Brook residents who reached out to the District E office for participating in what was ultimately an example of successful civic engagement in the City of Houston's planning and development process.


Concrete Panel Replacement Projects

This month, the District E office was informed of a number of concrete panel replacement projects planned for the district in early 2016. Locations scheduled to receive work include: 

  • El Dorado Boulevard and Space Center Boulevard
  • Bay Area Boulevard
  • Derbyshire Drive
  • Allen Genoa Road and Lawndale Street
  • Surrey Square Street and Winkler Drive
  • El Camino Real and El Dorado Boulevard (wheelchair ramp) 
  • Balcones Drive and Outlook Drive (curb repair)
  • Princess Drive (concrete placement)

The Public Works and Engineering Department (PWE) is also in the process of evaluating two further locations for comprehensive panel replacement projects: Space Center Boulevard, from Bay Area Boulevard to Clear Lake City Boulevard, and Allen Genoa Road, from Southmore Avenue to State Highway 225. Further evaluations on these locations are expected to be completed by the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2016, with project design potentially following later in 2016 or in early 2017.


The District E office will continue to keep residents informed as more information becomes available on these and other projects affecting the district in the coming months and years.


Citizens for Space Exploration D.C. Trip

For the past few years, Council Member Martin has made an annual trip to Washington, D.C. with Citizens for Space Exploration (CSE), a multi-state organization comprised of community leaders, space industry representatives, college students and other citizens from across the country who support America's continued investment in human space exploration. Council Member Martin returned to our nation's capital from May 19-21 for this year's trip, which was led by staff from the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership (BAHEP).


On the trip, Council Member Martin visited a number of congressional offices to discuss the importance of NASA and space exploration to the greater Houston region as well as to the country and the world. He also attended a special orientation featuring an address from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, as well as a congressional reception which featured brief remarks from several members of Congress who've taken leadership roles on issues related to NASA and space exploration. On the final evening of this year's trip, attendees additionally visited Lockheed Martin's Space Experience Center to learn about technology the company is developing to contribute to human space exploration.

This year's CSE delegation featured students from over 30 states and accomplished over 350 congressional office visits, more than any of the group's previous trips. Council Member Martin greatly thanks the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership for organizing another successful and informative trip. To learn more about Citizens for Space Exploration, please click here.  


Boeing Human Spaceflight Mission

This month, NASA issued a task order as part of Boeing's $4.2 billion Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contract to include the company's first-ever service flight to the International Space Station. The award marks the first time in human spaceflight history NASA has contracted with a commercial company for a human spaceflight mission.


Boeing was selected by NASA in September 2014 to build and fly America's next passenger spacecraft, the Crew Space Transportation (CST)-100. The Commercial Crew Transportation System (CCTS) is being developed in partnership with NASA's Commercial Crew Program which aims to resume U.S.-based flights to space by 2017.


Council Member Martin congratulates Boeing on this historic milestone as the United States moves closer to once again launching astronauts into space from American soil. 


10th Annual State of the Lake Tourism Address

On Thursday, May 14 Council Member Martin spoke at the 10th Annual State of the Lake tourism address, jointly hosted by the Bay Area Houston Convention & Visitor Bureau (BAHCVB) and the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce (CLACC). Council Member Martin, who serves on the board of the Houston First Corporation as an ex-officio member, highlighted recent initiatives undertaken by Houston First to increase tourism in the greater Houston region. Council Member Martin also discussed some of the exciting developments currently underway in the Clear Lake area, such as the upcoming eight-story Shuttle exhibit at Space Center Houston, slated to open this fall, and the expected granting of a spaceport operator's license for Ellington Airport, which should occur before June 28 of this year.


Council Member Martin thanks Pam Summers with the BAHCVB for the invitation to speak at the event, which also featured remarks from a number of other elected officials from Houston's Bay Area.


CCISD's 2015 Volunteer and Partnership Breakfast

On Friday, May 1 Council Member Martin attended the Clear Creek Independent School District's (CCISD) 2015 Volunteer and Partnership Breakfast held to recognize a number of individuals and businesses which support the district and its 41,000 students. At the breakfast, CCISD Superintendent Dr. Greg Smith announced the district's 2015 Community Partner of the Year, the CCISD Automotive Technology Advisory Board. Among the board members recognized at the breakfast were a number of automotive professionals from Houston's Bay Area who teach and mentor students in CCISD's Automotive Technology Program. Additionally announced at the breakfast were this year's Elementary and Secondary Volunteers of the Year: Norma Herrera, for her support of students and staff at McWhirter Elementary; and Debbie Davis, for her contributions to the science program at Bayside Intermediate.


Council Member Martin thanks all those recognized at CCISD's 2015 Volunteer and Partnership Breakfast for their dedicated support of the district.


Rotary Teachers of the Year Luncheon 2015

Each year, the rotary clubs of Space Center, Seabrook and League city team up to recognize outstanding teachers from the Clear Creek Independent School District (CCISD) at the Rotary CCISD Teachers of the Year Luncheon. On Monday, May 11 staff from Council Member Martin's office attended this year's event, where 44 educators from elementary, intermediate and high schools across the district were recognized for their excellence in the classroom. Each of the 2015 Teachers of the Year received a certificate of special recognition from Council Member Martin thanking them for their commitment to the education of our youth in the area.


This year's special honorees were Tonia Roque of Landolt Elementary, who was named CCISD Elementary Teacher of the Year, and Anthony Tran of Clear Falls High School, who was named CCISD Secondary Teacher of the Year. Dr. Britani Moses of Stewart Elementary and Dr. Karen Engle of Clear Lake High School were also recognized as CCISD's 2015 Prinicpals of the Year.


Congressman Brian Babin's District Office Ribbon Cutting

Staff from Council Member Martin's office joined a number of local elected officials and community leaders at a ribbon cutting event on Monday, May 4 held to celebrate the opening of Congressman Brian Babin's new district office.  At the event, Congressman Babin introduced staff members from his district and Washington D.C. offices before offering those in attendance brief remarks on the current session of Congress. Congressman Babin's new district office is located in Suite 600 of 203 Ivy Avenue in Deer Park. 


Nick Crnkovic Reappointment

On Wednesday, May 27 City Council confirmed the reappointment of Nick Crnkovic to the City of Houston's Public Safety Advisory Committee. In addition to his service on the committee, Mr. Crnkovic currently serves as the president of the Freeway Manor Civic Club. Council Member Martin congratulates Mr. Crnkovic on the reappointment and thanks him for his continued leadership in the Freeway Manor community and the City of Houston.


Ellington Airport Self-Fueling Station

The Houston Airport System (HAS) recently opened a self-fueling station at Ellington Airport (EFD) offering aviation gasoline (AvGas 100LL) to tenants and general aviation aircraft.The 'On the Fly' self-fueling station offers a convenient option to the general aviation flights operating from Ellington.  HAS estimates that EFD handled 97,000 aircraft operations in 2014.


The 'On The Fly' self-fueling station can be accessed taking Taxilane J to the T-hangar area and will be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The station will utilize Shell fuel and will accept all major credit cards, Shell cards, AVCARD and multi-service cards. The station has built-in safety features including camera monitoring and double-walled fire resistant tanks, and other fire safety regulated components.


HAS did not sell fuel at Ellington Airport previously. This is the first venture offering a product for resale at Ellington.  


City of Houston Storm Debris Collection

The City of Houston Solid Waste Management Department began storm debris collection in the hardest hit areas of the City on Saturday, May 30. Residents are asked to separate discarded items into the following six categories and place each pile at the curb away from mailboxes, fire hydrants, water meters, electrical lines and other impediments.

  • Normal Household Trash - Normal household trash and bagged debris of any kind will not be picked up with debris as part of this program. You should continue to follow your normal garbage schedule.
  • Vegetative Debris - leaves (do not put in bags), logs, plants, tree branches.
  • Construction & Demolition Debris - building materials, carpet, drywall, furniture, lumber, mattresses, and plumbing.
  • Appliances & White Goods - air conditioners, dishwashers, freezers, refrigerators, stoves, washers, dryers and water heaters.
  • Electronics - computers, radios, stereos, televisions, other devices with a cord.
  • Household Hazardous Waste - cleaning supplies, batteries, lawn chemical, oils, oil-based paints, stains and pesticides.

Additional information and instruction for debris placement can be found at or on the Solid Waste Management Department's Facebook page.


Weekly garbage, yard waste and curbside recycling services that did not occur during the last week in May due to the flooding will return to their normal collection schedules as follows:

  • Monday and Tuesday garbage that was not collected will occur on their regularly scheduled days beginning Monday, June 1. 
  • Missed yard waste will be collected on its regularly scheduled day beginning Monday, June 1.
  • Missed recycling will be picked up on its next scheduled recycling collection date. 
FEMA Federal Disaster Relief Funds

President Barack Obama and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) have approved federal disaster relief funding for Harris County as well as three other Texas counties impacted by severe weather since May 4, 2015. 


The full text of the FEMA announcement is available here


Federal assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster. 


Residents and business owners who sustained losses in Harris County can apply for assistance by registering online at, by calling (1-800) 621-3362 or via a web-enabled mobile device at


Disaster assistance applicants who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use TTY should call (1-800) 462-7585 directly. Those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS) should call (1-800) 621-3362.


The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.


National Police Week

The second week in May was National Police Week, and Council Member Martin participated in a number of events recognizing our local law enforcement officers for their dedicated and selfless service to the citizens of the greater Houston region. On Friday, May 8 Council Member Martin attended a memorial service in observance of police week held at the Houston Police Officers' Memorial. The annual service featured a procession down Memorial Drive and honored the brave HPD officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty. Council Member Martin additionally attended the yearly Police Week Awards Luncheon held on Monday, May 11 where members of HPD received awards in a number of categories.


Also held on May 11 was the first annual North Houston Police Memorial Day Ceremony, hosted by Congressman Ted Poe and the City of Humble to honor fallen peace officers from across the State of Texas. Staff from Council Member Martin's office attended the event, which featured remarks from Congressman Poe as well as former Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia. To view a recording of the full ceremony, please click here.


Council Member Martin extends his deepest gratitude for all of the dedicated police officers who risk their lives each day to serve and protect the greater Houston region. He also extends thoughts to the families of those peace officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty both in Houston and across the United States. 


Wounded Warriors Welcome Reception

On Friday, May 15 Council Member Martin and the District E team joined the Houston Police Department, the United Service Organization (USO), military personnel and the Patriot Guard Riders to help welcome Wounded Warriors to Houston at Bush Intercontinental Airport. The special yearly event celebrated the arrival of the wounded veterans in town for "Warrior Weekend," a project of Warrior's Weekend - Texas in which wounded veterans participate in a deep-sea fishing trip in Port O'Connor. This annual trip honors Army and Marine veterans who sustained life-altering injuries during combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. 


9/11 Heroes Run Registration

Registration is now open for this year's 9/11 Heroes Run, which will be held at District E's Ellington Airport on Saturday, September 12 at 8:00 a.m. Runners and walkers of all levels and ages are welcome to participate in the annual event, which is held to honor the sacrifices made by the veteran, first responder, civilian, and military heroes of September 11th, 2001 and the wars that have since followed.


For more information and to register for Houston's 9/11 Heroes Run 2015, please visit Online registration will run through Wednesday, September 9. To guarantee the receipt of a race shirt and participant souvenir, register before August 31 at 11:59 p.m.


An exciting video of last year's event can also be viewed here


United Airlines IAH Groundbreaking Ceremony

Staff from Council Member Martin's office attended a groundbreaking ceremony on Monday, May 11 where United Airlines, in partnership with Mayor Annise Parker and the Houston Airport System, broke ground on the airline's new Terminal C North concourse at George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH). The 265,000 square-foot concourse will feature 20 new dining and retail options as well as floor-to-ceiling windows for enhanced tarmac views and expanded lounge areas at the facility's 11 passenger boarding gates. It will be more than 100,000 square-feet larger than the airport's existing Terminal C North.


Construction on the $244 million project is currently expected for completion in early 2017. When construction on the concourse is completed, the Houston Airport System will demolish the existing Terminal C North facility at Bush Intercontinental to enable the reconstruction of the Mickey Leland International Terminal D.


For more information on United's new Terminal C North concourse at IAH and for pictures of the May 11 groundbreaking event, please click here


Southwest Airlines Press Conference

On Wednesday, May 13 Council Member Martin joined Mayor Annise Parker and Gary Kelly, CEO of Southwest Airlines, at a press conference held to announce new non-stop international flights the airline will be offering out of Hobby Airport's new international terminal, which is scheduled to open in the fall. Beginning October 15 of this year, Southwest flights will be available to Mexico City, Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos and Cancún in Mexico as well as San Jose, Costa Rica and Belize City, Belize. A flight to Montego Bay, Jamaica and Liberia, Costa Rica will begin November 1. In her remarks, Mayor Parker highlighted the positive economic impact the new flights will have on Hobby Airport and the City of Houston.


2015 Mayor's Literacy Leadership Award Breakfast

Each year, the Houston Center for Literacy (HCL) holds the Mayor's Literacy Leadership Award Breakfast to bring together the center's many contributors and raise awareness about the need for a more literate Houston. Council Member Martin attended this year's breakfast on Thursday, May 7 where the HCL's "Learner of the Year" Shanna Aniekwu spoke on the positive impact the center and East Side University have had on her life.


For more information on the Houston Center for Literacy and its mission to foster a more literate and prepared Houston, please visit  


Memorial Hermann Business of Health Breakfast

On the morning of Wednesday, May 6 Council Member Martin joined a number of community leaders, elected officials, Memorial Hermann board members and other professionals at Memorial Hermann's Business of Health Breakfast. At the event, Dan Wolterman, Memorial Hermann President & CEO, spoke to those in attendance about "The Business of Health: How Memorial Hermann Became the Nation's Busiest Level I Trauma Center."


The Business of Health Breakfast was hosted by Memorial Hermann Foundation's young professional group "Heroes in Health." For more information about Memorial Hermann Foundation, please visit


National Day of Prayer Rally

In observance of National Day of Prayer, which fell this year on Thursday, May 7, Council Member Martin joined a number of church leaders as well as colleagues on Council and members of the public for a rally on the steps of City Hall. At the event, Christian leaders from across the city gathered for a time of Thanksgiving and to pray for the city, state and country as well the elected officials who serve in leadership roles around the nation. Pastor Steve Riggle of Grace Community Church lead the prayer service, which was also accompanied by live music.


Established in 1952 by a joint resolution of Congress and held on the first Thursday of May each year, National Day of Prayer encourages all Americans to pray and reflect on the importance of faith in our country. For more information on National Day of Prayer, please visit


University of Houston Institute for Regional Forecasting's Spring 2015 Symposium

On Tuesday, May 12 Council Member Martin attended the Spring 2015 Symposium hosted by the Institute for Regional Forecasting at the University of Houston's Bauer College of Business. At the symposium, entitled, "Good Times or Bad? Oil Still Makes the Difference for Houston" the institute's director, Dr. Bill Gilmer, presented on a number of questions related to the recent downturn in the price of oil and its impact on the Houston economy. Topics covered included the growing history of drilling busts and clues about the depth and duration of the current downturn; the role Houston's petrochemical industry plays in the region's current economic health; the impact of oil-related job losses on other sectors of Houston's economy; and the ultimate impact the drop in oil prices will have on Houston commercial and residential real estate markets. For more information on the University of Houston Institute for Regional Forecasting's Spring 2015 Syposium, please click here


Hurricane Preparedness

The 2015 hurricane season began June 1, and a number of resources are available to help residents of the greater Houston region prepare. The City of Houston's Office of Emergency Management (OEM) offers valuable information to assist Houstonians to prepare for and respond to hurricanes and other emergencies. By visiting the OEM website here, residents can sign up for automatic alerts, access an electronic copy of the City of Houston's Disaster Preparedness Guide and find a number of links to other useful emergency readiness and response resources. For a recently updated map of evacuation routes and zones published by the Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC), please click here.


The Harris County Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Management (OHSEM) offers additional resources to help residents in the greater Houston area prepare for hurricane season. For up-to-date information on watches, warning and advisories throughout Harris County, please visit A hurricane preparedness brochure and other valuable resources provided by the OHSEM can also be accessed by clicking here.


Houston Zoo Retirements

Deborah Cannon, the president and CEO of the Houston Zoo, is retiring in August after 10 years of service in the position. During Cannon's tenure as CEO, attendance at the zoo has grown from 1.4 to 2.35 million, with membership quadrupling and the zoo's staff doubling in that same time period. Since Cannon joined in 2005, the Houston Zoo has executed over 500 capital improvement projects totaling more than $125 million. A search is currently underway to find Cannon's replacement, who will be responsible for a staff of 400 employees and a 2015 operating budget of approximately $46 million.

Rick Barongi, the Houston Zoo's fifth director since its founding in 1922, is also retiring. Barongi joined the zoo in 2000 and oversaw its transition from City of Houston management to its current management by the nonprofit Houston Zoo Inc.

Council Member Martin congratulates Mrs. Cannon and Mr. Barongi on their retirements and thanks them for more than a decade of capable leadership at the Houston Zoo.


Gorilla Exhibit at the Houston Zoo

The month of May brought more developments to the Houston Zoo with the opening of the new gorilla exhibit on May 22. Seven lowland gorillas now call Houston home, and two distinct troops will occupy the new exhibit alternating between an outdoor habitat which mimics the landscape of an African forest and a multi-tiered night house that includes private bedrooms, a 23-foot-tall climbing tree and a behind-the-scenes outdoor yard. All of the gorillas featured in the new exhibit have been chosen as a part of the Species Survival Plan, a cooperation between the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) to properly manage threatened and endangered species. More information on the Houston Zoo's new gorilla exhibit can be found online at


Houston Visitors Center Relocation

The official Houston visitors center, which for years had been located on the first floor of Houston City Hall, has been relocated to a temporary spot on Avenida de las Americas before a more permanent location for the center is established in Houston's Convention District. The move was finalized by a vote taken on Friday, May 15 by the board of directors for Houston First Corporation, on which Council Member Martin sits as an ex officio member. Following the decision, the visitors center closed on May 28 and reopened Monday, June 1 in its new temporary location, which is in a street-level retail space on the west side of Avenida de las Americas, between Polk Street and Dallas Street, facing the George R. Brown Convention Center.


Houston First officials expect that the move will bring increased visibility to the visitors center due to the 2.5 million patrons who visit the George R. Brown Convention Center, Discovery Green and other attractions proximate to the new location each year. The space currently being used for the visitors center at City Hall will be repurposed for meetings and news conferences. Preliminary plans include displays about Houston's history and the Houston Hall of Fame which honors those who have achieved excellence in the arts, athletics, business, entertainment, law, medicine and public service.


Interim Harris County Sheriff Ronald Hickman

Former Precinct 4 Constable Ronald Hickman was confirmed as the interim Harris County sheriff by Harris County Commissioners Court on Tuesday, May 12. Hickman took over in the role after former sheriff Adrian Garcia resigned this month to run for mayor of the City of Houston. Garcia had served as county sheriff since 2008.


Sheriff Hickman started his career in law enforcement with the Houston Police Department before joining Precinct 4 as a patrol deputy in 1983. He was promoted to sergeant after a year and a half on the job and served a key role in the development of a computer system which still facilitates communication between the county's different law enforcement agencies today. Sheriff Hickman was elected as Precinct 4 Constable in November 2000, a position in which he served for nearly 15 years before his confirmation as interim Harris County sheriff.


Replacing Sheriff Hickman as Precinct 4 Constable is Mark Herman, who was confirmed in the post by Commissioners Court on Tuesday, May 19. Constable Herman has served Precinct 4 for almost 30 years, most recently as assistant chief deputy.


Council Member Martin congratulates Sheriff Hickman and Constable Herman and looks forward to working with both in their new roles.


Harris County Mosquito Control Resources

The arrival of the summer months in the greater Houston region means the unavoidable rise of mosquito populations. However, the Mosquito Control Division of Harris County Public Health & Environmental Services (HCPHES) operates a number of programs and initiatives aimed at educating residents and controlling mosquito-borne diseases in the area. To protect the health and wellbeing of county residents, the Mosquito Control Division monitors Culex mosquito populations; performs laboratory analysis to test for the presence of St. Louis encephalitis (SLE) and West Nile Virus (WNV) encephalitis; utilizes Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to track mosquito-borne diseases; and conducts ground and aerial spraying in areas confirmed for SLE or WNV.


In order to keep residents informed about the current prevalence of mosquito-borne diseases in Harris County, the Mosquito Control Division also maintains a "Current Diseases Activity" webpage, accessible here.


The Mosquito Control Division further maintains a Dead Bird Reporting service to enable citizens to alert the county about dead birds potentially infected with mosquito-borne diseases. Concerned residents can contact the HCPHES Mosquito Control Dead Bird Hotline at (713) 440-3036 or by using this online form to report a dead bird.


For more information on the programs and resources offered by the Mosquito Control Division of Harris County Health & Public Services, including information on mosquito-borne diseases and mosquito repellent safety, please click here.


Save the Date: METRO Bus Network Public Hearings

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority of Harris County (METRO) is hosting two public hearings to receive comments regarding plans to adjust METRO's New Bus Network service. Proposed changes are intended to provide customers with more reliable, efficient and cost-effective service and to provide additional capacity where it is needed most.


The hearings will be held at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 3, and at 12:00 p.m. on Friday, June 5. Both hearings will be held at METRO Headquarters, 1900 Main Street, Houston, Texas 77002 in the 2nd floor Board Room.


Areas under consideration include:

  • METRO New Bus Network Operator Maps
  • Proposed Saturday Schedules
  • Proposed Sunday Schedules
  • Proposed Weekday Schedules
Attendees may view and download more detailed information about these changes, including proposed schedules and maps by visiting

Upcoming Events 

Please refer to Council Martin's District E website for location, time and more event details. Email the District E office if you would like us to include your upcoming event in future newsletters! 


City Wides

May 26-June 24
City of Houston's Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Process

June 3-June 7
28th Annual Houston Summer Boat Show

June 30-July 1
Council Break Week

June 4
Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce's Party on the Green

June 4
Kingwood Service Association's Parks Committee Meeting

June 10
Kingwood Service Association's Public Safety Committee Meeting

June 16
Kingwood PIP

June 16
Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce's State of the State Luncheon

Southeast Houston/Clear Lake    

June 1

Rotary Club of Space Center's 2015 Charity Golf Tournament


June 3

Economic Alliance Houston Port Region's Women's Leadership Luncheon


June 16

Clear Lake PIP


June 18

Bay Area Houston Transportation Partnership's Monthly Luncheon


June 24

Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce's General Membership Luncheon