There was an item on the agenda about the city's apprenticeship program. For quite a while it's been out of line with state and federal law. We could go way into it here, but the whole mess comes down to one local association that likes to quell competition and keep local upstarts from making any money.
Mayor Margo had done a good job talking to all sides and was able to broker a deal that would make everyone happy. At least, he thought had done that. When the item was up for discussion one group denied they'd agreed to any deal and this seemed to perplex the mayor who insisted he'd talked to them and gotten a deal. If I know one thing about Dee Margo it's that he's not a liar. He will tell the truth.
This little hiccup led to Rep. Ordaz asking for clarity on who was consulted and who wasn't. Ordaz is in a bad spot having received donations from both sides of the issue. I'm guessing someone needs to sit her down and tell her that very specifically small construction businesses in her district are being held back by a single word in the resolution. I think she'll understand.
What was weird was that Rep. Annello seemed to be reading from some kind of rolling script. Her disjointed point was how the city should adopt the rules of EPISD when it comes to this issue. If you know anything about anything, you don't want to do what EPISD when it comes to this stuff. Remember, people went to jail for how things went down on EPISD projects.
The important part is that seemed like Annello was being coached via text or other communication device by EPISD School Board Member Susie Byrd. Annello's grasp of the issue was odd and really seemed to be controlled by some kind of script being fed to her. It would interesting to see if she was in fact communicating with Byrd during the meeting.
I have been told by readers who live in her district that Annello defers to Byrd on everything. If you want something - you better go to Susie and then Susie tells Annello. I'm not sure that's what voters wanted.
I'll just quickly hit on the arena thing with the city taking the Chinese Laundry building.
It looks like they are moving forward with plans to build the arena. I'm not sure if this signals that the fights are coming to an end or they are willing to spend the money to win. I'm still a little worried they'll get the thing built and some judge will rule that only a narrow set of activities can take place in the building. We already know they don't have enough planned events to pay for the thing as is. To further limit what they can do in there would just increase the tax burden.
I'll make my prediction now - if this thing is built they'll sell it to a private entity in a decade for pennies on the dollar.