Last week the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce announced that it would be endorsing candidates for the upcoming El Paso Independent School District (EPISD) trustee elections. There are so many things wrong with this whole thing that I’m at a loss as to where to begin. Obviously, the most distressing thing is that the EPISD elections are to fill vacancies of a school board that had to be replaced for allowing such outrageous public corruption to manifest within itself that the State of Texas did not have any other choice but to remove the whole board.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, consider that the Greater Chamber of Commerce not only wholeheartedly endorsed a notorious public corruption figure but they also named him Entrepreneur of the Year! As you remember, Bob Jones swindled the taxpayers of the city while the chamber, not to mention the political elite, were bestowing accolades upon accolades on him for his business “acumen.”
Now, that same chamber of commerce wants to tell you who you should elect to take control of the same entity heavily involved in numerous corruption scandals. Coincidently, many members of the chamber benefited directly and indirectly from many years from public corruption at the city.
Even the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce acknowledges that this is the first time they are getting into the business of telling you who to elect. Look closely at why all of a sudden they want to tell you whom to vote for.
According to the El Paso Times article on January 29, 2015, titled “Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce to endorse school board candidates,” by Lindsey Anderson (kudos to Anderson’s investigative reports), the sudden interest to endorse candidates derives from a recently created PAC called Kids First of El Paso. According to a quote by a member of the PAC, the PAC was formed for “encouraging community organizations…to identify and endorse candidates who will ‘put politics behind’ and focus on preparing students.”
All laudable until you see who is financing the PAC.
Anderson reported that the PAC is financed with $11,000. Ten thousand of that financing came from Woody Hunt. This is the same individual whose company has a problem with the US flag adorning the façade of a school in one of his developments. This is the same individual that I have already documented caused a journalist to be fired because the journalist wanted to report on one of his shenanigans. It is the same individual that has spent money through various PACs to put certain individuals into office to drive his public policy agenda.
I don’t know about you, but understanding that most businesses associated with the El Paso Chamber of Commerce depend on the largess of Hunt related businesses who do you think the endorsements would favor?
Clearly there is a problem with this whole endorsement thing and it isn’t about what is good for El Paso, but rather a public policy agenda that is driving El Paso into bankruptcy.
That is something to be concerned. The El Paso millionaires club driving and controlling public policy.
El Paso has never entered the 21st century, despite all the bs that our historical buildings should be demolished. Once again, I will say it. Buildings don’t make a city, people do.
We are still trapped in the Ole West way of doing things. The millionaires club are the updated version of the old cattle barons that owned towns. They owned. The mayor, sheriff, saloon, store and had their enforcers to make the towns people toe the line. What this city needs is a strong leader that is not owned or afraid of the cattlemen.
How many individuals do you know who have spent years, time, effort, energy and money in an effort to better educate our kids than Woody Hunt? He recognizes that without better education ELP will always be a city of “growth without prosperity.” He recognizes the dropout rates in ELP schools are unacceptable, college readiness in ELP are extremely low and graduation rates at EPCC and UTEP are disappointing. This sounds like an individual that wants others to be successful, as he has. The issue with the school colors was one of “covenants.” Let’s not confuse the two issues.
Then again, can you educate Mexicans?
Barbara, if he was concerned about our youth having opportunities, he would assist the county with attracting quality jobs and companies. He wouldn’t spend time and money influencing elections and officials to achieve his toys and ideas that only benefit him.
Oh, he donated money for this and that. Bet, he made sure he received a tax write off . Didn’t he fight the tax rates of his company ? Not comparing him to gangsters, but to provide a very understandable example. Al Capone and John Gotti spend time in the Italian neighborhoods giving away free turkeys and toys during Christmas. They were known give unfortunate people a hundred dollars here and there. Now, what was in it for them, loyalty and convince the people they were good guys. What’s in it for the El Paso millionaires club? Tax write off, loyalty from the people, good PR and a nice investment with the city/county support.
Nothing personal against the man. Any millionaire in Mayberry would do the same. He gives away a lot of more money than I do, but then, he has the bucks.
Oh well, nothing will change and at least I can say that I tried to open your eyes.
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