San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

September 26th, 2009
Will Conley's blog: County budget increase unnecessary

By WILL CONLEY
Hays County Precinct 3 Commissioner

Hays County property taxes are going up again, but they didn’t have to.

In a four-to-one vote, the county judge and commissioners voted to add another 1.42 cents to the property tax rate, raising it to 46.92 cents per $100 of taxable valuation. I was the lone opposition to the tax increase. Under the 2010 fiscal plan, Hays County will collect $4.4 million more in property taxes than in 2009, with about $1.1 million coming as a direct result of the property tax increase.

I voted against this tax increase because it was unnecessary and out of touch with Hays County families and businesses. As a result of the national economic recession, more people are unemployed and businesses are struggling. Families all across the county are tightening their belts and your government—at all levels—should do the same.

During the county budget negotiations, I proposed several budget cuts that would have eliminated the need to raise property taxes altogether. Moreover, my proposals would have also continued to fully fund important, voter-approved road and park projects as well as increasing funding to local social service organizations whose resources are strained by the effects of the recession.

In an attempt to reduce county expenses, I proposed exactly $1,546,222 in budget cuts. My proposals included a countywide hiring freeze except for emergency dispatchers. Many other local governments have used hiring freezes as an effective means to cut costs. Additionally, I called for cuts in county legal expenses, contingency items, capital equipment purchases, employee bonuses, and a three percent cut in non-personnel funding. These are all items that could handle a reduced funding level during the coming year without impairing the level of service that citizens expect.

I also proposed a reduced level of funding for the county’s new Government Center. I agree with my colleagues on the court that the Government Center is a necessary project. I disagree, however, that it needs to cost so much. (A full list of my cost savings proposals can be found on my website, www.commissionerconley.com.)

This was a tough budget year, and I don’t believe that the budget my colleagues supported was altogether irresponsible. However, I know that we could and should have done better. Making cuts to a budget is never easy, but during tough economic times, citizens deserve a government that acts responsibly and keeps spending in check. They certainly don’t deserve tax increases that could have been avoided.

Will Conley (R-San Marcos) was first elected Hays County Commissioner in 2004. He can be contacted at www.commissionerconley.com.

(Editor’s note: Along with this piece, Conley submitted the following proposals for savings he made during the 2010 budget process. Additionally, Conley said he has “taken action to” suspend work on the Precinct 3 county office until economic conditions improve, and cut his Precinct 3 operating budget.)

* $500,000 savings from the county building fund
* $245,000 savings from a three percent cut to non-personnel items
* $235,000 savings in a one-year elimination of employee bonuses
* $157,000 savings by delaying new hires (except dispatchers)
* $120,000 savings from the county road line item
* $87,222 savings in capital equipment expenses
* $72,000 savings by using reserves to pay for capital improvements
* $50,000 savings from reducing county legal expenses
* $25,000 savings by funding the Hays Trinity Groundwater District at current levels
* $20,000 savings from contingency reductions
* $20,000 savings from the dispute resolution center
* $15,000 savings from Envision Central Texas

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93 thoughts on “Will Conley's blog: County budget increase unnecessary

  1. I might add that another 20K could be saved by eliminating the newly created Dispute Resolution Center which is not needed, most of the judges did not want and most importantly most of the attorneys will not be using. What galls me more than anything is that we have added a $5.00 extra fee ( I believe that the figure) to each new law suit filed in the county to pay for this mess and make justice even more inaccessible to those seeking access to the JP system ( Where no lawyer like me is needed) and the JP should be resolving disputes anyway. This is another white elephant.

    On the other hand, the legislature has authorized us to create a veterans court to deal with returning veterans that run into legal issues and need help. This can be done at no or little expense with volunteers and existing veterans with in our County.

  2. Hays-Trinity groundwater district had the opportunity to have its own source of funding comming from those people who use Trinity aquifer water. Instead a bare majority of the board, meeting while the other members were not present, chose to change their position and disavow the prior agreement with our local legislative represenatives. Now everyone who lives outside the Hays-Trinity district is paying. This is taxation without representation and for those people who are subject to the Edwards Aquifer authority this is double taxation. The H-T should not be rewarded for their political bad behavior by being allowed to pick the pockets of all the residents of the county who do not use Trinity goundwater. If you were to count the actual number of people who voted these individuals onto the board of H-T GCD you would see that they have no broad mandate from the people of Hays county.

  3. “Hays-Trinity groundwater district had the opportunity to have its own source of funding comming from those people who use Trinity aquifer water. Instead a bare majority of the board, meeting while the other members were not present, chose to change their position and disavow the prior agreement with our local legislative represenatives.” Andy, that is a flat out lie on your part. You know that Rep. Rose refused to introduce legislation giving the District the same authority the other 90 Groundwater Conservation Districts have to ASK all of the District voters for permission to impose a small property tax (not more than 5 cents per $100 valuation) to fund the District operations. Instead, Rose cooked up a proposed bill that dumped the full funding responsibility on the public water system customers and the District said NO, that wasn’t fair or responsible. You are a lying sack of sh— for publishing your flat out lies. I’m going to confer with an libel attorney to see if you can be sued for publishing such slanderous lies you know to be false.

  4. It is hard for me to take Will Conley seriously.

    Interesting how he thinks voting no for the entire budget allows him to say he said yes to certain things in the budget.

    Voting no means you voted no to 10 more dispatchers for fire and EMS, no to the 4% step increase for deputies, no to paying back the debt that is owed for the roads and parks, no to putting aside funds for infrastructure, no to pay back our contractual obligations, no to paying employees and their health benefits, no to the low cost insurance program for small businesses, no to the San Marcos economic development partnership, no to social services, no to the Hays County/San Marcos EMS, no to new subdivisions, no to public safety…..

    I also like how he has budget cuts – the 20,000 to fund the DRC making mediation affordable to the poor so that justice can be served….well, they have already performed two CPS mediations for free for the county saving the county well over 25,000, so they made us money… So I guess he voted no to cost savings in the budget also.

    You see what Conley doesn’t realize is that you have to vote YES, to be able to say what you didn’t particularly like supporting in the budget but the budget as a whole was a good thing.

    Voting no means the budget as a whole was a bad thing, that on balance it was worse than the good things that were in it.

    Weird outlook on life – voting no was purely political because no one can point to the budget and say that as a whole it was more bad than good.

    Does Will Conley even believe his own rhetoric?

  5. django, by your logic a person should never vote no on a budget because every governmental budget contains some things that are beneficial. We must blindly except any waste the budget is loaded with. If two more commissioners had sided with Conley it would not have meant that the good things in the budget would have never passed, it would have meant that the budget would be rewritten

    Django, I don’t know if you really believe the nonsence you posted, or if you just couldn’t pass up a chance to blast a politician you don’t like

  6. Maybe the Good Dr. should utilize the county’s new resolution center before he goes running to his libel attorney…

    And since the Commissioners do not have a line-item veto, and Comm Conley went to great lengths to explain his vote including exactly what he was voting against, I think he made himself very clear. I think Django missed the point, however. Comm. Conley wasn’t voting against the budget – he was voting against the tax increase that the budget was going to result in. He states that pretty clearly in the first sentence. I guess Django has a short attention span.

    I don’t agree with Comm. Conley on this one. I think Commissioners Court did a good job in hammering together a budget that resulted in a very modest tax increase. But I appreciate his willingness to explain himself as clearly as he did. He didn’t have to do it (it’s not like he’s up for re-election anytime soon).

    I get tired of everyone who dislikes a particular politician piling on at every possible opportunity.

    And I get very tired of hypocrites who rant on about their first amendment rights to free speech elsewhere but are very quick at threatening to sue people for libel/slander at the drop of the hat.

    FYI Doctor O’Dell – you can NOT sue for slander or libel over a comment made about the Hays-Trinity Groundwater District – because it does NOT affect YOU. Please – just get over yourself.

  7. we all know mr odell needs to have a long talk with a lawyer about libel. Very apparently he also needs a lot of professional help but it is probabaly way too late for that to do any good. Whatever his personal problems are the hate in his heart has corroded his mind to the point where he makes very little sense to most folks. A person can not continually lie like that and have very much self-respect. A pitiful creature, sort of like old Gollum from the hobbits tale. He longs for a power he never had. Delusional.

  8. Lila, tell that to my my neighbors whose wells, like mine own, went dry because Rep. Rose refused to give the District the authority to protect existing wells as the legislature meant for them to do in Chpt. 36 of the Water Code, and the lying support of Rose by minions such as Andy Grubbs who spews his venomous lies about the District’s efforts to accomplish their legislative mandate despite the undercutting of development interests who don’t give a damn about existing wells. FYI, many of the wells that went dry in the past few months sailed through the drought of record in the 1950’s.

  9. Charles. You will just never get it. You are your own worst enemy – and the enemy of your own causes. You do them more harm than good, as evidenced by what went down in the last legislative session.

    I’m sorry your well went dry. I really am. But that is the problem with the rule of capture. There were people who were here long before you Charles. And when you moved to the Hill Country – along with thousands of others – those people’s water source was stressed. Did you care about their wells when you moved to a place with meager water sources and built a pool? Now that you feel you have a stake, you don’t want anyone else to come in. I remember hearing exactly the same words from the old-timers years ago. The madness keeps on…

    I don’t have the answer. But I do understand that we are all part of the problem. Charles – Drop the self-righteousness.

  10. due to nature the porosity/permeability of carbonate aquifers gives them the ability to rapidly transmit water, but not the capacity to actually store a lot of it. It rains a lot the springs flow. it doesnt rain the springs dry up. Drilling a well is, and always has been like shooting dice. you really do not know what you will get. the economics are such that more and more people choose to do rainwater collection.

    no amount of delusional ranting by insane self appointed activists is going to change the fact that the legislation proposed by the Hays-Trinity GCD would have never been passed by the legislature, been signed by the governor or been ratified by the voters of the district. Why does Gobbels odell always spout off with the most stupid lies and personal attacks and never ever comes up with any actual facts. Lets see the actual proposed legislation ?

    Voters in Comal county have twice voted to dissolve their GCD. I do not see where the lack of a GCD caused the recent drought to harm them any more than residents of Hays county. Looking at the numbers of people who actually vote in the H-T board elections one has to wonder if that could not happen here.

  11. Andy, “the legislation proposed by the Hays-Trinity GCD would have never been passed by the legislature, been signed by the governor or been ratified by the voters of the district.” Why don’t we just do away with the democratic process and ask you for a decision? That would save a lot of time and money, wouldn’t it. And you of course are a political expert too. And your, “I do not see where the lack of a GCD caused the recent drought to harm them any more than residents of Hays county.” That statement reminds me of Jimi Hendrix and “Purple haze all in my brain.” Apparently you never paid attention to those public service ads about how drugs will fry your brain. FYI, it’s Joseph Goebbels, not Gobbels. That’s what turkeys do.

  12. Lila, “Did you care about their wells when you moved to a place with meager water sources and built a pool?” We don’t use groundwater for our pool. It’s total rainwater capture, so post about something you know—for a change. “But I do understand that we are all part of the problem.” So that’s why the buddy of your beloved Commissioner Barton, Rep. Patrick Rose refused to give our Groundwater Conservation District a chance to be part of the solution as the Legislature intended for it to be in Chapter 36 of the Water Code. Let’s not get into a discussion about self-righteousness. I hope you and Andy Grubbs are not sharing the same spoon (or is a spoon too old fashion?).

  13. “…Comm. Conley wasn’t voting against the budget – he was voting against the tax increase that the budget was going to result in. He states that pretty clearly in the first sentence.” Lila, do you believe the readers are that stupid? Conley votes for the budget busting items, and then singularly votes against the tax increase necessary to pay for the budget busting items that he supported—just so he can claim again that he never votes for a tax hike. How much more dishonest can he get? Answer: a lot.

  14. Lila, it’s interesting that you should bring up Nick Ramus in your post. He is the fellow who Barton encouraged to sue the county about revoking his septic permit so Barton could hammer Judge Sumter into submission and prepare for his run for county judge in 2010. This is the fellow who Conley and the Jim Green Hays Republican Club got to run for Pct. 1 county commissioner to get Commissioner Ingalsbe in line. This is the fellow who has been charged three times of being a public nuisance and convicted twice. This is the fellow who goes to trial Oct 5th on charges of deadly conduct. What a swell guy your buddy Barton and Conley promoted. I don’t believe Barton and Conley are pleased that you brought Ramus into this discussion. Bad girl.

  15. People, people, people, one of the oldest rules of the Internet is don’t feed the trolls. An excepted definition of a troll is:
    “In Internet slang, a troll is someone who posts controversial, inflammatory, irrelevant or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room or blog, with the primary intent of provoking other users into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.”

    Charles O’Dell is obviously a chronic troll and has a wonderful time doing his false, libelous and ridicules postings. He is effective because it is pretty clear that he has become (or always was) some what mentally unstable. He is the classical tin foil hat troll. I know it is hard not to respond. I have even been sucked in a time or two but when you respond to O’Dell, you feed the troll and he gets the attention he so desperately needs.

    Trolls disrupt the flow of information and screw up the conversation. The rules of the Internet have given the sysop, moderator or in this case the publisher/editor the right and almost an obligation to ban trolls. This is not a matter of free speech because the troll limits free speech and rational discussion. The moderator should never ban a person because they do not like what they are saying. The troll must be banned for the disruption he causes.

    I am going to propose that the publisher/editor of Newstreamz ban Charles O’Dell from further postings. He will attempt to reenter through other names but if Newstreamz is vigilant, his signature is pretty obvious. Even if he is careful, his obsessions with certain issues and people will come through and he can be banned again. Not the best solution in the world but one which has been developed over the Internet since the days of CompuServe newsgroups.

    Charles Sims

  16. With all do respect Charles, I disagree with you, even though I totally disagree with Charles O’Dell in most of his arguments, but still he has as much right to express his opinion here as anyone else.
    Simply put, either you can respond to his posts or just ignore it.

  17. O’Dell appears to have had a major meltdown yesterday afternoon. I agree with Mr. Sims and MI. I pledge to play no more Whack-A-Mole. Regardless of how much fun it might be for me. We need to give the poor man a rest. He’s really losing it.

  18. What ever you think about O’Dell you have to admit that whoever recruited Ramus to run must have been on “crack”.

    Further, I don’t support banning anyone. What should we do next burn books?

  19. hes not a troll, he is a gollum. that was a insult to trolls. Isnt this thread about the county budget, or should be ?

  20. AndyG (Andy Grubbs) designed the flawed Ramus septic system for which the permit was revoked—and has a direct stake in trying to discredit me. For the record, Lila Knight introduced Ramus into this thread, followed by Man of Mystery. I simply followed with substantive information and now am being chastised for it. Seems some would rather engage in name calling rather than in substantive exchanges—and I can certainly understand why. Charles Sims even wants to burn books (in a manner of speaking) by stifling free speech when he doesn’t agree. Thomas Jefferson wouldn’t approve of that. Readers also should be interested to learn that the Texas Ethics Commission complaint against Ramus that alleges misuse of his campaign funds (for personal use, as former County Commissioner Bill Burnett was found guilty), and failing to file timely campaign financial reports goes before the TEC board this morning. It’s called accountability under the law. Ramus’ frivolous complaint he filed against me was previously dismissed by the TEC. It’s called equal protection under the law.

  21. a lot of people a whole lot smarter than gobbels odell looked at the ramus system and found it to meet or exceed state and county standards. millions of lies can not change that. The judge from New Braunfels ruled that the county commissioners court had acted improperly in the case. one thing that comes out very clearly from mr odells actions is that he is a incredibally rascists person. He was involved with harrassing several hispanic families who were splitting a piece of land east of Kyle. The Torres subdivision. the county staff was so embarrased by what happened out there. I thought it was so shameful what the county commissioners court did that I gave my work on the subdivision to them for free.

    funny how I am rep Rose’s minion now. he lost my vote that time he went to New Mexico during the redistricting flap

    Do you people realize what a drain on talented people at the county staff this has caused ? do you know how many folks have left Hays county in the last 3 years to go work for Travis county ? Ranting rascists idiots cease to be funny when they get into your work space.

  22. Whether or not you agree with each other or whether you can co-exist with each other is inconsequential to the problems in this county.

    Facts:

    Property taxes continue to increase and must increase if only for the idiotic road bond package that recently was approved.

    Water is getting scarce throughout the county.

    All of our commissioners are good at playing politics.

    Our State representatives: Sen. Jeff Wentworth and Rep. Patrick Rose talk a good game but in actuality have done very little to help Hays County residents. Personally, I am sick of them and will vote next time for anyone running against them.

    Our property taxes continue to increase because our taxing authority immediately raises it annually whether or not it is appropriate.

    During this difficult and hard economic times our commissioners should become fiscal conservatives, not approving extragant increases of salaries, bond packages and other cost increases.

    There are many problems that we should focus on instead of badgering one another on this and other blogs.

    United we may resolves many difficult issues. Attacking each other does not guide us to resolutions.

  23. Andy, you forgot about Walter L.Snowden, P.E., President of Snowden Inc., who, in his report to Hays County wrote: “It is therefore our opinion that this (your Ramus) system is not in accordance with that system which would provide adequate protection to the environment and population of Hays County for any reasonable length of time.” And Judge Pfeuffer did not rule your septic system design was compliant, but rather that the County had no authority to revoke Ramus’ permit (as silly as that sounds and contrary to all previous case law). As for your charge of me being a racist—that’s a Ramus tactic you picked up from him. Ramus calls anyone who disagrees with him a racist. Now you are picking up his racist mantra. According to Tom Pope, OSSF Programs Manager for Hays County Environmental Health Department, on “7-25-05 Florinda Martinez applied for an on-site sewage facility permit and was told by EH that a permit would not be issued since her property was illegally subdivided.” Whoa, that racist Environmental Health bunch following the law! When Commissioner Barton attempted to help his Ramus cause by slipping a variance through court for Martinez (who doesn’t even live in Barton’s precinct) with false, misleading and missing information, I provided the missing information. So Pope called in a favor from you after the two of you back stopped each other on the Ramus fiasco. Contrary to your claim, hiring for Hays County has risen during the past two years, not declined.

  24. Wait a minute Charles. You provided false and misleading information to Commissioners Court on the Florinda Martinez case by citing the WRONG house. You didn’t even know where they lived. I guess you just get a little lost east of I-35. You need to stop talking about this one. It’s just too embarrassing for you. Drop it.

    This is a blog about Will Conley and why he voted against the budget – remember? Focus Charles. I know it’s hard. But try.

  25. Don’t ever say I didn’t try to warn you. The typical troll tactics immediately appeared. He said I was a book burner. I wanted to stifle free speech, etc.. My proposal does none of that. It allows speech to continue without allowing the troll to disrupt the conversation. The troll actually interferes with free speech and rational discussions. This was suppose to be a discussion about the County budget. You have allowed the troll to turn it into a rehash of the old septic tank argument.

  26. Lila darling, “I agree with Mr. Sims and MI. I pledge to play no more Whack-A-Mole. Regardless of how much fun it might be for me.” Are you a person of your word or not? ——–Sims: Lila and Andy Grubbs raised the Ramus matter, not me. I just provided factual information. And it really isn’t about a septic system, its about political corruption. Lila, Grubbs and you see the connection between Barton, Conley and Ramus and the county budget. Conley and Barton could have avoided tens of thousands in legal fees brought on by their creation of this political suit against Barton and Conley’s political opponents with encouragement from Barton and Conley. It’s in the public record. So this matter is very much on topic. That’s why the three of you try to discredit my posts.

  27. I cannot for the life of me understand how Nick Ramus keeps from getting his septic tank/cesspool shut down for being way too large for the size of his property or anyone’s needs) and why is he allowed to threaten his neighbors and their employees with shotguns?

    Why is this even controversial?

    Who is protecting this man….and why?

    This man seems to inexplicably have friends in high places.

    Can I be your friend?

  28. Back to Will Conley and that budget:

    Will seems to want to get conservative cred for saying no to the budget, but doesn’t want to take heat for being against things we all mostly agree need to be paid for.

    That’s all I was saying.

  29. As regards Rose, water and how our wells are running dry:

    Patrick Rose is a classic bought-off politician.

    He turned his back on his constituents to vote for what his big donors wanted: cheap, unlimited water.

    Only problem is, this water resource is not unlimited.

    One can debate this all day long, but the fact of dry wells, trickling springflows, creeks that resemble gravel pits and rivers you can walk across without getting your feet wet paints a very clear picture of our situation.

    Rose has betrayed his constituents to pave his way out of this county and into higher office.

    Rose is a disgrace and the Democrats needs to cut him loose and quit making the excuse that “he is better than the alternative”.

    If that alternative is someone who believes in protecting our natural resources and promoting the kind of development our land can sustain into the future, then s/he has my vote.

    Will Conley, Jeff Barton and Patrick Rose are all out for themselves.

    Who will represent the people when all the politicians are bought and paid-for?

    I need more money so I can buy me a politician.

    Must be nice. Oh, well…maybe next lifetime.

  30. django n odell: Its really easy to criticize when you’re on the outside looking in. I hate to break it to you, but Conley, Barton, and Rose aren’t evil people; they’re making decisions based on many factors, many of which you don’t know. Ramus doesn’t have sway over anyone, rather, there are many people who had pitied him for the way he was treated by you, his neighbor, and the county judge and a couple of commissioners. I’ve inspected his septic system; for you to call it a cesspool suggests that at the least you have no idea what you’re talking about. Ignorant fools like you retard the efforts of real environmentalists (that is, people with actual expertise and experience). If you want to help the environment, donate to the Nature Conservancy. If you want to help yourself, seek therapy.

  31. “Ignorant fools like you”?”Ranting racists”?”Gollum”?

    Is it any wonder people might choose to use a pseudonym when playing in this sandbox?

  32. Small wonder that Hays County is in such a mess as indicated by this blog and the endless in-fighting of readers, of neighbors.

    Can’t you get past this foolish bickering?

    Use your time and energy more wisely and work together to end the political aristocracy, the favoritism, the ongoing corruption here in our county.

    As a long time resident I have watched helplessly along with my neighbors as officials with their wealthy special interests have taken more for personal gain.

    During the past years taxes and appraisal value increases have damaged the residential base of our community, as has the water issue.

    For years I have written and phoned the various successions of elected commissioners and other officials asking for more conservative budgets and expenditures, to no avail.

    We need a strong core of residents to group together and demand positive change. Currently our leaders have shown themselves as disunited and neighbors on this blog have shown the same.

    Without a strong sense of unity and community we can not break from the current status quo.

    It troubles me when I see a community blog that is so entrenched in personality disorders, such as this one.

    I wish you people could stop. I wish you all could be more patient and compassionate with one another, but mostly I see the petty bickering. It saddens me.

    We need community spirit and unity. Collectively we need to focus on priorities and present them to the commissioners, so we may improve our county’s livng conditions. Why can’t you all see that?

    Please stop the bickering and the personality clashes. They resolve nothing. Please try to work together without the attitudes. You don’t have to like someone to work with them. It is for the betterment of our Hays County Community.

  33. Adolph Loia, “I’ve inspected his septic system; for you to call it a cesspool suggests that at the least you have no idea what you’re talking about.” Adolph, what qualifications do you have regarding inspection of a septic system? Are you certified or licensed? With what agency? Are you disputing the Snowden Report written by a professional engineer who was hired by the County to evaluate the Ramus septic system? You write: “Conley, Barton, and Rose aren’t evil people; they’re making decisions based on many factors, many of which you don’t know.” If we don’t know—how do you know there are many factors we don’t know? See how silly your statement is? What you should have posted is that they are not telling the public those factors that would be embarrassing to themselves. Of course it doesn’t take a genius to connect the dots between their actions and the special interests that support them and are rewarded for that support. Look at what Barton and Conley do—not what they say. You write: “Ramus doesn’t have sway over anyone, rather, there are many people who had pitied him…” Ramus has sway over some county employees and elected officials because they are a party to his crimes, and pity is exactly the purpose Barton and Conley knowingly created and spread false stories about Ramus, so folks would pity him as a victim. Barton’s newspaper and so called journalist friends in other media (including this site before Brad Rollins and Bill Peterson left to write for Barton’s newspaper) regularly referred to Ramus as a restaurateur in their articles when they knew full well Ramus has never owned or operated a restaurant, lied about studying with famous chefs, has only worked as a cook, and faked photographs of himself and celebrities (all who are dead) using PhotoShop, lied about his military service, was a San Marcos Food Bank client, continues to defraud the U.S. military and Texas Work Force agency, has admitted taking prescription narcotic drugs for years (we would like to see where Ramus obtains these prescriptions), has a rap sheet and multiple convictions in Hays County, and according to his followers claims he evolved from a leopard and is a guru in his Toltec Cult. This is the fellow that Conley, Jim Green and the Hays Republican Club supported as the Republican candidate for Pct. 1 County Commissioner last year trying to create an image of legitimacy for Ramus. Did Ramus ask you to inspect his septic system? Can we believe your posts?

  34. And did I mention that Ramus goes to trial on charges by the Hays County Sheriff Department of deadly conduct. Barton’s and Conley’s man is just a sweetheart.

  35. There’s several things I miss about living in San Marcos. This ongoing Nick Ramus septic system fetish is not one of them. How many victory laps does one person need? It just gets classless after a certain point.

  36. Wow – I hope all that stuff about Ramus is true and verifiable. If not, you’ve just opened yourself up to quite a potential lawsuit….

  37. Sean, “This ongoing Nick Ramus septic system fetish is not one of them.” After reading all the posts with all the information that can be verified with public documents, you just don’t get it—or maybe you do. How do you translate political corruption into a “septic system fetish,” unless you don’t want to acknowledge there is rampant political corruption in Hays County, because you are very slow, or political corruption is OK with you.

  38. one of the things about people leaving this county’s staff and going to work for Travis county is that things they could not discuss when they were at HCEHD have become more or less public knowledge. you want a non-complying resturant septic system that has had a county commissioner pressuring county staff to not enforce on because she likes to eat there then you should look on FM 150 out near Driftwood. everyone in the enforcement / wastewater community knows who this is and has know about this for several years. I guess since it is a white folks place the self appointed guardians cant be bothered to discuss it

  39. Andy, please not the race card distraction again. That is soooo Ramus. I understand that you’re coming in behind Ramus and claiming to design his non-compliant septic system to save Tom Pope curried favor with Conley and Barton. But it also put your license in great jeopardy, as you observed in commissioners’ court. You also will be pleased to learn that we are checking into the Railroad Commission “land man” dealings with Rob Hart and Hance Gross. Some problems just never go away, do they?

  40. “Some problems just never go away, do they?”

    I was just thinking the same thing, albeit with a different problem in mind…

  41. Charles, you just don’t get it – do you? No one gives a rat’s ass what you think anymore. Give it up. Time to move on. Find another community where they don’t know about you and your antics. Any topic (or politician) you now touch is doomed by the O’Dellian curse. Just go away.

    There are days you don’t even make me laugh anymore.

    The man who fights too long against dragons – becomes a dragon himself – Nietsche.

    At least get a sense of humor…

  42. Charles, this will be my only response to you, so don’t get your hopes up.

    I don’t care. It’s not about being slow. It’s not about not knowing. It’s just that I don’t care. I don’t know Nick Ramus. I don’t think I’ve ever written about Nick Ramus. If you put Nick Ramus in a lineup, I doubt I could pick him out from everyone else.

    Your involvement in the issue leads me not to care, because you aren’t exactly an objective font of information. You taint the issue by your very presence, being the quintessential boy who cries wolf. How anyone outside your circle can take you seriously is beyond me.

    However, I do know you Charles. I know that you love nothing more than hiding behind the costume of being a public advocate, while engaging in personal attacks, classless victory laps and promoting your chosen candidates. I know that you do more harm than good. I know you love ruining things for people and dancing on their tears. I know this because you have made this your public life, especially with your Nick Ramus fetish, and fetish is the right word.

    I often thought about doing an investigatory story about HaysCAN while working for Newstreamz. I’ve often been curious about where your money comes from, and why you’re so reluctant to discuss your supporters. I’ve read that you’re worried about what might happen to those people, which is an argument I just don’t buy. I’ve also noticed when these questions come up, you seem to vanish for a while. I find that interesting.

    Ultimately, I just decided you were too much fun to go after, and probably a waste of otherwise useful time. You do keep the comments section lively, which drives more readers to the site, which I was (and still am) in favor of. You’re annoying, hyperbolic, paranoid and frankly strange, but you are useful in that regard, so thanks.

    I was never in anyone’s pocket, and you yourself praised my professionalism when I left the publication. You can go back and see that I wasn’t particularly nice to Jeff Barton in the opinion section either, so if you can draw some sort of conspiracy theory there, I look forward to reading it. I’ll admit that I consider Will Conley a personal friend, which goes back before I started working in journalism, but I never gave him any breaks. So, spin your webs. I love a good yarn.

    In closing, dear Charles, I will do one thing for you, and I hope you appreciate it because I’m willing to bet you’ve been subconsciously wanting one of these for a while.

    I’m going to get you a big wooden cross.

    The next time you feel unappreciated for all your “contributions”, the next time you feel wronged and persecuted, the next time you feel like the rest of us just don’t get it, or are two slow to understand and you, and you alone can bring light and truth to the rest of us poor dullards, you can just climb up and nail yourself to it, playing Jesus to all out public sins.

    Until I make that delivery, thanks for the memories and laughs you brought about as the official public court jester of Hays County.

    Disrespectfully yours,

    Sean Wardwell

  43. Sean, did you ever check out the information identified on these and other blogs? No? Why not? Yes? Why didn’t you confirm the corruption or expose the false information presented? As you posted: “You don’t care.” You don’t care that innocent every day citizens are being put upon by corrupt government officials, while these same government officials collaborate and defend criminals like Ramus. If you haven’t made the effort to confirm or deny these serious charges then you are no better than Sherri Tibbe, our DA who actively protects official bad behavior. So don’t lecture me on my advocacy for good government until you have done your homework and can show my information to be false. And don’t write it off as “just dirty politics.” Crimes have been committed by a network of public officials.

  44. Sean and others, Nick Ramus is a lying sack of manure.

    The man’s character certainly should be highlighted as significantly questionable, at the least.

    For years he has publicly stated things that can not be proven, e.g., for years he has stated that he is a Disabled Vietnam Veteran.

    Well, he is NOT!

    I am a Disabled Vietnam Veteran and I did a search all over to find out whether Ramus is one. There is no record ANYWHERE of a Nick Ramus in the military data base records as one who is a Disabled Vietnam Veteran.

    I also checked with local and national branches of Vietnam Veterans of American and he is NOT listed as such.

    Recently, Ramus ran for Commissioner and I am thrilled that the public did NOT vote for him.

    If a man lies consistently about one thing, he lies about many more.

    I urge you to try to find ANY FACTUAL info on this man. He remains “in the shadows” and there are few facts to be found on this “phantom”.

    I am VERY good at locating people and info on them. I used to do it for a living. He is a very interesting subject, but I don’t trust him at all.

  45. I agree. There is nothing transparent about Nick Ramus.

    For a guy who supposedly was a chef at the White House, why can’t you find any facts supporting that?

    You can’t find a real bio on this guy.

    It is like he could be in the witness protection program! Beware of this dude.

  46. County budget anyone. this thread is ment to be about the county budget. Why are some people obviously so afraid of the people having a discussion about the county budget ? all this BS over battles lost a long time ago is just trying to drive people away from this subject.

    how many psuedonyms is mr odell posting under now ? maybe if he didnt post immidately after his prior post someone might be fooled……..he hates unicycle football too

  47. Sean took my breath away. Awesome post. Who gives a shit about the county budget after reading such wonderful prose!

  48. I’m with Andy.

    I wasn’t aware that O’Dell or Ramus were setting our budget. If I had known that, I would have moved to another county.

    I also was not aware that this budget had a line item for a septic tank.

    I guess I really am an uninformed voter. Guilty as charged.

  49. I get to say it. The sweetest four words in the enlish language. I deserve it. I earned it.

    I told you so, I told you so.

    That really felt good.

  50. I don’t get the fascination with Ramus. So he has an issue with his neighbor. Why is that O’Dell’s business?

    And he may have embellished his work history. Why is that O’Dell’s business?

    I can understand bringing such items up while the man was running for office, but the election has long since passed and O’Dell seems intent on continually bringing Ramus up.

    At this point, it looks like nothing more than a personal vendetta….and it’s reflecting quite poorly on O’Dell.

    I don’t know O’Dell beyond what he posts here. I don’t know Ramus at all. So I don’t have a horse in this race. But based on what I have read, Ramus may or may not be a terrible person, but O’Dell doesn’t sound like anyone I would want to have over for dinner anytime soon either.

  51. It’s not a “facination” with Ramus, it is a real concern when you have such a person running for office.

    His history and bio are hidden from the public and he is a volatile character as may be seen from his recent arrest and indictment for brandishing a shotgun at his neighbor and the fact that he wants power in obtaining a leadership role in this county.

    In addition, he is an established liar re: his public statements that can not be corraborated with real facts.

    He should be a concern to every resident here in Hays County.

    You don’t have to know Ramus personally to have an interest in him.

    You need the facts about him, which seem to be veiled from the public view.

    The fact that Nick Ramus wants a leadership role in our county should signal private residents to become interested and concerned.

  52. Getting back to the budget, it is too extravagant and bloated during this harsh economic period.

    Instead of cutting expenditures our leaders are spending more. This is being fiscally irresponsible.

    I agree with a lot of what Comm. Conley says, but my problem with Conley is that frequently he is 2-faced in what he initiates, says and votes for.

    I have a concern with most of the commissioners and the judge because they all seem to want to increase taxes and spending. I really don’t think that is a good thing to do.

    Loss of jobs and increased foreclosures are hurting Americans and this has occurred also here in Hays County.

    During this period of a harsh economy home values are decreasing, so how can local appraisals increase?

    How can the 5 commissioners push for tax increases and extravagant bond issues? BTW, Conley pushed for and voted for the road bond package, which does increase property taxes. So, he already did vote to increase our taxes.

    It is foolish for our leaders to push for salary increases at this time.

    It is suicidal to keep spending.

    It is absurd NOT to trim expenditures.

    Each of our local leaders is acting irresponsibly.

    We need change via better leadership.

  53. great post from Sean. yes it is way too easy to push those buttons and most of the readers here in San Marcos get a laugh from it. I think that a very long time ago everyone quit taking mr odelll seriously. If we can help him have a stroke then that would be a public service.

  54. It would be about the county budget if O’Dell didn’t keep blogging under different names to keep spreading his hatred for anyone in political office that doesn’t have his official stamp of approval.

  55. @Steve M:

    With all due respect, I did mention that those would be relevant factors when/if Ramus ran for public office.

    To my knowledge, he isn’t currently doing so – what’s the point of continually dragging his name through the mud? He ran and lost. “Mission accomplished” to his opponents. Now save it until/unless he runs again – when it’s relevant again. Otherwise, it just looks petty.

    Right now, Ramus is a private resident of Hays county, and I don’t believe that his recent issues with the law or his unsubstantiated work experience are any of my business – or yours. I don’t “need” to know anything at all about him right now.

  56. I’m afraid I have to disagree with you, Dano, also with all due respect.

    I say this because Ramus is not just “a private citizen”. He also calls himself a “restauranteur” who has redeveloped his estate to offer a restaurant for the public to eat in.

    Consequently, the issue of his septic tank becomes a public issue. So does an issue become public concern when the man waves around a shotgun in public and at neighbors.

    It should be a concern to all of us, in Hays County, when a resident masquerades himself to be a Disabled Vietnam Veteran and publicly purports himself as such in public.

    Nick Ramus lives in our community, and private citizen or not, there is enough the man does that should concern the community. He should be watchdogged.

    Just my 2-cents. You don’t have to agree — and apparently you don’t. But he does darken the community image and reputation.

  57. “Crimes have been committed by a network of public officials”

    This is all so fascinating. I feel sorry for Will Conley’s blog though. Mr. Dr. Odell, PhD: Has it occurred to you that all of these commentators are the same person writing under different names? Maybe they’re you. They aren’t me. Wink wink. you KNoW whAT I MEan. There, I’ve said it.

  58. You have got to be kidding – either “James” is O’Dell writing under a different moniker or “James” is an O’Dell Wannabe. Mr. James Wannabe O’Dell, do you actually think a private citizens should be “watchdogged?” You think YOU have some right to “watchdog” a private citizen because of some libelous crap you read on a blog? Or because of gossip you hear? Or because the man had some trouble with a neighbor (what happened to the presumption of innocence?).

    You really think YOU are the chosen one to decide who has a right to live in a community and who does not? And YOU think you have the right to police people?

    Great. Then Mr. James Watchdog – why don’t you just come “watchdog” me. Come on over. Love to have you… Sit outside my house, watch my movements, where I go, who comes to my house, read my mail, hell – tap my home. I promise to entertain. And I am certain if you consult with Mr. O’Dell, he can tell you that I need “watchdogging” too, seeing as I’m involved in so many conspiracies… And maybe, just maybe, if you get real, real lucky – someone out there might determine that you, too, are worthy of watchdogging……

    Get a life.

  59. So if you don’t like someone, you appoint yourself to “watchdog” them. And “watchdogging” apparently involves mostly talking trash about them on the internet.

    OK. That’s the dumbest thing I have ever heard, but whatever. To each his own.

  60. Apparently you folks (Dano and Lila) just like to react instead of reading what I wrote.

    What I mentioned are facts that have little to do with what I read on this blog.

    Is there a problem with my stating my opinions based on facts without you accusing me of your ridiculous fantasies?

    I stated facts but apparently I somehow pissed-off the 2 of you. I suppose I should have used another word besides “watchdogging” because that set off both of you to accuse me of quite a few obnoxious spewings, e.g., I am Charles O’Dell and other equally moronic statements.

    What is wrong with you two?

    I said upfront that you don’t have to see it my way or agree with me.

    Perhaps I simply should have stated that Mr. Ramus has issues that are not common and should send a signal to residents.

    He approached a neighbor who he does not get along with while brandishing a shotgun.

    He lies about being a Disabled Vietnam Veteran.

    He apparently lies about a lot of things like having cooked at the White House, etc., etc.

    My statements apparently sent the 2 of you into tirades. I don’t know why, sorry if my words knocked you off your respective sofas. Hope you didn’t hit your heads in the process, which may have caused those infantile outbursts.

    No wonder this blog has so many problems and issues with responders.

    Don’t you worry. I’ll stay off this one. BTW, you 2 should seek psychiatric help.

  61. Lila darling, you wrote:”It would be about the county budget if O’Dell didn’t keep blogging under different names…” What a dirty tactic. You know that I post under my own name.

    “Sean took my breath away. Awesome post.” Lila’s stamp of approval.

    Lila wrote: “I pledge to play no more Whack-A-Mole. Regardless of how much fun it might be for me.” You are not a person of your word so why should anyone believe you after going back on your word and denigrating me when I wasn’t posting and then claiming I was posting under other names.

  62. Mr. James Wannabe O’Dell: You have still not addressed whether you think it is okay to “watchdog” your neighbor or not. Do you still think it is okay to watchdog “certain” individuals (i.e. those that are targeted by Charles O’Dell)? Are you willing to send your children in brown shirts to Neo-Nazi camps to learn how to spy on their neighbors? You want to come to my house and spy on me? Your statements were not based on facts, but on the so-called facts delivered to you by O’Dell. Do your own fact-checking. Use your own brain.

    Charles – don’t you have a wooden cross to deliver yourself upon? Darling – you were posting…

  63. Miss Lila, you are a most disturbed, condescending and paranoid woman, who makes this blog extremely distasteful.

    I have to say that I find myself feeling sorry for you and also am surprised that the editors of this blog permit you to be so abrasive, arrogant and verbally abusive to so many people.

    Allow me to provide some comic “pearls of wisdom” from the old team of Abbott and Costello:

    “Have you ever ridden a Jackass? No? Well get onto yourself.”

    As for my, I thought this blog would be a positive county base to resolve some community issues, but with people like Lila I have no desire to be a part of it.

    So, I wish you all good lives and a lot of luck.

  64. You stated allegations and represented them as facts. Then you used those facts as examples of why you should be concerned with this man’s business.

    “He approached a neighbor who he does not get along with while brandishing a shotgun.” = None of your business or mine. A matter for local law enforcement.

    “He lies about being a Disabled Vietnam Veteran.” = None of your business or mine. A matter for the VA.

    “He apparently lies about a lot of things like having cooked at the White House, etc., etc.” = None of your business or mine. Between him and prospective employers.

    If Ramus ever runs for political office again (which he would only do if he’s deluded, given the nature of his opposition), then these items might again be of relevance to the general voting public.

    Until then, you still haven’t shown me why it’s so important to keep dragging his name out there in public forums other than to fuel a personal vendetta.

  65. How honest is Conley about keeping the county budget under control and minimizing taxes, and how much of what he does is just posturing for reelection so he can serve his special interest contributors?

    http://www.hayscountyroundup.blogspot.com/

    As someone who has followed Conley since his election as Pct. 3 County Commissioner, I judge his behavior, not his words. What do others know about Conley the politician—or think they know?

  66. Clarification: Ramus is the symptom. The disease is corrupt public officials. Recognizing the symptom exposes the disease for treatment and recovery.

  67. Correction: O’Dellian Paranoia is the disease. Ramus is but one of many delusions resulting from the disease. There appears to be no expectation for treatment nor recovery.

  68. It doesnt take a degree in Lit Crit to recognize when mr odell is posting under assumed names. for someone who is always going on about how smart he is it sure is stupid. In the words of Juan Carlos “por que no te calles”

  69. The Lila and Grubbs hit team. Post something of substance. All the readers are getting from you is a tag team effort to smear. Not a single post with information that can be tested or verified. Where’s the beef? Don’t you trust readers to separate wheat from the chaff?

  70. if you think of Liz as the wicked witch of the west, picture mr odell as a ugly little winged monkey. that is purty much how it is

  71. how about a bit of aquifer science for a change. there are several good websites where monitoring of wells and springs is going on. Hays-Trinity has one for the small portion of folks who are in that part of the county and SAWS has a good one for people on the big Edwards. What I want to discuss today is at the USGS link to continuous monitoring at Jacobs Well. http://waterdata.usgs.gov/tx/nwis/uv/?site_no=08170990&agency_cd=USGS this is a data streaam from a instrument package placed in the well. you can see the rainfall record and changes in water chemistry /temperature real time. So about the recent rains and the hope for increased flow at Jacobs Well. There is a big spike in temp during the big rain event. This must be from a local source of rapidly infiltrating water that came thru during the rain. it was much warmer than the normal spring water, but it goes away as soon as the flood is over. ( except that according to the rainfall graph it is a couple of days after the big rain ?? but the rainfall graph does not show the saturday afternoon/nite rains ) What I find interesting about this data is the specific conductance chart. this is a measure of how mineralized the water is. how much electricty it conducts is a good measure of how much dissolved mineral is in the water. Turbidity is the measure of how cloudy the water is. By looking at all of these different things and how they change during a big rain event you get a idea how the aquifer is working ( at that particular time) a spike in temperature with a drop in conductance and a rise in turbidity means quick jolt of very fresh rain water rushing thru the system. The long steady rise in conductance that we are seeing means that water sitting back in the slow moving parts of the aquifer is now being pushed on towards the springs. Water in carbonate aquifers is in the conduits, big open cave space with relatively fast flow rates. it is in the fractures which connect to the conduits, but the water there moves more slowly due to greater resistance. And water is in the intergranular spaces between the tinsey tiny grains of rock. that is usually not too important in limestone aquifers, but around Wimberley where the ancient reefs were it can be significant.There are very different amounts of water held in each portion. So the quick guess as to why the conductance is rising several days after the big rain is that all the water sitting in the puddles and ditches took a few days to percolate down and fill up the thirsty fractures and start pushing the water that had been sitting for a while on towards the spring. So, hopefully this will translate into more water flowing thru the conduits and on to Jacobs Well. Back before all these cool automatic monitoring instruments the grad students who worked on karst springs had lots of fun. they were always getting up in the middle of the night, during pouring rain toout to the springs and get lots of water samples and then rush them to the lab in time to get proper readings. Now, at the click of a mouse, thru the miracle of the internet and modern day science you can see it from the comfort of your own home.

  72. I wonder if there is any document(s) that show how many more “straws” are in the acquifiers (more wells) than one year ago that are “sucking up” more water.

    Seems to me that the rains that used to replenish the lakes, rivers, creeks and acquifiers just aren’t doing the job any more the way they used to.

    Also seems llke maybe ranchers and/or developers are drawing more water away from the amounts that used to be available. Guess there is no real way to check on this.

    The situation initiates way up north from Colorado down through New Mexico and here in Texas as more and more water is taken from these water sources.

    Seems as though it will only get worse year after year.

  73. It is very easy to see why most people who read this blog would not wish to use their real names nor even venture an opinion that was not given prior approval by Miss Lila or that Andy guy. Talk about needing to “get a life”.

    That their explanation for why there are other people who might tend to agree with Dr. O’Dell’s assertions is that those other people are also Charles O’Dell is quite amazing. What a tidy way to deflect criticism: convince yourself that all your critics are the same person using different names. Wow….

    The fact that the Ramus conversation keeps coming up is all about who and what Ramus represents as much as it is about Mr. Ramus himself. Too many questions wherever he is involved. Strange oversights…strange bedfellows.

    Attacking Dr. O’Dell personally as a way to discredit the information he asserts is pretty lame as far as debate technique goes.

    So you don’t like Charles because he doesn’t support your opinions/candidates. That doesn’t change the truth or the validity of Charles’ statements or his research.

    From where I see it, Dr. O’Dell is right on the money here and Mr. Ramus is the tip of an iceberg of county corruption and collusion between some folks who didn’t do their homework when permitting or inspecting his property and are now trying to cover up that fact.

    I personally don’t care if Ramus is a liar, a jaguar or if he can boil an egg, but I don’t wish to see people be allowed to pollute the air, land or water that we all share. I also don’t want to see public officials cover for each other when one of them messes up.

    There is something in all these Ramus septic issues that stinks to high heaven.

    Follow the money. Follow the stench.

  74. Django, you’re not keeping up. It’s Mr. O’Dell that started the rant accusing others of blogging under false names. In fact, he does it so often, many now just repeat it as a sarcastic nod to his paranoia. But it’s amusing that you accuse others of doing just what O’Dell does – “deflecting criticism by convincing yourself your critics are the same person using different names.” Your entire comment is really so much a reflection of O’Dellian tactics – attacking people personally to discredit information; not likeng people because they don’t agree with him.

    You’re right on target – you just aren’t looking in the right direction.
    Maybe the County needs to build that practice range after all – you could use some target practice Django.

  75. Lila, this is all just some game to you, isn’t it?

    It is obvious you are on some personal crusade to discredit O’Dell, but the mud is slinging back on you rather heavily.

    Take a deep breath. There is surely more interesting things in this life than this vendetta of yours.

  76. You’re doing it again. I have no vendetta. But O’Dell obviously does. Particularly when it comes to Ramus. I personally don’t care about either one of them. Come on django, you have to admit it’s just kind of weird the way he always brings Ramus into every dialogue. And there is just no reason to.

  77. In 1974 there was this minor news blip about some “break-in” at some office building in D.C.

    The building was called The Watergate.

    No one paid any real attention at the time, it was just a minor crime. Nothing to speak of.

    But some journalists doggedly stayed on the story and lo and behold, that little burglary ended up bringing down a Presidency. Turned out there was a lot more to it.

    Some stories have in them the seeds of much larger stories and I have this suspicion that these Ramus Tales are that kind of story.

    It is not just O’Dell who is refusing to let this story die, there are numerous people around the County shaking their heads and wondering why this particular man, this particular septic permit, this little shotgun incident and that lawsuit, this running for office and that protection order and this allegation of defrauding one agency or another…all just keep this guy in the news and on numerous radar screens.

    Some things just don’t add up…and some things just have an odor to them.

    I guess time will tell.

  78. OMG – Ramusgate!! LOL. You’ve been sipping too much of the O’Dellian Kool-Aide darling. While I enjoy your dramatization django, you’ll forgive me if I don’t equate Ramus with the Watergate burglars. But thanks for the good chuckle anyway.

    The odor is emanating from O’Dell. Have you ever taken a good look at the people he supports? I’ve always wondered why he never “investigates” his own. Not much of a watchdog of the people if you ask me – just another hypocritical hound for special interests.

  79. Lila, I goggled “O’Dellian Kool-Aide” thinking that it might be sold in stores in San Marcos, didn’t get so lucky, and Google redirected me back to your post. Just wondering how much Mr. O’Dell would charge for his Cool-Aid.

  80. To Lila, the Editors and others:

    I did not provide the previous comment. Someone else is using my name to spread that nonsense.

    I just wanted all of you to know and I am hopeful that the editors may soon require the REAL names for posters.

    J

  81. I believe there may be more than one “James” in the world. Sounds like an authority file problem at Newstreamz. It happens.

  82. Damned when I do, and damned when you do Lila darling.

    # Man of Mystery on September 28, 2009 5:02 pm
    Hey, O’Dell … When are you going to figure out that one of us is Nick Ramus?

    # Charles O’Dell, Ph.D. on September 28, 2009 10:20 pm
    Lila, it’s interesting that you should bring up Nick Ramus in your post.

  83. What the hell are you talking about Mr. O’Dell? Maybe you need some sleep. And by the way, you never answered my question on whether or not you are paid by the Wimberley newspaper to blog on their online section or not? Can I assume by your silence that the answer is a “yes”?

  84. Lila darling, go to the February 2008 initial post:

    [deleted: Offsite links are not permitted in the comments.]

    “I believe that an informed electorate is the foundation of our democratic form of government and that too much of current reporting and discussion about issues in Hays County is biased and incomplete. The publisher of this site has agreed to broaden the spectrum of public discussion and debate in Hays County without censorship but retains the rights of a responsible editor. This column will strive to inform readers with factual and targeted information on important local issues. You won’t find this information or opinion in the other Hays County print or online newspapers. Opinions are labeled. No compensation of any kind has or will trade hands, no quid pro quo, except this window to the public in return for accurate reporting, analysis and informed opinion. I will strive to be fair.”

    Next question?

  85. So Lila darling. Does my post from the Hays County Roundup answer your question about payment? The answer you already knew before you posted your question to cause some to question my objectivity.

    You’re really devious, aren’t you.

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