Stealth One-Sided Public Hearing
27 NO PARKING signs installed same day
County Judge refuses rehearing
Commissioner Noack keeps County Attorney Busy
Claim:arbitrary and capricious imposition of signs.
The people want to have a voice. Give them one.
Commissioner James Noack enjoys almost unanimous support among leaders and
activist that make up the limited government movement in Montgomery County.
That support was bolstered during the commissioners court incident of last May 24th when the young Tea Party liberty activist, Republican Party precinct chairman and Empower Texas field representative Reagan Reed was ejected form the court by order of County Judge Craig Doyal for
daring to approach the court in violation of some ad hoc and arbitrary new public comment rule.
At the time, County Commissioner James Noack took up for Reed by quickly challenging the Judge’s decision and rationale.
The following exchange played out at Agenda Item 10 as Reed was escorted out by MCSO Sergeant Jordan.
DOYAL : “Have a seat please! You’re not signed up to speak!”
REED: “I got here more than 5 minutes early. Your clerk told me I would be allowed to speak.”
DOYAL : “If you don’t have a seat, you’ll be removed.”
NOACK: “You’re breaking your own protocol. You have done this time and time again.”
DOYAL: “No, I’m not”
NOACK: “You have let people who have not signed up come and speak. Come on, Judge. The people want to have a voice. Give them one.”
Reed’s colleagues in the audience responded in support of Commissioner Noack, One such political activist in attendance was Republican non-tea party member Jon Bouche who later reported Noack’s actions approvingly via facebook;
“Commissioner James Noack dispensed with the pleasantries and called Doyal out for his treachery at every turn. Thank you Commissioner Noack for standing up for what is right.”
Later in the proceedings Commissioner Noack officiated over a Public Hearing under Agenda Item 17 CONSIDER AND APPROVE ESTABLISHING A NO PARKING ZONE AND PLACING OF “NO PARKING ANYTIME” SIGNS.
The Public Hearing drew extensive citizen testimony that was unctiously received by an obviously fawning Commissioner Noack.
NO PARKING ANY TIME
Later that day, unsuspecting MAXIMUM ATHLETICS business owner Derrick Atherton was alerted by his staff that Precinct 3 work crews were in the process of installing NO PARKING ANY TIME signs on both sides of SWEETGUM ROAD in front of his business.
There were Twenty Seven signs in total. Atherton was shocked and taken by complete surprise. Atherton states that he was never notified of the pending PUBLIC HEARING or potential action that affected his business. Atherton had not received a visit, a letter or even a phone call from any official regarding potential actions that would be taken by the Precinct 3 Commissioner.
NOACK AS JANUS
The County presumably advertised the official Public Hearing in the the manner required by law, but failed to extend the courtesy of calling Atherton to alert him to the pending public hearing affecting street parking in front of his business. A courtesy that was apparently afforded the opposing resident who did speak.
Atherton is a long time resident and taxpayer in Montgomery County with two locations, one Woodlands branch on Sweetgum Road and a longer standing location in Conroe.
After placing several calls to Commissioner Noack that went unanswered by the commissioner it took Atherton a few days to marshal a response to the County.
Legal documents obtained by countycitzen via TPIA request from Montgomery County Attorney’s office reveal Jason Krause of the Krause Law Firm has presented a position contrary to the effusive “just so” presentation, uncritically entertained by Noack on the subject of the stealth public hearing, namely the imposition of NO PARKING ANY TIME signs.
One point made by Atherton worth noting is that the Athletics business features 75 parking spaces and only experiences moderate overflow conditions during a short time frame each week day.
Atherton’s proposal for an adjustment to the ANY TIME mandate seems quite modest to countycitizen.
In no uncertain terms, there is no legitimate government reason why citizens should not be allowed to park on these ROWs and absolutely no rational interest is being served here. These ROWs have wide shoulders, plenty of room, low traffic volume and are low speed areas. Parking on these roads is only heavy Monday-Thursday from 5:30 to 6:30 pm and anytime taxpayer funds are being utilized, such use must be justified by more than to simply appease one wealthy vocal neighbor with an “in” to the commissioner’s office. There is no public safety issue addressed here and I have serious doubts as to whether any traffic or public safety study was performed prior to
spending public money on these signs.
The demand letter from Krause goes on to relate how neighbors and even a member of law enforcement support Atherton’s view, a view which perhaps could have been heard by the People’s chief free speech advocate Commissioner James Noack assuming his plea of April 24th The people want to have a voice. Give them one. is a genuine one. Krause also inveighs against lack of due process the evident partiality granted to others “with a county contact and a personal agenda” citing “Due process requires more than Mr. Evan Besong (in Commissioner Noack’s office) simply sending an email on February 23, 2018 to Charles Cobb and Rick Wong demanding that these signs be installed.”
My clients are not the only people who object to the imposition of these signs. Our neighbor to the west, Ms. DeAnna Durocher, objects to these signs being placed in front of her home and Deputy Kennelly (Precinct 3) is shocked too. Duputy Kennelly’s comment to me was that “there’s no reason these signs should be here”. In short, due process has not been served. Even Replat hearings require letters to all impacted property owners, the posting of 4’x8′ signs and the opportunity to be heard for those who may disagree with their neighbors. As you well know, you are public servants serving at the pleasure of the voting public and this is potentially bad publicity. If necessary, we will begin a social media campaign and contact both the Golden Hammer and the Montgomery County Police Reporter. Both outlets are suitable for situations where one voice (with a county contact and a personal agenda) seems to have the ear of a public official.’
Krause closes his letter with a request, ultimately denied, for an additional agenda item review at Commissioners following on May 8, 2018.
My clients and I hereby formally request to be heard on this issue, and until such time when that can be arranged (either publicly or privately), that the Commissioners instruct the Precinct 3 Constable’s Office to cease and desist from enforcing this no parking zone. If no suitable resolution can be had on this issue, my clients will have no choice but to bring a public suit against the County for its arbitrary and capricious imposition of these signs. There is no parking problem on this street (absent one vocal, wealthy neighbor pushing a personal agenda), and thus there is simply no reasonable, rational link between no parking signs and the government’s legitimate interest in keeping traffic flowing on public right of ways. If necessary, we will prove this in court.
As is the happy knack of Noack, once again his knucklehead conduct looks to cost taxpayers in unnecessary legal fees.
The classless and hypocritical Commissioner Noack’s true self turned out on display in full Janus mode for all to see , The comparison of Noack almost pounding his breast as he intercedes for Reagan Reed on one day vs. the glum “Uuuuh, You can visit with the County Attorney’s office” when Mr Atherton and his landlord seek to avail themselves of the same right as Mr. Reagan raises the question of whether Noack will be held accountable by the same voices so critical of Judge Doyal?