Houston Residents Protest Proposed Cutback in Neighborhood Drainage Spending Amid Revenue Surge
Houston residents in the historically black neighborhood of Settegast are voicing their concerns over the reduction in funding for neighborhood drainage improvements in Mayor Sylvester Turner's proposed budget for fiscal year 2024. Despite a significant increase in tax revenue, the budget allocates most of the additional funds to large-scale capital improvement projects, while the Storm Water Action Team and Local Drainage Program, which cater to emerging neighborhood needs, are not set to benefit. Around 50 members and supporters of the Northeast Action Collective, an advocacy group for drainage equity, gathered outside City Hall to demand an additional $20 million for each of the two local drainage programs. They emphasized that neglected neighborhoods like Settegast continue to experience persistent flooding issues, affecting the safety and well-being of residents. Councilmember Tarsha Jackson is in discussions with the mayor about possible funding increases, and the administration is considering raising the city funding for the Storm Water Action Team projects.