Letters: Wednesday, December 17, 2008
TCC by Mhoon Light

To the editor: Regarding Tarrant County College’s gross financial mismanagement (“Outfall/Downfall,” Oct. 8, and “Illegal to Erase,” Dec. 10, 2008): Gov. Rick Perry could task our higher education board and state auditor to scrutinize a community college’s financials to determine if gross fiscal mismanagement exists. Will he?
Where’s the gross fiscal misman-agement? First, trustees not only didn’t satisfactorily review alternatives and costs for the failed downtown campus; they totally ignored the obvious problem they were creating. Instead of buses to solve the bridge crisis, they worked secretly and spent $321 million (cash purchase of the property plus broker’s fee and refurbishing costs) on the RadioShack campus! Had they even talked to the Trinity River Vision Authority, they would have learned that the bridge could be built later without the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ permits.
In business, prowess is a scale ranging from bankrupt to insanely profitable. Tax-funded TCC certainly isn’t bouncing checks; they aren’t even affected by the down economy. But TCC’s upper limits of revenue — our tax dollars and tuition — are tied to a breakeven point to qualify as fiscally responsible. However, TCC collected and slyly squirreled away a gigantic surplus of tax dollars to make that impulsive purchase. Had our trustees acted wisely, we could have had a much larger tax break and lower tuition. Of course, the debt could have been paid off or at least reduced. That constitutes gross fiscal mismanagement. Didn’t we elect the trustees to ensure effective planning and fiscal stewardship, while preventing problems?
If you would like to see my petition to the governor and a wealth of TCCD insider information and the e-mails that the Texas attorney general’s office ordered released under open record laws, visit http://www.spiralogix.com. The web site includes contact information for each trustee. Please, make your voice heard.
Bob Mhoon

To the editor: Every citizen/taxpayer in Tarrant County owes Bob Mhoon a big thank-you for the time and effort he has devoted to shining the light of day on certain cloaked activities that have taken place at Tarrant County College District.
Mr. Mhoon, reporter Betty Brink, and Fort Worth Weekly have slowly chipped away at the wrap under which TCCD management and certain board members have attempted to conceal activities which included waste and abuse of taxpayer funds.
The chancellor has attempted to portray Mr. Mhoon as a mindless scoundrel who has been out to get him and his cohorts. Nothing could be further from the truth. Mr. Mhoon has been simply doing what every dedicated citizen/taxpayer should do: securing and protecting what is legally theirs.
Taxpayers have been burdened with an abortion on the south bank of the Trinity, along with hundreds of millions of wasted taxpayer funds. Mr. Mhoon and the Weekly are doing what gutless local officials should be doing — exposing waste, abuse, and unfit TCCD leaders!
Dennis Killy

Unfavored Treatment
To the editor: Thanks for the article “Muzzled” (Nov. 19, 2008) about how a candidate, Suzette Watkins, was removed from an East Fort Worth public meeting. After reading the article, I concluded this was routine, especially at churches.
A similar incident happened to me while I was working to ease the tax burden for the elderly and disabled. I was barred from a public meeting in a church in northeast Tarrant County, with the help of an off-duty policeman.
Despite that, we were successful on the tax issue. The senior tax freeze was implemented even though we had to twist some elected officials’ arms by petition to accomplish what was right.
We’ll see even more of these favored treatments under the new president-elect, as these kinds of incident are commonplace in churches and other places when it comes to politics.
We the people need to demand equal treatment under the law — and I mean all the people, regardless of race, color, religion, political affiliation, or national origin.
Jack O. Lewis
Haltom City

Open that Pasture Gate
To the editor: Dan McGraw’s Nov. 12 article (“Still Smoldering”) was an excellent recap of the Brimer-Davis campaign and the issues at stake. Someone needs to send Kim Brimer a copy for his archives.
Brimer’s attitude was pure “weaned on a pickle” syndrome, during a campaign in which he attempted to hold onto the Texas Senate position he’d held for 20 years. His refusal to participate in a “candidate conversation” on WFAA/Channel 8-TV really showed his disdain for a qualified opponent who has experience in dealing with problems and who stood ready to serve the interests of the people, not just self-interest. The voters sensed this and cast their ballots accordingly. So Brimer got pushed out to pasture, where he can stew.
I think Mike Moncrief needs to follow Brimer to that destination come the next mayoral election.
Dee Cantrell
Fort Worth

To the editor: I think you are an anti-Catholic publication for insulting Bishop Kevin Vann with your “Turkey Award” (Nov. 19, 2008). He did nothing more than remind Catholics of the church’s moral stand on abortion. The church has always clearly defended the right to life of the unborn.
This is a non-negotiable tenet of Catholic Christianity, and he would not have been doing his job if he had not reminded Catholics of it.
So where is the Turkey Award for the anti-abortion Protestant clergy?
Griffin T. Murphey, DDS
Fort Worth

Jihad in Bombay
To the editor: Gwynne Dyer’s commentary “Decaying Evil” in the Weekly’s Dec. 3 issue was a very good explanation of our lack of attention to world events, whether they’re good, bad, or ugly.
Attacking India’s commercial capital in Bombay and killing innocent people at random proves that this global “jihad” has no borders and illustrates the fragility of that part of the world and its inability to curb these terrorists. The message conveyed by these latest attacks will have worldwide ramifications — religious, political, and financial.
Edna Maskell
Fort Worth


• The Dec. 3 story “A Border Under Siege” incorrectly identified the city where a corpse was left hanging for children to see. That incident occurred in Ciudad Juarez. Additionally, the story should have noted that Celerino Castillo, the former DEA agent who blew the whistle on the drugs-for-arms scandal in Nicaragua during the mid-1980s and on U.S. human rights violations in Guatemala during that country’s civil war, recently pleaded guilty to selling three guns at a gun show without a license. Castillo, who contends that he has long been a target of U.S. government retaliation, is appealing his three-year sentence. Fort Worth Weekly regrets the error and omission.
• Additionally, in the Nov. 19 “Turkey Awards” issue, an illustration showing a two-headed turkey misidentified one of the human “heads.” Having issued itself a shot-in-the-foot Turkey, the Weekly regrets that error.

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