Welcome to our little slice of paradise! Clear Lake Shores is probably one of the best kept secrets in the entire Bay Area. Yes we are an island. We are surrounded by Clear Lake, Jarbo Bayou and the Lazy Bend canals. Plug this in to Google Maps and you'll see what I mean 29.32' by 95.01' We are about half way between Galveston Island and the city of Houston and located in north Galveston county. I will try to keep us up on all the goings on that we can walk, boat, bike or drive our golf carts to. Very few things pi$$ me off but one of them is wasting my precious time. I'll try not to waste yours. Enjoy. ab

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Once in a

 Blue moon, Just like the one last night. Yes it was, look it up. I couldn’t make it to the City Council meeting last night so I enlisted the services of a Ghost Blogger. Yep. So here in his words is a recap of last night’s adventure. Pay close attention when he talks about the ninja babies….who knew?

City Council Meeting Report
Decent crowd.  Saw a few faces that have not been there in a while and who were regulars during all the controversial times, so that gave me some hope there would be fireworks.  I don’t miss the dark days, trust me, but the meetings have been a little vanilla lately.
Richard Sowrey, Mayor Pro Tem, led the meeting in Vern’s absence.  I didn’t hear any mention of where Vern was so hopefully all is well with him.  Richard did a good job overall.  He is really just a calmer and better groomed version of Vern anyway so his performance was as expected. 
Department/Council Reports were uneventful, as usual.
The Committee Reports were pretty generic, other than the Parks Committee reporting that the 2nd order of bricks will not be ordered until after the 1st of the year.  No explanation was given as to why and no one seemed to care.  Also, the Waterfront Compliance Committee reported that 50% of the bulkheads that had been identified earlier this year as needing repair had been completed and more progress was expected soon.  Nice job.
 There were no Unscheduled Visitors, which was both surprising and disappointing at the same time, given the return of some old controversial regulars, as mentioned above.  They had made some memorable appearances in the past as unscheduled visitors and I was hoping for some repeat performances.  Nothing.  Nada.  Even Vern, I mean Richard, seemed surprised.   Actually, he looked relieved.
The Consent Agenda was actually approved in whole, with no items being pulled.  And without Vern there we did not have to hear the usual:  “Is there any discussion?”………”Ummm, Mayor, there can be no discussion on a Consent Agenda”………”Oh, that’s right…All in favor?”   Richard has obviously mastered Robert’s Rules of Order.
New Business
Item A.  Resolution 2013-11 was something about flood insurance.  I kinda dozed off during that one.  It passed, I think.         
Item B.  Ordinance 2013-06.  This was where it turned bizarre.  I woke up just in time to hear one of our police officers stating that there are 6 terrorists that are on an FBI watch list that live in Clear Lake Shores.   They consider themselves “sovereign citizens” and feel they are above laws and ordinances, or something to that effect.  He said they are constantly showing up at court and disrupting the proceedings, and they show up at City Hall and barge in on meetings and other city and police business.  They also carry guns on them!  I felt like I was in a Twilight Zone episode at that point.  At that point I asked Rob Scherer to pinch me and the bastard did.  I have a bruise to prove it.  Anyway, I know the Island is full of crazies but I always considered them to be harmless crazies, unless politics is involved, of course.  They can sure figure out creative ways to get dead people to sign petitions and vote, and also waste reams of paper and city staff time on useless Open Records Requests, but carrying guns and jumping over the counter at City Hall was never in their bag of tricks.  Now we were talking about a whole new level of crazy that I didn’t even know walked amongst us.  Apparently the police, and City Administrator George Jones, think an ordinance is needed in order to give the city something to charge these dirty half-dozen with.  I think the penalty was a $500 fine.  I guess a “disturbing the peace” or a “disorderly conduct” charge won’t stick to a sovereign citizen?  But an ordinance will?  Confusing.  Not surprisingly, and rightly so, Councilman Ianni challenged the need for the ordinance and wondered aloud if it would even enforceable, would it apply to all citizens or just the “terrorists” in question, etc.  He said something like: “so, if I show up at City Hall and start screaming about something I don’t like then I will have violated the ordinance and I have to pay you $500?”  At that point Councilman Burns woke up and said “yes, and you will also need an attitude adjustment”.  I thought we might finally get something juicy going but it fizzled.  Councilwoman Bailey then muttered a few questions but her microphone was not on so I couldn’t hear her anyway.  Then, just before it came to a vote, Councilwoman Boren wisely asked for a moment to think about it and the she asked a few more questions.  This pause was good, because it was uncovered during this time that the City Attorney had not yet reviewed the wording on the proposed ordinance and had not even been consulted on whether or not it was even enforceable.  Sloppy work there, guys.   No new ordinance should be voted on that has not been through the City Attorney first.  The whole thing was tabled until next meeting.  Now, the real question is:  who are those 6 terrorists?   When I got home I did a little googling on the whole “sovereign citizen” thing and a found a whole handbook called, you guessed it, “The Sovereign Citizen’s Handbook”.  This is the most interesting chapter, in my opinion:
Includes special chapter on Having Ninja Babies!
With 15 years of experience in keeping our children safely outside of the system we included a special chapter that shows you how to keep your kids safely out of the system and even use alternative documentation for establishing their identity! Without a mark or a number C.P.S. employees have no claim to your children, which keeps them from devastating your children's lives.
In chapter 14, Having Ninja Babies...
Whether you're birthing your baby at home or in a hospital, we show you how to have your baby without creating the birth certificate and social security number ("fictitious business accounts") or giving up your child's DNA.
Enough said.
Item C.  Ordinance 2013-07 involved amending the Community Pool rules to tighten up a few areas and outlaw a few new activities.  Apparently there were some issues recently.  One involved a resident purchasing 50 guest passes for her company party that was held at the pavilion, and then all 50 people crashed the pool at one time, overwhelming the staff and, I suppose, the chlorine level.  What were you thinking?  Also, crowd attending a bachelor party on island invaded the pool and allegedly were not on their best behavior as part of a ………bachelor party.  Go figure.  Ah, memories….  Anyway, vomiting and ogling the 16 year old lifeguards is not allowed at the pool any more.  Thanks a lot, guys. 
Item D.  Last but not least was a family on Narcissus asking for a variance to allow some existing 3rd floor attic space to be converted into living space.  Apparently it had already been rejected by ZBOA and they were under the impression that their next course of action in their quest for resolution was to appear before Council and request a variance.  However, before they could even get stared presenting their case Mayor Pro Tem Sowrey read a letter from the City Attorney stating that they would need to take the issue to court, not Council.  That procedure is intended which keep politics (Council) out of it.  I was always under the impression that what they were trying to do was the right protocol, but I guess not.  Anyway, once that opinion was read there was really nothing Council could do or act on.  I did feel for the home owners, though. The whole ordinance in question has always been an issue.  It is the whole “box on a box” discussion.  The intent of the ordinance was to keep folks from building houses that look like a giant square box.  The wording is something like the “living” square footage of the upper story cannot be greater than 60% on the floor below it.  So, you build it the same size but you make 40% of it attic space.  Simple.  Maybe it should say that the “total” square footage of the upper story cannot be greater than 60% on the floor below it.  Can someone on P&Z look into that please?  Other than a poorly written ordinance the other issue is clearly inconsistent enforcement of some of our ordinances by the Building Inspector.  The owners of the house in question presented 2 or 3 houses that were built AFTER their which appeared to violate the same ordinance but still passed inspection.  I can understand their frustration.  In any event, it looks like the city may be headed to court, again.          

Great job Casper!

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Anonymous said...

No comments?? Thanks casper that was a great read!

Anonymous said...

I don't know about the rest of you but I want to know who these "Sovereign Citizens" are. Or at least who they think they are.

ab said...

That was a fine report. Thanks Ghost Blogger! Anyone else interested in being a Ghost Blogger? Got something you want to get off your chest? Let me know. Thanks for reading y'all.

Anonymous said...

Can we at least get street names if nobody hs the balls to post the names of the 6?

Anonymous said...

Think marinas - not streets.

See the police if you want more information.

Scott said...

I find it hilarious that the person suggesting that "nobody has balls" posted that anonymously. Have you located your balls?

Anonymous said...

Thanks Ghost Blogger. Yo8ur awesome sir! (or mam...)

ab said...

absolutely think marina. That's what I loved about being a liveaboard and or cruiser. No taxes, no utilities, no ID required.... Off the Grid. One day soon.

Bryan said...

And Wyatt is a bit of a Ninja.....

Anonymous said...

There was more to the ordinance then just not having box on box as I remember it from back in the day. I'm not really for the ordinance but the reason behind it at the time was justified If you want my remembrance of how it went down give me a call Ghostbuster. By the way great job on the article glad someone can fill Allen's shoes when necessary hopefully it will keep the blog going for a long time


Adelia said...

Alan - not sure if you got my email. Hellie and Chris spoke and we (they and me) all agree that movie night should be on the 31st instead of this weekend. That way we will have time to work any issues with George about using the pool. Sooo We will show Captain Ron - hopefully in the pool but if not then at the pavillion. Time right after the sun goes down. Chris asked if you could send a "Civic Club" email about that - maybe Ninja style

Anonymous said...

Word I got was that the 6 do not live here. They were stopped by police in a car and got a misdemeanor ticket for something in their car. will now have to go to court, but they think the laws dont apply to them since they are in "The Republic of Texas" organization.

Anonymous said...

OMG !!!!! Will never go back. Looked so forward to This bar Bad ,bad , bad. Service we were 3 of 7 people in the bar . Can't tell u how bad this was in a blog. Spend 3 bucks for a beer and find out for yourself You will probably get better service if you r a male.. Such a disappointment. Will be going back to Jackie's .....

Anonymous said...

well its amazing the republic of texas idiots have been living in Watergate for the past 5 years and the police department here knew about it. So this is old news. Not a big deal the police department has always kept an eye on them. They are just excercising their beliefs. Although its kind of strange why it would be brought up now, by the Police Dept some more drama I guess. Have a Blessed Day,
The Night Rider.