Not that it comes as any surprise but the mayor's rant on Monday evening at the beginning of the city council meeting appears to have practically no basis in fact.
First of all, as was posted today on media juggernaut La Sanbe, the mayors claim that the Gateway city was the only border town to get COPS funding was not true. As it turns out, it was not Laredo but the Sheriff's department that got the funding. The truth is that another Texas border town, Brownsville, received nearly $1.2 Million or about twice what Webb county got.
Now on the subject of the famed Cuatros Vientos road, the Mayor was banking that we forgot what really happened. The truth of that matter was that the city was given Zero funding for that project AFTER they went lobbying all over the map. It was only after an additional trip to Austin by City Manager Carlos Villarreal- to meet with Richard Raymond, among others- that the city was finally provided the funding. It was NOT because of the city's entourage going across the country.
Still, despite all this, the mayor continues to cite the Cuatro Vientos as a success of the city's high dollar lobbying efforts. Again, the truth is that the low-dollar trip by only a few city staffers was what turned the game around.
It has been my contention that only a few members of the city's elected officials and staff should go on these ventures- regardless of who pays for it. There is absolutely no need and no benefit to take a parade of 60 along. To the contrary, people up in Austin and Washington might be thinking "a city that can afford to send these many people out lobbying is probably not really hurting for funding".