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Everything You Should Know about Houston City Council 

Everything You Should Know about Houston City Council

Whether you’re moving to Houston or have been a Houstonian for years, it’s essential to be familiar with Houston’s economy and local government. To help you out, here is everything about the Houston City Council.

What is the Houston City Council?

Houston’s City Council is the city’s legislative body in charge of legislating for Houston. It has the authority to pass and uphold all ordinances and resolutions.

Website Houston City Council
Address901 Bagby, Second Floor Houston, TX 77002
Contact Info713-837-0215.

What is the Houston City Council responsible for? 

Houston City Council is responsible for carrying out the legislative duties of the city government. Such as adopting the annual city budget, ordinances, and resolutions. 

They also make decisions on the proper tax levy, sewer and water rates, and other general tax and service rates. Furthermore, council members hold the responsibility of vetoing the mayor’s requests. 

How long is the tenure of the city council? 

Every four years, voters choose the mayor, city controller, and council members. The maximum number of terms that a council member and mayor may serve is two, each lasting four years and starting on January 2.

What duties does the mayor have in the City Council? 

The mayor of Houston performs the duties of the City’s executive officer. 

He oversees the City’s general administration. He ensures that all laws and ordinances are upheld in his capacity as the City’s chief administrator and official representative. 

The mayor, who serves as the Executive Officer, also administers oaths and signs all motions, resolutions, and ordinances approved by the City Council. Mayors have historically presided over the City Council and have voting rights.  

Hence, a mayor also performs legislative duties. The mayor is also in charge of informing the Council of the City’s financial situation and submitting an annual budget for the Council’s approval.

Who makes up the city council in Houston? 

Who makes up the city council in Houston

There are sixteen city council members in Houston, which includes the mayor of Houston. Below is a general overview of the council members who make up Houston’s local government that are in term until 2024.

The Mayor of Houston: Sylvestor Turner 

Sylvester Turner is in his second term after being elected in December 2015 and soundly re-elected in December 2019. He is the 62nd mayor of Houston. 

Houston has faced several difficulties since Mayor Turner took office, including fiscal shortages, homelessness, and natural catastrophes like Hurricane Harvey. He is in charge of Houston’s current COVID-19 global pandemic response. 

To counteract the rise in violence brought on by the pandemic, domestic violence, mental illness, and the abundance of guns on the streets, Mayor Turner unveiled his One Safe Houston project in February 2022.

Additionally, he started the Hire Houston Youth program to offer thousands of young people chances for employment and internships each year. He established public-private collaborations to upgrade local parks and broaden Houston’s influence in technology and innovation.

Amy Peck: District A 

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Peck, who represents District A on the Houston City Council and serves as its vice chair, was elected in 2019 and is now spending her first term in office. 

She formerly served as the District Director at the state level of government. 

Tarsha Jackson: District B 

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Since the 2000s, she has fought for District B’s residents. Tarsha’s life transformed when her oldest special needs son Marquieth was detained at his elementary school for disrupting a class while she was raising two young boys and working as a mortgage lender. 

Marquieth, who was only ten years old at the time of his arrest, received a three-and-a-half-year prison term for a crime that should have only required detention.

Tarsha and her family lived the agonizing injustices of a system that criminalizes children rather than assisting and defending them. 

She rose to prominence as a parent advocate and community leader, mobilizing other parents to fight for and succeed in reforming juvenile imprisonment. As TOP’s Harris County Director, Tarsha started the organization’s first campaign for criminal justice. 

Over the years, Tarsha’s advocacy has grown to include fighting for economic justice for Houston’s frequently ignored communities and issues like ending ICE and police cooperation in immigration enforcement.

She campaigns for affordable housing and fair recovery following Hurricanes Ike and Harvey. 

She is also a co-founder and co-director of the nonprofit organization Urban Community Network, which assists families of vulnerable and system-involved children in locating the support they require to succeed.

Abbie Kamin: District C 

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Abbie Kamin is honored to represent fifteen distinct super communities as a fourth-generation District C resident. 

She manages the region’s civil rights programming, community collaborations, and incidents of hate reported by constituents while serving as the Associate Regional Director of the Anti-Defamation League’s Southwest Regional Office. 

She advocates for answers to the foster care crisis in Texas as the Committee Director and Clerk for the Texas House Human Services Committee. 

Carolyn Evans Shabazz: District D 

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Dr. Carolyn Evans-Shabazz recently served as a trustee for Houston Community College, representing District IV. She was the first African American woman to chair the board for two years. 

Dave Martin: District E 

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Dave, a seasoned leader in business and politics, ensures that conservative values are upheld in city administration. He has impacted the council’s ability to make solid business decisions and address fundamental problems plaguing Houston.

Public safety, financial accountability, and economic progress have been and will continue to be the three pillars of Dave’s daily goals since his election in November 2012. Additionally, he puts a lot of effort into providing District E constituents with first-rate constituent service.

Tiffany D Thomas: District F

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She fills this position for the first time as a Black woman under 40. She is in charge of the city’s housing, veteran affairs, homelessness, and solid waste priorities as chair of housing and community affairs. 

Early in 2020, Councilwoman Thomas and Mayor Sylvester Turner announced a rent reduction scheme in response to COVID-19 to address the eviction situation. 

For working families, homeless people, and multifamily developments, Councilwoman Thomas continues to stress the significance of keeping affordable housing alternatives. 

Mary Nan Huffman: District G 

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On February 2, 2022, Mary Nan Huffman was sworn in as a Council Member for District G. She uses her experience as a law-and-order prosecutor to protect Houston’s neighborhoods from crime and prevent corruption in city hall. 

She prosecuted various internet-related crimes perpetrated against kids while serving as the Chief of Child Exploitation. Huffman has a national reputation for her work as a child exploitation prosecutor and is in high demand as a special prosecutor for challenging child abuse cases.

Huffman is currently an attorney for the Houston Police Officers’ Union. She represents HPD officers in various cases relating to their official obligations. 

Huffman arrives on the scene to support law enforcement personnel involved in shootings and deaths in custody.

Karla Cisneros: District H

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Karla Cisneros affects and addresses the gap in many District H neighborhoods. In 2015, she won a seat on the Houston City Council, and in 2019, she was re-elected. 

She has spearheaded various projects to ensure that children, particularly those living in poverty, have equal access to opportunities. She is the chair of the City Council’s Childhood and Youth Committee.

Robert Gallegos: District I 

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Robert stands up for all District I residents, working families, senior persons, and those with disabilities in his capacity as a council member. 

He has pledged money to develop additional dog parks, hiking, and biking paths, canoe launches, and rehabilitate neighborhood parks and sports fields. 

He is a champion for green areas. Robert was the driving force behind establishing the first Houston Botanic Garden in District I and the historic Gus Wortham Park Golf Course restoration in 2015.

Edward Pollard: District J 

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Edward founded Suits for Success, a program that educates juvenile guys on life skills in District J high schools. The semester-long course emphasizes ties, résumé building, personal finance, etiquette instruction, and public speaking.

Edward is also the founder of Pollard Legal Group, LLC, a boutique civil litigation law company with offices in District J. 

Martha Castex-Tatum: District K 

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On May 5, 2018, Martha Castex-Tatum prevailed in a special election to complete the term of District K’s late Houston City Councilman Larry Green. 

Castex-Tatum was the first African-American woman elected to the San Marcos, Texas, city council when she started her career in public service. 

Her peers chose her to serve as Deputy Mayor Pro Tem throughout her term. Her first entire four-year tenure as a council member for the area where she was reared began in January 2020. 

Martha has lived in District K for a long time and is an active community member. She supports senior folks and small business owners. 

Among other projects and activities, she is committed to accelerating beautification projects and economic development in Houston

Mike Knox: At Large 1 

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Mike Knox is a veteran who spent time in the US Air Force and worked as a Houston police officer for over 15 years. In 1988, Mike was one of two detectives who helped establish the Houston Police Department’s first divisional gang unit. 

In 1995, Mike wrote a book titled “Gangsta in the House: Understanding Gang Culture.” 

Mike assisted his fellow officers by chairing the HPPU Political Action Committee and serving on the Houston Police Patrolmen’s Union board. 

Mike served as the Spring Branch Management District’s Director of Community Service for three years after being hired in 2007 to assist with developing the Public Safety portion of the district’s service plan. 

Mike Knox has been the Yupon Estates Homeowners Association president for the last seven years.

David Robinson: At Large 2

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David has been actively involved in neighborhood concerns in addition to his architectural profession. He served the Neartown (Montrose) Association for eight years as an executive, including spells as vice president and president.

He also contributed to the master plan for the Texas Children’s Hospital facility in Houston. Since then, he has contributed to numerous healthcare projects in Texas, elsewhere, and at the Texas Medical Center (TML). 

In the spring of 2018, David was chosen to lead the Houston City Council’s Transportation, Technology & Infrastructure (TTI) Committee. This year, he was appointed the committee’s vice chair for housing and community affairs. 

Michael Kubosh: At Large 3 

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Since 2014, Michael Kubosh has represented the City of Houston as the At-Large Position No. 3 Council Member. Kubosh led the effort to have Houston’s red-light cameras taken down before he was elected to government. 

In addition, Kubosh spearheaded the Free To Give petition drive to stop the City of Houston from criminalizing feeding the homeless and needy. 

Kubosh convinced Harris County and the City of Houston to fund and work together on a project to retrieve 125 stolen and abandoned vehicles from the Brays, Sims, and Buffalo Bayous. This was accomplished while Kubosh was a council member.

Kubosh is still a champion for openness. He thinks that the public should be given brief, clear, and complete information since they have a right to know what the local government is doing.

Letitia Plummer: At Large 4 

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Letitia has contributed to several initiatives as a council member for the City of Houston. Through her “Serve the Need Program,” she effectively recruited prominent Houston chefs to feed seniors and families who were food insecure throughout Houston during COVID-19. 

She advocated for criminal justice reform in Houston’s budget amendments and developed a comprehensive policing reform program. She most recently advocated for an initiative to reform apartment inspections to enhance Houston’s residents’ quality of life and living conditions.

Sallie Alcorn: At Large 5 

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In December 2019, Sallie Alcorn won a seat on the Houston City Council. As an at-large council member, she focuses on broad policy topics such as city budgets, public safety, flood mitigation, transportation, mobility, infrastructure, environment, parks, and green space. 

To increase citizen participation and input in the city’s budgeting process, Sallie established YOUR TWO CENTS in 2020. 

Sallie has been actively involved in community concerns as the chair of the Regulatory and Neighborhood Affairs Committee, spearheading efforts to change the City of Houston’s animal welfare and noise rules. 

She has also kept up her efforts to streamline and improve city permit procedures.

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