The new Harris County officials sworn in New Year’s Day had something in common: They were all Democrats. The swearing-in ceremony at 2 p.m. Sunday followed the Democratic Party’s sweep of every countywide office in November’s general election, including closely watched contests against incumbent Republicans for DA and sheriff. The blue wave in a normally purple county where President Barack Obama won by just one-tenth of a percent in 2012 was driven largely by the unpopularity of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, who polled just 42 percent in Harris County compared to Democrat Hillary Clinton’s 54 percent, according to the county clerk’s official election results. Trump’s unpopularity here helped spur the Democrats’ 11-point advantage in straight-ticket voting.
Judge Kyle Carter, of the 125 District Court, signs the marriage certificate of Ashley Creath and Jacquey Creath, of Houston, a couple for nine years, after being pronounced a married in the Harris County Civil Courthouse Friday, June 26, 2015, in Houston. “Today we are getting married because it is legal throughout the country, we have all the rights of other married couples,” said Ashley. The Supreme Court of the United States on Friday ruled that same-sex couples can marry nationwide
Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart began issuing same-sex marriage licenses at 3 p.m. Friday following a legal confrontation with the county attorney’s office. Two couples had gotten their licenses at the downtown Harris County Clerk’s Office, while four others were having theirs processed. A judge is expected to perform a ceremony shortly at the Harris County Administration building. At a press conference, Stanart had said he would begin to issue same sex marriage licenses at 3 p.m., even though existing state marriage paperwork labels marriage partners as man and woman.
KINGWOOD — Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan announced on Aug. 18 that a three-year long lawsuit against a major polluter has ended with the firm closing down and agreeing to pay over $3 million in penalties and attorneys’ fees. U. S. Oil Recovery, L.P., its Chief Operating Officer Klaus Genssler and several related entities were found to have operated an illegal hazardous waste processing and oil recycling facility in Pasadena on North Richey Road. In addition to closing the company and paying the penalties, Genssler has agreed to a permanent injunction barring him from serving as an officer or director, or being employed by any business that generates, transports, processes, stores or disposes of any hazardous waste or used oil … Read More
Wendy Johnson had stopped to check on her deceased parents’ empty two-bedroom house when she spotted the absurd: A “For Sale” sign on the lawn. Johnson, sole heir of her parents’ former home of 50 years, hadn’t authorized any sale. The next time she visited, the locks had been changed. And a stranger claimed the house was his. He’d paid for it and had the legal papers to prove it. But the deed turned out to be a forgery, the handiwork of a daring group of rogue businessmen and con artists who claimed ownership of more than 70 vacant houses and lots across Houston and allegedly made millions by reselling them to unwitting buyers, a Houston Chronicle analysis of pending … Read More
PASADENA — The Harris County Attorney’s Office has won extraordinary legal relief in an environmental enforcement case: the appointment of a receiver to take over the assets of an international businessman Klaus Genssler and several of his companies that have illegally stored thousands of gallons of hazardous and flammable waste in leaking drums, barrels and containers along Vince Bayou in Pasadena. According to a news release from the County Attorney’s Office, Harris County District Judge Kyle Carter appointed the receiver on July 2 after hearing testimony about illegal continuing discharges of wastewater into the bayou, citizen complaints about air nuisances caused by open vessels of wastewater and the lack of fire fighting capabilities at the facilities located at 200 and … Read More