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ANS-WER ING 0,04.01t, e 414 SERVICE P.O. BOX 3005 AUSTIN, TX 78764 KATHLEEN O’CONNELL 477-8278 Our outstanding lunches have been an Austin must for eleven years. Our international grocery features food and wine from around the world. Come see us at our new home. OOMM011 MBRISET 1610 San Antonio Austin, Tex. 78701 472-1900 Hours: “am 7pm Mon. to Fri. and 8am 6pm on Sat .’,11 and Associates 1117 West 5th Street Austin, Texas 78703 REALTOR Representing all types of properties An Austin and Central Texas Interesting & unusual property a specialty. 477-3651 E support. But it wasn’t there. Political insiders claim that when Walter Mischer said no, Russo folded. He had recently worked with Whitmire in a unsuccessful attempt to bring the Democratic National Convention to Houston. The Russo Company holds interests in banking, real estate, hotels, large commercial and residential developments and owns five percent of United Press International. More political posturing in Houston. City Councilman George Grenias appears to be using the trial-by-rumor approach to find his place in November’s electoral scheme. Grenias, who represents the city’s Montrose district, was first rumored to be interested in running against Whitmire. More recent talk has him considering a race with Houston City Controller Lance Lalor. Grenias has been at odds with the mayor’s office on fiscal matters but a source close to the mayor suggests that he might be the preferred candidate in a race with Lalor. He couldn’t be much worse; Lalor’s visceral dislike for the mayor often limits his effectiveness as the city’s chief fiscal officer. The controller’s office, once occupied by Whitmire, is considered a stepping stone to the city’s chief executive office and has a history of tension with the mayor’s office. In the past the adversarial relationship has been structural and bureaucratic; with Lalor, who a few years ago referred to Whitmire as a “slimy worm,” it is personal. One of the effects of the state’s current budget crunch is to set social spending advocates against each other. When the House considered its $39.4 billion budget bill May 4, proponents of higher education spending were pitted briefly against proponents for more welfare spending. Rep. Mike McKinney, D-Centerville, tried to take $53 million in administrative funds for colleges and universities and divert it to the Department of Human Services budget. Austin’s liberal Rep. Wilhelmina Delco protested. “Although we need more money in nursing home programs, [and] we need more money in the Women, Infants and Children program, we need more money in a lot of areas. I don’t deny that for a minute. But robbing one set of needy institutions to support another is not the way to do it,” she said. Delco’s argument prevailed. Rep. Paul Colbert, D-Houston, took an unsubtle swipe at Gov. Bill Clements by proposing to restore a half million dollars in funding for the Crippled Children’s program with money taken from the governor’s administrative budget “where monies: to my knowledge, are being wasted flying around the state,” Colbert said, referring to the governor’s 17-city tour to advocate his budget policies. Colbert’s measure passed 77-65, but was later reconsidered and withdrawn because Colbert said he feared it would drag down the amendment he attached it to. Three months into his second term and Gov. Bill Clements continues predictably to appoint conservative, white, and corporate-type males to direct state boards, agencies and commissions. According to the Dallas Morning News white males comprise two-thirds of the governor’s appointees. The gender-gap narrows as in the case of Beatrice Pickenswhen husbands have contributed heavily to the Clements campaign. Pickens, whose husband T. Boone contributed $21,000 to the governor’s campaign, was recently named to the state Parks and Wildlife Commission. Sen Craig Washington DHouston, temporarily held up two of Clement’s parole board appointments. Now approved by the Senate, Henry Keene and Christopher Meely, who are white, will replace Connie Jackson and Antonio Morales, currently serving on the state pardon and parole board. According to state Democratic Party Chairman Bob Slagle, Clements is appointing “corporate heads, people who he’s more confortable with and who are closer to his age group.” Rep. Bill Ceverha, R-Dallas, has been wearing a Jack Kemp for President button on the House floor another small sign of New York congressman. Kemp’s appeal to the most conservative elements of the Republican Party. Ceverha has traditionally defined the outer boundaries of right-wing thinking in the House. Political writers at the San Antonio Express-News mention Southwest Voter Education Project Director Willie Velasquez as a possible candidate to run against San Antonio Democratic Congressman Albert Bustamante. Contacted in San Antonio, Velazquez said that rumor is simply not true. Bustamante, in his second term, is currently involved in a political battle with Cong. Henry B. Gonzalez, for whom he once worked, over the size of the proposed new Brooke Army Medical Center. John Thomas Henderson, perennial Republican candidate for the Railroad Commission who has twice switched parties is staking out an early claim to his place as a Democratic candidate to run against incumbent commissioner Jim Nugent in the party primary. Henderson will spend the next two years taking Nugent to task for such issues as the loss to the Interstate Commerce Commission of power to set rates for railroads in the state, failure to act early and decisively on the White Oil issue that has soured the Panhandle economy and what Henderson describes as Nugent’s adversarial relationship with the oil and gas industry. As in the past, Henderson will underwrite his own campaign. Environmentalists and neighborhood activists in Austin criticized a 4-3 city council vote that gives state Rep. Stan Schlueter final approval to build 1,200 residential units on a 100-acre tract of land in Northeast Austin. Councilmembers voting with Mayor Frank Cooksey were attacked by neighborhood activists for failure to impose the standard square-footage limit on the Schlueter development. As a House member Schlueter has been a critic of city landuse ordinances and in the past has been openly hostile to Austin’s city planners. It is far less likely that the Schlueter proposal would have passed in its current form had it been delayed until the newly-elected council is seated. THE TEXAS OBSERVER 13