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Nearly 10 percent of Texans displaced by Harvey still haven't gone home, survey says

From a story in the Texas Tribune, by Brandon Formby, August 23, 2018

...15 percent of homes damaged or destroyed by the storm are still unlivable. Yet FEMA and Texas officials aren't keeping track of how many people remain displaced one year later.

One year after Hurricane Harvey slammed the Texas coast, 8 percent of the people impacted by the disaster have not been able to return to their homes, according to a report from two nonprofits that surveyed Texans about how the storm affected their finances, health and living conditions.

Fifteen percent of the hundreds of thousands of homes damaged by the storm are still unlivable. And of the 1,651 people from 24 counties who answered the survey, 30 percent of those impacted by the storm said their lives are still "somewhat" or "very" disrupted by the devastating storm's lingering damage.

Those survey results, released by The Kaiser Family Foundation and the Episcopal Health Foundation on Thursday, may be the clearest picture of how many people are still struggling to put their lives back together after Harvey. Federal and state officials aren't keeping track of how many people remain displaced.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency, which provides aid in the immediate aftermath of disasters, said it doesn’t tally how many Texans are still without permanent homes “in a meaningful way.” FEMA spokesman Kurt Pickering deferred The Texas Tribune’s questions to the Texas General Land Office, the state entity that federal officials and Republican Gov. Greg Abbott tabbed to oversee both short- and long-term housing recovery programs after Harvey slammed ashore last year.

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Where are Houston's Crime Hot Spots?

Read the full story at

Houston’s most dangerous neighborhood is the Clubcreek Drive area, which led the city in burglary, robbery, rape and murder from September 2016 through February 2017.

Channel 2 sat down with Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo to address the violence that residents there have been living with for many years. The chief acknowledged the neighborhood was a challenge to keep safe.

“It is a trouble spot that has been a historical challenge for the city," he said. "I think between the Police Department, our social services, some economic development, we’re going to turn that area around.”

The chief didn’t talk specifics, but told us he plans to add more resources to the high-density housing neighborhood.

Next on our hot spot list is the area near Almeda Mall, which includes the Edgebrook subdivision. Burglary reigns supreme in that location.

For those of you who work downtown, heed this warning: While you are working, thieves are stealing. Downtown ranked No. 1 for theft. Nearby Montrose and Midtown didn’t fare much better, coming in at No. 2 for thefts.

From a story by Joel Eisenbaum - Investigative Reporter, Shannan Adler - Special Projects Producer, May 17, 2017


Houston's Drainage Fee Producing Few Results

From an article on, by Ted Oberg, October 9, 2018

Outside Viviane Hudson's southwest Houston home, you could call the new drains, new curbs and new streets progress.

She doesn't.

"It's time they finish it," Hudson said.

City records show this $41 million drainage project was supposed to be finished in 2017, but it's been delayed. Now they won't finish until sometime next year, two years late.

"You know that I will be dead before they are finished," Hudson said.

While Hudson wants the dozers out, Roland Balderas on the east side can't wait for them to move in.

"When it rains hard, the streets start covering up here," Balderas said.

A $23 million drainage project in Balderas' Magnolia Park neighborhood hasn't started construction yet, and city documents show it too has been delayed.

Both projects are among the many supposedly funded, at least in part, by the City of Houston's drainage fee. It's a small addition to Houstonians water bills added by voters in 2010. It's up for re-approval on this year's ballot and our investigation shows the millions of extra dollars collected aren't creating more improvements.

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