November 22, 2021

Thankful for Our City Staff

Last week Interim City Manager Brant Gary announced his resignation, having accepted a job offer elsewhere.  His last day with the City of Bellaire will be December 3.  We appreciate his service to our community over the years, as Public Works Director in his prior stint with us, and then as Assistant City Manager and Interim City Manager.  Brant truly rose to the occasion in leading the City through some tumultuous times—made all the more challenging by his indeterminate status in the role, and on top of his regular duties no less—quite capably and always with the utmost poise and professionalism.  We’re better off for it (as is he), and we wish him all the best in his new position.

While at first his leaving may seem a major disruption to the organization, it really doesn’t change things all that much considering we’re about to begin the hiring process for our next permanent City Manager anyway.  With a new Council set to take office in January, this is already at the top of our to-do list.  Brant’s departure does mean that the current Council will need to appoint a replacement to serve as Interim in the meantime.

It also highlights, along with other high-profile resignations of late, we’re at a critical juncture with our staff.  It’s no secret that morale is low, and has been for some time.  The organization has surely been affected by all the prolonged uncertainty (16 months is an unusually long time to operate with an Interim City Manager), an often-hostile political climate, and more recently a particularly dispiriting budget process.  But it doesn’t have to be this way.  The opportunity to hire our next City Manager is also an opportunity to begin repairing our relationship with staff, to rebuild mutual trust and respect, with an appreciation of our respective roles in working together on the same team.

This week of Thanksgiving let’s remember how fortunate we are to live in Bellaire, and acknowledge the hard-working, dedicated professionals who help make our special town what it is.  The people who show up day in and day out, to provide the municipal services we all rely on but frequently take for granted.  Let’s assure them their efforts don’t go unnoticed, and that we value each and every one of them.  Want to recognize a staff member who has gone above and beyond?  I know they’d love to hear from you!

I wish you and your families, and our staff and their families, a Happy Thanksgiving and a blessed holiday season.

November 17, 2021

CRS Restoration Update

City staff have been working diligently toward the restoration of our Community Rating System classification, and with it our flood insurance discount.  They recently provided an update on their progress.  As shown below all of the required activities are proceeding on schedule and according to plan.