Oh, and maybe some benefits and percs.
Still, that isn’t a lot of money, and with a family of 4, a state representative and his or her family would surely be living below the poverty line and qualify for food stamps and free federal cheese.
So what is the draw?
Well, this week we learned what keeps State Rep. Wayne Christian attracted to the job. Sometimes you get to feather your own nest.
Take a bill that passed on the last day of the 81st Legislature, a bill that had to do with beaches. Wayne Christian inserted an amendment to the bill that would allow owners of destroyed beach houses to rebuild their houses, even though the property the house once stood on is now within the boundaries of a public beach.
Hurricane Ike, you see, moved sand around a lot, and eroded much of the
Later, State Rep Hamilton inserted language that “bracketed” the area of
12 properties which now extended onto the public beach.
And the reason State Rep Christian inserted that amendment and
One of those twelve properties is owned by Wayne Christian.
Yes, that’s right, in a rarely seen event right out in the open, we observe a state representative feathering his own nest by pushing legislation through that will directly benefit himself.
Well, himself and his 11 neighbors.
But wait it gets better. Wayne Christian doesn’t represent the
Christian denies any conflict of interest.
“This is not an unethical, deceptive method of doing anything,” Christian said. “This is the way it’s been ever since government was invented.”
Well he got the first sentence in his statement wrong and the second one right. Proving that State Rep. Christian has been in
The bill has yet to be signed and that takes us to the Texas Land Commissioner, Jerry Patterson, who is hopping mad about this.
Again, from the Chron:
“Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson has asked Gov. Rick Perry to veto the bill containing the amendment. The bill has not yet crossed the governor’s desk, and he will not make a decision until he sees it, said Perry spokeswoman Katherine Cesinger.”
“I don’t think building houses on the beach, with the waters of the Gulf beneath them, is a good idea or good public policy,” Patterson said. “
If the governor signs the bill, Patterson vowed that he would not enforce the amendment. “My option is just to say, ‘Screw you, Wayne Christian,’ because the Legislature didn’t pass this, one guy passed this,” he said.”
“Patterson said the Legislature would have to impeach him if lawmakers wanted the provision enforced.”
So while thousands are out of a job here in Texas, and will not get to benefit from the $555 million in federal unemployment stimulus dollars because of Republican shenanigans in the late legislative session, Wayne Christian found the time and the votes to get himself an exemption on his beach house so he can rebuild it on public land.
Unfortunately if this was a beach in, say,