A Time to Take Stock, County Blessings
and Plan for 2007!
Commissioner Tommy Adkisson
December 22, 2006

With this year practically gone, this season provides us with a special opportunity to take stock of the past year, count our many infinite blessings and plan for a great 2007! Without accentuating or ignoring our ongoing challenges, much has been done to provide for the future here in Bexar County.

Here are the following major areas and some accomplishments done by subject and in order of priority. They are not my only issues, but especial priorities. Where appropriate, projected savings to the County are listed at the end of each subject.

  1. Energy
    1. Hired a top-notch Energy Manager
    2. Enacted A Serious County Energy Policy
    3. Established the First E-85 Station in Texas
    4. Installed Texas' largest solar hot water heater for jail annex
    5. Installed and Installing Lighting Retrofits
    6. Sealed Roof of Courthouse building
    7. Implemented an Energy Management System
    8. Sealed South Entrance Door
    9. New Buildings engineered for savings!
    10. Measurement of all projects for savings!

    11. $300,000.00 to $1,250,000 Annually!
  2. Health - Working with the University Health System for a healthier County
    1. Prevention
    2. Diabetes & HIV/AIDS
    3. Healthcard or Smartcard for secured, immediate medical records access
    4. Healthchart (electronic or paper) to personally monitor individualized health status

    5. At least, $40 to $50 million annually!
  3. Justice - Developing a system that protects the public and prepares inmates to re-enter society constructively.
    1. Jail Population - Managing economically for best possible results.
      1. Breaking the cycle of unnecessary, repeated incarceration
        • Mental Health
        • Substance Abuse
        • Tent Jail
      2. Strengthening the Continuum of Restraint
        • Bail Bonds - commercial & public recognizance
        • Work Release - child support nonpayers
        • Electronic Monitoring & Global Positioning System
      3. Making Work Fundamental to Inmates
        • Minimizing barriers where appropriate, to re-employment
        • Partnering with Texas Inmate Families Association, Jail Ministries, & Restorative Justice Committee of Archdiocese, Project SER and others to secure employment.
        • Creating an environment of transparency and accountability through our information system
  4. In 2006 alone, $8 To $12 million!

  5. Transportation
    1. Bexar County Transportation Initiative - County pays for employees to ride VIA free and challenges 100 top employers to do the same! (Healthier Air, Decongestion of Expressways, Compliance with Clean Air Standards, Savings for Employees)
    2. Advanced Transportation District—a quarter cent sales tax, expected to raise approximately $34 million annually, 50% going to VIA, 25% to City and 25% to TX Dot.
    3. Austin-San Antonio Commuter Rail District (provide fast, reasonably-priced transportation on I-35 between Austin & San Antonio.)
  6. Flood Control - Proactively Plan and Prevent Flooding in Our Urban Watershed (including regionally through collaborations)
  7. Neighborhood Fortification
    1. Support Neighborhood Leadership
    2. Develop Membership in all neighborhoods
    3. Revitalize Targeted Areas (economic development)

May you and yours have a very happy holiday season and a really great New Year!

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