Vote for the Best of the Bay Awards 2018! Go Vote Now

Recycling Collection Schedule Update

January 17th, 2019

HOUSTON – Please note the following adjustments to the City of Houston’s recycling collection schedule. Due to the schedule adjustments do not place your recycling (green) container at the curb until Wednesday or Saturday.

For future updates and collection schedules please visit our website, monitor our social media and 3-1-1 customer service center.

Thank you for your patience as we work on resolving this matter. Residents are also encouraged to take advantage of the six (6) neighborhood depositories closest to your home. For more department information visit

Saturday, January 19, 2019
Thursday’s & Friday’s A-Week Curbside Recycling pickup

Monday, January 21, 2019 (Martin Luther King Jr) 
CITY HOLIDAY: NO COLLECTION SERVICES. All facilities and services closed.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019 
Monday’s Garbage Collected.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Tuesday’s Garbage Collected.

Thursday, January 24, 2019
Thursday’s Garbage Collected.

Friday, January 25, 2019
Friday’s Garbage Collected.

Saturday, January 26, 2019
Monday’s & Tuesday’s B-Week Curbside Recycling pickup.

Sunday, January 27, 2019 
Thursday’s & Friday’s B-Week Curbside Recycling pickup.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019  
Monday’s & Tuesday’s A-Week Curbside Recycling pickup.

Saturday, February 2, 2019
Thursday’s & Friday’s A-Week Curbside Recycling pickup.

For more information about SWMD and our services, visit us at, “LIKE” us on Facebook at, follow us on Twitter @HoustonTrash, or call 3-1-1, the City of Houston’s Customer Service Helpline.

Houston Rodeo 2019 schedule

January 16th, 2019

Monday, Feb. 25 at 6:45 PM
Kacey Musgraves
NRG Stadium

Tuesday, Feb 26 at 6:45 PM
Prince Royce
NRG Stadium

Wednesday, Feb 27 at 6:45 PM
Brooks and Dunn
NRG Stadium

Thursday, Feb 28 at 6:45 PM
Luke Bryan
NRG Stadium

Friday, Mar 01 at 6:45 PM
Cardi B
NRG Stadium

Saturday, Mar 02 at 3:45 PM
Turnpike Troubadours
NRG Stadium

Sunday, Mar 03 at 3:45 PM
Panic at the Disco
NRG Stadium

Monday, Mar 04 at 6:45 PM
Old Dominion
NRG Stadium

Tuesday, Mar 05 at 6:45 PM
Camila Cabello
NRG Stadium

Wednesday, Mar 06 at 6:45 PM
Luke Combs
NRG Stadium

Thursday, Mar 07 at 6:45 PM
Tim McGraw
NRG Stadium

Friday, Mar 08 at 6:45 PM
NRG Stadium

Saturday, Mar 09 at 3:45 PM
Kane Brown
NRG Stadium

Sunday, Mar 10 at 3:45 PM
Los Tigres del Norte
NRG Stadium

Monday, Mar 11 at 6:45 PM
Zac Brown Band
NRG Stadium

Tuesday, Mar 12 at 6:45 PM
Kings of Leon
NRG Stadium

Wednesday, Mar 13 at 6:45 PM
NRG Stadium

Thursday, Mar 14 at 6:45 PM
Chris Stapleton
NRG Stadium

Friday, Mar 15 at 6:45 PM
Cody Johnson
NRG Stadium

Saturday, Mar 16 at 2:45 PM
Brad Paisley
NRG Stadium

Sunday, Mar 17 at 7:00 PM
George Strait
NRG Stadium

Recovery centers to provide federal aid for repair of homes damaged by Harvey

January 16th, 2019

The City of Houston has taken a critical step forward with the opening of four Housing Resource Centers, one in each quadrant of the city, to use $1.17 billion in federal aid to assist Houstonians whose homes were damaged by Hurricane Harvey.

Anyone who may be eligible must first complete a survey:

  • Online at
  • By phone at 832-393-0550 (Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.)
  • Or in person at any of the new centers (Northeast, 9551 N. Wayside, Houston 77028; Northwest, 13101 Northwest Freeway [Hwy. 290], Suite 101, Houston 77040; Southwest, 6464 Savoy Drive, Suite 110, Houston 77036; Southeast, 11550 Fuqua St., 3rd floor, Houston 77036)

Mobile outreach teams are also available to serve home-bound residents and others.

Please see the info flyer.

Mayor Sylvester Turner opened the Northeast center on Monday, encouraging community members to be ambassadors for the recovery effort to ensure that no eligible homeowner is left out.

The mayor told people in the packed room, “Our goal is to reach and serve as many of the affected homeowners as possible, especially those who are hardest to reach – our disadvantaged, senior citizens, those with limited English proficiency and those with special needs. We will not leave anyone behind.”

On the importance of taking the Harvey Recovery Survey, the mayor continued, “No one wants another delay in the process. The survey will help us understand each homeowner’s situation better and determine which program they may be eligible for.”

Tom McCasland, director of the City Housing and Community Development Department, emphasized that the city has moved quickly to ensure recovery was launched as soon as federal funds became available. McCasland said, “The contract for the money was signed on the 4 th , today is the 14 th – it’s 10 days later and we’re rolling out programs.”

The city will receive the $1.17 billion for housing recovery through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the State of Texas General Land Office.

The recovery funds include the Homeowner Assistance Program, which offers five program options including: 1) reimbursement for completed repairs, 2) homeowner-managed rehabilitation, 3) city-managed rehabilitation and reconstruction, 4) buyouts, and 5) interim mortgage assistance.

While priority will be given to low- and moderate-income homeowners, assistance is available to homeowners of all income levels.

To schedule a mobile outreach team, or for any additional information, please visit or call the Harvey recovery hotline number 832-393-0550, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Housing Resource Centers hours of operation are:

  • Mondays – Tuesdays, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Wednesdays – Thursdays, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Fridays, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

‘Phantom’ star Kristen Hertzenberg to bring Broadway to Bayou Theater

January 9th, 2019

Houstonian and UT grad Kristen Hertzenberg plans to bring Broadway to UHCL’s Bayou
Theater Jan. 18

Well known for her role as Christine in the Las Vegas production of “Phantom of the Opera,” classically-trained c will take center stage at University of Houston-Clear Lake’s Bayou Theater to perform an evening of classic showtunes on Friday, Jan. 18 at 7:30 p.m.

Her performance, titled “There’s No Tune Like a Showtune,” showcases her ability to sing just about anything, from opera to Broadway to the blues.

Hertzenberg was raised in the Houston area, earning her degree in voice at University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree in opera at the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, Mass. Her previous theater credits include “Hair,” “Million Dollar Quartet,” as well as five years in her dream role as Christine in “Phantom.”

“Having an artist of Kristen’s caliber in the Bayou Theater is another opportunity for the community to see an outstanding performance in our beautifully renovated theater,” said Bayou Theater Managing Director Alex Malone.

“Kristen, along with her pianist and musical director Philip Fortenberry will take the audience on a musical journey from the classic showtunes of Rodgers and Hammerstein to modern musical hits. You won’t want to miss it.”

To purchase tickets, phone 281-283-2065 or visit

Lane closure at 15600 Highway 3

August 29th, 2018

Houston City Councilman Dave Martin would like to make residents aware that the City of Public Works Department is replacing the air release valve vent pipe and manhole ring, frame and cover on the 42-inch water line at 15600 Old Galveston Road, beginning Monday, Aug. 27. The project is anticipated to be completed by Tuesday, September 11, 2018.

During construction, the outside southbound lane of the 15600 block of Old Galveston Road will be closed from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Drivers should expect reduced traffic speed through the channelized area during this time. To ensure driver and worker safety, traffic control measures will be in place at all times. The District E office has contacted the Houston Police Department’s Clear Lake Substation to ask that officers monitor the location and provide assistance with traffic control as needed.

For more information, contact the District E Office by emailing or by calling 832-393-3008.

Fabulous at 50!

August 1st, 2018

Summer birthday BFF’s Lara Bell and Roseann Rogers celebrated a big 5-0 on Wednesday, June 27 at Hotel Zaza Memorial City. Over 150 friends and family gathered to salute the fabulous 50th birthday of this dynamic duoH. Bell and Rogers have been celebrating their summer birthdays together for more than 20 years.

“At our 29th birthday parties, which were weeks apart and had pretty much the same people at each, we decided we would combine the summer celebrations and make it more fun and more fabulous,” said Bell.

For their 50th they decided for “cocktail cool celebration” by the pool at the new Hotel Zaza in Memorial City. Guests sipped Deep Eddy and Patron Specialty Vodka Drinks, while they nibbled on delicious appetizers which included Crispy Artichoke and Boursin Beignet with Tabasco Syrup, Mini Beef Wellington with Port Reduction, and Grilled Chipotle Chicken Skewer with Red Bell Pepper Jam.

“This year’s birthday celebration was extra special because we rekindled friendships from years gone by. It was like a reunion of former colleagues and dear friends. We are truly blessed!” added Rogers.

This isn’t the first time the duo celebrated their birthdays at Hotel ZaZa. In fact, Lara and Roseann celebrated their 41st birthday at the original hotel in the museum district. Their celebration was the first ever pool-side event when the hotel very first opened. Guests left the party with not only goody bags but with a late night snack, chicken sandwiches courtesy of Whataburger!

In lieu of gifts, Lara and Roseann encouraged friends and family to donate to KidsMeals. The two are co-chairing the 10th Anniversary Harvest Luncheon on Nov. 2. At last count, the donations were well past $2,500.

Seen in the chic crowd were loads of their media friends including Deborah Duncan, Alicia Smith, Myia Shay, Chita Craft, Laurette Veres, Warner Roberts, Laura and Ned Davenport, Richard Ray, Anthony Dowd, Suzy Bergner, Mary Beth Mosley, Dr. Angela Strum, Bruce Padilla, Shelby Kibodeaux, Kim Padgett, Sonia Soto, Suzanne and Adam Stiles, Michelle and Jeff Majewski, Christina Sacco, Bree Knodel, Page Parkes, and Edward Sanchez.

Houston’s Local Action Plan Open for Public Input Until June 21

June 8th, 2018

The City of Houston has released its draft local action plan for $1.15 billion in housing recovery funding. The plan is available for review and public comment from Thursday, June 7 through Thursday, June 21 and will be submitted to City Council for approval on June 27. The plan includes a local needs assessment, programs and budget, and spending timelines for $1,155,119,250 in Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds.

“Hurricane Harvey hit hard for many Houstonians, but it didn’t break our spirit,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner. “With these recovery resources, our goal is to make historic progress in ensuring that every Houstonian has a safe, affordable place to live, and that our neighborhoods provide economic opportunities for Houstonians to thrive.”

Since the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced the availability of housing recovery funds in February, the City has been working with Harris County, the State of Texas, and the federal government to ensure that Houston gets its fair share of these resources and that they are locally controlled. Submitting a local action plan to the Texas General Land Office (GLO) is a requirement for Houston to receive this funding.

The Housing and Community Development Department (HCDD) has been convening public meetings and focus groups to inform the development of the local action plan. Since April, HCDD has worked with civic groups, the Super Neighborhood Council, and City Council Members to host or participate in 17 community meetings, focus groups, and public events to get input on Houstonians’ recovery priorities.

“Houstonians must have a voice in their own recovery,” said Housing Director Tom McCasland. “Our department will continue to be out in the community, listening to people’s experience, concerns, and needs so that we can build a stronger, more resilient, and more equitable city.”

More than 600 people have participated in events focused on long-term recovery since April and 383 have taken HCDD’s recovery survey: Additional meetings will be held throughout the comment period before the draft goes to City Council on June 27. A list of upcoming events is posted at and on the HCDD Facebook page:

Later this summer, Houston’s plan will be incorporated into the State of Texas Plan for Disaster Recovery: Hurricane Harvey – Round 1 as a substantial amendment. Harris County’s plan will be incorporated in the same amendment.

Public comments on the local action plan may be submitted by email to: or by mail: HCDD, ATTN: Fatima Wajahat, 601 Sawyer, Suite 400, Houston, TX 77007. View the draft Plan at:

To learn more about CDBG-DR and upcoming events related to disaster recovery, please call 832.394.6200 or visit

Robert Lightfoot honored at RNASA Foundation Space Gala

May 9th, 2018

Johnson Space Center Director Ellen Ochoa presents the National Space Trophy to Robert Lightfoot, recently retired acting NASA administrator. RNASA photo

The Rotary National Award for Space Achievement (RNASA) Foundation presented the 2018 National Space Trophy to Robert Lightfoot, NASA’s former acting administrator at its 32nd annual black-tie Space Awards Gala on April 27, 2018 at the Houston Hyatt Regency.

RNASA Foundation Chairman Rodolfo González welcomed the guests to gala, saying that RNASA’s mission is to encourage, recognize, honor and celebrate U.S. space achievements from across the entire country and across all sectors.” The Clear Brook High School JROTC Color Guard presented the colors, followed by Thomas Glass, first year baritone from Houston Grand Opera, who sang the National Anthem a cappella.

Reverend Michael Stone, St. Thomas the Apostle Episcopal Church, gave the invocation.

After dinner, the program kicked off with a year-in-review film by Space City Films. John Zarrella, former CNN correspondent served as the emcee. “We are here tonight” he said, “in no small part to acknowledge the accomplishments of men and women behind the scenes. Tonight, we will honor many individuals who have made outstanding contributions to our space program.

Cindy Steele, NASA Public and Stakeholder Engagement Division chief, presented the 2018 Space Communicator Award to actor William Shatner, best known for his role as Capt. James Kirk of Star Trek’s USS Enterprise, saying that “as a lifelong advocate of science and exploration, Mr. Shatner has inspired generations of young explorers.” Shatner accepted the honor via video, saying “the concept of space travel and exploration is one of great mysteries we humans can ponder. Space is the greatest mystery story of all.

Stellar Awards were presented to 29 individuals and 8 teams. The Stellar Award winners were announced by NASA astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Peggy Whitson, who then presented them with engraved marble trophies donated by Orbital ATK. The Stellar Awards were presented in Early Career, Mid-Career, Late Career and Team categories.

NASA astronauts Scott Tingle, Drew Feustel, and Ricky Arnold sent a congratulatory message down from the International Space Station to Lightfoot on receiving the National Space Trophy, telling him “we wouldn’t be on this amazing laboratory in space today if it hadn’t been for your complete dedication to our mission and for your effectiveness in the many roles you held over your career. Our community thrives because of your commitment to safety and mission success. Robert, congratulations on this prestigious and well-deserved honor.

Ellen Ochoa, director of the Johnson Space Center, presented the prestigious 2018 National Space Trophy to Robert Lightfoot. In her introductory comments, Dr. Ochoa said “The many leadership roles that Robert Lightfoot has held and excelled at over his entire aerospace career made him the ideal person to lead NASA during the last 15 months.” While accepting the NST, Lightfoot said “…I really feel like I’ve been honored with the pinnacle of recognition in our business. This is the biggest award you could bestow on me, but really it is for this entire team and what we do. What we do every day makes a difference.

Lt. Gen Thomas P. Stafford, USAF (Ret.), Gemini and Apollo astronaut, and the 1993 National Space Trophy winner, presented an Omega speedmaster watch to Lightfoot, saying “The National Space Trophy is very well deserved. I followed you your whole career; it has been superb.”
Engility donated the portrait of Lightfoot by Pat Rawlings, which was on display at the gala and used as the cover of the souvenir program. The portrait will become part of the National Space Trophy display at Space Center Houston for one year.

This mayor is quite proud of his great big city

July 1st, 2017

Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership President Bob Mitchell, left, and BAHEP Chairman Dr. Greg Smith thank Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner for coming down to Clear Lake to address the BAHEP luncheon at the Clear Lake Hilton.

By Mary Alys Cherry

Listening to Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, you can easily tell how proud he is of the city. As he addressed the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership’s June 1 luncheon, he couldn’t stop boasting about America’s fourth largest city, and how it would be the 23rd largest in the world if it was a country.

How it added 18,000 jobs in April – its best growth in 35 years, how the Texas Medical Center is growing, how it is the most diverse city in the country with 140 languages spoken, how we hosted the most watched Super Bowl ever, and how “The Los Angeles Times wrote ‘New York City is in Houston’s rear view mirror.’”

Looking around the ballroom at the Clear Lake Hilton at the smiles on everyone’s faces in the sellout crowd, it was easy to tell his audience was enjoying listening as much as he was enjoying his storytelling – giving him a standing ovation.

Webster City Manager Wayne Sabo, right, stops to visit with Ron Servis of Judge Ed Emmett’s office and Carla Medlenka, Houston Methodist St. John Hospital marketing manager, at the BAHEP luncheon at the Clear Lake Hilton.

Several area mayors were in the crowd, including Mark Denman of Nassau Bay, Michel Bechtel of Morgan’s Point, Louis Rigby of La Porte and Carl Joiner of Kemah. Houston City Councilman Dave Martin introduced him. Other elected officials included City Councilors Amanda Fenwick of Clear Lake Shores, Jack Christie and David Robinson of Houston, Bob Warters of Nassau Bay, Pat Van Houte of Pasadena, Theresa Vasquez Evans of Kemah, Nancy Ojeda of La Porte and Andrea Wilson of Webster.

Others BAHEP President Bob Mitchell welcomed included Johnson Space Center Director Dr. Ellen Ochoa, San Jacinto College Chancellor Dr. Brenda Hellyer, Ellington Airport Director Arturo Machuca, Barrios President Robbie McAfoos, GeoControl Systems President Rose Zarcaro, MEI Technologies President David Cazes and Space Center Houston President William Harris.

Houston Pension Solution takes historic step forward in Texas Legislature

March 21st, 2017

After hearing testimony from Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and many others, the Texas Senate State Affairs Committee Monday, March 20 voted to send the Houston Pension Solution to the full senate for approval.  With one exception, the measure passed out of committee is the same reform package supported by a 16-1 vote of City Council and forwarded to Austin by the City of Houston.

“This is a historic day,” said Mayor Turner.  “With today’s vote, the state affairs committee joins the growing list of supporters for the Houston Pension Solution.  Our plan eliminates $8.1 billion in unfunded liability, caps future costs, does not require a tax increase and is budget neutral.  There is no other plan that achieves these goals and has the same consensus of support.”

The state affairs committee measure includes a provision requiring a vote for the issuance of Pension Obligation Bonds (POBs).  The agreement between the city and the Houston Police Officers Pension System (HPOPS), as well as the Houston Municipal Employees Pension System (HMEPS), includes the issuance of $1 billion in pension bonds to replace existing debt the city already owes HPOPS and HMEPS.  They will not result in new borrowing.

“We oppose the inclusion of this provision and will continue to fight for its removal,” said Turner.  “As my father taught me, a deal is a deal.  We have kept our word to the police and municipal employee pension systems.  Now I am asking the Texas Legislature to do the same.”

The mayor is reiterating a call to the Houston Firefighter Relief and Retirement Fund (HFRRF) to provide data on the true costs of providing firefighter pension benefits.

He was joined in that call by Texas Sen. Joan Huffman, who is sponsoring the Houston Pension Solution in the Texas Senate.  Both the mayor and Huffman indicated willingness to revisit the proposed changes in firefighter pension benefits if HFRRF will provide the cost analysis it has, so far, refused to release.

Mayor Turner will travel to Austin again next Monday to testify before the Texas House Committee on Pensions.  The House version of the bill does not include the requirement of a vote for POBs.