Results of Commission Government in Houston, Texas

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Jerome Farbar writes about the commission government that was in effect in Houston beginning in 1901. This government contracted the paving of the roads, extending public parks, deepening the shipping channel, and other civic projects. Also, this was a more centralized form of government in contrast to the ward style government that proceeded it. Now the mayor and four commissioners make decisions instead of twelve ward officers. Under this new government, government employees face the same job insecurity as those in the public sector, “as in the directorate of a corporation, its officers can be removed by a majority vote, while all department heads are responsible to the chief and various employees responsible to the department head and the mayor.” (232) This change in government put more power into the hands of those who ran Houston so they could get more things done. Their contracting of the paving of the roads along with other building projects probably helped to employ W. L. Macatee, and if not directly then the expansion that this government helped to create certainly added to the success of Macatee and Sons.

Citation: Farbar, Jerome. “Results of Commission Government in Houston, Texas.” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 38 (1911): 231-235. Web.


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