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Harris County Judge Continues To Criticize Astrodome Bill

Judge Ed Emmett calls the bill “misguided.”

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Photo of the Astrodome
Florian Martin | Houston Public Media
The Astrodome

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett continues to criticize a bill that would force a new election on the future of the Astrodome. The judge argues the measure from State Senator John Whitmire could get in the way of future building projects.

Senate Bill 884 would require large Texas counties to get voter approval to upgrade old sports facilities, if plans to do that cost more than $10 million. That would affect the county's $105 million plan to turn part of the Dome into a parking garage.

On Houston Matters, Judge Emmett called the bill “misguided.”

“Where do you draw the line?” he asked. “The next time someone wants improvements to NRG Stadium under the contract that the county has with the Texans, do we have to go to the voters for that? If we want to redo one of the courthouses, do we have to go to the voters for that?”

Emmett claims this latest plan would generate money for the county from groups wanting to use the Dome. Whitmire says the county is ignoring the will of voters, who rejected a different renovation plan three years ago. The bill has yet to be taken up by a committee.

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