August 2023

Dear HCP4,


As the summer winds down, we look ahead and prepare to send our children back to school. Growing up as the daughter of two public school teachers and as a former public-school teacher myself, I believe it is essential for every child—regardless of their ZIP code or family income — to have a fair chance to succeed.


This means investing in our children as early as possible. High-quality child care has been linked to higher rates of educational success and adult employment, as well as reduced drug use and criminal outcomes. We recently invested $26 million in federal dollars for the Early REACH program, which will provide free, high-quality childcare for at least 800 children ages 0-3 across Harris County.


Raising my three young daughters, I know how important it is to provide this kind of support to parents and families year-round. Recently, we renewed our commitment to County Connections, a vital program that provides summer programming for students in grades K-12. Through a three-year, $7.1 million agreement, the County and the Harris County Department of Education will continue to offer structured summer experiences that benefit students — particularly low-income students — before they head back to school.



We are also making sure that all children in Harris County are equipped with the tools they need to succeed once they are back in the classroom. This month, we are continuing to distribute free Chromebooks, for a total of 1,000 overall, to help students from underserved communities get access to the tools needed for a high-quality education. We have also teamed up with local organizations to give out backpacks and school supplies throughout the Precinct, collecting nearly 1,250 items at one of our supply drives.


Finally, when you send your children off to school, know that we are prioritizing ways to rethink our infrastructure to make commutes safer for children who are walking or biking to school. I am deeply committed to ensuring that every child is safe, receives a quality education, and has the support they need to thrive.


Thank you for your partnership as we create opportunities for every student to succeed.


All my best,

Lesley Briones

 
Moving Precinct 4 Forward

National Association of Counties

Commissioner Lesley Briones joined county-elected and appointed officials from across the country in Austin, TX for the 2023 National Association of Counties (NACo) ) Conference and Expo. This year’s conference focused on county economies, resiliency and safety, health and wellbeing, governance and operations, and leadership.

 

Commissioner Briones worked with other county officials to help shape NACO’s federal policy agenda, discuss best practices, and strengthen knowledge networks to help improve the lives of residents in Precinct 4 and Harris County. 

Community Budget Meeting

The Office of Management and Budget joined Commissioner Lesley Briones and Harris County Precinct 4 residents to encourage local involvement in the budget process.

 

This opportunity introduced the Balancing Act, an interactive tool where Harris County residents can provide feedback on what should be prioritized in the county budget. If you haven’t already, make sure to check out the Balancing Act tool to learn how your money is being distributed.  

CRECEN

Commissioner Briones joined local leaders and union members to advocate against Texas House Bill 2127. Texas HB2127 weakens our local government's ability to self-govern and threatens the lives of essential workers.

 

Along with Fort Bend County, Precinct 4 is the fastest growing in the state of Texas and has the largest employed labor force in Harris County. This law would disproportionately harm our Latino community, where Latinos make up more that 80% of workers in construction and extraction.

Latin Restaurants Week

Precinct 4 has the largest international district in Harris County, which allows us to have a great variety of cuisines to choose from. For Latin Restaurants Week, Commissioner Briones visited one of Precinct 4’s very own featured restaurants, Fonda Santa Rosa.

 

Fonda Santa Rosa is inspired by the most beautiful colonial cuisine of Mexico, with ancient and colonial recipes of Sor Andrea de la Asunción. David and Ita Reyes have continued the family tradition of more than 30 years by opening the Fonda Santa Rosa in Southwest Houston.

Precinct 4 in the Community

Backpack Giveaway

Commissioner Briones hosted a free backpack giveaway at the Radack Community Center. Throughout the year, over 250 backpacks and 1,250 school supplies were collected for precinct residents to support children returning to school.

50th Golden Independence Day

On July 16th, Commissioner Briones joined the people of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas to celebrate 50 years of independence.  In celebration of the 50th Golden Independence Day, Commissioner Briones presented a proclamation to commemorate the anniversary of their sovereignty.

Power on Heels

Commissioner Briones attended the Power on Heels Fund, Inc. Latina Power Institute Program – Elevate the Powerful Leader Within where she spoke about her leadership journey and obstacles she overcame as a Latina.

 

Power on Heels, Inc. is a non-profit organization focused on decreasing the impact that the gender pay gap has on the advancement of Latinas. The organization provides professional and economic development opportunities to assist Latinas increase earning potential, accelerate career advancement, and cultivate future leaders. For more information, click here

Commissioners Court

Below are just a few highlights from the July and August Commissioners Court: 

 

  • The Office of County Administration provided an update of the 2023 Harris County Recovery Plan, detailing progress in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Coronavirus Local Fiscal Recovery Fund administration.


  • Approved the creation of Precinct4Forward, a nonprofit organization that will bring community partners together to improve the quality of life of Harris County Precinct 4’s 1.2 million residents.

 

  • Reviewed six project recommendations that could be funded through the 2022 public safety bond. Potential projects include public safety facilities and the buildout of new district courts.


  • Approved a contract to develop a master plan to transform Bayland Park into an inclusive and prominent destination for sports leagues in Southwest Houston. The development will also integrate improvements to the Bissonnet Corridor and the METRO Gulfton Bus Rapid Transit route. To learn more, click here  

 

  • Approved bylaws for the creation of the eleven-member LGBTQIA+ Commission which will provide recommendations on issues impacting the #LGBTQIA+ community. To learn more, click here.

 

  • Awarded over one-quarter of the County's contract dollars during the first half of FY23 to minority-and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBEs). To learn more, click here  


WATCH: August 8, 2023 Commissioners Court Recap 

CLICK 2 HOUSTON: Harris County commissioner talks progress, college program supports students, and more on Houston Newsmakers. Lesley Briones has only been the Harris County Precinct 4 commissioner for seven months but has hit the ground running... She was involved in a groundbreaking for a $20 million drainage improvement project in the Bear Creek area and securing $1.2 million for the Harris County TeleDeputy program, but she said there is still much more to do.

 

COMMUNITY IMPACT: New Precinct 4 nonprofit seeks to advance quality of life for residents. Improving the quality of life for more than 1 million residents within Precinct 4 will be the initiative behind a newly established nonprofit, Precinct4Forward… Precinct 4 Commissioner Lesley Briones said in a news release that she is energized by the outreach coming from community member support.

 

HOUSTON STYLE MAGAZINE: Harris County Unveils PROSPERS: A Visionary Roadmap to Prosperity. In an inspiring leap forward, Harris County Commissioners Rodney Ellis and Lesley Briones have taken a remarkable step towards realizing the American dream for every citizen. This Thursday, they will proudly launch Harris PROSPERS, an ambitious and comprehensive roadmap designed to make sure everyone in the county has a home, a stable job, and the essential pillars to create a fulfilling life.] 

 

COMMUNITY IMPACT: Gulfton's Bayland Park gets green light for major improvements. We’re so committed to revitalizing Bayland together with deep community input and doing community outreach in multiple languages and really just revitalizing that southwest part of Harris County,” Precinct 4 Commissioner Lesley Briones said at the July 18 meeting.

 

COMMUNITY IMPACT: 6 August school supply drives in Greater Houston. Harris County Precinct 4 Commissioner Lesley Briones is hosting a school supply event that will be giving out free backpacks with school supplies.

 

HOUSTON CHRONICLE: Harris County to investigate Houston title company accused of 'scamming' homeowners. Over the last 10 years, dozens of people in our communities have accused these companies of scamming people in real estate transactions,” Menefee said at a June 28 press conference, where he was joined by Harris County Precinct 4 Commissioner Lesley Briones and members of two families who say they were victims.

 

UNIVISION: "Pone en peligro las vidas de nuestros hermanos": trabajadores protestan contra la nueva ley HB 2127. A pesar de las altas temperaturas, activistas y líderes locales se dieron cita frente al Ayuntamiento de Houston para protestar contra la nueva ley HB 2127, firmada por el gobernador Greg Abbott, la cual entrará en vigor en septiembre. Lesley Briones, comisionada del Precinto 4 del Condado de Harris, aseguró que esta legislación afecta especialmente a la “comunidad latina”.

 

HOUSTON LANDING: Can we just say it? Resilience in Houston is exhausting. …During a ceremonial groundbreaking this June, complete with public officials stomping shovels in too-big hardhats, Harris County Commissioner Lesley Briones noted that the $20.2 million project will improve drainage and mitigate future flooding. She also acknowledged what was on many residents’ minds: Six years is a long time to wait for a solution.

Precinct 4 Events

Senior Birding Trip  

August 18, 2023 | 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Kleb Woods Nature Center, 20303 Draper Rd, Tomball, TX, 77377


Join us to look for shorebirds on Galveston Island and then visit the Moody Gardens Rainforest Pyramid. Space is limited and spots are on a first come basis.

 

To attend, please sign up by emailing klebwoods@hcp4.net or calling 281-357-5324. Transportation is provided for individuals 50 and older through Harris County Precinct 4. The vans will pick up and drop off participants at the parking lot on Draper Road. 

"UP" Movie Night 

August 25, 2023 | 8:00 a.m

Reginald Moore Community Park, 13900 Sand Canyon Dr., Houston, TX, 77083


Join us for a family-friendly movie night at the Korean American Association Community Center. To register, visit our events page.

15th annual Hummingbird Festival 

September 9, 2023 | 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. 

Kleb Woods Nature Center, 20303 Draper Rd, Tomball, TX, 77377 

 

Join us to celebrate hummingbird migration at Kleb Woods Nature Center. Enjoy games and activities for the whole family. View hummingbird banding, see live raptors from Houston Audubon, take a guided nature walk, tour the 1896 Kleb house, and more! This event is free and open to the public. No reservation required. For more information, visit our events page.

Hispanic Heritage Kickoff  

Sunday, September 09, 2023 | 9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. 

Burnett Bayland Park, 6000 Chimney Rock Road, Houston, TX, 77081 

 

Join Harris County Precinct 4 as we kick off Hispanic Heritage Month with a fantastic morning of family-friendly activities. Come enjoy mariachis, food trucks, face painting, and a special community workshop for the Burnett Bayland Master Plan to reimagine this area into a signature Southwest Houston Park! To register, visit our events page.

Click For More Events ⇦
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