Via Houston Chronicle:
In its brief but controversial life, the Texas Residential Construction Commission won far more detractors than admirers. Former Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn called it "a builder protection agency" that created additional roadblocks for homeowners living with shoddy construction. To Rep. Garnet Coleman, D-Houston, the agency served only "to shield home builders from being responsible" for defective work. The Texas Sunset Commission concluded the agency did "more harm than good."If the name Bob Perry sounds familiar, it is indeed the same Bob Perry who co-authored a letter with Grocery store magnate Charles Butt. That letter was addressed to Governor Perry during the last Texas special legislative session. In it, the two men made known that they would be VERY displeased if the tough sanctuary cities legislation got passed.
The TRCC, however, had at least one friend who mattered: Houston homebuilder Bob Perry, who has given Gov. Rick Perry more than $2.5 million during his tenure in office. An advocate for the agency from its creation in 2003 until it closed its doors in 2010, the homebuilder's imprimatur was significant. His lobbyists played a key role in its inception; his company's general counsel, John Krugh, was appointed to serve on the commission by Gov. Perry, no relation to Bob Perry, one month after the homebuilder gave a $100,000 campaign contribution to the governor.
Now dormant, the TRCC serves as a case study of how wealthy contributors can shape public policy. In this year's hard-fought Republican presidential primary, the agency likely will get renewed scrutiny as Perry's Republican competitors search for ways to distinguish themselves from the Texas governor. In a speech last week in Iowa, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin took aim against career politicians who reward their campaign contributors with government favors.
Rick Perry was in a pinch. He had to put it on the special session agenda because of constituent support. It ultimately died in the legislature, in part, because Rick skipped town after introducing it and refused to fight for its passage.
We're learning why.
h/t Free Republic