Metro Pick

President Joe Biden was in H-Town yesterday and it looks like Mayor John Whitmire and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo welcomed him at Ellington Field and got to visit the President on Air Force One. Pretty cool.


The Metropolitan Transit Authority, err METRO has a nine-member board of directors comprised of members appointed by the City of Houston, Harris County and the 14 Multi-Cities that METRO serves.

Five board of directors are appointed by the H-Town Mayor, two by the County, and two by the 14 cities.

Election denier and loser Harris County Judge candidate Alexandra Moral Mealer was picked by the 14 cities to serve on the METRO board. Last I heard, Mealer lives down the street from Commentary in H-Town and not in one of the 14 cities. Unusual, so go figure. Oh, well.


The Chron E-Board today addresses the deal H-Town Mayor John Whitmire is cutting with the Houston Firefighters. See the featured photo. It is a pretty good E-Board take and here is how it starts:

It took John Whitmire less than three months as mayor to accomplish what his predecessor couldn’t over eight years: settling a contract impasse with the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association.

If only expediency weren’t so expensive. When the city first announced late last month that it had finally reached a tentative agreement with the firefighters union, relief for many of us was accompanied by a sense of dread about Houston’s precarious finances. Sure enough, when the bill was tallied last week, including a whopping $650 million for eight years’ worth of back pay, taxpayers couldn’t avoid sticker shock. 

This massive sum could’ve been much smaller had it been dealt with years ago. 

Former Mayor Sylvester Turner’s years of fruitless bargaining talks, lawsuits, charter amendments and threats of layoffs and budget cuts yielded nothing but frustration and bitterness. All the while, reasonable voices periodically reminded both sides that taxpayers would ultimately be on the hook for potentially hundreds of millions of dollars the longer the stalemate dragged. 

Here is the entire read: Houston firefighters have a contract. Now Whitmire must pay for it. (


Commentary will be signing up for this in the next day or so. From the Chron:

The Astros are set to use facial authentication technology for the first time at Monday’s exhibition game against the Sugar Land Space Cowboys at Minute Maid Park in a system Major League Baseball calls Go-Ahead Entry.

The Astros will be one of four teams using Go-Ahead Entry at opening day with another four teams expected to add the system by midseason.

The addition allows enrolled fans to walk into the ballpark through a Go-Ahead Entry lane which has a facial authentication camera that means fans don’t have to stop to show a ticket or pull out their phone.

“Some of the feedback fans have given us over the years is that it’s not always a nice experience getting into the ballpark,” MLB’s senior vice president of ballpark experience and ticketing Karri Zaremba said Thursday after demonstrating the technology at Minute Maid Park. “So, this was an option that we created for fans to get in with less stress, less hassle and much faster.”

The Astros will have the facial authentication technology available at every gate, but it’s optional. Fans who would rather not sign up for the service can enter any gate the way they normally would with their tickets on their phone.

To opt in to the service, fans who are 18 and older must sign up through their MLB Ballpark app. The app will ask the fan to hold their phone up one time so it can take a selfie scan that will be used throughout the season. It also will work at any other ballpark using the technology.

When the fans show up at Minute Maid Park, they locate the Go-Ahead Entry lane at any gate and walk through, making sure to look at the facial authentication camera as they pass by. There’s no need to remove a baseball cap or any head covering as the system recognizes the face from the mouth up to the eyes.

Here is the entire read: MLB’s Go-Ahead Entry: How facial authenticaion system works at gate (


61 years ago today, the album “Please Please Me” was released by the Beatles in the UK. It was their debut album, and the rest is history.

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