Houston City Hall

Houston Mayor Willy Walker told the Houston City Council last Tuesday he plans to seek the impeachment of an unidentified council member later this month. The declaration came at a meeting filled with accusations by the mayor and pleas by some of his colleagues to move municipal government forward.

The 50-minute meeting included the mayor highlighting grievances occurring over the last year and telling the council that “collusion and corruption”  were occurring within the body.

The mayor, himself the subject of a civil lawsuit by the council over health insurance benefits and the focus of a viral video involving law enforcement that continues to bump around corners of the internet, highlighted several matters heard over the last year during council meetings:

•Pay for the city’s legal counsel, Brad Eidson, who the mayor says should be paid by the hour and questions his participation in a retirement plan offered to city employees. Eidson, who noted the retirement pay was in place when he took the job, is paid $30,000 annually for legal services, attends council meetings, serves as the city prosecutor, reviews all reports generated by city police and is on call around-the-clock. Aldermen Kevin Stilley and Don Romines questioned why the city didn’t include the employee of nearly 19 years in its across-the-board 8.3 percent pay increase.

“You can keep it where it is or do something different,” Eidson told Walker, noting that was the arrangement the city offered him in 2003.

“I figure you just don’t want to talk about it,” the mayor replied.

Both have butted heads over the last year.

Romines’ retirement benefits paid by the city as a councilman years ago also came under fire by Walker.

The council moved to table any further discussion about its attorney indefinitely.

•Walker highlighted two recent closed meetings of the council, saying he preferred an open session before the public. The first on Dec. 12 dealt with the salary of the city clerk. The clerk, Heather Sponsler, was asked to leave the discussion on a 5-1 vote (Sam Kelley no). The Dec. 21 gathering included viewing a police video taken in late November that involved the mayor at a business he co-owns. The council requested that Police Chief Brad Evans appear before it with an authenticated copy of the mayor’s encounter with law enforcement as it investigated reports of a drunken man. The minutes show no votes occurred that night. In recent days, the video is the subject of a viral animated cartoon.

•The mayor denied any wrong-doing for his inclusion on the city’s health insurance plan. The city filed suit in June 2022 seeking reimbursement. Eidson pushed for answers about his insurance coverage that occurred for about two years. “No one told me that I had to pay whenever I was receiving insurance. Nor did the city ever take it out or deduct my check when they had the opportunity,” Walker said. Eidson told the mayor he signed the checks and should have known he was required to pay. The amount totals about $10,695 the city alleged in the lawsuit that is handled by outside counsel from Jefferson City.

“Why are we even discussing this? We have an attorney, you have an attorney. It has a court date. You can continue to bring it up. You continue to bring it up. You continue not to do city business. What city business [there] is, is an attack on Don, it is an attack on me or it is an attack on Brad,” Stilley said. “It is a retaliation against somebody going after you for what we feel like is a violation of the taxpayer’s money. That’s all it is, mayor. We feel like we are doing the right thing. And you’ve hired an attorney.”

Walker pressed for what he did wrong. “Mayor, we’ve had this discussion 100 times,” Eidson told him.

“Then tell me, it ought to be easy,” he told the city attorney.

Edison said the mayor had violated a city resolution, state statute and the Missouri Constitution.

With the council in lockstep with a 4-2 majority against the mayor, Walker wondered about illegality among the council. “I mean, what are you guys covering up,” Walker asked. “That’s the question. There has been 4-2 (voting) going on the whole year.”


Walker then highlighted two sections of the city’s ordinances that describe impeachment or removal from office. He promised a resolution and articles of incorporation would be prepared by him for the council’s Jan. 17 meeting. The target wasn’t identified.

In other matters, members heard:

•Councilwoman Sheila Walker ask for updates on an unfilled maintenance slot, request a copy of the finalized 2023 budget, seek answers on how many subscribers were on the city’s fiber-to-the home internet system (around 100) and what was being done to enroll customers. The councilwoman also learned that a suggestion by her to include information about pay and benefits would be included with the next employee payroll.

•Approved the first reading of an ordinance to assess a 3 percent tax on commercial marijuana sales. The measure would appear on the April ballot.

•Bypassed the administrator’s report. Mark Campbell was not at the meeting due to illness.

•Councilman Don Romines sought support for moving the city forward. He called for city government to work on several projects:

  1. Recreation quadplex to fulfil the city’s commitment to the voters who approved a one-cent sales tax with half going for parks needs.
  2. Completion of the fiber-to-the home high-speed internet project.
  3. Extending power supply to the Northeast Industrial Park east of the fairgrounds on North U.S. 63.
  4. Encourage Industrial Development Authority of Houston to construct a spec building there. A pad is already in place.
  5. Looking for money to reduce water infiltration into the city’s wastewater treatment plant. He said that would reduce wear on equipment and operating costs.
  6. Developing a plan for the Bridges Community Park at Lilly Avenue and West Highway 17, where property was donated.
  7. Looking for ways to improve the city’s fire and police departments following passage of a city sales tax in April 2019.
  8. Improve the city’s recycling program.
  9. Working on a five-year program for street overlay and repairs.

Romines called the meeting’s discussion “petty.”

“Collusion and fraud isn’t worth talking about?” the mayor asked.

“Alleged,” added Romines.

“Not alleged,” Walker replied.

Join the Conversation


  1. The real question should be: How do we impeach the mayor? He doesn’t seem mature enough to serve in this post. Can’t believe he has filed to run again.

  2. “Council, mayor at odds at meeting” – The title of the news article says it all. Get rid of the ONE person who is wasting our time and money and let the rest get on with doing what we need them to do.
    “Councilman Don Romines sought support for moving the city forward. He called for city government to work on several projects:” – Yes, this is what the town council is for.

    Here’s a suggestion: Get rid of the dead weight who seems to be stopping any positive progress (the deadbeat drama laden Mayor) and elect Don Romines in as Mayor so we can all start seeing positive progress and a better place to live in.

    Just do it. Enough of the fuss and misdirection, time to move on to improvement. What do you say, Houston? How long are we going to put up with the very pathetic soap opera going on?

  3. This Mayor is a joke…. what kind of yodel hick town is this that it votes for a crook like this, who stops a cop from doing his job with Threats, not for a writing a parking ticket… but to keep a Sticking Hot Drunk from KILLING someone?!!! This town deserves what they get when someone bad happens because the cops are too afraid to do their jobs and some PoS wasted, likely on moonshine, and hopefully it isn’t a kid… this Mayor should have been tossed out, and then handcuffed!!!

    1. You know what is a joke? That is everyone with their ability to bitch and moan about what they read. Instead of getting off their asses and doing something about it. I myself really don’t think that the attorney should be treated any differently than everyone else that is contracted through the city. Hourly fee when he does something should suffice. How bout we start there….

  4. Him and that idiot that was with him on that video I guess his friend the jerk, Are both jokes there must be something on those tapes he didn’t want law inforcement to see to allow a man to be a drink as that guy was and treat that cop that way!!

  5. What an absolute embarrassment. To have some trailer park hick as your mayor protecting the town drunks from being arrested. Hard to believe this is in a first world country.

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