Guaranteed Income, Gun Buy-Backs and Reparations

On June 5 and 6 articles were published by the Houston Chronicle describing a new program for some Harris County residents –

“Harris County Commissioners Court on Tuesday approved a guaranteed income pilot program that will send $500 cash payments for 18 months to 1,500 low-income families.

The court authorized the plan in a 4-1 vote along party lines, with Democrats voting in favor. The county will pay for the program using $20.5 million from the federal American Rescue Plan Act.

Precinct 3 Commissioner Tom Ramsey, who voted against the program, expressed skepticism about using ARPA funding on guaranteed income.

“We have a lot of flexibility on where to spend ARPA dollars,” he said. “There might be other places we could spend this other than this. This is, I guess, one way to do it.”

The Uplift Harris program will specifically target households in neighborhoods experiencing persistent poverty, including Sunnyside, Gulfton and Galena Park.

The program could launch as early as fall 2023.”

So, Harris County, Texas still has Federal COVID-19 money they don’t need?  Wasn’t this supposed to be clawed back per that debt ceiling bill just passed?

If $13.5 million is going to be used for randomly selected families who are already earning as much as $60,000 per year, who will they be giving the other $7 million to?

This new program reminds me of the COVID-19 vaccine outreach scandal in 2021 –

In a Letter to the Editor recently published by the Houston Chronicle, the author stated, “In my opinion, a person who is woke at this time is an educated, courageous, non-racist person.”

My reply, “In my opinion, a person is AWAKE if they are an educated, courageous, non-racist person and now paying attention to all of the corruption and wasteful government spending!

What are your thoughts on this new “Guaranteed Income” program?

On LinkedIn this week a connection wrote, “I heard on the news tonight that almost 500 Ukranian children have been killed since the war began 15 months back. Savage Russians. Of course, in a year 1,130 (that’s more than twice the amount for you Republicans) kids 17 and under were murdered by guns in 2019 here in the land of the free. That is murder, by the way, it excludes suicides and police actions.
So, in Canada the number was 48. Same in France. Australia rocked in at 11.
So, once again, America is, by far, Number 1. USA!! USA!!

My illustrated reply, “Here’s the Truth about guns you would like everyone to simply ignore!”

And followed-up with another illustrated reply, “When you have figured out how to take guns away from the gangs in the cities run by Democratic Party politicians for decades, let us know.”

I received a response from another individual who works in the Harris County Accounting Dept.

“Here’s how: gun amnesty buyback program every quarter following the initial amnesty period where anyone can turn in a gun for cash regardless of documentation. Just because the fix would not be instant doesn’t mean it’s not worth the effort. Nothing worthwhile ever came easy. And just because it’s difficult doesn’t make it pointless.”

While I appreciated this suggested solution, it seems that spending more taxpayer money is always the best course of action vs. arresting the criminals and keeping them off our streets.

What are your thoughts on new Gun Control Laws and Harris County Gun Buy-Back programs?

Finally, I am sure that you have some awareness of the recommendations made to Gov. Gavin Newsom of California including $5 million for each long-term resident harmed by slavery when that state currently projects a $31.5 billion budget deficit, up from $22.5 billion projected in January. And that does not include any reparations at all.  But, forming the committee and allowing them to make such recommendations is much like Joe Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness Program.

It is very effective in securing votes but most likely will never happen!  I now have another request…

What are your thoughts about Reparations that are being proposed in Democratic Party-run States?

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Greg Plotner

Greg Plotner, Principal of Experience 4 Hire LLC, has lived in Houston for 35+ years. Utilizing his expertise in the computer software business and staffing for primarily the oil & gas industry, he provides assistance to executives and professionals who are now in a career search or seeking to make a career transition. He is a member of the Katy Christian Chamber of Commerce and his blog (started in June 2021 while in Facebook jail) can be found at