Friday, May 01, 2009, 09:29AM CST
By Jennifer PeeblesLt. Gov. David Dewhurst is a busy man.
As shown by his 2008 official calendar, which Texas Watchdog is publishing today, he has a full schedule, meeting often with powerful and influential people across the state -- some elected leaders, some not.
Some things we noticed:
+ He met often with state officials and department heads, such as state Transportation Commission chairwoman Deidre Delisi (with whom he met Jan. 9), state prison system chief Brad Livingston (May 12), Secretary of State Hope Andrade (June 9), and state Comptroller Susan Combs, with whom he had lunch on June 18.
+ He met often with state senators, which is not too surprising for the guy who presides over the state Senate. A few examples: He met with state Sen. Eliot Shapleigh on Feb. 18, attended a dinner in Laredo hosted by state Sen. Judith Zaffirini on Aug. 21, and met with state Sen. John Carona (and an unidentified constituent whose name was redacted from the paper records) on Jan. 29 at the Houston offices of Dewhurst's company, Falcon Seaboard. (Shapleigh and Zaffirini are Democrats; Carona, like Dewhurst, is a Republican.)
+ He met with various other people in Texas political life. His Sept. 17 meeting with oilman and one-time gubernatorial candidate Clayton Williams was noted as being about the state Railroad Commission, which, despite the name, regulates energy issues, not railroads. He met on May 29 with Austen Furse, who at the time would have been running for the state Senate District 17 seat given up by Kyle Janek. But the schedule also shows that Dewhurst met on July 23 with one of Furse's Republican competitors, former judge Joan Huffman, and spoke at a reception for Huffman on Nov. 11. (Huffman won the seat in a December special election.)
+ He met with captains of industry. His schedule indicates he met with oil-billionaire-turned-wind-energy proponent T. Boone Pickens on June 3 in Dallas -- about wind energy. He also met with TXU CEO John Young in Dallas on Nov. 3.
Though most of the calendar entries don't say what the meetings were about, some of them do. For instance, we saw at least two entries on Dewhurst's calendar regarding the old and historic Battleship Texas, which as the Chronicle recently reported, is the subject of some controversy over whether it should remain docked at the San Jacinto battlefield or be moved to Galveston. (It also needs a multi-million-dollar repair job.)
Some meetings, we won't venture a guess as to what came up -- namely, the lieutenant governor's Oct. 9 meeting in Amarillo with former state Sen. Teel Bivins. It was recently announced that Dewhurst is engaged to be married to Houston lawyer Tricia Hamilton Bivins -- Teel Bivins' ex-wife.
View the files
Texas Watchdog obtained Dewhurst's 2008 calendar through a request under the Texas Public Information Act.
Readers should note that Dewhurst's office provided Texas Watchdog two versions of the lieutenant governor's calendar for each month between May and December, with a note that the second version may be a more accurate picture of Dewhurst's activities in those months.
To make it easier for our readers, Texas Watchdog has created individual PDF files for each month -- and for the months May-December, we grouped the two versions of each calendar in the same PDF. For example, the July file's first page is the first version of the calendar, and the second page is the revised version of the calendar. Or, if you prefer, you can see the entire first version of the calendar (covering January-December) at this link, or see the entire revised version of Dewhurst's May-December calendar at this link.
Dewhurst's office also redacted, or blacked out, some material on the calendar before making it public. In a letter, Dewhurst's deputy general counsel, Bryan Hebert, said the redacted items are "the names of citizen constituents that are considered confidential," and of entries of "private information that is maintained on the schedule for Lt. Governor Dewhurst's convenience and does not meet the definition of 'public information' that is subject to the Act." (Click here to read the entire letter.)
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for January 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for February 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for March 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for April 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for May 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for June 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for July 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for August 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for September 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for October 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for November 2008
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's calendar for December 2008
Reporters, bloggers, citizen-journalists -- do you see something in the lieutenant governor's calendar worth noting? Shoot us a note -- or a link to your blog item -- at firstname.lastname@example.org, or post in the comments section below.
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