ABC13 asks councilmembers running for controller what makes them best suited for job

Chaz Miller Image
Thursday, January 5, 2023
Councilmembers Kubosh, Martin running for controller this November
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ABC13 asks the long-standing members of Houston's City Council a series of questions as they plan to run for City Controller in November.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Two long-standing members of Houston's City Council, at-large member Michael Kubosh and Mayor Pro-Tem Dave Martin plan to run for City Controller in November.

The two men are ineligible for reelection to the council due to term limits.

Both candidates spoke with ABC13 Wednesday afternoon to answer three questions about why they feel they're best suited to replace current controller Chris Brown, who will have served his maximum of two terms following this year in office.

Question 1: In a single sentence, why is this job so important?

Kubosh: "It's the watchdog - it's what tells the public what's going on at City Hall when it comes to their taxes and their finances."

Martin: "You heard this morning that we have about a $5 billion net-present value in the City of Houston, which is phenomenal. In order to keep that track going, you need to have someone sitting in the controller position that's going to do a good job and has the educational, private, and public sectors working in finance accounting and audit to realize where the city is today and where we're going in the future."

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Question 2: Why are you the person best suited for this position?

Kubosh: "That's what I've been for the last 15 years in Houston, even before I got on council. I'll call out the mayor. I'll call those out when I've seen they've done wrong - I'm not afraid to do it. A watchdog not only barks, but it also bites."

Martin: "I always hear the term, 'You're the city's watchdog,' but no. You're a finance, accounting, and audit specialist. What gives me the experience is that I spent 40 years in the private and public sector working in those arenas."

Question 3: This is a job that's independent of other city offices - including the mayor's office. How will you deal with arguments or criticisms that come from the mayor or any other official?

Kubosh: "I ran the first time as an outsider, and I told the citizens if they put me on the inside that I'd tell them what's really going on at City Hall. I don't work for any mayor; I work for the people. As the controller, I will work for the people and stand up and tell them what the truth is for the finances of the city."

Martin: "As the city fiscal-affairs manager, as someone who puts together forward-looking financial statements, as well as monthly and annual, you have to be in the position to give your advice based on sound fiscal and financial principles as to where you think the city is today and where you think it's going in the future. If you don't do that, you're taking a large chance of something bad happening in the city's fiscal arena."

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