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HomeNewsWATCH AT 6:30 P.M. - Emails show a top city of Houston...

WATCH AT 6:30 P.M. – Emails show a top city of Houston director had history of working outside of City Hall in favor of airport businessman

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A liaison between Mayor Sylvester Turner’s office and City Council , who pled guilty to a federal conspiracy charge involving cash bribes from a bar owner, appears to have previously worked to help other private businesses on deals against the best interest of the City of Houston, according to emails obtained by KPRC 2 Investigates.

In July, William Paul Thomas, the former Director of City Council Relations, pleaded guilty to helping change the certification of bars to restaurants during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in exchange for money.

Thomas’ actions were described as “out of character” by Mayor Sylvester Turner, who admitted he was surprised at the revelations surrounding his former senior advisor.

Thomas had announced his resignation the week before the plea became public.

The director of city council relations typically acts as the chief liaison between the mayor and the city council.

In 2020, emails obtained by KPRC 2 Investigates through the Texas Public Information Act showed Thomas worked outside of the scope of his role on several occasion.

One email showed Thomas in the middle of massive six-figure offer in exchange for Mayor Turner’s help in the closing of a private land deal for local businessman Jason Yoo.

“The email, when I saw it yesterday, based on what you presented…the email was inappropriate,” said Turner back in 2020 in response to KPRC 2′s investigation.

“The email, when I saw it yesterday, based on what you presented…the email was inappropriate,” said Turner back in 2020 in response to KPRC 2′s investigation.

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Sourabh Verma franklin
Sourabh Verma,From Franklin Tn - Sub-editor in Asian News International(ANI) I am a detailed-driven journalist with 3+ years of experience in news writing and copy-editing, I can file quick, compelling and error-free stories as they break. I have sound knowledge of national and international issues and have covered stories across beats, including politics, parliament, legal and crime like drugs and Human Trafficking at Asian News International (ANI), where I currently work. Some of these include extensive coverage of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, several state Assembly elections, Parliament sessions, COVID-19 pandemic and other stories of national importance. A typical working day involves copy-editing dozens of drafts, managing junior sub-editors in shifts and keeping an eye on developing stories. This added responsibility followed a couple of years of filing stories based on press briefings, bytes and inputs from reporters on the ground.
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