Mike Heiligenstein is the executive director of the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority (CTRMA). The unelected RMA will toll public highways for the first time in the country. When our freeways are tolled, the cost of maintaining those roads will shift from being paid with gas tax (TxDOT's responsibility) to tolls (our families responsibility) permanently. We will continue to pay the gas tax while other counties benefit. Although tolling freeways is an experiment for the U.S., the freeway tolls will never be removed.
Numerous qualified individuals vied for the CTRMA’s top position, but Mike Heiligenstein stacked the deck for himself, as he’s done many times in the past.
CAN THIS UNELECTED PERSON BE TRUSTED TO TOLL ROADS WE'VE ALREADY PAID FOR?
In 2004, Mike Heiligenstein tried to get out of paying child support and was chased down and penalized for being a deadbeat dad.
Records show Mike Heiligenstein was divorced by his wife Anne Heiligenstein in early 2004.
Later in 2004, Anne Heiligenstein filed a "Income Witholding for Child Support" petition in Williamson County to force Mike Heiligenstein to pay $1,500 a month in child support, for their daughter Katherine. District Court Judge Jergins signed the order (case # 03-556-f395) for income to be withheld from Mike Heiligenstein and to be paid by the CTRMA.
Anne Heiligenstein moved to Washington D.C. in 2004 to take a position as Deputy Executive Commissioner for Social Services of Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC).
The 53 year old Heiligenstein certainly made enough money to offer to pay child support, as his CTRMA salary is $125k a year, not counting company car and other perks.
SURPRISE, SURPRISE, Mike's new wife, Lisa England, is a certified contractor for TxDOT. As the type of work performed, she lists "Management Consulting Services". BUT, TxDOT has refused to release documents I've asked for that would shed some light on the deals Lisa England has crafted with TxDOT. TxDOT has asked the AG's office to allow them to keep all the documents a secret.
It looks like Mike and his new wife rent and live around the corner from the mail box Lisa uses for her Transportation business in West Lake Hills (2008 Cuernavaca), just past this Austin Lake Estates landmark.
The garnishing of Mike's wages for child support was NOT THE FIRST TIME Heiligenstein refused to take responsibility and pay up. Heiligenstein’s also failed to follow Texas law and failed to be responsible for his own finances.
Before the CTRMA was created by Heiligenstein, and others in the “Circle”, records show he was involved in real estate deals that went into Bankruptcy (#90-14004 Williamson County)
But the interesting part of the official bankruptcy affidavit records show that Heiligenstein, who owed many businesses and individuals, also owed James Mills and Mike Robinson, who Heiligenstein later appointed CTRMA board members.
As Williamson County Commissioner, Heiligenstein voted for the formation of CTRMA and for the appointments of four of its board members. Then, those board members thanked him by hiring Heiligenstein as Executive Director while the bloated bureaucratic CTRMA was being run with our tax dollars.
The Comptroller Report from 2005 showed how CTRMA board members benefit by giving out NO BID contracts to themselves and their friends, among other schemes.
The Comptroller Report, also tells the story of how the “Circle” created the first freeway tolling bureaucracy in the country:
"Mike Heiligenstein was a member of the Williamson County Commissioners Court until December 2003, and in that capacity voted for the formation of CTRMA and for the appointments of four of its board members. According to CTRMA’s Web site, he also “initiated the drive for transportation improvements that led to the passage of a $350 million dollar bond package” in Williamson County.Mike Heiligenstein couldn’t be trusted to give his own child financial support, while rolling in the dough. He failed to follow Texas law and manage his own finances.
In 2004, however, the Texas Ethics Commission cited Heiligenstein and three other Williamson County commissioners for an ethics violation related to the promotion of that same bond package. The Ethics Commission found that the commissioners used public funds for political advertising in connection with the Williamson County Road Bonds Program. Each commissioner received and paid a $400 civil penalty for the violation. Several future CTRMA contractors also worked on this bond program.
CTRMA’s board offered Heiligenstein the executive director job on November 5, 2003. He continued to serve on the Williamson County Commissioners Court, voting at its December 2, 2003 hearing, and was formally selected for the CTRMA job on December 9. Thus one of the persons responsible for creating CTRMA found himself in the authority’s top position."
Mike Heiligenstein in no regular crook, he’s figured out how to work the system and benefit by being a taxpayer parasite. Parasite - from the Greek word parasitos, meaning "one who eats from another's table."
The bloated Williamson County toll authority plans to create a slush fund by tolling Travis County Freeways. Note that Williamson County has no plans to toll roads it has already paid for, but instead it is getting free roads by using “Pass Through Financing”. Note that the Statesman endorsed the double tax toll plan in 2004, and they have failed to report ANY of this information. The Austin American Statesman removed my article and deleted my complete blog when I posted these facts on my Statesman blog, to protect Heiligenstein.
This article is part one of a twelve part series. Freeways have never been tolled in the history of the U.S., but that doesn’t stop a close circle of mostly Williamson County characters with a long history of looking out for themselves at the expense of others.
This time, the WilCo crooks want to get into our wallets daily, as our families drive to work, school and shop.