Rep. Michael Cloud (R-Victoria)

Staff photo by Albert Villegas

First-year Congressman Michael Cloud visited Wharton County’s Precinct 1 area and Boling for the first time last week.

Of the few people who showed up to meet and listen to District 27 Congressman Michael Cloud (R-Victoria) while he set up a mobile satellite location at the Boling Community Center earlier this week, it was stakeholders who were in attendance that would take this information and spread it to the masses.

Opening remarks shared by the first-term congressman who replaced Blake Farenthold last year, could be shared with residents who either weren’t aware that Cloud was in Boling or couldn’t make it to the Tuesday, July 30 mid-afternoon event. 

Cloud and his representatives also made themselves available to speak one-on-one with visitors like Willie Hunter, a resident of Boling. His concern was drainage. Another received information about veteran benefits. 

Coming into the event, Cloud’s office said the stop would highlight veterans’ affairs, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other federal agencies. 

Among other topics of concern that residents had were border security and agriculture. He reiterated how Washington D.C. 

While answering a resident’s question, he said it’s difficult to comprehend how an illegal immigrant can have health care covered in some aspect, but a resident of this country who can’t afford it, does not have health coverage. He told the audience of 20 he admires those who go through the process of wanting to be Americans, and shared the story of his wife, who is a naturalized citizen. 

They went through the paperwork, sometimes long drives, and long lines that it took to make sure his spouse, Rosel Cloud, would become naturalized. 

Among those who were in attendance to listen to Cloud were his Deputy District Director Mark Longoria, Wharton County Recovery Team’s Patti Odom and Jim Leckinger, Wharton County Precinct 1 Commissioner Richard Zahn, Robert Macek, who is running for Wharton County sheriff, and Texas General Land Office’s (GLO) Intergovernmental Affairs and Community Relations Shannon Longoria.

Zahn spoke personally with Cloud when he came into the building. Zahn said he listened to Cloud and hopes the federal government can continue to benefit local citizens with current and past issues. Zahn spoke to him about the concerns his constituents still have with FEMA-related affairs from Hurricane Harvey in 2017 and recent flooding events.

Shannon Longoria’s appearance in Boling was to continue to provide residents information on FEMA disaster assistance, and Hurricane Harvey homeowner assistance. She said the GLO still has a lot vested in communities that Cloud represents. She said the GLO also works with elected leaders like Zahn.

Before Cloud arrived, Odom said she is concerned that some flood victims from Harvey still don’t have some of their needs met all because they don’t seek the assistance that is rightfully theirs to ask for. Granted, she said, the number, has gone down dramatically, but she said some residents don’t think about recovery still being available.

“I would have loved to have seen a bigger crowd,” Odom said. “I was especially pleased that Representative Cloud has been reaching across the aisle to help find reach common ground to seek solutions to our challenges. I hope we see more of this in Washington.”

She was referring to bi-partisan legislature.

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