Department of Neighborhoods
The Department of Neighborhoods was established by Mayor Annise Parker in August 2011 as a centralized source of citizen assistance and services aimed at improving quality of life in Houston neighborhoods. The new department consolidated several city operations focused on reducing blight and making neighborhoods cleaner and safer in an efficient, fiscally responsible manner. The process for the establishment of the new department involved the review of HPD’s Neighborhood Protection Corps operations by appointed committees led by a transition team. In accordance with the recommendations of the transition team, City Council approved an ordinance on February 9, 2011 amending Chapters 1, 10, 28 and 34 of the Code of Ordinances pertaining to dangerous and substandard buildings. The ordinance took effect on May 9, 2011, directed primarily to Chapter 10 and providing for the removal of HPD’s Neighborhood Protection Corps. These actions led to the creation of the Department of Neighborhoods and its Inspections & Public Service division, charged with city code enforcement operations formerly conducted by the Neighborhood Protection Corps. Subsequently, other city operations were moved to fall under the auspices of the new department, including the Mayor’s Citizens Assistance Office, Mayor’s Anti-Gang Office, Mayor’s Volunteer Initiatives Program, Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities, Office of Education Initiatives and Office of International Communities.