The primary contractor responsible for building the Kingwood area’s first RV Park has six tax forfeitures in his past. And the Secretary of State indicates that he has not filed public information reports (PIRs) associated with Texas franchise tax since 2019 for two more of his companies involved in developing the RV park. They are Higbie Ventures LP and Higbie Ventures of Texas, Inc.
Filing PIR reports is an annual requirement in Texas for business entities.
Below are the roles played by Higbie Ventures LP and Higbie Ventures of Texas, Inc. in the RV park next to Lakewood Cove.
Higbie Ventures LP Obtained COH Permits
Higbie Ventures LP obtained many, but not all, of the construction permits for the project from the City of Houston. They include permits for construction, clearing, grading, sitework, utilities, concrete and more. (For the full list, search by JOB ADDRESS on the Houston Permitting Center Website. Use 1355 LAUREL SPRINGS LN 77339).
According to the Secretary of State’s database, Higbie Ventures, LP has not filed a PIR beyond 2019. Note also that the partnership previously forfeited its right to do business in Texas for seven years due to non-filing of reports (see below). However, it was later reinstated.
I called the Texas Secretary of State (SOS) to confirm that the department’s records for Higbie were current. The lady I talked to said they were, but urged me to call the State Comptroller’s office to see if a new batch of updates was coming soon.
The State Controller’s office could not tell me when new updates were being sent to the Secretary of State. She also refused to discuss the company’s filing history except to say that their status was currently “active.”
The Comptroller’s office, however, did confirm that companies and partnerships had to file PIRs every year. No one could explain the contradiction between active status and apparent non-filing.
Higbie Ventures of Texas, Inc. the Primary Operator At Construction Site
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Stormwater Pollution Prevention Permit at the Laurel Springs RV Park construction site shows Higbie Ventures of Texas, Inc. as the primary operator of the construction site.
Yet this company’s most recent PIR was filed in September 2019 according to the Secretary of State.
It’s unclear why Higbie or the owners needed more than one Higbie entity involved in this job.
13 Higbie Companies, Six Tax Forfeitures, One PO Box
Texas Secretary of State records show that William S. Higbie has started at least 13 companies or partnerships in Texas. Five are still active. They include:
- Higbie Ventures, LP (formed 2003)
- Higbie Ventures GP, LLC (formed 2003)
- Higbie Ventures of Texas, Inc. (formed 2010)
- Cherry Branch Enterprises LLC (formed 2006)
- Higbie Residential Ventures of Texas, Inc. (formed 2014)
Higbie lost six in tax forfeitures and voluntarily dissolved two others. They include:
- Higbie Builders GP, LLC (Tax Forfeiture 2006, later reinstated)
- Zentrum Construction Company (Tax Forfeiture – 2007 )
- WM-GP, Inc. (Tax Forfeiture –2007)
- 1318 GP, Inc. (Tax Forfeiture – 2007)
- 1318 Birdsall LTD (Tax Forfeiture – 2009)
- Birdbath GP, Inc. (Tax Forfeiture – 2009)
- Higbie Roth, Inc. (Voluntarily dissolved – 2002)
- Higbie Roth Construction Company (Voluntarily Dissolved – 2013)
Higbie may have other business interests in Florida that are not shown here.
No Offices Currently Listed for Higbie
Eight of the 13 Higbie entities above are or were registered to PMB 1007 (Private Mail Box 1007) at 3733 Westheimer. Google Street View shows a Post & Parcel store there.
Higbie uses that same box for ALL of his active companies or partnerships in Texas.
This may indicate that none of Higbie’s Texas companies has a regular office.
Apparently, No Websites Either
At this time, Higbie does not appear to have a website of his own or for any of his ventures. I cannot find one.
A website called HigbiePlans.com DOES exist, but Higbie has no company by that name. Nor is one registered in the State of Texas.
A footnote on the HigbiePlans website says, “Online planroom powered by ReproConnect and Best Blue Print.” WhoIs.com shows that Best Blue Print actually owns the domain called “HigbiePlans.com.” To boost its own business, Best Blue Print appears to host websites like HigbiePlans as a courtesy to architects, builders, contractors, and others who may require prints of oversized files.
The HigbiePlans.com pages for Higbie Ventures shows one phone number that has been handed down from one Higbie company to another over the years, according to Google searches.
Very little information can be found about William S. Higbie or his organizations online.
The TCEQ permit posted at the RV park job site shows that Higbie Ventures of Texas, Inc. is the primary operator.
According to the TCEQ, a primary operator has operational control of a construction site. However, I have yet to see a Higbie logo on a truck out there. Or a Higbie logo anywhere!
Another company, A&M Contractors, appears to be doing the actual work which the TCEQ thinks Higbie is doing and which Higbie purchased the permits for.
While it is not unusual for companies in the construction business to hire subcontractors, it is unusual for an owner of a site to hire two (or three) companies to do the same thing. That runs up costs without adding value. And RV Parks are among the most cost-sensitive types of construction, according to developers I interviewed for this post.
Low Profile, High Failure Rates
I’m not alleging anything illegal or even unethical about Higbie or his organizations.
He just keeps an exceedingly low profile for a business man. And he has an exceedingly high failure rate. His Texas business ventures have failed at an alarming 62% rate.
In construction, when large dollars are at risk, that’s not the kind of track record that inspires confidence among lenders and investors.
Several Lakewood residents say they have tried to meet with Higbie about the RV park, but that Higbie doesn’t answer his phone. No wonder he’s so successful.
Will the real William S. Higbie please stand up?
Next, more on the owners of the RV Park. They operate more than 100 different companies.
Posted by Bob Rehak on 11/4/2021
1529 Days since Hurricane Harvey
The thoughts expressed in this post represent opinions on matters of public concern and safety. They are protected by the First Amendment of the US Constitution and the Anti-SLAPP Statute of the Great State of Texas.