This week saw two challengers enter local races.
Luis Castillo entered the school board Place 4 race and challenges the incumbent John Hibbs.
Kelly Canon entered the city’s District 1 race and challenges the incumbent Charlie Parker.
The deadline for filing in the local elections is this Friday, February 19.
Early voting for the primaries begins Tuesday (February 16). Early voting ends Friday, February 26
Four members of the Arlington City Council are up for reelection this coming May. They are:
In the fall of 2014, RINOs Bennett and Parker both campaigned and signed their names in full support of the Democratic challenger to conservative State Representative (District 94), Tony Tinderholt.
All four of these council members greatly prefer the special interest buddy over the citizens in their votes. The Lamar Blvd road diet is just one example.
From The Arlington Spectator, Volume 9, Number 7, Monday, February 15, 2016
Richard Weber, Publisher of the Arlington Spectator
Arlington is a city where citizens are relegated to being spectators rather than players. The SPECTATOR helps citizens know what is happening on the field. Only the few on the in-house team are allowed to play ball in Arlington. The SPECTATOR helps citizens understand the game.
From the Locker Room
The city council met for its regular meetings on this past Tuesday, February 9. Jimmy Bennett was not present.
The first committee meeting continued their discussion of strategies to improve single-family and commercial properties. Their discussion was mostly about donation boxes. Part of the discussion included registration and limiting them one per property.
The second committee discussed the Arlington Property Finance Authority. They need more funds to operate. They are looking at an average of $1.7 million per year and seek to sell bonds to gain that amount.
The third committee meeting had requested more information regarding Business-287 which is Arlington on one side and Kennedale on the other side. A good portion of the presentation appears to be towards salvage yards. A side note, very near the area they were discussing, approximate address of 7801 Mansfield Cardinal: going to P&Z on March 1 is the plotting of 44 acres into just under 130 plots.
The last committee meeting discussed the HUD Plan Year 2016 Action Plan. The actual amount they get to budget won’t be determined until the federal budget is finalized.
The afternoon session started at 1:30pm in executive session. The open portion of the afternoon session was scheduled to start at 2:30pm, but did not start until after 3:00pm.
WeCAN’s Peggy James also has a summary of this meeting at https://gallery.mailchimp.com/7ddd0294d1c4a1d1511d4ee3c/files/02_09_16councilworksession.01.pdf .
The first work session item was the city manager’s desired compensation strategy. Based on his numbers, we are far behind national averages. (National averages are noting to be looked at since Texas’ cost of living is lower than 98% of the states, of course our salary averages could be lower.)
Though the salary numbers are low, after throwing in benefits, we are not that far off from others in the region. However it is very hard to come up with an apples to apples comparison.
The city manager suggests a strategy of average plus 5%.
The second work session item regarded the capital budget. Lots and lots of millions of dollars being spent. They adjusted some of the money to keep Ditto Golf Course as a high priority.
One of the informal staff reports was on the current electricity supply cost. The current contract ends at the end of the 2017 calendar year. The council got an option of a 5-year extension at the same price and is ready to jump on that option.
There was no discussion of the consent agenda items, which passed 8-0.
WeCAN’s Peggy James also has a summary of this meeting at https://gallery.mailchimp.com/7ddd0294d1c4a1d1511d4ee3c/files/02_09_16councilmeeting.pdf .
The first public hearing was for a zoning case at 7415 S Cooper St. The applicant wishes to change the zoning from Residential Estate (in other words, large lots residential) to General Commercial and Light Industrial. P&Z approved the changed by a 5-3 vote. Sheri Capehart moved to continue the public hearing because the property owner from across the street only now woke up, found out there was a public hearing, and was not going to be able to make the meeting. She had no idea what he wished to add to the case, but wanted to wait. The council voted 5-3 to continue the public hearing.
The second public hearing was for the abandonment of right-of-way on several streets between Collins, Park Row and Johnson Creek for the Julia Burgen Park. There was one public speaker wishing for lighting near her portion of the park. It passed 8-0.
The call for a public hearing on a zoning case for a liquor store near Bowie High, that P&Z rejected was denied by the council 8-0.
There was one citizen speaker discussing the desire to change the dangerous animal ordinance to include animal on animal attacks. The story that spurred this item: http://www.arlingtonvoice.com/news-politics/story/jan/25/2016/after-violent-dog-attack-neighbors-seek-change-arlington-protocol
The next AISD board meeting will be Thursday, February 18.
In The News
City May 7 Elections
As expected, Kelly Canon entered the District 1 race to battle incumbent Charlie Parker.
The other three races only have one candidate. Sheri Capehart (District 2), Robert Shepard (District 6), and Victoria Myers (District 7) are currently all unopposed.
The filing deadline is Friday, February 19
AISD May 7 Elections
Luis Castillo entered the AISD Place 4 race to battle incumbent John Hibbs.
Jamie Sullins, the incumbent in Place 5 is currently unopposed.
Republican Primary Races
The Arlington Spectator endorses TONY TINDERHOLT in the Texas State District 94 Representative race.
The Arlington Spectator endorses BILL ZEDLER in the Texas State District 96 Representative race.
The great news here is early voting starts Tuesday and Election Day (March 1) is in sight and the mudslinging by Andrew Piel will eventually come to an end.
AARG Meeting – Polly Walton
AISD Board of Trustee member, Polly Walton is to be the guest speaker at the next Arlington Alliance for Responsible Government meeting. The meeting is Wednesday, February 24, 6:30pm at Cokers Bar-B-Q, 2616 W Pioneer Pkwy.
Feel free to forward this column to family and friends.
Ready to put your two cents in? Comment online and/or….
Richard Weber, publisher of the Arlington Spectator, is that rare citizen who devotes time to civic duty and involvement. For doing so, he receives little thanks. Most citizens have more important things on their minds—TV, football, enjoying their retirement, etc. Not Richard. You’ll find him at City Council afternoon and evening sessions, at school board meetings, publishing Arlington Spectator, and helming AARG (Arlington Alliance for Responsible Government). Richard is not welcome at Mayor Cluck’s City Hall, where every effort is made to muzzle Richard and any other citizen who believes taxpayers should have a voice in government. Richard’s selfless effort is one of the things that inspired us to begin publishing Opinion Arlington.
The Arlington Voice (online newspaper covering Arlington)
Opinion Arlington (comment on issues of Arlington)