Sign up for our Weekly Email Newsletter

Update on Proposed Arlington Senior Center


Friday, March 25, 2016, by Buddy Saunders

At a town hall meeting last Thursday evening at Shackelford Junior High, Charlie Parker, District 1, North Arlington, updated citizens on the proposed citywide senior center.

What will it look like and offer?  That’s yet to be determined, but plans are for it to be much like Grand Prairie’s impressive senior center, including heated indoor swimming pools.

Where will it be located? 303 and Green Oaks

What will it cost to build? $37.7 million dollars, just about what we are paying for a new and non-needed central library.

How will we pay for it? Mr. Parker cited three options:

  • Issue certificates of obligation, “emergency” bonds that do not require a vote by taxpayers. These bonds would be paid off with property tax dollars repurposed from other priorities such as street maintenance.
  • General certificates of obligation, bonds that would require a vote. These bonds would be paid off with property tax dollars repurposed from other priorities such as street maintenance.
  • Additional quarter cent sales tax. This option should not be supported unless there is a stipulation that the tax dies once the building is paid for.

Can this be done without a property tax increase?  Mr. Parker assured his audience that there will be no tax increase under the first two options, and the third option, the quarter cent sales tax increase, would require voter approval.

What will the year-to-year operating and maintenance cost be and how will that be funded?  According to Mr. Parker, rental income, membership fees, and the like will cover much of the costs and thus require little in the way of tax dollars.

Regarding the quarter cent sales tax, Arlington is the only major city in the metroplex not already taxing its citizens at the maximum allowable 8.25c. Given that cash of any kind burns a hole in our council’s collective pocket, this seems an odd circumstance.  It actually isn’t. There’s a good reason our city leaders have kept that quarter cent in reserve.  It’s there mass transit egg money. Without it their chances of taking Arlington into the black hole of mass transit is greatly reduced.

Feel free to forward this column to family and friends.

Please comment online! What you think matters!

Ready to put your two cents in? Comment here and….

email the entire City Council with one click!


Contact City Council members individually

Opinion Arlington needs informed citizens willing to write of issues concerning our city, schools, county, hospital district, and state legislature. A columnist may submit columns on a regular basis, or occasionally, as few or as many as they like.  If you are interested in writing for us, please contact Buddy Saunders at

8 Responses to Update on Proposed Arlington Senior Center

  1. Patrick Kelly

    April 14, 2016 at 10:16 pm

    It would be advantageous to our readers and citizens if the good citizens posting comments would read and assimilate Ron Paul’s library and then, participate in “Leave a Reply”.


  2. John Johnson

    April 9, 2016 at 9:07 am

    Geez…Arlington, by all measurable indicators is one of the best run cities in the state. I would like to know which city Kelly Canon thinks we need to be emulating that has it all together more than Arlington does. Her comments about average commercial building costs compared to the cost of a new senior center tells me all I need to know. Since when can you compare a Great Southwest warehouse cost per sq ft to an upscale multiuse facility with an indoor pool? Sorry, she is simply an unqualified wannabe who has gotten eaten up with the radical Tea Party agenda.

    Her mentor, Konni Burton, has become nothing more that a sound bite launcher. The word “liberty” is in most of them, with neither examples of how ours are being trampled on, or how she proposes the perceived problems be corrected.

    I do know that she voted for SB1628 which would have made it more difficult for homeowners and businesses to sue big insurance when they shorted or denied claims. Try and figure that one out. Business owner associations got that bill killed in the House. How many of you knew about it?

    Then there is the continued pounding on private/corporate partnerships here in Tarrant County. Where would Tarrant County and Arlington be without General Motors, Lockheed, TR Horton, Six Flags, the Rangers, the Cowboys, FedEx and others? How about American Airlines? How many of your friends and neighbor’s work for them? It seems that Burton and Canon and other TP radicals would prefer them in Anaheim or Orlando or San Antonio. I will never vote for Canon, and look forward to every major corporation in Tarrant County and every employee working for them to find someone to run against Burton next time around unless she moderates her views, starts giving us some specifics, and quits playing sock puppet to Empower Texans, her primary $ contributor.

    • Tired Taxpayer

      April 15, 2016 at 5:50 pm

      Mr. Johnson, Public/Private Partnerships are simply the way government redistributes wealth. Not only is this well beyond the parameters of Constitutional governance, it is also immoral.

      It has been proven quite often that Corporate Welfare fails to achieve the lofty results pitched to the public. “XXX new jobs” will magically appear… “XXXX $ of economic impact” will occur….

      If government bureaucrats are well-experienced with one thing, it’s choosing losers. Giving tax breaks to entities such as the Cowboys (whose parent organization, the NFL, is incorporated as a ‘non-profit’ by the way!) places more tax burden on individuals. If bureaucrats would STOP giving away money that is not theirs, stop trying to engineer economies and societies, and stop stealing property and rights from the citizens, we would all be much better off.

      Considering an ’emergency option’, ie; Certficates of Obligation, clearly shows Mr. Parker abuses taxpayers. This is how the new, unneeded council chambers and library were funded. Council members knew taxpayers would never approve of this expenditure, so they went behind our backs and did it anyway.

      CoO is debt that government is allowed to incur, WITHOUT taxpayer approval, for EMERGENCIES. You know, things like snow removal after an unexpected blizzard. Cleanup after a natural disaster. Etc.

      Appealing to retired voters by promising them a Senior Center, funded via CoO methods is UNETHICAL, DISHONEST, and should be grounds for criminal charges.

      By your standards of name-calling, (radical Tea Party agenda) Economic Terrorist seems to apply to you just fine.

  3. Tired Taxpayer

    March 27, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    I wonder just how Parker’s ‘Economic Development Corporation’ is set up. My guess is that this is a specifically vague title for yet another taxing entity that will suck up more private citizen’s money, for the ‘purpose’ of constructing a senior center, but in reality is a front to simply confiscate and squander more of our hard-earned property.

    Is there anything SPECIFIC and BINDING, that this so-called ‘Corporation’ can ONLY use its confiscated funds for this project, and nothing more? I would guess not. And really, this would be a meaningless point, since this council has a long history of deliberate deception and outright lying:

    1. The Max bus pilot project will only be TWO years… but was conveniently extended.

    2. Trash (recycling) cart storage/placement would NOT be policed…. but it is now.

    3. The Arlington Tomorrow Fund will be run by a consortium of bureaucrats AND citizens…. nope, now all the ‘board’ members are bureaucrats.

    These are just the three most recent circumstances I can recall at the moment, there are plenty more if someone wants to do any digging. It matters not what is promised today, they’ll simply change the rules at some point in the future, after conning the public into yet another expensive proposition.

    If seniors wish to join a country club, that’s fine with me, Arlington has TWO fine ones, Rolling Hills and Shady Valley. Don’t expect the rest of us to pay for YOUR folly. This will simply become yet another budgetary liability to the Parks Department, which is ALWAYS one of the first entities to see budget cuts when bureaucrats are forced to act somewhat responsibly.

    This city needs LESS debt, not more. FEWER bureaucrats, not more. TRUTH, not obfuscation and falsehood. DAYLIGHT, not closed-door deals.

    VOTE FOR KELLY CANON FOR CITY COUNCIL. She is a SANE alternative to Mr. Parker.

  4. Kelly Canon

    March 25, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    Option #1… an “emergency” bond pkg? Since when is a senior recreation center an “emergency”?

    Option #2… Certificates of obligation… TRANSLATION: More debt. Is this a good idea?

    Construction cost of $37.7 million for a 68,000 square foot facility, comes out to $554/sf. This is over THREE TIMES the national average for commercial construction costs! This is beyond belief. This is frivolous spending of OUR tax dollars.

    • Dennis Killy

      March 26, 2016 at 8:08 pm

      Ms Cannon,

      You don’t understand; there is “taxes” and then there is “TAXES”. One is totally different than the other … if you are a gutless politician.

      Most people who “work” in government take hardworking citizen /taxpayer funds … and with the blink of an eye it becomes theirs.

      Get use to it; if you are unlucky enough to get elected … look forward to a LOT of stomach problems!

    • John Johnson

      April 9, 2016 at 9:52 am

      He was asked for options. He offered up three of them. The “emergency one” is one of the options, but you seem to suggest Charlie Parker was suggesting it as his choice. You know better. How would you have answered the question? Would you have included it, since it is an option, or just left it out?

  5. SYLVESTER Briones

    March 25, 2016 at 6:41 pm

    We do not want mass transit in Arlington

You must be logged in to post a comment Login