November 19, 2018 Newsletter

Home  ============ November 19, 2018 ============ November 12, 2018 ============ November 5, 2018 =========== October 29, 2018 ============ VIA - by the numbers ============ CityCouncil Grades ============ Jeff Williams, =====Mayor===== Helen Moise, ===District1=== Sheri Capehart, ===District2=== Roxanne Thalman, ===District3=== Kathryn Wilemon, ===District4=== Lana Wolff, ===District5=== Robert Shepard, ===District6=== Victoria Farrar-Myers, ===District7==== Michael Glaspie, ===District8=== Kennedale Knowledge ============



Wilemon Wants to Waste Even More Tax Dollars on VIA

 

VIA got close to a million dollar contract for its first year. Now the current budget has $1 million of taxpayers' dollars and $700K of federal dollars. Yet, Kathryn William is heard at the November 13, 2018 work session, item 4.5 reporting on her committee, asking the city manager for even more funds so it can expand. [ http://arlingtontx.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=9&clip_id=2893 ]

 

The attempt to expand the coverage zone has generated very predictable results, a great lack of funds. When the city council approved the contract with VIA, the staff report projected the expansion to Phase II, down to I-20, to take four to six months into the pilot. It finally happened in the last half of September, more than nine months after the start of the pilot. VIA needed to add vehicles, and not the Mercedes vans bragged about at the start, at a cost that took awhile to cover.


 

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.

 

 

November 19, 2018 – Volume 11 Number 45

 

GAME SCHEDULE:

Monday, November 19, Short-term Rentals (STR) Open House/Discussion. Bob Duncan Center, 2800 S Center St, 4:00pm.

Tuesday, November 20, District 3 Town Hall Meeting, South Police Community Center, 1030 SW Green Oaks, 6:00pm.

Thursday, November 22, Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 27 Arlington City Council meetings, Arlington City Hall, 101 W Abram St, times TBD.

Tuesday, December 4 Arlington City Council meetings, Arlington City Hall, 101 W Abram St, times TBD.

Tuesday, December 11 Arlington City Council meetings, Arlington City Hall, 101 W Abram St, times TBD.

Thursday, December 13, AISD meeting, AISD Administration Bldg, 1203 W Pioneer Pkwy, 7:00pm.

 

From THE LOCKER ROOM

 

Arlington City Council Update

 

The Arlington City Council met this past Tuesday, November 13. Council woman Moise was absent.

 

The council also met on Thursday, November 15 for canvassing the vote of the November 6 propositions. It passed, 6-0. Mayor Williams, and council members Moise and Shepard were absent.

 

The next city council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, November 27.

 

Committee Meetings

The first of two committee meetings discussed a close out of the Milo [driverless shuttle] Program. Somehow they are calling a huge success, though I do not know how. I, a fairly typical taxpayer, got absolutely zero benefit from them spending $265,213. [but then again, it is NOT about the taxpayer or the citizens]

 

The second committee meeting is to discuss updates to the Chapter 380 program for the Arlington Home Improvement Incentive Program. They then went into executive session to discuss Offer$ of Incentive$ to Business Prospect$.

 

Afternoon Session

The open portion of the afternoon session will started almost an hour late, because of a long executive session. [Though it did not contain a short-term rental discussion this meeting, you can expect staff to be ready for further discussion at the next meeting, 11/27]

 

The first work session item (3.1) was Domestic Violence and Victim Services. The police chief did the presentation, and with questions, last for more than 45 minutes.

 

The second work session item (3.2) was new water utilities customer account management tools (no presentation available). A lot of water account information is available to the people with the newer type of meters.

 

The third work session item (3.3) was a gas well discussion. No improvements are planned about measuring or implementing air quality, which will still be up to the fairly nonresponsive, TCEQ

 

The reporting out of committees (4.5) Transportation and Municipal Infrastructure, lead into Kathryn Wilemon asking the city manager for money for the VIA program (the 2018-9 budget has it getting $1.7 million, a million from the Arlington taxpayers, and $700K from the federal government (FTA)). Agenda item 4.5 [ http://arlingtontx.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=9&clip_id=2893 ]

 

Evening Meeting

The consent agenda saw two nonspeakers, Robert Kimbel and a sidekick, in support of the two Arlington Common issues. The mayor had to abstain on those two items. Other than the abstention, all items on the consent agenda passed, 8-0.

 

No mention was made of other consent agenda items, as 8.12 is for the purchase of ten buses for Handitran, where the low bid was not taken, or 8.14 for two more change orders (#2, and #3) to the $10 million for the e-sports conversion portion of the Arlington Convention Center.

 

The first public hearing, 11.1, was a zoning case at 2501 Woodside. This was a much improved modification to a plan approved in 2016. These are single-story town homes that will not tower over the adjacent neighborhood. It passed, 8-0.

 

The second public hearing, 11.2, was a zoning case for 5401 Kelly Elliott. This was for single family homes. It passed, 8-0.

 

The third public hearing, 11.3, was for a Wendy's with a drive-thru at 1197 N Watson Rd in the entertainment district. The corporation had bought the location and was to reconstruct the whole building.

 

The fourth public hearing, 11.4, was for more apartments at 1500 Blue Danube St. The zoning case wished for apartments at approximately 29 units/acre, well above the 22 units/acre allowed by the zoning. A majority of the apartments fall below minimum size requirements. Prior to the meeting the developer and the neighborhood agreed to a plan where the third floor of the buildings would be scrapped and put the project at 22 units/acre. The citizens speaker opposed withdrew his opposition. Note that the mayor had to leave and abstain for this public hearing. It passed, 7-0-1.

 

The fifth public hearing, 11.5, was for approval of the the waste of tax dollars, known as the Downtown Master Plan. It passed, 8-0.

 

The sixth public hearing, 11.6, was for an extension of TIRZ #1 (downtown). Twenty years is far too long, an extension is ridiculous. So if the TIRZ started in 1999, basically the tax money that goes to the general fund, where police, fire, and administration is paid from, is locked in at 1999 prices, while the additional tax money goes to the TIRZ to spend. Meanwhile, the other taxpayers have to make up for the shortage siphoned from the general fund AND also pay for bonds, as Abram St. The lone opposition speaker was promptly ignored. It passed, 8-0.

 

The three remaining resolutions have to do with a) interlocal agreement with Tarrant County for another TIRZ on East Pioneer Pkwy, b) paying $50K to a Houston firm to established that TIRZ on East Pioneer Pkwy, and c) amending the bylaws of the Arlington Tomorrow Foundation (ATF). These all passed, 8-0.

 

There were four speakers during citizen participation. The first speaker was very upset about not being able to park at his home, because of the special events parking rules.

 

The second speaker spoke about short-term rentals (STR). The third speaker spoke on wanting the results of TCEQ's impact studies of high speed rail on the city's water sources.

 

The final speaker addressed the council about problems with staff and the municipal court system.

 

AISD

The next scheduled meeting is Thursday, December 13.

 

Press Box

VIA Ride-share

The October's numbers and report are now included. The attempt to expand the coverage zone has generated very predictable results, a great lack of funds.

 

When the city council approved the contract with VIA, the staff report projected the expansion to Phase II, down to I-20, to take four to six months into the pilot. It finally happened in the last half of September, more than nine months after the start of the pilot. VIA needed to add vehicles, and not the Mercedes vans bragged about at the start, at a cost that took awhile to cover.

 

VIA got close to a million dollar contract for its first year. Now the current budget has $1 million of taxpayers' dollars and $700K of federal dollars. Yet, Kathryn William is heard at the November 13, 2018 work session, item 4.5 reporting on her committee, asking the city manager for even more funds so it can expand. [ http://arlingtontx.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=9&clip_id=2893 ]

 

I, as a majority of the taxpayers, am not in the coverage zone, and quite frankly, extremely tired of paying for this service for the select few. Lower my taxes, and raise the prices on the service to cover the expenses. I do not understand why we must use my tax dollars to subsidize this service that basically competes with the private sector's LyFT and Uber. [ http://arlspectator.mysite.com/rich_text_22.html ] Arlington Taxpayers are still paying for a lemon. While the company, VIA, is doing quite well [they have a contract for nearly a million dollars for the year—no problem].


 

HELPFUL CONTACTS

The Spectator . ...ArlSpectator@yahoo.com

www.ArlSpectator.mysite.com

 The Arlington Voice (online newspaper covering Arlington) www.arlingtonvoice.com

 Opinion Arlington (comment on issues of Arlington) www.opinionarlington.com

 City of Arlington website www.arlingtontx.gov

 

e-mails of mayor and council

.............................. first.last@arlingtontx.gov

mayor = jeff.williams

district 1 (north) =  helen.moise

district 2 (sw) = sheri.capehart

district 3 (se) = roxanne.thalman

district 4 (west) = kathryn.wilemon

district 5 (central/east) = lana.wolff

district 6 (all) = robert.shepard

district 7 (all) = victoria.farrar-myers

district 8 (all) = michael.glaspie

 

 

city council grades:

http://arlspectator.mysite.com/blank.html

  

AISD website ....................... www.aisd.net

e-mails of the AISD board .....

whole board ..................... - board@aisd.net

Fowler .......................fowler.aisd@gmail.com

Hogg ......................- bowie@bowiehogg.com

Reich......................... - areich.aisd@tx.rr.com

Chapa .................- chapa.aisd@gmail.com

Walton .. ................ - pollywalton.aisd@gmail.com

Hibbs ........................ - hibbsaisd@gmail.com

Mays ............ - keciaforarlington@gmail.com

 

NW Arlington Newsletter:

www.nwarlington.com

SE Arlington Blog

www.fishcreekmonitor.blogspot.com

Age-Friendly Arlington

www.agefriendlyarlingtontx.org

Randol Mill Park Nature Area

www.thepostoaks.org

Texas Legislative Online

http://www.legis.state.tx.us/Home.aspx

The Texas Bond Review Board ....

http://www.brb.state.tx.us/lgs_search.aspx?action=city