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No Pay Joe May
John Burton
Mary Lou Montes Zijderveld
Hicks & Mrs. Kirk

                             

08/22/02  But, will they ever really be gone?

As worrisome as it is to make a pact with the devil, Tim Dickey says sometimes you have to trust the people you helped get elected to represent your best interests.  He's right.

Two weeks ago, several Bachman-NW Hwy residents and business people called a press conference to oppose any settlement with the sex clubs and/or Burch Management related to the myriad of lawsuits pending in state and federal courts.  We had not been part of the mediation and knew nothing about the terms of the settlement the City Attorney had presented to the Mayor and council for approval.

Thank goodness, Mayor Miller and Dep. Mayor Pro Tem John Loza told the City Attorney to go back to the bad guys and get more protection for the community.   

The Mayor, Dep. Mayor Pro Tem and Councilmen Mitch Rasansky and Ed Oakley invited some community members to a meeting where the City Attorney could explain to all of us the terms of her proposed settlement with the bad guys.  It was a little tense at first.  DallasArena.com has been very hard on the City Attorney and John Loza, and I am DallasArena.com.

The City Attorney went through her list of points of the settlement and mentioned Burch Management would deed restrict the property they own (the surrounding parking lot) so it can never again be used (after 7/31/03) as parking for any sexually oriented business.  As a former Plan Commissioner, that jumped out at me like nothing else she was talking about.

At our press conference, we said any settlement at this time would be premature.  We said even an escrow deposit would not be enough of a threat to make these bad guys keep their word on 8/1/03.  We said we wanted a court ruling one way or the other to settle once and for all that our zoning laws prohibiting sex clubs in certain locations were legal or not.  We were concerned about the lack of enforcement of the city's "no touch" laws regarding physical contact with the dancing hookers in the sex clubs and the perverts who frequent the sex clubs.

We got two things in this settlement that are better than any escrow deposit:

* deed restrictions on parking lots owned by Burch Management
* city can padlock the door and turn off clubs' water and sewer on 8/01/03.

These are huge hammers for us.  Whether they will be enough to force Baby Dolls and Santa Fe out of their NW Highway location remains to be seen.

There's no guarantee we would have ever had a ruling from Judge Bully Buchmeyer, who has been no friend to Dallas.  He could have taken these cases "under advisement" and just sat on them for 3 years like the last time.  We would have nothing -- nothing to appeal -- and no laws to be enforced.

Today, a Dallas County jury convicted a sex club dancer of violating our "no touch" ordinance.  This is just overwhelming to us.  These clubs are not like in the movies where some tootsie struts across the stage and drops her clothes in an "artistic" way.  No, these clubs are about lap dancing and Clinton/Lewinski connections under the tables.

It's a never ending battle.  We now have a sex club on Monroe at Walnut Hill -- right where the hookers and pimps prowl.  This backs up to houses.  There is no way this whorehouse has a license to operate.

But, that's a fight for next week.  This week, we are celebrating in Northwest Dallas.

We are celebrating having a Mayor who stands up for us and makes time for us and responds to our concerns.  We haven't experienced that in at least 6 years.

We are celebrating having 3 council members take time to meet with us and hear our concerns.

We are celebrating having the City Attorney include us in the settlement discussions because we have to live with the results.

We are celebrating each other and our perseverance.  It is not every day you see results from community activism.  

For the next several days, many of us will be working hard to get Mike Martinez elected to the School Board.  We have just experienced a definite return on our hard work to get Laura Miller elected as Mayor.  We can't have a good city without clean government, and we can't have clean government without honest people elected to public office.

The School Board and Supt. Mike Moses have made some remarkable progress over where we were just three years ago under Lounge Lizard Rojas.  We can't go backwards by electing a political hack to the school board.  It will send a terrible message to our school children to have someone on the School Board who disrespects our election process by manipulating mail-in ballots.  It will send a worse message to have someone on the School Board who has been sued 4 different times by the DISD to force him to pay his property taxes (No Pay Joe May).

We need an educator on the School Board.  We need Mike Martinez.

We also need to stay focused on July 31, 2003.  What say we have a party on August 1, 2003 at Noon to celebrate that the sex clubs are gong?  Don't choke, but I agree with John Loza that it would be great to have that fancy Wal-Mart right smack dab on top of the site where the sex clubs are now.  He can't be wrong all the time.

Accord to close topless clubs 
Settlement would shut 3 Bachman-area bars next year, drop lawsuits
08/22/2002  By DAVE MICHAELS / The Dallas Morning News
. . .  according to a settlement agreement the City Council informally approved Wednesday. Three Northwest Highway topless clubs that are in violation of the city's zoning laws would close July 31 in exchange for dropping about 35 lawsuits between the city and the clubs.
. . . If the clubs remain open, which many residents fear, the settlement allows the city to lock their doors and shut off the water. If the clubs still manage to do business, the city will fine them $5,000 for each day they violate the agreement, Ms. Johnson said.
  The settlement also bars the club owners from opening sexually oriented businesses on the parking lots they own behind the clubs. The settlement establishes acceptable uses for those lots that include offices, churches and day-care facilities.
. . . It is as ironclad a settlement as we will ever get," said council member John Loza, whose district includes the clubs. "It will be the key element to the turnaround of the Bachman Lake area."
. . . Mr. Loza said he would encourage Wal-Mart, now lobbying the City Council to approve a massive store at Mockingbird Lane and Lemmon Avenue, to instead open at Bachman.
  "A perfect location would be right there on Northwest Highway," Mr. Loza said.

I hope your neighborhood has a big success with some issue unique to your area.  For the time being, share our good fortune.  It's a sign of changing times in Dallas when we have a Mayor who stands up for the little guys and the rest of the council stands with her.  

Our budget problems are really worrisome.  Stan Aten says it's gong to get worse.

After attending a townhall budget meeting last night, I am afraid for our city's future.  It sounds just like 1985 all over again.  If you add up all the expenses that are being deferred, the city budget in a year will be even worse.  The city is postponing $14 million for replacing vehicles on their last legs and adding $17 million for another 5% pay increase for the police and firemen, $8 million more for employee healthcare.  Then there is the expense of the next round of bonds to fix our city's infrastructure.   

This year is just a band aid to get us thru to better times.  If sales tax revenue does not improve or property taxes don't go up more next year, the citizens of Dallas will face an even bigger property tax increase next year.

Stan Aten

Yes, but we now have a Mayor who is not going to gloss over budget shortfalls.  

When you know the truth, you can fix the problem.

 

                                        

    





                            

 

  Ward politics is the Devil's key to the soul of the city council.  It is how some council members got themselves in trouble in the past.  It is the bait that will get others in trouble in the future. 4/6/8