Thursday, February 28, 2008

New FB Logo: Memo from Gary Greer, City Manager

I love our new Farmers Branch city logo. I think it effectively illustrates all we are as a city: a nice mix of homes and commercial districts, surrounded by parks and trees. I think it symbolizes who we are as a city, and where we're going.

I've heard some concern about the costs associated with the logo change. As is so often the case, those concerns include costs that are greatly inflated. City Manager Gary Greer prepared a memo last week outlining the history behind the logo change, the reasons the logo change was pursued, and the real costs associated with the transition and implementation across the city. You can read that memo here.

The bottom line: the city will spend an estimated $177, 235.35 over the next three years to introduce our new image. That's roughly $59,000 a year.

Money well spent.

Tim Scott

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

New Developments in Farmers Branch

Have you seen the new townhome development on Alpha Road, just off Midway? It's fabulous, and the perfect example of the exciting projects we have underway in Farmers Branch. Drive by and take a look, and if you know anyone looking for a new townhome, bring them along.

More information about the townhomes can be found here.
Also, we have a great new apartment development right across from the Galleria called Broadstone Parkway. It's right on Galleria Drive, and I bet you didn't realize it was in Farmers Branch. This is an outstanding development, with state-of-the-art amenities, and an unbeatable location. You can learn more about it here.

I've said it before, but I'll keep saying it: Great Things Are Happening in Farmers Branch!

Tim Scott

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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Farmers Branch & Icon Partners Announce 300-Acre Development

This is exciting.

Icon Partners announced today that they have agreed to develop a 300-acre shopping, residential, and business complex here in Farmers Branch. Mercer Crossing - approximately 1,100 undeveloped acres in Farmers Branch roughly bordered by LBJ, I-35, and the George Bush Tollway - is the largest empty section of Farmers Branch, and is well on its way to being a signature retail destination and premium office and residential choice. The Dallas Morning News story about this announcement is here, the press release from Icon Partners is here.

The first phase of this new development is a 500,000 square foot development that will sit on a fabulous new lake, with construction beginning before the end of the year. This phase will be a Mediterranean-inspired, lakefront town center, with plazas, gazebos, parks, fountains, and walking trails.

"The announcement of the Shops at Mercer Crossing is a great day for Farmers Branch. This is the kind of world class development that will bring excitement, money, energy and people from all over to Farmers Branch," stated Mayor Pro Tem Tim O'Hare in the press release from Icon Partners. "On behalf of the Mayor and City Council, I express our great enthusiasm and optimism for this project, because our residents have been longing to be part of a high quality development like this for a long time."

A development like this has far-reaching effects. First, it provides retail, dining, and recreational options to our citizens. Second, it increases our tax base, which allows us to provide more services to our citizens, and third, development chases development, and this exciting project will lead to more exciting projects across the city.

"This will happen quickly," City Manager Gary Greer said, "we are not messing around."
That about sums up this Council and City Manager's philosphy. Let's get things done for our citizens.

See you at the ground-breaking.

Great things are happening in Farmers Branch!
Tim Scott


Monday, February 25, 2008

High Profile Intersection: Valley View and Webb Chapel

Hope everyone had a great weekend.

I receive almost daily questions about the soon-to-be-removed house at the Southwest corner of Webb Chapel and Valley View, and what will happen to that lot. The city owns that property, as well as the property at the corner of Nestle and Valley View, and sold the houses to a company that is relocating them. One of this council's goals is to build upon the great foundation we have in our wonderful parks, and continue to accentuate and improve the aesthetic beauty of our city. We are going to use these lots as landscaped "parks" that further beautify our city, and continue to build our brand as a "city in a park." These lots won't be parks in the sense that they are designed to be visited, but instead will showcase landscape features that will be visibile to the tens of thousands of people who drive down our major east-west roadway on a daily basis. It's exciting, and the type of thing you will see more and more of going forward.

Have a great week!
Tim Scott

Friday, February 22, 2008

Choose Your Friends Wisely

Local realtor Gene Bledsoe announced yesterday that he is running for Mayor of Farmers Branch, challenging widely popular Mayor Pro Tem Tim O’Hare. I worked closely with Mr. Bledsoe when we were members of the Branch Revitalization Task Force, and have definite opinions about why he is the wrong person to lead this city, and why electing him would undermine all of the exciting progress we are making. But there’s time for that.

Today I want to call attention to Mr. Bledsoe’s relationships and campaign confidants.

Mr. Bledsoe is quoted here saying that our citizen’s stance against illegal immigration wouldn’t benefit the city, and would simply be “buying swimming pools for lawyers.” The lawyers he’s referring to are from the law firm of Bickel and Brewer, who bankrolled the opposition to Ordinance 2903 last Spring, and were soundly defeated at the ballot box. Bickel and Brewer represent multiple lawsuits filed against the city, and rely heavily for PR on their former Director of Communications, Travis Carter. Mr. Carter was also the leader of the ill-fated opposition to Ordinance 2903, the one Bickel and Brewer funded. Well, at Mr. Bledsoe’s press conference, guess who was at his side, giving advice and crafting his message? Travis Carter.

So while mocking the city for defending itself against frivolous lawsuits, Mr. Bledsoe is receiving counsel and support from the very people bringing these lawsuits.

So who’s side is Mr. Bledsoe really on? The vast and vocal majority of the citizens of Farmers Branch, or the self-serving law firm repeatedly suing the city? I know which side Mr. Bledsoe is on, though I’m not sure he even realizes it. And that’s even more troubling. Welcome to the Bledsoe team, Bickel and Brewer.

Also lending support at the press conference was previously unsuccessful City Council candidate Jose Galvez. Mr. Galvez was the candidate propped up in last Spring’s elections by activist and convicted felon Carlos Quintanilla. You remember Mr. Quintanilla, the organizer of multiple protests against Farmers Branch, and noted scofflaw, who was arrested on multiple outstanding warrants in Dallas County when trying to lead a protest against the city of Irving. Welcome to the Bledsoe Team, gentlemen.

It’s no secret that Mr. Bledsoe has met repeatedly with business owner and Dallas resident Elizabeth Villafranca to discuss ways to thwart this City Council’s desire to carry out the mandate of our citizens. Mrs. Villafranca was also lending her support to Mr. Bledsoe at his press conference. Mrs. Villafranca is an outspoken critic of Farmers Branch, and was the President of the Farmers Branch chapter of LULAC, until she resigned during last year’s election campaign, partly due to the fiasco of filing a sworn affidavit and perjuring herself, accusing me of intimidating her and scaring her young daughter. (You can rehash that charade here.) It was a total lie, the first of several. When my attorney tried to get her under oath to tell the truth, she dodged the subpoena like a squirrel dodging cars on a busy street. Welcome to the Bledsoe team, Mrs. Villafranca.

This is an important election for farmers Branch. Maybe the most important, because the foundation has been laid for the incredible hometown we all want: more parks, more retail, more development, all within the fiscal security of our pay-as-you-go budget. We don’t need a Mayor who takes advice from the very outsiders who have consistently put the will of the people in their cross-hairs and pulled the trigger, disparaging our citizens and wasting our time.

Mr. Bledsoe is the wrong candidate for many reasons. Who he’s listening to and who he’s serving is one of the biggest.

Tim Scott

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Developers Marc & Roger Andres: We've Got a Spot for You!

This article in the DMN outlines the frustration that Henderson Avenue developers Marc & Roger Andres are facing trying to transform an abandoned grocery store into a vibrant mixed-use development. Marc and Roger: We have just the place in Farmers Branch! We'd welcome you with open arms.

Tim Scott

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Everything's Coming Up Roses in FB

So that I don't get charged with Obama-style plagarism, I will declare up front that this information is lifted verbatim from the City of Farmers Branch website. I hope everyone can participate!

It may be the dead of winter, but that’s prime time for planting roses in the new National EarthKind Trial Garden and Display Garden which has been under construction at Gussie Field Watterworth Park, at Valley View and Dennis Lanes, near Farmers Branch City Hall. Now that the ground has been prepared, the community is invited to come out and help plant the roses on Friday, February 22nd between the hours of 8 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Parks Landscape Manager Pam Smith is asking anyone interested to let them know you’re coming by calling 972-919-2620. She said if everyone will bring their workgloves, the City will provide tools and – more importantly – lunch. Ms. Smith said more than 700 roses will be planted for the garden that will test for the environmentally-friendly EarthKind roses and display known performers that will include the past five years of All American Rose selections.

Beyond planting day, there are many volunteer opportunities for both a one-time or ongoing basis. For more information on the event or the gardens, please call Pam Smith at 972-919-2620.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Happy President's Day!

Here's hoping in the near future our great Nation finds selfless leaders in the mold of Washington and Lincoln.

Tim Scott

Friday, February 15, 2008

Do You Know You Can Dedicate a New Street Sign?

As part of our beautification initiatives, we are replacing our existing street signs with new, decorative ones that will add character to all our neighborhoods. Currently, you can find these street signs in Branch Crossing, and at residential intersections on Josey and Webb Chapel. Our plan is replace ever street sign over the next several years, but you can get one on your street right away, and honor someone close to you in the process. Go here for information.

Tim Scott

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Texas State Lawmakers to Consider Laws Similar to Oklahoma

The state of Oklahoma passed sweeping illegal alien enforcement laws last year by huge margins, and so far they have stood up in court. One of the questions I receive the most is "why can't the State of Texas do the same thing?" There's a story today that indicates that legislators in Texas are planning to do just.

Call your representatives and show them your support.

Tim Scott

Monday, February 11, 2008

"What are you going to do, deport twelve million people?!?"

One of the things that opponents to enforcing the immigration laws of the United States often shout hysterically is "What are you going to do, deport twelve million people?" The answer - always met with derision and mocking - is "we won't have to." Well, here's evidence from Fox News that we really won't have to: Illegals Begin Leaving Arizona as New Law Approaches.

UPDATE: Here's more info.

Tim Scott

Sunday, February 10, 2008

More and More, Courts Upholding Local Immigration Laws

I am no fan of the New York Times, but here's an interesting article about the legal trend developing for state and local governments passing immigration laws and ordinances. Is the tide turning? Let's hope so.

Tim Scott

UPDATE: Here's my favorite quote, from Judge Payne of Oklahoma:

“These illegal alien plaintiffs seek nothing more than to use this court as a vehicle for their continued unlawful presence in this country,” he wrote. “To allow these plaintiffs to do so would make this court an ‘abettor of iniquity,’ and this court finds that simply unpalatable.”

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

We're Getting Used to This

Well, we got sued again, and by the usual suspects, Guillermo Ramos and the law firm of Bickel and Brewer. To comment on it other than to say that it's the most ridiculous waste of paper imaginable would give too much credence to it. It's shocking how void of merit this suit is. But a little worthless lawsuit isn't slowing us down from carrying out the will of the people and bringing substantive progress to Farmers Branch. We're all still at work this morning.

By the way, our attorneys received an actual copy of the lawsuit from the press, not from the plantiff or his attorneys. There's no question what their motives are.

Tim Scott

Monday, February 4, 2008

I Support Harold Froehlich for City Council, Place 2

I support Harold Froehlich for Farmers Branch City Council, Place 2. Harold is an outstanding candidate to represent the citizens of Farmers Branch. He and his wife, Kathy, have lived in FB for twenty years, and have been very invovled in the community, volunteering with Boy Scouts, PTA, and youth sports. They have a son currently enrolled at RL Turner, and a son serving in active duty with the United States Air Force.

I have spent time discussing our great city with Harold, and am convinced he is the best person for this job at this time. His love for FB and his vision for what it can become is something that all of us agree with. He's pro-revitalization, tough on crime, and an ardent supporter of our efforts regarding illegal immigration.

Harold has more than More than 35 years of Financial and Business Experience with Major Financial and Real Estate Institutions, and understands the complex nature of redevelopment and neighborhood revitalization. He is a Commissioner on the Farmers Branch Planning and Zoning Board, and is a member of both the Farmers Branch Rotary Club, and the Farmers Branch Chamber of Commerce. Harold is the only candidate for Place 2 endorsed by myself, Councilman David Koch, and Mayor Pro Tem Tim O'Hare.

Please visit Harold's website here to learn more about him and his plan of action for Farmers Branch.

Friday, February 1, 2008

U.S. District Judge Decisively Upholds the Right of Cities to Enforece Immigration Laws

Here's what the Dallas Morning News isn't reporting on, choosing instead to focus on the racial politics of beans: In a landmark ruling handed down on January 31, U.S. District Judge E. Richard Webber decisively upheld the right of local governments to enforce laws against illegal immigration by denying business licenses to employers who hire illegal aliens. Judge Webbers ruling rejected every argument presented by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund challenging Valley Parks authority to suspend the licenses of businesses that employ illegal aliens.

Lead Counsel for Valley Park is Kris Kobach, who recently consulted on drafting Farmers Branch Oridnance 2952.

You can read more about it here and here.


Have a great weekend,
Tim Scott

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