Abrams-Brookside Meet and Greet

Karen Casey held a terrific meet and greet this evening in her Abrams-Brookside home. We had an in-depth discussion about zoning, the strong mayor proposal, and animal control.

I was pleased to report to several animal-lovers in attendance that the successful 2003 Bond Program, which I worked to pass as a member of the Bond Campaign Steering Committee, has provided the funds to build a state-of-the-art animal shelter. Groundbreaking on the $15 million dollar facility occurred last November, and construction at the site, located at Interstate 30 and Westmoreland Road, is scheduled for completion next year.

Much thanks to Karen and her guests for a great evening!

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Apartment Association of Greater Dallas Candidate Interviews

I enjoyed visiting with the leadership of the Apartment Association of Greater Dallas. After a full day of interviewing candidates from council district 1 – 13, they were no doubt weary. I appreciated hearing about issues specific to the apartment industry, and will work with them to ensure their concerns are addressed at City Hall.

Sammons Center for the Arts Candidate Forum

Although the turn-out wasn’t quite as high as I had hoped, I attended a good discussion about the arts in Dallas this evening at the Sammons Center.

The arts are very important to me. I played the violin growing up, was in theater in college, have served as the Cultural Affairs Commissioner for District 14, and have served on various arts boards. I feel very strongly that the arts benefit us both culturally and economically, and that our city must nurture and support our arts groups. I’m proud that the Arts District is part of District 14, and look forward to watching our Arts District blossom in the decade ahead.

The Real Estate Council Candidate Interviews

I enjoyed meeting with the leadership of The Real Estate Council today. They were very interested in my plan to improve economic development in Dallas, and I hope to partner with them in the future to make our city business-friendly.

UPDATE: I am pleased to report that The Real Estate Council has endorsed me. I appreciate this endorsement and look forward to working with TREC.

Greater Dallas Restaurant Assc. & Hotel Assc. of Greater Dallas

Candidates from District 14 answered questions from the Restaurant Association today at the Westin City Center. We were asked about the smoking ban (which I support), economic development, and Dallas’ hotel occupancy rates.

I made it clear to the associations that I believe we cannot continue to fund every big-ticket project in Dallas through hotel taxes. Dallas’ convention business has suffered due to these high surcharges, and, as a result, we have fewer tourists spending money in our city.