DISD Board trustee Mike Morath was featured in a Dallas Morning News Q&A over the weekend. You should read it. Morath also apparently feels the Q&A needs some clarification, which he has just issued via the miracle of e-mail. Read with your eyes:Full Story
In 2010 I wrote a cover story on John Carona entitled “The Last Republican.” Why that title? Because John represented the last and the best of the old GOP.
He believed in a state government that was fiscally responsible, paying its bills, keeping debt down, and planning for the future. The new Republicans seem to believe in only one thing: no new taxes. If that means we have tollroads instead of state roads at four times the cost to the taxpayer (because the private owners have to recoup their investment), that’s fine with them, because it means no new taxes. If it means state government borrows to keep up with population growth, that’s fine with them, because it means no new taxes (and it also means that one state agency, TXDOT, is $30 billion in debt with service on that debt taking up one-half its budget). In this new regime, short-sightedness is a virtue. It drove John Carona crazy.Full Story
A couple of weeks ago, during a rare moment while I was in my living room and not watching Friday Night Lights on Netflix and/or asleep on the couch, I happened across an attack ad from prospective lieutenant governor Dan Patrick. Now that Patrick is in a runoff against David Dewhurst, you can probably expect more of these things, which are so over the top, they are almost parodies.Full Story
A visual analysis. (Click on photo.)
Anxious to see if Westcott’s message to voters tightens up for his May runoff with Morgan Meyer (who got 47 percent of the vote in the House District 108 race).Full Story
If you read the story in the Sunday paper, you know that there will be people at polling locations tomorrow asking you to sign a petition to explore remaking DISD. It’s a great idea, one that could lead to meaningful change. Two things that struck me:Full Story
Can Dallas ISD Turn Into a Home-Rule District? Technically, yes, because of a 1995 state law. And the group Support Our Public Schools is trying to do it. On Tuesday, petitioners will meet Dallasites at the primary polls, looking to collect nearly 25,000 signatures. With the necessary signatures, the proposal could get on the ballot as early as November. No specific changes are on the table yet beyond the home-rule proposal, which would allow DISD to largely operate separate of state control. It would be the first district in the state to do so.
Part of Sylvan Thirty Burns Down. The West Dallas project was engulfed in flames (video) Saturday afternoon, setting off a two-alarm fire allegedly started by someone welding inside. The two-story building, the remnants of which will now be torn down, was going to house a yoga studio and a restaurant as one part of the $50 million project.
Steve Blow: Stop It. Just Stop It. It looks like he’s talking to us, all of you in the comments section, and certainly Patrick Kennedy. We all need to stop talking about tearing down I-345 because, “It’s never, ever, not-in-a-million-years going to happen.” Okay then.
Today Could Be the Coldest Day of the Season. That’s according to meteorologist Jesse Moore. Schools are closed, there’s a wind chill advisory until 8 a.m., and it’s cold. Very cold. Stay safe out there. More updates here.Full Story
We’ve been talking about Fair Park for so long, the agenda to fix it is really already laid out. All the task force should do is implement these five initiatives.Full Story
DART Contract Up For Extension. MV Transportation’s two-year pilot period will come to an end in September, but some DART staffers insist the contract should be re-opened for other bids. MV operates a fleet of paratransit vehicles that service the elderly and disabled. Some allege that since MV took over from Veolia Transportation in 2012, there have been problems. MV has even been fined some $335,000 for performance issues. Still, some board members insist there isn’t enough time to accept new bids. The contract is expected to be extended Tuesday.
Despite Felony, Constable Running For His Old Job. Who says a felony holds you back? Not this guy. Derick Evans is actively campaigning for his former Dallas County constable Precinct 1 position, the one he was removed from after he was convicted of running illegal raffles. Two federal lawsuits are also pending against the county from when Evans held the constable position, and he was accused of a vehicle-towing scam.
The Fascinating Tale of Eric Brauss. It’s not so fascinating for those who say he scammed them out of millions, but the Dallas Morning News details the rise and fall of the Dallas-based developer who eventually fled to Brazil and died last late last year, though some believe that’s just another part of his scheme to evade prosecution.
Times Criticized for Wendy Davis Cover. Last week, I pointed you to The New York Times Magazine’s profile of Wendy Davis. This week, the Times’ public editor responds to complaints alleging sexism in the story.
Westbound Lanes of LBJ Closed After Fatal A.M. Accident. Be careful out there during your morning commute.Full Story
Cops Arrest Driveway Robbers. On Thursday night in Oak Cliff, Dallas Police nabbed a man and a woman they say can be tied to several of the rash of 24 driveway holdups committed since January. It’s unclear whether these suspects are connected to the other incidents in this crime spree.
Domestic Violence Charges Against Judge Dropped. After a grand jury declined to indict District Judge Carlos Cortez for allegedly assaulting his former girlfriend, the district attorney’s office said it’s done with the case. Cortez said the case had been trumped up by people with a political agenda. He’s up for re-election this year and faces a primary challenge March 4.
There is a 107-year-old Licensed Driver in Texas. The Department of Public Safety wouldn’t reveal the identity of the centenarian motorist. Could be he or she is still in the best shape of his or her life, but even if that’s not the case, from the sound of this WFAA report, the DPS is virtually powerless to deprive even the elderly suffering dementia or severe loss of hearing of their licenses, so long as they can pass an eye test.Full Story
Can Wendy Davis Have it All? The New York Times Magazine is asking this rather stale question in its perhaps now-definitive profile of the Fort Worth-based governor hopeful. Also interesting: The photographer who took the cover shot and the behind-the-scenes Q&A with writer Robert Draper.
Dallas Woman Fighting to Get “Revenge Porn” Removed From the Internet. This case seems a touch different from the rest, in which people send their x-rated pics to whomever and then are dumbfounded when they end up on the Internet. In this instance, “Lisa” (the Dallas Morning News respected her wishes not to be identified) says she didn’t know the pics were taken (?) and is in the midst of a costly fight to keep her ex at bay and get the images removed. This sounds awful. But two questions: 1. She’s contemplating paying $2,000 to ripoffreport.com to get personal details removed. What does this have to do with the revenge porn? 2. If the ex hasn’t been charged with the crime, why is his name used throughout the story?
Health Department Skipped Some Stops at DFW Airport. NBC 5 is reporting that because of the West Nile virus, some 30 restaurants went more than a year without required inspections. Health inspectors are supposed to visit twice a year, but they were out spraying for mosquitoes instead. Now, I’m sure, we’ll all get the joy of hearing what restaurants have moldy ice buckets in the near future.
T.D. Jakes Battling a Stalker. Karleisha Tarver, also known as Karleisha Washington in Dallas County Jail records, will not stop showing up at The Potter’s House churches in Dallas and Fort Worth, where she has been “excommunicated,” and Jakes’ Fort Worth home, where she is clearly not welcome. She allegedly appeared at his door four times alone in January. The unwelcome appearances started in 2011.Full Story
Wilonsky scoops the Dallas city attorney’s office in finding out about the lawsuit filed this morning by Trinity East Energy, which paid the city $19 million for mineral rights on public land in northwest Dallas only to have the council change the rules on drilling:
The Dallas City Attorney’s Office was unaware of the suit until contacted by The Dallas Morning Newsthis morning. We expect a reply later today.
The suit maintains that when it signed its deals with the city on August 15, 2008, it received a letter from then-Dallas City Manager Mary Suhm saying she was “reasonably confident” Trinity East would be able to drill on the 22-acre tract of land on the west side of Luna Vista.
In a statement issued this morning, Trinity East Energy President Stephen Fort says, “This is about a deal, plain and simple. We had a deal with the City of Dallas, and they went back on it. The city made promises to us and took our money. They sold us minerals but then denied us the ability to extract them.”
“Friends, these ‘illegals’ are people. They are human beings who love their little ones just as much as you and I love our little ones. They want a better life for their families and they want their children to have a better life than they have had.”Full Story
This headline just
trolled me showed up in my Twitter feed:
Oh my stars. Okay, if you don’t remember all the details of this absolute b.s. investigation, I don’t have the energy to recount it again. Just know I wanted to call your attention to this because, really, it’s the perfect DMN DISD blog post. Its construction is a thing of beauty:Full Story
Road conditions are getting worse, so the city has downgraded (or escalated) matters to Ice Force Level 2. At first, I found this news confusing, since I was under the impression that Ice Force operated much the same as DEFCON, where 1 means nuclear war is imminent.
As evidenced by the NBC 5 chopper video shot this morning around 635 and Royal Lane, you’ve got to be careful out there.Full Story
A former director of both the National Security Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency says North Texas is just a few hundred miles away from a country that embodies one of the most significant security problems of our time: Mexico.Full Story