City Hall

What's On the Council's To-Do List Today?

Here, to start your morning, a few highlights from today's 858-page council agenda, which we'll begin with a shout-out to Brad Kirby. Surely you remember him? Back in January, Kirby went down to Dallas City Hall to tell the horseshoe about his stolen dogs. He proposed an ordinance that would make it an offense if a person "takes possession or control of a dog ... and knowingly fails to deliver it to the animal shelter or a licensed veterinarian for identification scanning with 48 hours."

City officials looked into it, and Assistant City Manager Forest Turner responded in an informational memo to the council a month later, "This is unenforceable by code and is civil issue between two individuals claiming ownership of the same property." Except ... council will vote today on an ordinance that more or less reads just like Kirby's proposal. OK, so the time frame has been extended to 72 hours, but other than that ...

The proposed ordinance would add Section 7-4.12 to the Dallas City Code to create an offense if a person takes possession of a stray dog in the city and knowingly fails to make, within 72 hours after taking possession, a reasonable effort to locate the dog's owner by: (1) calling the telephone number listed on the dog's tags; (2) taking the dog to a licensed veterinarian for a microchip, tattoo, or other identification screening and calling the owner identified through the screening; (3) calling 311 to request that animal services pick up the dog for identification screening and impoundment; or (4) delivering the dog to the city's animal shelter for identification screening and impoundment. A violation of the proposed ordinance would be punishable by a fine not to exceed $500.
Ah. (Update: Council OK'd the ordinance this morning.) And I see that the council will also vote today on that teardown ordinance that's been a thorn in preservationists' side since it was first introduced in August 2008. Last month, you may recall, it went before the council's Public Safety Committee, which slid it through without listening to one word from the experts -- among them, Preservation Dallas exec director Katherine Seale, who said this process of expediting demolition of old homes deemed a health and public safety threat "completely obliterates" the historic preservation program.

The Joule expansion will get its $20 million in TIF money today. Belo Garden will get its $1,666,191 in remediation funds today. Massana Construction will get its $5,575,149 to build out the Santa Fe Trestle today. And National Waste Management Services and Raynor Shine will get, respectively, $372,018 and $961,415 for helping to remove debris left over from the snow storm in February. Says the agenda, "Had the city not secured the assistance of contract crews, the debris removal period would have been doubled -- extending until the end of June."

But you know who's also getting some money (back): plumbing contractors, who will no longer be forced to pay city-imposed registration fees per a state law that took effect at the beginning of the year. The city expects to lose $30,000 annually. And, finally, this expenditure's worth noting too: $75,000. That's how much the city is going to spend ...

... to implement the first phase of the Pleasant Grove Economic Development Program to fund the marketing and design work aimed at improving the image and perception of the Pleasant Grove community thereby encouraging future business and commercial activities within the area.
Take that, Zazzle.