Harlan Crow PACs a Punch in His Fight Against Convention Center Hotel

Anne Raymond

Harlan Crow, owner of the Hilton Anatole and longtime critic of a publicly owned convention center hotel, upped the ante Wednesday afternoon in his quest to kill the project. Turns out, he's spearheading a political action committee called Citizens Against a Taxpayer Owned Hotel, which was formed by Anne Raymond, who handles the hotel investments for Crow Holdings.

“This was a first step, and we’re still investigating different strategies,” Raymond tells Unfair Park. “But clearly people need to be better informed about what’s going on here.”

It would appear that this is a “first step” toward a referendum, but Raymond would only reveal that this is the beginning of getting a coalition built and educating the public. “We’re still figuring out the next steps,” she says. “We’re exploring all the options.”

This comes after Crow sent Mayor Leppert not one, not two, but three angry missives regarding the city’s plans for to build a convention center hotel. After hotel proponents chickened out of debating Raymond at an event held by The Dallas 40, she spoke alone at the rescheduled event held Tuesday night.

“I have talked till I’m blue in the face to council members, so it was nice to have people who were interested in understanding what is going on,” Raymond says. “I think people were a little surprised about how much it’s going to cost, what the potential losses are, and that it’s all going to be on the shoulders of the taxpayers. And it’s all going on behind closed doors. If it’s so good, why won’t anybody talk about it?”

Raymond will continue to brush up on her debating skills at noon on September 3 at the Fairmont Hotel during the meeting of The Rotary Club of Dallas. --Sam Merten