City Hall

DART Board Member Tells Council He's No Longer Associated With Wet-Dry Lawsuit

The council's Transportation and Environment Committee is being briefed on streetcar funding at this very moment. We'll get back to that shortly. But a little while ago, the committee was interviewing Dallas Area Rapid Transit board nominees, among them Jerry Christian Sr., who's a sitting board member and has been since he was appointed in '07.

At the end of the interview process, Jerry Allen asked the one question worth asking: Does Christian's involvement in the lawsuit seeking to overturn the citywide sale of beer and wine conflict with his ability to serve the board and the city? To which Christian offered a surprising response: "I'm not on that lawsuit now." He said he's still against the sale of beer and wine citywide, especially in the southern sector, and that he'll continue to fight it, just not in the courthouse.

Which is news to city attorneys who note, one week before that summary judgment hearing, that Christian is still listed as one of two plaintiffs, along with real-estater Marcus Wood, and that nothing's been filed to remove him from the litigation. I've left a message for, and sent an e-mail to, Leland de la Garza, one of the attorneys suing the city.

Update at 3:45 p.m.: Attorney Andy Siegel, who works with de la Garza, heard I had a question and shot me a what's-up email. I told him what Christian told the council and asked for a clarification: Who, exactly, is suing the city to overturn Proposition 1? He responded: "I know the Reverend has felt heat for his involvement, but haven't been advised of any lawsuit changes. Will get back with you." Updates forthcoming.

Update at 8:30 p.m.: De la Garza just replied via email: "He is still a party. No change." He also wondered why I asked. When I told de la Garza what Christian told the council, he said he would double-check with Siegel. More in the morning.

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Robert Wilonsky
Contact: Robert Wilonsky