Many neighbors have contacted me recently asking me about the status of the city’s redistricting plan. Below is an update on that item. The public is invited to attend any meeting by the Redistricting Committee. The Committee’s next meeting will be Wednesday, April 27, at 6pm, in the upstairs Study Session Room at City Hall.
Also below is information regarding openings on the various Boards & Commissions the city has. Serving on a city Board or Commission is a fun way to get involved with making decisions that will help guide our city’s future. The application process is easy and we are always looking for interested people to serve. Let me know if you apply so I can advocate for you when we are making selections.
Early voting starts Monday and I have provided information on that.
Please be sure to scroll down to the end for a comment about the upcoming council elections and candidates.
If you need information on something that is not listed please feel free to message me and I will try to help you with your concern.
CITY REDISTRICTING UPDATE
Because we have council districts, we are mandated by law to look at the size of each voting district every 10 years and re-balance districts to make sure we have approximately the same number of residents in each district.
Here is a brief update on the status of the committee…
- The committee has reached the halfway point in its endeavor to develop and deliver an official recommendation to Council for consideration
- The committee has unanimously agreed upon the first of two maps that will ultimately be presented during the June Council meeting
- The plan complies with all criteria set forth in Section 7.10(c) of the City Charter and Resolution No. 2021-166
- The plan strengthens District 1’s Hispanic total population and Hispanic voting age population
- The plan establishes District 2 as a second district with a majority Hispanic total population
- The plan preserves/restores neighborhoods of interest
- The plan utilizes compact districts composed of contiguous territory with easily identifiable geographic boundaries
As the commission wraps up work over the next 5 weeks, a second map will be established as well as a list census blocks that the commission agreed should be bifurcated prior to the 2030 Census. This was intended to deliver a quick overview of the redistricting commissions work thus far.
COMMENT: When the committee was established, the council agreed not to interfere with their process. I have not attended any of their meetings in order to give them complete autonomy in creating a plan to serve the city. If you have specific questions about their work let me know and I can refer you to one of the committee members to get answers.
EARLY VOTING STARTS MONDAY
FARMERS BRANCH LOCAL ELECTIONS & CFBISD SCHOOL BOARD ELECTIONS are right around the corner for Council District 1 and Council District 4
• Early Voting for Farmers Branch Elections begins April 25 and runs thru May 3
• Election Day for Farmers Branch Elections is May 7
• Early Voting runs:
April 25-29 Monday – Friday 8AM TO 5PM
April 30 Saturday 7AM TO 7PM
May 1 Sunday 12PM TO 6PM
May 2-3 Monday & Tuesday 7AM TO 7PM
Make sure your voice is heard…VOTE!
In Farmers Branch, you will be able to vote at Dallas College Brookhaven Campus or at the Manske Library
The Farmers Branch Chamber of Commerce recently held a candidate forum. Click FORUM to see the event.
Candidates Richard Jackson for District 4 and Omar Roman for District 1 are both supported by the Farmers Branch Police Officers Association and the MetroTex Association of Realtors.
As a reminder, residents can Vote Anywhere in Dallas County also.
MAY CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS
Upcoming City Council meetings for May will take place Tuesday, May 3rd, and May 17th, at 6pm, in the City Council Chambers. The meetings are open to the public. The Study Sessions will take place at 3:00pm prior to each meeting in the upstairs meeting room.
Citizens are always welcome to address the City Council on any topic during the Citizen Comment portion of Council meetings or on agenda items at the proper time during a Council meeting provided they have signed-up in advance per the Mayor’s order. Citizen Comment Forms must be submitted no later than 5:30pm on Council meeting days. Citizens are given 3 minutes to speak to any topic as long as they are cordial and don’t make disparaging remarks to Council or staff. This is your time to bring issues to the attention of Council and the City.
The agenda for the Council Meetings and Study Sessions may be found by clicking on AGENDA.
Call 972.919.2503 or send an email to Amy Piukana at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about speaking.
WANT TO SERVE OUR CITY?…APPLY FOR A BOARD POSITION
We are still seeking volunteers to fill annual vacancies for various Boards and Commissions. Volunteers requirements are listed below for each board. Please remember we have 7 regular members with 2 alternates for each board. Serving as an alternate does NOT count against your term or effect term limits. (It’s extra time to learn what the board is all about.) Volunteers need to apply online (FBBoards.com) Now – May 1st.
Animal Shelter Advisory Committee– This Committee consists of nine members, one of which is a licensed veterinarian, one city official, one person whose duties include the daily operations of the animal shelter, and one representative from an animal welfare organization. All members of this board serve 2 year terms and must pass a criminal background check.
Art & Culture Committee – This Committee makes recommendations in connection with public art programs and other matters requested by City Council. This Committee has 9 members with special qualifications required for a representative of the Brookhaven College School of Arts, the Carrollton/Farmers Branch ISD Department of Fine Arts, the Firehouse Theatre, the business community, and a resident and/or a local non-profit focused on community art. Members serve two year terms and pass a criminal background check and residency unless otherwise specified.
Historical Preservation & Restoration Board– This Board consists of nine members who must be residents and registered voters of the City of Farmers Branch. All members must pass a criminal background check. Members of this board serve 2 year terms with a six year term limit.
Manske Library Board– The Library Board serves as an advisory board to the City Council and consists of nine members. To be eligible to serve on the Board, a person must be a resident of Farmers Branch, a registered voter, and pass a criminal background check. Members of this board serve 2 year terms with a six year term limit.
Municipal Drainage System Advisory Committee– This Committee includes six members, one member must be a city resident or HOA representative, a representative of the business community, a representative of the construction and development industry within Farmers Branch, current member of the Valwood Improvement Authority Director, and an ex-officio City Council Member. All members of this board must pass a criminal background check and serve 4 year terms.
Parks and Recreation Board– This Board is comprised of nine members. The board makes recommendations in connection with the operation of the park facilities and recreation programs and other matters requested by the City Council or City Administration. All appointees must be a resident of Farmers Branch, a registered voter and pass a criminal background check. Members serve a 2 year term with a six year term limit.
Planning and Zoning Commission– The Planning and Zoning Commission is an advisory board to the City Council concerning matters primarily related to development and land use of private property and the planning of public improvements. The Planning and Zoning Commission is comprised of nine members who must be residents of Farmers Branch, registered voters, and pass a criminal background check. Members serve a 3 year term with a six year term limit.
Senior Advisory Board– The Senior Advisory Board serves as an advisory board to the City Council on all issues relating to The Branch Connection including programs and improvements. The Board is comprised of nine members. To be eligible to serve, each member must be a resident, a registered voter, at least 50 years of age or older, and pass a criminal background check.
Sustainability Committee– The Sustainability Committee assists with sustainable initiatives which includes researching projects directed by City Council. The Committee consists of nine members who are registered voters of Farmers Branch and have passed a criminal background check. Each member serves a 3-year term.
Zoning Board of Adjustments & Building Code Board of Appeals– The ZBA acts as an alternative for the consideration of individual site requests for relief from the interpretation and enforcement of Zoning Ordinances. They review applicant hardships. The Board consists of 9 members. Each member must be a registered voter of Farmers Branch, and pass a criminal background check. Members serve 2 year terms with a six year term limit.
The City Council also appoints members to the Farmers Branch Local Government Corporation, TIF I , TIF II, TIF III Boards, Metrocrest Hospital Authority Board, DART Board and various other community boards, as deemed necessary.
FREE CONCERTS AT THE GROVE
GREEN GRABBER BULK PICK-UP
The week of May 2-6, will be Bulk Item Pick-Up Week. The Green Grabber will pick up BULK items on the same day as your recycling bin pick-up. Bulk consists of furniture, mattresses, appliances, etc.
The other weeks of the month the Green Grabber will only pick-up BRUSH.
Residents may call for a “special bulk pick-up” by The Green Grabber as this service has not changed. Special Pick-Up’s are done on Wednesdays. Call 972-919-2597.
BRING THE KIDS!!
FREE MEAL FOR ACTIVE ADULTS AT TBC
The First Monday Breakfast for May takes place Monday, May 2, at 9am at The Branch Connection and will be limited to the first 100 active adults. Free for TBC members and $5 for non-members. Come join us for some good food, meet new neighbors and see what all is happening at TBC!
I have had the privilege of serving as your City Council Representative for the past six years and up until this point, I refrained from endorsing any candidate or issue in my newsletter. Since I am terming-out and will be off council in May, I felt that I could endorse candidates now because, like you, I want the best and most qualified people to serve our city.
I do not believe that it is proper for sitting council members or the mayor to take sides for or against certain candidates. Council members and the mayor will have to work with whoever gets elected.
To date, we have seen some very disparaging comments by council members and the mayor against certain candidates, as well as myself for supporting certain individuals. Those comments do not benefit our city and serve to create division and a hostile environment for anyone who gets elected that is not of the mayor or council choosing. That is not the way our system is supposed to work.
Again, as someone who is exiting, I believe I have the right to express my view. However, if I was going to remain on council I would not have endorsed anyone.
I ask all remaining council members and the mayor to think and act with dignity and respect… not only to themselves but also to all candidates.
Our city is too small to have the ugliness towards candidates overshadow all of the things we are supposed to be working to achieve.
MESSAGE FROM CANDIDATE RICHARD JACKSON
It has been an honor to meet many of you and hear your stories. At times, it has even been emotional. Representing you as a City Council member is an opportunity I take seriously. As your City Councilmember it would be my privilege and duty to advocate for you, regardless of my own opinions. You deserve a city government that INVITES your ideas and concerns. That is why it is important that we meet. I have walked almost every street in District 4 at least once. If we’ve missed each other, please call me at (469) 855-5276 or email Richard.email@example.com. I’d love to stop by and chat. I look forward to earning your vote. Meanwhile, visit www.richardjacksonfb.com to learn more about my background and priorities.
MEET CANDIDATE OMAR ROMAN THIS SATURDAY
As you can see, there’s lots happening in our city… Click on the following links to see what else is going on:
Please let me hear from you regarding any questions, comments or concerns you have about our great city. Thank you again for allowing me to represent you.