Hello, I'm from City Hall and I'm here to help you. Not!

Instead of getting aggressive on Lower Greenville, Hunt wants City Staff to fix the problems they helped create

Dallas City Council Member Angela Hunt has put the parking space/patio conversion proposal in a holding pattern while City Staff tries to untie the knot they created on Lower Greenville Avenue.

We can only hope she includes the people who live out here in the war-zone and not folks from LGNA who could not find Lower Greenville without a map or police escort.

According to an email sent out early Saturday morning by Ms Hunt [notes added for explanation only by BD]:

Given the violence in the last few weeks on Greenville Avenue [a shooting at Martel/Greenville which left one person dead, and a knife-slashing at Bell/Greenville, which left several people injured], I have created a taskforce of city representatives to pull together information about Lower Greenville so that we can address the problems we have in the area (crime, noise, parking, traffic, etc.) comprehensively.

Councilmember Pauline Medrano [District 2] and I share Lower Greenville [the area south of Belmont], and are working together on this.

After gathering staff input, we look forward to getting input from residents and business owners and working with you to address these issues.

We don’t want to piecemeal any significant changes to the area as we try to create a larger solution.

For this reason, I have advised the applicant [Andres Real Estate et al] for the parking space/patio conversion that consideration of his request will be delayed until we have developed a comprehensive solution to our Lower Greenville problems.

BD really believes Ms Hunt's heart is in the right place, but she just does not understand the juggernaut that is Dallas City Hall.

The problems on Lower Greenville did not develop overnight. They started nearly ten years ago when scumbars moved into the area claiming to be restaurants. They were issued Certificate of Occupancy permits by an inspector who had no problem belting back a few beers with his friends in the bars. When one resident confronted this inspector during a beer bust, this inspector just laughed in his face.

Ms Hunt does get involved on a personal level, and that's all she can do. Just an hour after BD got his now-dismissed 911 abuse ticket from DPD Officer Mike Welch, and the obscene email from former DPD Sgt. Ray Gonzalez, Hunt was on Greenville Avenue with BD and his posse. After a quick lesson in email sourcing and IP tracing, she knew that we were right in our claim that the email came from a DPD computer terminal inside Central SubStation.

Hunt spent the rest of the evening on the Lower Greenville - without a police escort to keep her from seeing the trouble spots - calling in noise violations from her cell phone. It's amazing that she did not get a 911 abuse ticket, too.

There is no timetable specified for the City Hall taskforce, neighborhood / business input or other factors in her statement. Given that it took City Hall less than ten years to let things go bad - by ignoring code violations, by not enforcing certificate of occupancies, and by not auditing the scumbars claiming to be restaurants for their alcohol/non-alcohol sales reports - BD can only assume it will take twice as long to fix things.

Does anyone remember the Lower Greenville Land Use Study nearly five years ago (click here to see the original report)? For two years, twice a month, a small and dedicated group of Lower Greenville residents, property owners and business people met at City Hall to hash out a long-term vision of Lower Greenville. In essence, it turned the hodge-podge zoning we now have into very clear and even zoning patterns based on impact - starting from Lower Greenville and working out into the neighborhood.

Mad Maxine and LGNA dissed the proposal since they had not been allowed to pick and manipulate the members representing Lower Greenville residents - the residents appointed by Veletta Lill were not about to let Mad Maxine tell them how to behave or discuss the issues.

On the day the report was finalized, Mad Maxine walked into the Planning Services meeting room at City Hall and asked one Lower Greenville resident who appointed her to the committee. When she was told Lill, Mad Maxine told the group

These people do not speak for LGNA, and we do not know what you have been doing here without our presence at the table (not sic).

Not a few months later, LGNA voted to not accept any of the Land Use Study's proposal. That friendly attitude led to the creation of Belmont NA, a group of nearly 100 residents that LGNA still does not even acknowledge as existing after nearly three years.

BNA residents (no membership fees required) are the ones who live closest to the scumbars. They deal with the parking problems, the noise, the traffic, the abusive police officers, and more on a weekly basis. Very few dues-paying LGNA members live south of Belmont - and Mad Maxine even conceded at a Plan Commission meeting last year that LGNA was not distributing newsletters to residents in the area.

It may be coincidence, but LGNA flyers show up on BD's lawn about a week after the meeting takes place. Inquiring minds want to know.

Some only come down here to take tours from inside a police cruiser. BD has a better idea - Take our walking tour at 2 am. Get up and personal with the drunks as they carouse on our little streets. No ticket or squad car needed.

Don't count on BNA representatives being at the table for Ms Hunt's discussions after the City taskforce does its non-thing. Her I look forward to working with residents and business owners on the issue translates as If it's good enough for LGNA, it's good enough for me. Hunt can't even acknowledge that BNA exists without ticking off Mad Maxine or DHL's Jeri Arbuckle. So the people with the most to lose or win will get shafted by the ones who have no idea what is really going on, but claim to represent our interests.

The BNA attitude - Let's get aggressive and make things right for the residents first (leveling the playing field) - does not sit well with Hunt or LGNA, who prefer condescension and committees to action and results.

Damn those pesky residents who insist that all City Code be enforced on the scumbars, on their parking, on their noise, and on their patrons before we sit down and discuss how the City wants to make Lower Greenville an official entertainment district and force our property values lower and our health insurance costs higher.

It's gonna be a long hot summer, folks. Keep your phones handy to call 911 on the weekends, and then Ms. Hunt's office on Monday morning (214-670-5415) with the latest news about the problems and events on Lower Greenville. (Don't forget to send BD a note about the latest stabbing too).

She is anxious to hear from some of you, assuming Mad Maxine agrees with what you say.

By Avi S. Adelman under Dallas City Council , Lower Greenville