MayorTomLeppert.com supports the Stop-The-Hotel campaign

The campaign to stop the City of Dallas from going into the hotel business took a giant leap forward when the Citizens Against A Taxpayer Hotel officially kicked off their petition drive on Tuesday morning.

Quoting from the Dallas Observer blog, Anti-Hotel Folks Make Their Case, to Which Developer Jack Matthews and the City Offer a Weary "Whatever"

The mayor and city council have used secret meetings to devise a plan to fund a convention center hotel with millions in taxpayers’ dough, and it's time to give voters a say, since they’re the ones assuming the risk. At least, that’s what Crow Holdings’ executive Anne Raymond told approximately 50 people this morning while announcing a petition drive by the political action committee Citizens Against a Taxpayer Owned Hotel.

The organizers have 60 days in which to collect a little more than 20,000 signatures (5% of the registered voters), since they are trying to amend the City Charter. That is an lower number than the Trinity Vote campaign, which required the more than 45,000 signatures (10% of the registered voters.

BD is throwing his support squarely behind this effort. After living ten years in the middle of the Lower Greenville bubble, BD has firsthand experience in watching a City not be able to figure out the difference between a restaurant and a bar, let alone put some effort into cleaning up Lower Greenville. Look at your struts and shocks, and you gotta wonder which streets they are fixing - because obviously we are not driving on them. How many public pools will be turned into giant planters to pay for this thing? Will Dallas residents get a discount to stay there - I mean, hey, we are the owners, right??

And there's this little mistake about renaming Industrial Boulevard, which has somehow turned into the effort to rename Ross Avenue, showing how disorganized the City is on the basic stuff. But a minority of our City Council sure knows how to diss the original history and founders of this town as a CYA move.

The last thing Dallas needs is another hotel attracting conventions that won't come to Dallas in the summer (or any other time of the year) no matter how iconic the venue. Except for Dealey Plaza and titty-bars, what does Dallas offer the tourists as landmark points of interest?? Can you name any attractions within walking distance of a downtown hotel (okay, so I forgot Neiman-Marcus)?

All those business people that paraded like lemmings to the City Council microphone a few months ago to say they support the hotel have one thing in common - They need another big hotel in order to stay in business because our downtown is not yet cool enough for the locals to visit. Have you noticed that most of the downtown businesses are focused on singles with money or families with lots of money to spend. There are very few family-centered events that don't cost an arm and a leg for anyone with more than one kid in tow. If you have three Puppettes, fuhgedaboutit. It's sad when you need a c-spot just to find Dallas' D-Spot.

Having grown up in Philadelphia, BD fully understands how a walkable downtown can bring thousands of conventioneers. Hundreds of free tourist attractions all within walking distance of all the hotels between the Delaware River docks and William Penn's statue on City Hall, and I am talking about more than just Independence Mall.

In a city where our so-called smart leaders can't figure out the real priorities that need fixing today, giving them a hotel to play with is just damn scary. A city government as dysfunctional as ours needs to be put back on the right track, and this no-hotel petition drive is a good step in the right direction.

As soon as the documents are ready, BD will have petitions for Lower Greenville residents to sign. We'll set up a table at a local restaurant (I don't think it's gonna be Whole Foods) and announce the location online. He's also trying to get yardsigns for local distribution.

And to make things just a little more fun, BD's pulling a domain name out of his hat. Like we told the DHL hearing panel last October, cybersquatting's a nasty business, but someone's got to do it.

Last year, when Tom Leppert was elected, BD bought MayorTomLeppert.com just in case - of anything. A few weeks after the election, someone from Leppert's PR team called and asked how much it would cost to buy the domain name. BD asked for $2,500, believing Leppert's term was gonna be soooo boring, but always willing to make a little profit at someone else's expense.

Boy, were we glad they did not buy the name. Sometime Wednesday, MayorTomLeppert.com will point to the stop-the-hotel website. I guess you can say Mayor Tom Leppert is kinda supporting the petition drive, even if it's only his online persona.

I can already hear the lawyers writing a letter to BD. This is gonna be so much fun.

By Avi S. Adelman under Elections , Dallas City Hall