Hunt recognizes BelmontNA, but won't let that stand in the way of haters in other NA's during rezoning discussions

Lowest Greenville neighborhood associations blocking full participation for BelmontNA with Angela Hunt's implausible deniability

The past few weeks have been abuzz with comments about Angela Hunt's plans (with CM Pauline Medrano) to rezone specific areas of Lowest Greenville and require businesses open late to have permits. (link - Lower Greenville's Future). Though this concept - the most significant proposal since the 2000 Lower Greenville Land Use Study (shot down and stomped on by LGNA) has been discussed in secret with Ms Hunt and City Attorneys for nearly a year, the recent tragic fire on March 2nd that consumed Terilli's, Mick's, Greenville Bar & Grill and Hurricane Grill moved the topic to the front burner.

Councilmember Pauline Medrano and I have proposed a special zoning district for Lowest Greenville that would require businesses that want to stay open past a certain time — say 11:30 p.m. or midnight — to get a special permit. That’s it.

The permit can be granted for several years for known businesses that haven’t caused problems, or it can be granted on an annual basis for those businesses that are new, unknown quantities. Or it can be denied for bars that cause problems weekend after weekend. And even those bad operators won’t have to shut down; they’ll just have to close their doors at 11:30 p.m. or midnight.

We believe this will bring some balance back to Lowest Greenville and encourage a better quality and mix of businesses.

As she gets ready to go offline in a few weeks for the arrival of a baby girl (mazel tov!), Ms Hunt is holding a series of informational meetings and discussions with the boards of neighborhood associations, the property owners and even business owners to get their reactions, comments or outright fawning motions before a big public meeting of residents in June.

A few weeks ago, she told BD there would be two group meetings with the neighborhood leaders - one meeting with BelmontNA would also include Greenland Hills NA and Lowest Greenville West NA, and another meeting with Lower Greenville NA, Vickery Place NA, and Hudson Heights NA (who even knew there was such a group?).

Ms Hunt told BelmontNA members they would have a seat at the big table in the public meeting planned for June - guaranteed in writing, up front and recognized for their efforts for nearly 12 years to bring some sanity to our neighborhood.

So imagine BD's shock and awe - shocked, I tell you - when someone sent him a copy of the invite to the meeting on Monday night in the house of the LGNA president Pat Carr, along with VPNA, HHNA and LGWNA (all of which touch Lowest Greenville). Then a few hours later he gets an official invite to a meeting with Hunt and Greenland Hills NA (which is way north near McCommas) inside a church on Wednesday night.

Hey, what happened to the original plan?? At this point, BD throws off the doggy muzzle and challenges Hunt to formally recognize Belmont NA and its boundaries before this process moves any further. Ms Hunt replies with a very political middle of the road yes and no message, which was on posted on Friday to BelmontNA's members...

If you are asking if I will proclaim that the BelmontNA is the sole representative of the residents within its boundaries and the LGNA does not represent those residents, then I’m unable to do so. Nor would I do so if the LGNA asked me to (do the same thing). The City of Dallas isn’t the arbiter of such matters, and I’m not the "Boundary Queen” (though I like that moniker) for neighborhood associations and won’t be getting involved in those matters.

I am happy to publicly state that I respect and recognize the BelmontNA as a legitimate NA and appreciate everything you all have done to improve the neighborhood and Lowest Greenville. If I haven’t already done that to your satisfaction, I apologize.

BD would probably be struck by lightning upon entry to either location, or at least a trespassing charge for trying to crash the first meeting at a private residence. But it was very clear the agenda and gameplan for the rezoning concept would not include input from the neighborhood (and people like BD) who have been living the vida loca for nearly 12 years and sending entertaining video, photos and stories from the trenches. The agenda was going to be determined by Hunt, LGNA and LGWNA. BelmontNA could go to hell before they were allowed to have one moment to say anything out of turn or off script.

As BD wrote to the BelmontNA board and friends...

Ms Hunt is a politician and she will tell anyone what they want to hear if it suits her purposes. She whispers in our ears she loves and respects us, but the next morning she goes back to Pat Carr et al and moans so quietly -  Oh I don't like Belmont because you don't like them. You know I love you (batting eyelashes).

BelmontNA is not recognized by the Dallas Homeowners League, or the associations in the area, since they just won't play nice in the neighborhood sandbox. RPO'ing all the streets and forcing the big bad gangbangers to park for free on their streets is also not going over very well. Is it any coincidence that LGNA ignored the issues down here ten years ago when all the bad bars were safely stuck up our butts south of Belmont Avenue, while the good restaurants were north of Vickery Boulevard? Last evening, BD counted more than 25 DPD officers on the street corners between Belmont Avenue and Ross Avenue watching the hoochiemamas and their gangbanger boyfriends. He could not find a single DPD officer standing on the street corners watching any of those pesky meat-eating, dinner-consuming, well-behaved mature adults in all the restaurants.

Here's the view of Lower Greenville from the perspective of LGNA's Pat Carr, and the reality of the boundaries from BelmontNA's view. When it comes to how many members are in each group, that information would be protected tighter than the President's nuclear war codes. BelmontNA has 150 paid members ($5 dues) on file, VPNA counts everyone in their boundaries as a member (no dues), LGWNA has five members and probably excludes every non-english speaking Hispanic in its boundaries, LGNA ain't telling ($10 dues) ever, and no information on HHNA is available (it's so new we don't even know their borders (but we are sure it's in the DHL).

 

Here's a map showing the number of RPO zones in each neighborhood. The first few (from 1999) in LGWNA and BelmontNA were paid for by a local resident or with funds collected by BD from private sources. From 2007 to 2009, BelmontNA used money from the Arcadia Fund to buy RPO in its area, spending nearly $7,000 in the process. BD also raised funds to put RPO on 5600 McCommas Blvd and 5500 Alta Street.

LGNA only recently re-discovered Lowest Greenville even existed after the gangbangers were spotted in groups of two and three pissing on their car tires (see Greenville's best kept secret - Free Parking). They have no trouble telling anyone their boundaries extend all the way to Ross. During a front-porch meeting of just NA officers (one per group) at Hunt's house on Saturday morning about the zoning issue, the president of BelmontNA wrote...

During a preliminary meeting on Saturday at Ms Hunt's house, the BelmontNA was, once again, subjected to the disdainful claim to the entire group by Pat Carr, president of LGNA, that her association represents our area and claims our boundaries. I immediately corrected her on this claim, but the group glossed over it.

As usual when this happens, no one in the group bothered to voice their support or appreciation of the work we have done and continue to do here in the most under-siege area of Greenville Avenue.

We were also advised at this meeting by the leader of Lowest Greenville West NA that he cannot attend the Wednesday meeting (with the BelmontNA and Greenland Hills) due to his 'work schedule'. Apparently none of the other members of that group were considered as substitutes for that meeting, conveniently making it 'necessary' for this NA leader to attend the Monday meeting with all the other major players.

There's no reading between the lines here: Belmont NA has been told to stay in the shallow end of the pool.

The president of the new HHNA is also caught in this groupthink: When BD invited her to join the new BelmontNA Facebook page, not only did she ignore the invite, but she blocked BD from being able to see her Facebook page forever. It's absolutely her right to not anyone see her profile, but so much for being good neighbors. These images from grabbed from the FaceBook page from BD's account and another account, with name blocked to protect this person's immaturity and lack of independent thinking bones).

The view from BD's Facebook account (shows Angela Hunt with 1,554 friends)

 

The view from another Facebook account (shows 1,556 friends)

Ms Hunt is planning to use BD's property, crime and other databases and images in her presentation, in the same way that BD's videos are regularly viewed at some Council committee meetings. Visions of BD being banned from City Hall - again - swirled around his doggy bowl as he contemplated being shut out from a discussion and challenge he started years ago just because a few so-called neighborhood leaders don't like his in your face attitude.

BD has thrown down the muzzle down at Ms Hunt's feet by challenging her to recognize BelmontNA's boundaries. She won't do anything to antagonize her base of supporters in the DHL and East Dallas. But having happy neighborhoods is a big - and important part - of the rezoning process at City Hall and the City Plan Commission. Ms Hunt will need every single vote she can get from these two panels to see this proposal come to life. Any doubts about how supportive the residents are, or how consensus was reached (as opposed to shoved down our throats) means fewer votes.

Bill Dickerson, former LGWNA president (until they dumped him for supporting the CityVille project), made it very clear.

When I tell people I once lived on Lower Greenville (and still own property down there), the first thing they ask me is - Do you know BD? Are you the other BD (because of my initials)?

They don't know about Bruce Richardson or Pat Carr, since those folks were too scared to show their faces on the street at 2am. We were out walking crimewatch and getting mugged while they were cowering in their bedrooms, calling us on the phone to complain about the noise in front of their own homes.

Bruce fought RPO tooth and nail, but now he has it on his street - after we worked and paid for it on Summit Avenue ten years ago. You put it on Alta Street last year. LGNA opposes RPO since it might offend a business that gives them money for their National Night Out picnic.

If any proposal to change Lowest Greenville goes to the City Plan Commission or City Council, and you're not sitting in the front row along with your neighborhood association members, it's going down faster than a hoochiemama on her drunk gangbanger boyfriend at 3am.

We know this is a big sham - none of them wanted to walk the streets with you, Ivan, Paul or me before RPO when the fight was on their streets. Now they don't want you in the discussions? What am I missing here?

BD is being restrained by his friends in BelmontNA from taking too big a bite out of this crime. They locked him in the dog house, and don't want him to play in the streets for a while. He's so mad it looks like rabies, and thank goodness he still has access to a wi-fi signal from one of the bars.

Stay tuned, it's gonna be a wild ride to City Hall.

By Avi S. Adelman under Dallas City Council , Code enforcement