Three years ago the people of District 2 were in great distress. They felt they had no voice, no power—and that their city government was deaf to their needs. They wanted an advocate.
They came to me and asked me to help.
I believed we could do things better. I believed that the City Council’s job was to serve, not rule people. In fact, the city’s own organizational chart makes it clear who’s supposed to be in charge: the citizens of Garland. That’s you.
That’s why I ran for City Council in 2018, and that's why I am now running for re-election in District 2.
Over the last two years, I have worked closely with individuals, neighborhoods, businesses and organizations in the district to learn your needs and challenges. I’ve listened to your frustrations, analyzed what could realistically be done in each case, and worked with you to find practical solutions.
Some problems had simmered in the district for years, like the sharp conflict between a large church and the small neighborhood next door that complained of noise and over-parking of their streets. I called a neighborhood meeting, invited the church leaders to participate, and led negotiations that resulted in the church agreeing to reduce the number of their outdoor events, the neighborhood blessing several outdoor events important to the church, and our city transportation department installing “No Parking” signs on specific streets as agreed by both the neighborhood and the church.
The relationship between the church and the neighborhood is now a mutually supportive partnership.
Other problems have been more widespread, like the barrage of “celebratory gunfire” the district has endured each July 4th and New Year’s Eve. My first July 4th on Council I received calls, texts and email complaints until well into the wee hours… and when I drove the district in the middle of the madness I understood why. The illegal fireworks were everywhere, but the gunshots were shocking. It sounded like a war zone! I understood people's alarm; the year before a “celebratory” bullet drilled right through our garage roof. This was more than a nuisance; it was a danger.
I led an initiative to tackle this longstanding problem, including suggesting a dedicated holiday task force (first used on New Year’s Eve 2019), then suggesting the use of warning signs before holidays to announce the consequences of celebratory gunfire. The new sign program was piloted in District 2 over the July 4th holiday last year, and was so successful that it was expanded citywide this year. Although we’re still a long way from “Mission Accomplished”, numerous neighborhoods throughout District 2—and the city at large--have reported great improvement.
I also led the initiative to take a more proactive approach in addressing the growing homeless population in Garland by coordinating City services with the many nonprofits which provide emergency resources, while at the same time supporting GPD’s enforcement of our laws to protect our residents and businesses. Our balanced approach has attracted the attention of neighboring cities who have followed our lead in initiating similar programs.
Problems will always exist. I look for solutions. That’s part of what I love about this job! Not every problem can be fixed, of course, but most situations can at least be improved if we work together.
I respectfully ask for your vote on Nov 3rd so I can continue my work for you, and with you, here in District 2.
At your service,
City Council Member, District 2
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