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President's Message, April
by Jason Ray
I hope you were able to enjoy the terrific program we received last month from Dr. Kathleen Powderly. If you missed it, you can watch the recorded meeting on the Past Meeting page.
There are several other items that I’m excited to share with you:
1. Mayoral Candidates Forum: Our April 1 meeting will be a candidates forum. You won’t want to miss this chance to hear the candidates field questions and discuss issues focused on East Fort Worth. The meeting is expected to run long, so I encourage you to budget an extra 30 minutes for the meeting. We’ll start promptly at 12:00 on 4/1.
2. Survey Input Needed:
The March meeting had a bonus presentation by Rachel Albright from Community Design Fort Worth at www.designfortworth.org. The organization is collecting information through a Community Vision Survey.
After hearing Rachel’s presentation, we are motivated and challenged to ensure East Fort Worth and its special place and opportunities are reflected in the survey. Between now and the end of March, please take a few minutes to get familiar with Community Design Fort Worth and lend your voice to the Community Vision Survey. We want to cover the East Fort Worth section of their map with the great places to see and experience in East Fort Worth.
3. Small Business Assistance: City of Fort Worth Director of Economic Development Robert Sturns has shared the attached information about the Southern Opportunity and Resilience Fund (SOAR). SOAR is a partnership of local and national community organizations created to provide access during COVID-19 to flexible, affordable capital to small businesses and nonprofits with 50 or fewer employees across the US South and Southeast (including Texas).
4. Dues: If you haven’t paid your dues for 2021, please check your email inbox for your dues statement. If you have any questions, please contact EFWBA Treasurer Angela Baker
I look forward to seeing you on April 1 for the Candidates Forum. Please encourage others to dial into the Zoom and hear from the candidates.
Invite your friends & save the date for our April 1st
Mayoral Candidates Forum
In other East Fort Worth news, a transportation consultant will be engaged in the next couple of months by Trinity Metro to assess East Lancaster for transportation options, including a bus rapid transit system that will meet transportation needs and serve as a stimulus for economic development. The consulting engagement will be the first step of many and this is a good time to get familiar with the project. I would not be surprised to see the project as the subject of one of our EFWBA meetings in 2021.
Our First Thursday of the Month meetings (currently on ZOOM) present timely discussions by prominent business people on events and politics affecting our local business environment. Pre-lunch networking gives you time to meet other Eastside business owners.
We provide civic and community information, development projects & politics of vital interest to residents and business owners in East Fort Worth.
Meet the City Council Candidates for East Fort Worth
Meet the 2021 City Council Candidates for East Fort Worth Monday, April 5, 2021, at 6:30 pm
Postponements: Due to Covid, we had to cancel the annual EFWBA Banquet and Awards presentations.
You can still support by making a donation to the EFWBA scholarship or library book fund.
Donations can be sent to: EFWBA Attn: Don Boren, EFWBA Secretary PO Box 8861
Fort Worth, TX 76124
April City Council Candidate Forum
Moderated by Linda Fulmer
View the meeting here.
April - Mayoral Candidate Forum
Election Day is Saturday May 1.
Eleven candidates submitted papers to be on the ballot for the 2021 Mayoral election.
2021 Candidates for FW Mayor
Each candidate for mayor was given an opportunity to answer this questions from our organization.Their responses are on the
Candidates for Mayor page. The six candidates that answered our question were invited to be guest speakers at the April Zoom meeting.
Five of the 11 candidates joined EFWBA for a Mayoral candidate question & answer session. Attending the April 1 meeting were Dr. Brian Byrd, Daniel Caldwell, Mattie Parker, Deborah Peoples and Ann Zadeh. Mylene George submitted her response to the questions we sent each candidate, but was not at the Zoom meeting.
During the meeting, attendees were able to ask/type questions in the Q & A chat sidebar and these are the candidate's response:
Tracey Smith asked:
About one month ago, I received a phone call for a mayoral survey. The questioner gave information only on two candidates--Mattie Parker and Brian Byrd. The information about Ms. Parker was mostly negative, information about Dr. Byrd was mostly positive, including the mention that he is a supporter of Donald Trump and contributed to his campaign. In a non-partisan election, why is he bragging about his presidential choice?
DC for FW Mayor (Daniel Caldwell) responded:
Tracey, your concern is legitimate. Career politicians learn early on and never forget a cliche, "politics is a team sport." In a nonpartisan election, Mr. Byrd's campaign may have been trying to recruit a team from a pre-existing team that is formally "sitting out" this election. On the other side, we know that another candidate is chair of the county Democratic party, and while the formal organization remains officially neutral, she clearly has the vast majority of the support from the Democratic party. So why? Because partisan alignment still plays a huge role even in "non-partisan" races.
Gary Cumbie asked:
Mrs. Peoples — a robocall from your campaign said that you were Democratic Party chair, and we need to elect more Democrats to Council and school Board. Do you really believe that local elections should be conducted on a partisan basis? If so, why?
DC for FW Mayor replied: Mrs. Peoples advised before the public portion of the meeting began that she does not look at the chat nor type answers into chat during the meeting "so that she can remain engaged in the discussion."
You already answered your first question, that yes, she believes the elections should be partisan. Meanwhile, I answered another related question with the following: Career politicians learn early on and never forget a cliche, "politics is a team sport."
In a nonpartisan election, [her] campaign may have been trying to recruit a team from a pre-existing team that is formally "sitting out" this election. [W]e know that [she] is chair of the county Democratic party, and while the formal organization remains officially neutral, she clearly has the vast majority of the support from the Democratic party.
So why? Because partisan alignment still plays a huge role even in "non-partisan" races.
Kat Kroll asked:
What is your view on an Independent Redistricting Commsission to redraw the 10 person city council maps? Do you support the current city council drawing the new maps?
DC for FW Mayor replied:
My view is that I don't trust a so-called independent commission any more than elected officials and their staff members. That said, I don't care who draws the maps. I care HOW we draw the maps. I hate gerrymandering, and many of the recommendations for reform actually encourage this unethical practice.
Gary Cumbie asked:
How would you feel about additional tax breaks and incentives for job-creating enterprises on the Eastside and other parts of the city where services are already available, rather than locating in greenfield areas outside Loop 820?
DC for FW Mayor replied: Gary, I feel that in a perfect world, the tax rate would be 0. In practical terms, starting or building a business usually has many up-front costs which act as a deterrent. That said, my interest in tax breaks or incentives would focus on deferring those payments rather than eliminating them completely. This applies inside and outside 820.
What would each mayoral candidate do to help the homeless, with social care, rehabilitation, education and reintroduction into the workforce, and medical care?
DC for FW Mayor replied:
Greg, I have been homeless before. I am opposed to the centralization of the homeless shelters in one area that reduces the access of transient individuals to housing, schooling, or employment which may be far away from the shelters.
To help the homeless, I would decriminalize camping and encourage permitting campsites at select city parks for a nominal fee to provide electricity at pavillions and running water for toilets. At the current shelters, I would want access to a bathroom after-hours so we reduce the number of people urinating or defecating on the street.
I want to model the shelter intake process more like the experience I had at San Antonio's Haven for Hope, and less like the one I had at Dallas's Bridge or Austin's Salvation Army, where if you show up after 4:30pm, you're out of luck and sleeping on the street is the only option, which makes working most transitional jobs unfeasible.
Our system needs to be a leg-up, not an anchor holding down so many unfortunate individuals.
Jay Singleton asked:
Tarrant County will be having a transportation bond election in the near future. How do you pledge to make sure east Fort Worth receives a fair share of the funding for new and improved transportation intiatives?
DC for FW Mayor replied:
My answer to this is fundamentally the same as my answer to the EFWBA prompt question. My approach to improving focus on and investment in East Fort Worth starts with pushing for bridges to improve regional mobility in east Fort Worth.
Specifically, there are no north-south roads between Haltom Rd. and Handley-Ederville Rd., and I would like to see Sanders St. extended to Oakland Blvd.
In addition, Minnis Dr. could be extended to Woodhaven Blvd. on the other side of Quanah Parker Park, but as a lesser priority.
I also want to encourage economic development by promoting and facilitating construction of feeder/service/access roads along I-30 (Tom Landry Fwy.) and alignment of any new on/off ramps in an X-configuration rather than the much-less-efficient “diamond” configurations. Service/access roads should connect Beach St. to Brentwood Stair Rd. on the southside of I-30.
Similarly, I want to see the east end of Randol Mill Rd. connected to Greenbelt Rd.
President Jason Ray asked if there were any more questions that had not been answered in the audio portion.
kat kroll said:
REDISTRICTING, since it affects the whole city.
DC for FW Mayor responded:
I reviewed the Redistricting Task Force recommendations, https://www.fortworthtexas.gov/news/2021/03/Redistricting-Task-Force-Final-Report, and I will demand compliance with applicable laws and recommendations 1, 5-7, and 10.
I note that the rest of the recommendations (2-4, 8, and 9, *as written*) all tend to encourage unethical gerrymandering.
I prefer district boundary descriptions be brief.
Carol Peters asked:
Do you support prohibiting police and firefighter unions from endorsing candidates or donating to council campaigns?
DC for FW Mayor replied: Yes.
katkroll added this to the chat Q&A section:
Candidates, if you want to add anything to your comments, please email the EFWBA newsletter/website editor at email@example.com
Text from this text stream will be included on the website: https://efwba.org/CandidateForum2021.html
A recording of this meeting will be on the Past meetings page:
Guest Speaker: Dr. Kathleen Powderly
Pediatrician at Cook Children’s Magnolia office.
Kathleen Powderly, M.D., began her career at Cook Children’s as a hospitalist, and found herself drawn to pediatrics and joined the pediatrician team at Cook Children’s Magnolia office.
Kathleen Powderly, M.D., has been a pediatrician with Cook Children’s for 15 years. She is currently a pediatrician at Cook Children’s Magnolia Office and a hospitalist at Cook Children’s Medical Center. She served as co-medical director of inpatient pediatrics for the last five years.
Dr. Powderly feels privileged to have cared for children and families in the Fort Worth community her entire career. Listening to parents and partnering with them in the development and health of their children is essential to her practice.
Dr. Powderly earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Dallas where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa. She then completed medical school at the University Health Science Center at Houston. In her residency at Austin Medical Education Program (Dell Children’s), she was selected as chief resident for her leadership and communication skills.
Serving on multiple community and hospital committees has enabled Dr. Powderly to understand the broad spectrum of caring for children from home to hospital.
Community service has always been an integral part of her life. Whether it involves teaching Sunday school to first graders or serving as president of the local nonprofit organization Fort Worth SPARC. She has served on the PTA and school boosters from elementary to high school.
In her free time, Dr. Powderly enjoys reading and hiking with her husband and teenage son. She’s also earned a black belt in Taekwondo.
February 4, 2021
Regional Advocacy Director – Greater Fort Worth
Due to technical problem, this meeting was not recorded.
The Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that supports programmatic initiatives structured to identify, pilot, and scale systemic improvements in public education.
Matthew Hall joined the Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation in fall 2019 as regional advocacy director for the Tarrant County area. He spent four legislative sessions in the Texas Capitol, serving as a Luna Scholar and aide to former State Senator Robert Duncan of Lubbock and legislative director for State Representative Ana Hernandez of Houston, helping organize diverse coalitions around critical issues, including public education, pension, veterans' affairs, and human trafficking.
Outside the legislature, Matthew spearheaded numerous coalition-building and grassroots advocacy initiatives across Texas and the American Southwest and has contributed his expertise to several leadership development programs, including the North Texas-based Latino Center for Leadership Development. Additionally, he served as a communications and policy advisor to the Board of Hispanic Caucus Chairs, a national nonprofit consisting of bipartisan Latino state lawmakers in positions of legislative leadership.
Matthew earned a master's degree in political science from Texas State University – San Marcos, as well as a bachelor's degree in political science from Texas A&M International University in Laredo.
A Fort Worth native and third-generation Tarrant County resident, Matthew is excited to work with lifelong neighbors to advance public schools. He enjoys a good game of paintball and exploring Fort Worth's museums.
"A man cannot live off his community. He must live with it." – Amon G. Carter