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More Vote No! Deception Print E-mail
by Sam Merten    Mon, Oct 29, 2007, 11:00 AM

When I posted my latest conversation with Mayor Leppert, I promised a follow-up to discuss issues from the Oct. 22 forum that concerned me. The first thing that bothered me was Leppert claiming there have been “zero” private contributions since the petition drive began.

Normally this wouldn’t have been a big deal. He’s been saying this throughout the campaign. However, I was at the Oct. 17 debate at Vickery Towers when Bob Meckfessel, who was debating against Angela Hunt, admitted that a large gift had recently been given to the Trinity Trust Foundation.

This was brought up when a great question from the audience was asked. The question was, “What does the absence of a toll road in the park have to do with private donations? Why would one way or the other keep rich people from giving to the park?”

Meckfessel said he wasn’t sure because he’s not rich, but then provided this confusing answer.

“The fact is, and I think Gail Thomas would confirm this, is that private philanthropy has basically dried up during this time,” Meckfessel said. “Hopefully, once it’s resolved either way, it will start up again. In the meantime, it has come to a halt.”

Basically dried up or come to a halt? Hunt asked him if any large gifts had recently been secured and he replied, “Yeah.” Meckfessel then changed his tune.

“It [private philanthropy] has not dried up,” Meckfessel said. “It has slowed down in that it’s not flowing in as fast as it was.”

So I’ve been sitting on this, waiting for a response from Gail Thomas, president of the Trinity Trust Foundation. However, I’ve been told she’s out of town. She may or may not get back to me, but really, would Meckfessel backtrack if a donation hadn’t been made?

Of course not. With or without confirmation from Thomas, Meckfessel’s admission is a clear indication that Leppert has been lying about “zero” private donations. And it’s not like Leppert could have forgot since he’s on the board of directors of the Trinity Trust Foundation.

The other big thing I learned at Vote No’s one-sided forum was that the issue of trucks being on this road is becoming more of a concern as more people supporting the road continue to send different messages. The NTTA made it clear it doesn’t want trucks on the road and now Michael Morris, director of transportation for the North Central Texas Council of Governments, has told me trucks won’t be using the Trinity Turnpike.

Morris, who gave a PowerPoint presentation giving his 10 reasons why people should vote no, didn’t mention trucks. However, I caught up with him after the forum and asked him if trucks would be using this road.

“We won’t have trucks on the toll road, on the Trinity Parkway,” Morris said.

I then asked why the lanes have been designed at 12 feet instead of 11 feet and he said because federal funds are being used, the road must be designed to federal standards, which are 12-foot lanes.

This would all be fine except for members of the Vote No! campaign saying the opposite. Bill Blaydes admitted trucks will use the road at a Lake Highlands debate Oct. 1. Here is what he said.

“Trucks are gonna use it. Trucks are gonna use it because it is the fastest route of getting through a metroplex that is growing at the rate of 3,000 people a day.”

It’s not like Mayor Leppert hasn’t acknowledged this himself. When he teamed up with Bob Meckfessel Oct. 7 at Temple Emanu-El, moderator Dr. Richard Wasserman asked the Vote No! side if the road would be available to 18-wheelers as well as regular vehicles and Meckfessel replied, “Yes.”

“So it’s an open tollway,” Dr. Wasserman said. “So that would be open to all types of traffic.”

“But truckers hate paying tolls,” Meckfessel said.

“Truckers hate tolls, but truckers hate sitting in traffic jams probably equal to that. Obviously it depends on the toll and the traffic jam, but that’s certainly a consideration,” Dr. Wasserman said. “You don’t see a lot of trucks on the Dallas North Tollway.”

“Also, this is not the route that truckers use,” Leppert said.

Clearly the Vote No! campaign knows something the NTTA and Michael Morris don’t know. What is known is that the Allen Group contributed $50,000 to the Vote No! campaign and sponsored an event to help Mayor Leppert recoup $950,000 in debt from his mayoral campaign. Another $50,000 contributor to the Vote No! campaign is the law firm Thompson & Knight. One of its clients happens to be Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway Co. (BNSF).

The Allen Group and BNSF are the major players in the inland port project in South Dallas. The Allen Group is building a 6,000-acre facility called the Dallas Logistics Hub, which will be “adjacent to Union Pacific’s Southern Dallas Intermodal Terminal, a potential BNSF intermodal facility.” The Allen Group has a picture of how this will work on its Web site. BNSF brings in cargo on its rail line and Allen takes it away using its trucks.

With all these trucks wanting to get out of the South, they are going to want the best way to bypass downtown congestion. The Trinity Turnpike will be a way for these trucks to move out of the South faster. This is why the Vote No! campaign has been saying trucks will be using this road. So for Leppert to say “this is not a route that truckers use” is well, misleading at best. Why the NTTA and NCTCOG are out of the loop, I have no idea, but the connection is clear.

I have to hand it to Vote No! on this one. For once, they were actually up front about an issue, even when it conflicted with what the NTTA and NCTCOG were saying. However, the knowledge that this road will be a major truck route should be a concern for voters, especially since the NTTA has said trucks using this road would be bad for the environment and Michael Morris was adamant that the NCTCOG wants to keep trucks off this road.

The NTTA told me that restricting these trucks from the turnpike would require approvals from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), the Regional Transportation Council (RTC), the NTTA and the Dallas City Council. I think we know what the Dallas City Council is going to say on this one.

Let’s play another game of connect the dots. Back when Councilmember Ron Natinsky was accusing Angela Hunt of writing the ballot language, I was able to get Assistant City Attorney Jesus Toscano to admit it was the City Attorney’s Office that wrote it.

“Our office, along with bond counsel, wrote the ballot language and presented it to the council and the council approved the ballot language,” Toscano said.

Since then, I’ve been trying to contact City Attorney Tom Perkins to find out about the city’s bond counsel and ask him a couple other questions. Perkins has been a tough man to get a hold of, so I finally asked a secretary to find out about the bond counsel, and she came back on the phone and told me it is Vinson & Elkins, where Ron Kirk is a partner. Suddenly I was told, “Tom would like to talk with you.”

I asked Perkins why the bond counsel was involved in writing the ballot language and he said, “Because I chose to consult with them.” I then asked if he had any issue with that since Ron Kirk has been so intimately involved in the Vote No! campaign.

“That occurred long before any campaigns were put together or his role or anything like that,” Perkins said.

“Looking back on it, you don’t see any issue with it?” I said.

“No,” Perkins said.

Perkins also wanted to point out that the city has teams of bond counsel and Vinson & Elkins is one of the members of the team. When I asked for the other members, Perkins said, “I’d have to get you the names of the other law firms.”

So what happened when the ballot language was written was Tom Perkins, who works for the council members (14 of which are on the Vote No! side), consulted with Vinson & Elkins, which happens to have one of its partners working on the Vote No! side, to come up with the confusing language on the ballot.

However, this confusing language somehow is Angela Hunt’s fault, as Natinsky and others on the Vote No! side have claimed. This email was sent from a citizen to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it  Saturday at 6 p.m.

“The ballot issue is very confusing, indicating that we should vote "NO" or "YES". We thought we had it figured it out when we went to vote early today. Then we found that the ballot is "FOR" or "AGAINST". Very confusing and we hope we supported your view, but we are not sure. It seems that some politicians are deliberately trying to confuse the voters again. I hope you do not lose by one vote.”

This was the response from Randall White, who is the president of the Corporate Citizen Group. Carol Reed and Associates is listed among CCG’s clients.

“Thank you for your comments. Yes, the ballot language is unclear and confusing. It was drafted by the opponents to the Trinity Project for their petition and, by state law, was the language the city had to use for the ballot. The ballot language has also been posted on our Web site and on the county elections Web site for some time. We have been communicating to our constituents for a month that voting no means voting against the referendum. Like you, we hope that voters will understand the impact of their vote.”

I also asked Perkins about Rebecca Dugger’s PowerPoint presentations. My first question was very simple, “Your office has approved the slides that she’s using, is that correct?”

“I’m not discussing any conversations or discussions that our office has had with staff,” Perkins said.

“Why not?” I said.

“Because those are privileged communications,” Perkins said.

“I’m not asking you to talk about any communication, but I’m just asking you to confirm that you approved the presentations that she is giving,” I said.

“I’m not discussing those conversations,” Perkins said.

So, to recap, you’ve got Meckfessel admitting that a large private gift has been given despite Leppert going around town saying no funds have been raised. You have the NTTA and NCTCOG saying there won’t be trucks, but Vote No! is saying there will be trucks. And now, it should be crystal clear why. Finally, you’ve got Tom Perkins working on behalf of the council asking Ron Kirk’s law firm for advice on writing the language on the ballot for which both sides admit is confusing, yet the Vote No! side wants to blame the Vote Yes! side.

Confused yet? If not, check out Vote No’s TV ad.

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written by Please Vote Yes for a Better Dallas , October 29, 2007

Not so much confused as incredibly saddened. This is twisted and rotten and wrong.

Thanks for reporting what the DMN won't.





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written by Ethics R Us , October 29, 2007

Another example of questionable actions of Mayor Leppert is that Lynn Flint Shaw (DART Board Chair) is serving as the Treasurer of "Friends of Tom Leppert". This seems to be in violation of the City Ethics Code, Section 12A-10 (a)(2) which states:
"(a)City Officials. In any election, except his or her own, a city official shall not: (2) serve as the designated campaign treasurer for a candidate under the Texas Election Code: or--". Ms Shaw is classified as a "city official". Where is the City Attorney's ruling on this?



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written by Sharon Boyd , October 29, 2007

Oh, Lord! Sam, this is frightening stuff. Thank you.


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written by Linda , October 29, 2007

Keep on following the money, Sam.

Senator Royce West's law firm is also bond counsel for the City of Dallas. West is another supporter and spokesman for VoteNo and is a big proponent of the Inland Port too. As is Kirk, Natinsky, Blades, etc.

Speaking of Natinsky, where is Ron? Oh, yeah, that's right, he's over in China right now. That's where most of the goods that will go through the Inland Port, straight up the Turnpike to Alliance Airport (Ross Perot connection) will come from.





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written by Nathan , October 29, 2007

Mrs. Shaw does not work for the City.

The contributions from the Allen Group should bring into question the claims that this road will act as a reliever route for existing Dallas traffic.



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written by Wylie H. , October 29, 2007

Ethics R Us.... I just attempted to verify your claim that Lynn Flint Shaw is serving as Treasurer of "Friends of Tom Leppert." However, when I checked the public filings, Al Black (not Lynn Flint Shaw) was listed as the Treasurer.


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written by sal costello , October 29, 2007

Sam,

Thanks for your report. I've learned that these back door deals are par for the course, when it's about Texas toll roads (hey it's free money!).

The more you dig, the more muck you find.

Sal "The Muckraker" Costello
http://salcostello.blogspot.com



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written by Ethics R Us , October 29, 2007

Albert Black is the Treasurer of the Mayor's campaign account.

You will find Ms. Shaw's appointment on the Specific Purpose Committee called "Friends of Tom Leppert". That appointment is dated October 15, 2007.

If you are looking at Campaign Filings, you will find the Specific Purpose Committees at the bottom, below the individual candidates.

These two committees are separate from one another.




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written by Wylie H. , October 29, 2007

Nathan,

Sec. 12A-2(24)(I) defines a City Official as "City council appointed members of boards of entities that were not created by the city council (i.e. DART)."

Therefore, Ms. Shaw is considered an employee under the City of Dallas Ethics Code.



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written by Richie Sheridan , October 30, 2007

AN OPEN LETTER TO COUNCILWOMAN PAULINE MEDRANO, AND ALL OTHER CITY COUNCILMEMBERS WHO SIGNED ONTO THE LYIN' "VOTE NO" FLIER


October 29, 2007

Dear Councilmember Medrano,

You have extremely misrepresented what will happen if the tollroad is voted down by the voters on Nov 6 in your recent mailer to your constituency.

You have made the Nov 6 election an ALL-OR-NOTHING vote. You have strongly implied that flood protection, the park, and economic growth are integrally a part of the INSIDE THE FLOODWAY tollway, and that if the tollway is voted down, we won't get the flood protection, we won't get the park, and we won't get economic development. WHAT A LIE!!!

It's the Tollway which has held up the flood protection, held up the park, and held up the economic development that the park will bring FOR AT LEAST 5 YEARS. IT'S TAKEN THIS LONG TO FIGURE OUT A WAY TO DECEIVE THE VOTERS. Any Stemmons bypass highway will bring economic development in the way of saving the time of 100,000 drivers, BOTH THE PUBLIC AND COMMERCIAL, each day. But the proposed tollway inside the levee is the only alternative which will serve the economic interests of a special interest monied elite, a group which YOU HAVE OBVIOUSLY SOLD OUT TO.

COUNCILWOMAN MEDRANO, YOU HAVE DISGRACED YOUR OFFICE, AND BETRAYED YOUR CONSTITUTENCY BY ALLOWING YOUR NAME TO BE PLACED ON A CAMPAIGN FLIER WHICH IS TOTALLY MISLEADING.

MS. MEDRANO, YOU HAVE CONFIRMED THE "NEW DEMOCRACY" WHICH OUR COUNTRY HAS DEGRADED TO. OUR "NEW DEMOCRACY" IS ONE WHERE, WITH ENOUGH MONEY, AND BIG ENOUGH LIES, THE VOTERS CAN BE MISLEAD TO VOTE FOR SOMETHING THAT IS NOT IN THEIR BEST INTERESTS. HAD THEY BEEN TOLD THE TRUTH, THE VOTERS WOULD NEVER HAD VOTED FOR IT.

THANK GOODNESS MOST OF THE REST OF YOUR FAMILY IS ON THE "YES" VOTE SIDE


Richie Sheridan



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written by Tucker Willis , October 30, 2007

Yaba daba . . . conspiracy theories on top of conspiracy theories.

If you're so concerned about trucks, why don't you figure out how to get them off the I-30 bridge (Tom Landry Highway) that goes right over and through the proposed park with ten lanes carrying an average of 151,000 vehicles per day on top of the proposed Urban Lake; and get the trucks off the two I-35 bridges with eight lanes carrying an average of 181,000 vehicles per day on top of the proposed Natural Lake. And be sure trucks are prohibited from the new Woodall Rogers (Margaret Hunt) Bridge under construction (six lanes) connecting that freeway to Singleton Blvd. Are you just against trucks that pass on the high side of the north levee in the proposed park but not against those that pass over and through the middle of the park? The needle on my hypocrisy meter is going wild.



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written by cc , October 30, 2007

Go ahead, Dallas government, let trucks on this road.. such will be a confirmed vote for Plano, Frisco, Fort Worth et al and Dallas will go farther away from being a worker, visitor, populated place. Don't believe it? Ask those who might come but seldom do now but might.


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written by Nathan , October 30, 2007

Tucker, if you apply your reasoning, we should just pave both sides of the river. Why not pave the whole thing. If you going to have trucks crossing the river, why not have them zooming down the river on both sides of the park. Or not! How about we try to discourage as many trucks from using our core as a bypass as we can.

Vote Yes, Vote For!



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written by Tucker Willis , October 30, 2007

My reasoning is that those who rail against the noise that will be caused by the proposed tollroad carrying up to 100,000 vehicles per day on the side of and through the proposed park, ignore what is already there going across and through. In addition the the 4 bridges I cited, there are 8 more that carry vehicles and 2 RR bridges in the approximate 2,000 acres between the Mockingbird/Westmoreland Bridge and the DART Bridge, the "downtown" park. The daily vehicle count currently is around 375,000 to 400,000. If this doesn't disturb your potential enjoyment of the park, surely your argument that the new tollroad will rings hollow. I heard a woman on KERA yesterday saying "I would never take my kids to a park where a high speed roadway ran thru it!" Guess she's out as a potential user. Why don't you talk about "the" park that can be developed and enjoyed in the floodway between the levees rather than a generic park.


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written by Vote Yes for Transparency in Government , October 30, 2007

Sorry Tucker, I just don't think that's a valid argument for putting a high speed toll road in a floodway in a park.





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written by Branden Helms , October 30, 2007

Sam, good job as always.

Another lie that Mayor Tom said last night was that DART was urging people to vote no.

For political reasons, they are neutral, but you will find very few DART people in favor of it.

That was one of many lies that made me want to grab the handouts they gave us and try to jab it in my eye to end all the pain.

Trucker, the point is not whether truckers will use the road, the point is the lies. We were told for 8 years trucks would not be allowed on the road. Then, with no warning, some council members and the mayor said yes, and acted like it was no big deal. Then, at a No presentation, Mike Morris is saying the road will not allow truckers. The vote No side is lieing and can't even get their facts straight.



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written by Erin , October 30, 2007

The pretty new map that voteno is now using and passed out last night is dated March 22, 2004. It represents what was then the Balanced Vision Plan, with the tollroad on top of the levees instead of being in the park where it would now be since the Corps moved it.

More pretty pictures to deceive the voters.



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written by El Rey , October 30, 2007

I asked the Mayor about the truck issue at a Southeast Dallas Chamber of Commerce Breakfast. He said engineers that are smarter than you and I have developed a way to keep harmful chemicals from entering the FLOODWAY, even in the case of a tanker spill. I have consulted with engineers since then and I can't seem to find one "smart enough" to tell me how they would do it. Every drop of antifreeze, fuel, oil, etc. that fall on the road are hazardous to the ecology of the river and those downstream. I am not sure why this is not the biggest issue over this bait and switch scam debacle in the first place... Please use some common sense when you go vote!


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written by Linda , October 31, 2007

Come on. Who do they think they're fooling? Big diesel trucks are going to use this road. They are being built 12' to accomodate them.

If we build 'em, trucks will use them.

Anyone who says otherwise is lying.



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written by Ralph Goin , October 31, 2007

I thought, as I approached senior citizen status, all forms of government would become more ethical. So sad it has gone just the other way and the City of Dallas so called leaders are the ones taking us in that direction. That's pathetic and they should be retired in the next election.


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written by Tucker Willis , October 31, 2007

Hey, Vote For for Transparency, what is your valid argument for not putting the tollroad on the upper side of the north levee? It is above the 100 year flood line.

Hey, Brandon, you're against the tollroad no matter what in any case, eh?, so if the trucks or no trucks issue has not been resolved, what's your beef? Keep the ole conspiracy theories on the front burner.

Hey, El Rey, why the big concern over the hazardous material that might get through the filter system on the proposed tollroad, but none for the same material that goes into the river and proposed park from the existing bridges which carry about 4 times as much traffic?

NONE of you guys (and gals) will discuss THE park you are trying to protect from this awful tollroad. What will go on in it? What are its limitations? There will be walking, jogging, and biking trails, picnic areas (probably no permanent tables), lighting ?, no structures of any consequence. Will the Corps allow many trees? Nothing that can impede the water during a flood. Every so often, the whole park will be totally under water. Then there will be considerable clean up required. Central Park, not in any way shape or form. It can be a lovely open space green area that will be very marginally affected by a roadway up high on the north levee. The Zoo is on south I-35, Old City Park is on central I-30, the Nasher Scupture Center and Dallas Museum of Art are on Woodall Rogers, Griggs Park is on Central, Reverchon Park, Craddock Park, and Germany Park are on the North Tollroad. Those parks, and many others in similar juxtapositions to roadways are used and enjoyed abundantly.






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written by Sharon Boyd , October 31, 2007

Tucker,

The toll road can't go on the levees - east, west, north or south. Corps of Engineers ruling. We want it outside the levees or on Industrial.

A Downtown, low speed street (Nasher) is not comparable to a 55-mph toll road. When you are at the Zoo, most of the grounds and exhibits are away from the freeway. Go to WFAA.com and watch Brad Watson's report (couple of weeks ago) where he used NTAA's own numbers to measure off where the toll road would be, you can see how far out into the floodway it would go and how close anyone using the park would be to it.

Most of the river park facilities near the toll road will be low maintenance, no structures. The lakes are vulnerable to flooding and not my favorite components of the Trinity Project.

The toll road will flood, will be torn out from time to by the Corps when they work on the levees (they say so) and it will pollute the river.

No one has put a major road in a river floodplain because it makes no sense. Let the river be a river.



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written by East Dallas Eccentric , October 31, 2007

I give up Tucker let's just pave the whole thing so everyone can race back to their sterile suburb, freeload at Parkland, make us take care of the poor and homeless, fill the outer DART parking lots and trains while not paying for it through sales taxes and then let them keep savaging our schools and city as ungrateful, racist hypocritcal morons.


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written by Tucker Willis , October 31, 2007

Sharon: Come on, let's don't dwell on semantics--when I say on the upper side of the north levee you know what I mean. We're both talking about the same proposed tollroad, inside the north levee tucked against the side of the levee--higher up than the park area--good enough?
The Nasher is one service road away from Woodall Rogers that carries an average of 164,000 vehicles per day.
Most users of the park will be hundreds of yards away from the tollroad. Many parts of the Zoo are not as far from I-35.
I live near Bachman Lake and Park. It runs right along side NW Hwy where the traffic count is around 50-60,000 per day. The park is often full of people and the lake is used by school crew teams. And don't forget it also on the the north end of the main landing runway of Love Field. Will the Corps allow light poles along the walking/jogging/bicycle trails like are at Bachman, or would the electricity be a hazard in a flood and the light standards an impediment to water flow? Check both the visual impact and noise level studies from the Trinity Parkway Draft Environental Impact Statement. Depends on where you are in the park. You'll hear tons more noise from the freeway bridges and the others, including RR, in the core area of the park than as you go more north or south--or certainly on the Oak Cliff side.
The tollroad will be at the 100 year flood level--last time was 1908. I think the raised levees will be at the 800 year level. This is a very interesting, but not a remarkable engineering project.
If your worry is pollution then you should remember that all the storm sewers in Dallas and other cities upstream dump the water off the streets into the Trinity. The tollroad itself, as I have read, will have some type of filter system. You know, of course, the source of the water for the proposed Urban Lake and Natural Lake is the Central Water Treatment Center not the river.
It's not just the lakes that are vulnerable to flooding, the whole park will be flooded from time to time.
Let the river be a river is an interesting concept, but the Trinity is most of the times a creek. I have to laugh when I hear it compared to the Hudson, the Williamette, the Ohio, the Charles, the Colorado.

Hey, East Dallas Eccentric, I am a Birkenstock wearing, 100% tree hugger. The problem I have is that anyone who thinks the tollroad and the park can co-exist inside the levees is branded as anti-park. Baloney.

Now will SOMEONE please articulate their vision of THIS park: the activities that will go in in there, the amenities, how it will be used, where cars will park, etc., etc., etc. PLEASE don't wax on about Central Park, a park on the west side of Manhattan overlooking the Hudson, or the park on the Williamette River in Portland. Tell me about what our park can be.




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written by El Rey , October 31, 2007

Oh Trucker, your infantile arguments make me wonder if you spend more time at the daycare center than you do "workin" uder the table at the Dallas Citizens Council...

My big concern deals with a toll road that is ten (10) miles long, inside the floodway, compared to the already existing roughly one (1) mile worth of bridges in the City of Dallas. (I choose my battles where they make the most sense.)

Can you describe the "filter system" for me? The descriptions I get from the tollway folks describe the systen to be almost identical to a septic tank design. Not really what I want in my river. BTW, there is no system in the design to keep the tollway septic system from backflushing the same way it came in when the river tops over the roadway. Despite the empty promises from the tollroad folks, this is guaranteed to happen.



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written by Tucker Willis , October 31, 2007

Why,El Rey, aren't you a clever boy! Anyone who takes a view other than yours is "workin' under the table for the Dallas Citizens Council." Well, at least, you've proved my point. "Infantile", "daycare center"--you do have a way with words. Always go for the put-down.

I do not understand how the ten mile tollroad on the upper inside edge of the north levee is in any way going to affect the use and enjoyment of the park. I presume you know that of the 2,000 acres considered the "downtown" park, approximately 1,165 will be left as is--tall grass, muddy when it's been raining, crusty when it's dry. Of the 835 remaining, 80 and 60 are for the lakes, 140 for the river, 76 for the tollroad, 6 for the Crow lake. The balance is 473. A nice green space. Tell me what's going to go on there which will be degraded by the tollroad?

As to the filter system, below is some text from the DMN (10-28-07), which I am sure you have some conspiracy theory about, but if you question any aspect of it write a letter to the editor.


"The city will realign the river's channel, improving water quality and habitat by re-establishing some meanders and ripples to keep the water moving and dynamic, said Rebecca Dugger, director of the city's Trinity River Corridor Project.

The North Texas Tollway Authority says the dirtiest first flush of storm runoff from the highway will go through a filter system – an improvement over the raw street slime that now dumps into the river. Currently, 'from every street in the city of Dallas, the runoff eventually makes its way to the Trinity River without any treatment,' Ms. Dugger said."



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written by Richie Sheridan , November 01, 2007

Why is Jim Schutze and the Dallas Morning News ignoring Trinity "Tunnel"? Boo to the secrets in Dallas!

Not one mention from either Jim Schutze with the Observer or the Dallas Morning News about perhaps the best of all the Stemmons bypass alternatives. Why?

Certainly we don't want a high speed surface highway in our Trinity Park. We don't have to rehash all the negatives of such a plan, and the secret agenda of the Special Interests in wanting to do such.

But the unique Trinity Tunnel continues to be ignored by both sides?! I've met with three city council members about it and my sense is that they like the idea. Mayor Tom Leppert stated that he would build a tunnel in a minute if it weren't so costly. Jim Schutze's article this week shows that the proposed surface tollway inside the levee will cost a lot of money...PERHAPS MORE THAN THE TRINITY TUNNEL. THIS WOULD ESPECIALLY BE TRUE WHEN THE BENEFITS OF THE TRINITY TUNNEL ARE FACTORED IN.

Not only is the Trinity Tunnel a great compromise, a SOLOMN SOLUTION, but it will significantly help Dallas make the Trinity River a World Class park. Who will say that we can make our park of world class stature, the stature of New York's Central Park, or Amsterdam's Tivoli Park, or San Francisco's Golden Gate park if it floods? It's because of the flooding that we are significantly restricted in developing the Trinity Park. Are there any bathrooms nearby, or a place to buy a burger or drink?

One main reason the Trinity Tunnel is ignored is because it's coming from me, a very controversarial person in Dallas. I've been called every name in the book. I don't take sides, other than the side of the truth. Just when Republicans start to like me, they start running away. The same goes for Democrats, the same goes for some blacks, for some, hispanics, and for some whites.

Have I been right on things? Have I been right on my support of sheltering the homeless? Finally, Pastor Clifford is standing up and doing something dramatic! Have I been right about not having a gay activist as mayor? Have I been right about the need for a new direction with our County DA? Have I been right, to really reduce crime, that we need rehabilitation, job training, and jobs, and that our prison system (33 year growth) and our No. 1 crime ranking are related? Have I been right that Texas, and Dallas is among the most "wicked", most materialistic state and city in the Nation? Have I been right that our immigration problem is due to our fascist U.S. and Mexican governments?

It is my position that God has given us this Trinity war to begin to turn back the tide of evil in our city, and in our Nation, and to begin to either bring us together, or TO BEGIN TO SEPARATE THE WHEAT FROM THE TARE. I have stated clearly that, based on the sociological conditions in our city, and in our state, the 5 pointed star emblems of both are PENTAGRAMS! OH, I AM SUCH A BAD PERSON FOR POINTING OUT THINGS THAT PEOPLE DON'T WANT TO SEE, NOR HEAR LIKE A BOOGER ON THEIR NOSES.

Just remember, Jesus came to us 2000 years ago to point our the failings, to point out the evils of society. The most mysterious message that Jesus left us is: "What I have done ye shall do and even greater things." I take Jesus literally with these words.

What I do isn't an easy job. But I'll tell you this. The reward will be worth it. This job is available to anyone, but many are called but few chose.

Come Wednesday, November 7th, I expect the Secret Trinity Tunnel to become a buzz word at city hall, with the City Attorney's office very busy determining if the newly passed ordinace will allow it within the levees. It will be allowed because it is our SOLOMON ANSWER BROUGHT TO DALLAS BY THE MAN CALLED CRAZY BY MAYOR LAURA MILLER.

Happy Halloween, and Boo to the lyin' No Vote group. You have brought more shame to our city.

Richie Sheridan



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written by Stan Aten , November 01, 2007

I the effort to build a tollroad inside the levee is criminal in nature. If I were the detective investigating the case, I would say follow the money. See who has been giving money to the NO campaign, check out has been funding city council members, check out all the incestous activity between non-profits, consultants and city govt. It would keep the FBI busy years.

The only way to stop this corruption in its tracks is to vote YES.



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written by El Rey , November 02, 2007

Tucker,

Your argument for the toll road inside the floodway is seriously flawed. I want to focus on this quote of your quote of Ms. Dugger:
"The North Texas Tollway Authority says the dirtiest first flush of storm runoff from the highway will go through a filter system – an improvement over the raw street slime that now dumps into the river. Currently, 'from every street in the city of Dallas, the runoff eventually makes its way to the Trinity River without any treatment,' Ms. Dugger said." "

The filter system for the tollroad is modeled after the big filter system used for Central Expressway. In fact, along a good part of the storm sewer system in Dallas, there are cisterns and catch basins for sediments and pollutants. By stating the Dallas storm sewer system does not have these features, Ms. Dugger is being a bit disingenuous. Federal regulations and civil engineering handbooks frequently mandate healthy stormwater systems. If you are saying we don't have any stormwater treatment methods at all, I would like you to help me write the multi-billion dollar infrastructure improvements bond package for the City of Dallas. Why are we wasting time and money on this tollroad when there are much more important things to deal with?

With that being said, I know much of the stormwater going into the river is polluted. I know there are people dedicated to fixing the stormwater problem. I share office space with one such group. All I am saying is we need to focus on fixing the problem rather than fixating on a plan that has potentially devastating effects "down the road". USACE has said it will take years just to study the effects of putting a multi-lane road in a floodway. Our problems with congestion, air quality, water quality and quality of life are issues we should be addressing right now.

I have said before, I am not sure if I will actually use the park, but I would like to have the amenity available for people who would. Parks are a relatively inexpensive way to lure outside business to a city. Good transportation is a great lure as well, but far more costly. We need to be extremely judicious with our tax-dollars and the impression it gives to the rest of society. By being an example of a city that cares about the environment and growth, we will do far more for the city than any tollroad will.

http://www.nctcog.org/envir/SEEclean/stormwater/index.asp



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written by Donnat , November 02, 2007

That Leppert is a crook was made public during the campaign, but Dallas, comfortable with crooks who are rich, white, and male, being so overpopulated with them, let him in.

South Dallas - you thought Laura Miller was bad for you, I can't wait to see how you are going to feel about Tom a year from now.



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written by Branden Helms , November 04, 2007

Well Donnat, Leppert was the Citizens Council pick for mayor. The Citizens Council has made south Dallas what it is for the last 60 years when they ran the city with at-large council picks.

It is odd to me that South Dallas Council members are so willing to go along with the CC, as this road is the same type of thing that they have done to Dallas for a long time.




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