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Recent News and Opinion
2015/3/6 - Upcoming Events Around Lewisville and the Surrounding Area
2015/3/5 - Free Chamber Concert Features UNT Piano Trio - March 20th
2015/3/5 - Willis Alan Ramsey to take Texas Tunes Stage at MCL Grand
2015/3/5 - Free Garden Secrets Class: Herb Gardening
2015/3/4 - Lewisville ISD Closed Thursday
2015/3/4 - Winter Storm Update
2015/3/4 - LPD Lieutenant Haynes Graduates Command College
2015/3/4 - Lewisville Police Arrest 17-year-old in Road Rage Incident
2015/3/4 - Lewisville Hires New Emergency Management Coordinator
2015/3/3 - Winter Storm Warning for Wednesday Afternoon
2015/3/3 - Updated: Fox Avenue Bridge Demolition and Reconstruction to Start ...
2015/3/2 - Symphony and Ballet Present Peter and the Wolf
2015/3/2 - Winter Weather Back in Forecast for Wednesday
2015/3/1 - LLELA Nature Preserve opens new Blackjack Trail March 21
2015/3/1 - Miscellaneous Notes and Links
2015/3/1 - Citizens Fire Academy begins March 10
2015/2/28 - Candidates for Lewisville City Council, Place 2 - 2015
2015/2/28 - Flower Mound Police Investigate Shooting
2015/2/28 - The Last First
2015/2/24 - Updated: Drought and Lake Update - February 2015
2015/2/24 - Adoptable Pets of the Week
2015/2/22 - Lewisville ISD Closed Monday and Tuesday Due to Hazardous Driving ...
2015/2/22 - Lewisville Morning Rotary taking Flag Subscriptions
2015/2/22 - Severe Weather Awareness Week is March 1-7
2015/2/22 - I-35E Project - Community Meeting and Updates on Closures
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Lewisville Election Results - ISD Bonds, City Council

The Editor's Column
 Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/10 23:50:00 (5099 reads)

In place 1, Lewisville City Council, Greg Tierney won re-election to his third term over challenger John Gorena. The vote was 796 (61.14%) to 506 (38.86%).

In place 3, Lewisville City Council, Lathan Watts won re-election to his first full 3-year term over challenger David Fogle. The vote was 811 (63.76%) to 461 (36.24%).

The total turnout was 1,398, which is normal for Lewisville Council elections.

I'm not surprised with the results here. I knew that barring some sort of massive turnout sparked by the "immigration" debate, Greg Tierney would win. He's a likable guy, very well known and respected in the community. It would also be an uphill battle for the non-political challenger Fogle against professional political operative and incumbent Lathan Watts.

What I find interesting is the disparity between the early vote, and election day voting. Both Watts and Gorena campaigned in person at the polling locations today at the Municipal Annex and the Memorial Park Recreation Center. It appears to my surprise, that this did give both of them a little bump.

In place 1, early voting, the ratio was 66.41% (Tierney) to 29.01% (Gorena) with 31 not voting.

In place 3, early voting, the ratio was 57.63% (Watts) to 35.24% (Fogle) with 41 not voting.

The Lewisville ISD Bond propositions were a mixed bag.

Proposition 1, $700 million for new school buildings and land PASSED.
Proposition 2, $80 million for a "Special Events" center FAILED by a hair.

Update:
Results for this election were not available by precinct, but this document shows results by polling location. Voters at Lewisville locations overall rejected the bond.

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Michael Burgess Votes Against Mothers

The Nimrods Never Cease to Amaze Me
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/9 21:53:29 (2878 reads)

This afternoon, I surfed around on Thomas looking at recent roll call votes to see what our local Congressman, Michael Burgess has been up to. A lot of the votes taken in Congress are on procedural matters, so it's easy to miss the little nuggets that give you true insight on the character of your elected representative.

One thing I had missed, but that The Texas Blue had picked up on was that 178 Republicans, Michael Burgess included, voted against H. Res. 1113 "Celebrating the role of mothers in the United States and supporting the goals and ideals of Mother's Day"

Actually - they all voted FOR Mothers Day - at least the ones who could be bothered to show up and vote - before one Republican lemming, Todd Tiahrt of Kansas ran off the cliff and they all decided to follow him. Tiahrt waited until after the vote for H R 1113, then moved to reconsider - basically asking for a "redo". At that point, Democratic Congresswoman and mother, Kathy Castor of Florida moved to table the motion to reconsider. Sort of convoluted, but a YES vote on Castor's motion means "yes, to heck with Tiahrt's regrets. We voted for it, let it stand". A "no" vote meant: "We didn't mean to do that. Let us vote on it again". The second vote passed 237 - 178.

The Washington Post quotes Minority Leader John Boehner as saying:

"Oh, we just wanted to make sure that everyone was on record in support of Mother's Day."


Uh, OK? 412 voted for it and 21 missed the vote. At least one of those was Republican Vito Fossella, who has drunk driving and zipper problems to deal with.

Now, sure - you could waste your time asking Michael Burgess why he would vote against a silly Mothers Day laudatory resolution. I'm sure he would be glad to waste 15 minutes or more of your time explaining how they only did it so they could vote for Mom again and get some of their colleagues back from their 4 martini lobbyist schmoozing lunch hour.

Yes, Michael Burgess would love for you to waste your time asking why he would so blindly vote along party lines for something so silly. Because the more time you spend asking about that, the less time you have to ask tough questions like:
- Why are we still in Iraq?
- What will it take to consider the job done? (this time)
- When will Congress do its job of oversight on the executive branch?
- Why does he always vote against the middle-class, and against consumers?
- Why does he vote against basic worker safety regulations, and living wages for hard working Americans while voting for tax cuts for dead rich people?
- Why does he want to increase the number of uninsured in this country?
- Why does he take campaign money from Oil and Gas companies, and then vote on legislation to give them corporate welfare?
- Why does he own stock in, and take campaign money from the pharmaceutical industry, and then vote on legislation favoring them at the expense of consumers and taxpayers?
- Would President Bush literally have to sodomize kittens in front of school children before Michael Burgess would break with the radical right and hold him accountable? Obviously seizing powers not granted in the constitution, tolerating and condoning corruption, and starting a war based on a lie, that kills 4,000 of our troops and hundreds of thousands of civilians while spending a trillion dollars is not enough.

Michael Burgess doesn't likely hate his own mother, or even yours. He just thinks they need some "tough love", and that the free market will eventually get around to putting value on the intangible things like a mother's love. (or peace, or freedom, or human rights, etc...)

Happy Mothers Day from Michael Burgess, and the Republican Party

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Fitch Rates Lewisville, Texas GO Bonds 'AA'; Outlook Revised to Positive

Miscellaneous
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/9 20:50:32 (1332 reads)

Fitch Rates Lewisville, Texas GO Bonds 'AA'; Outlook Revised to Positive

AUSTIN, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fitch Ratings assigns an 'AA' rating to the City of Lewisville, Texas' (the city) $8.85 million general obligation (GO) bonds, series 2008. Additionally, Fitch affirms the 'AA' rating to the city's $59.5 million outstanding GO bonds and $45.2 million outstanding certificates of obligation. The bonds are scheduled to be sold via negotiated offering the week of May 19. The Rating Outlook is revised to Positive from Stable.

The bonds are secured by a continuing direct ad valorem tax levied against all taxable property within the city, subject to a $2.50 per $100 taxable assessed valuation (TAV) limitation prescribed by law. Bond proceeds will be used to finance street and drainage improvements to Westwood Estates (Phase 2) and to reimburse the general fund for street and drainage improvements to Railroad Street.

The 'AA' rating reflects the city's favorable financial profile, moderate direct debt position, and a stable and fairly diversified local economy. The Outlook revision is the result of strong commercial development activity over the past 12-18 months as the city has succeeded in attracting new businesses and retail and multifamily residential projects. Operating reserve levels also continue to grow. A high overall debt level, principally driven by Lewisville Independent School District (ISD, GO debt rated 'AA' by Fitch) is an additional rating consideration. Fitch views the strength of the city's financial management and the demonstrated commitment to conservative budgeting practices and policies key factors in the rating assignment.

The city's tax base, which recorded healthy annual gains during Lewisville's rapid growth period over the past several decades, has posted increases over the past five fiscal years averaging 5.4% annually, including a 13% gain for fiscal 2008; the current TAV is $6.2 billion. The planned widening of Interstate Highway (IH) 35 through Lewisville and construction of a light rail system that will feature three Lewisville stations and tie into the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) system have begun to spur additional commercial development in the city. In addition, the city has attracted some large companies to Lewisville such as Fidelity Investments and 21st Century Insurance with active tax incentive agreements. As these agreements roll off in future years the city should benefit from a TAV boost.

General fund spending has increased a manageable 5%-6% annually since fiscal 2002, enabling the city to maintain healthy reserve levels while holding the property tax rate steady. The unreserved general fund balance at fiscal 2007 year-end was $26.3 million or a sizeable 43% of spending and transfers out. These results marked the fifth consecutive fiscal year with net income and increasing reserves.

Sales tax receipts have registered average annual gains of almost 5% over the past three fiscal years. Sales tax and property tax revenues each comprise roughly 33% of total general fund revenues typically, with other fees and charges generating the remaining one-third of operating revenues. Liquidity has improved steadily since fiscal 2002; general fund cash and investments have increased each year during this period and at fiscal 2007 year-end totaled more than $23 million.

Projected fiscal 2008 results suggest an increase in the total general fund balance to $28 million, or a $1.2 million increase (after transfers related to one-time capital projects); sales tax receipts are projected to be flat for the year at approximately $19 million. Both of these results will exceed original budget projections.

Lewisville's direct debt position remains moderate, although the overall debt burden is well above average due to Lewisville ISD's ongoing borrowings. Debt service as a percentage of operating expenditures is average at roughly 15%, and principal amortization is above average at nearly 63% in 10 years. The city's debt position also benefits from annual general fund transfers to capital projects; Lewisville maintains a policy of transferring a sizable amount of surplus revenues, primarily for street and drainage improvements. Following this sale, the city will have $28.7 million remaining from previous authorizations; planned GO debt offerings totaling $10.0 million over the next two years appear manageable and likely will have little or no impact on the debt service tax rate.

Lewisville is located northwest of Dallas along IH 35 East, lying in parts of Dallas and Denton counties in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro-plex. The estimated city population for 2008 is approximately 92,900. The city is home to various manufacturing, distribution, and service concerns. Commercial development activity spiked in 2006 and 2007, and development is expected to continue in the areas surrounding three planned light-rail stations in the city as well as in the redeveloped old downtown area. Construction on the light-rail system, which will tie into DART in nearby Carrollton, is expected to begin in 2010 and be completed by 2013. Expansion of IH 35 is expected to be completed in the same timeframe. Local unemployment rates historically have been lower than regional, state and national averages. The city's most recent monthly unemployment rate was 3.6% (May, 2008).

Fitch's rating definitions and the terms of use of such ratings are available on the agency's public site, www.fitchratings.com. Published ratings, criteria and methodologies are available from this site, at all times. Fitch's code of conduct, confidentiality, conflicts of interest, affiliate firewall, compliance and other relevant policies and procedures are also available from the 'Code of Conduct' section of this site.

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65 Pound Catfish Caught in Lewisville Lake!

Links, Thoughts, and Open Thread
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/9 16:15:54 (1675 reads)

Oh - My - GOD!

...
After 45 minutes of fighting, [Royce] Coker [of The Colony] says he landed a monster of a fish: a 65-pound channel catfish.

...

Texas Parks and Wildlife says if the catch is verified, it would be a new record for the lake. The previous record-holder weighed just 22 and a half pounds.


No word on whether or not it contained any small farm animals, house-pets, or children.

I guess fishing is going to be anti-climactic for the rest of Coker's life.

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Independent Candidate for Congress in TX-26 Fails to File Petitions

The Editor's Column
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/9 11:52:34 (1648 reads)

Independent candidate for U.S. Representative in the 26th district of Texas, Donald Tracey of Keller, Texas (right) has effectively ended his bid for access to the November, 2008 ballot. Texas Secretary of State Elections Division employee Kim Thole confirmed this morning that Tracey failed to file his required petition of 500 voters, which was due yesterday, May 8.

In an April 5th email to WhosPlayin, Tracey stated that he had the required signatures:

“Our signatures are now over 1000 with another 1000 we hope in 2 weeks. I will be on the ballot in Nov. and in DC, come January 2009 God willing.”

Candidates attempting ballot access by petition usually attempt to gather many more than the required number of 500, so that they have a safety margin in case some of the signatures turn out to be invalid.

Tracey would have made a three-way race for the seat with incumbent Republican Michael Burgess of Lewisville and Democratic challenger Ken Leach of Gainesville.

Thole noted that Tracey could still run as a write-in candidate. If Tracey did file as a write-in, he would have to do so no later than August 26.

WhosPlayin attempted to contact Mr. Tracey for a comment, but was unable to reach him at the time this was posted.

Donald Tracey has written for WhosPlayin.com as a guest contributor.

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Talk with Fred Placke about LISD Gas Lease, Renewables

Lewisville ISD Notes
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/8 15:00:00 (3244 reads)

WhosPlayin recently received an anonymous comment (excerpts shown in yellow below) on one of our blog postings which raised some questions and some allegations regarding Lewisville Independent School District's leasing of its land for oil and gas drilling.

Though I've removed the comment for libel reasons, it made an accusation that Board President Fred Placke had negotiated gas leases for far below market rates.

I contacted LISD, and received a call from Mr. Placke today. I asked if he could provide some comments, and he was more than glad for the chance to set the record straight, saying that the comments had made his blood boil.

"Fred [Placke] said the Mayor of Flower Mound, Jody Smith, had approached him sometime back encouraging him to lease the LISD land. Fred was positively GLOWING about this "found money" for the district! He waxed eloquent about how he had leased all of LISD's land for gas drilling to the tune of about $1,000-$1,100 per acre and 25% royalty."

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Dim Bulb Nominee: Carrollton Mayor Lies About Singing Career, Brother, College

The Nimrods Never Cease to Amaze Me
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/7 8:13:59 (2198 reads)

The Dallas Morning News reports that Carrollton Mayor Becky Miller's assertions about her past are at best, misleading.

Mrs. Miller states on her campaign Web site that she attended Western Kentucky University. Laura Dilliha, student records specialist there, said the school has no record of her having been a student. Mrs. Miller's former husband said that he attended Western Kentucky but that Mrs. Miller did not.

Mrs. Miller said Monday that she attended the school for about two months in 1968.

Wow, two months? Now THAT is resume-worthy! But at least lying about college sort of makes some sense. But it gets weirder:
Sang backup for Linda Ronstadt and Jackson Browne. Engaged to Eagles singer-songwriter Don Henley. Devastated by a brother's death in Vietnam.

All are part of the colorful past described by Carrollton Mayor Becky Miller, acquaintances say.

But spokesmen for the famous singers said the three don't know her. And the mayor's father said she never had a brother who died in the war.

In the article, Ms. Miller states that she used another name when she sang, but declines to say what that name is. Her "brother", well, she's been caught in a lie twice on that. She now says it was a person who was "like" a brother, and she won't name him.

Becky Miller would appear to be another one of these radical Republican anti-immigrant activists. Here's the first paragraph from her campaign website:
Mayor Becky Miller is proud to announce that the City of Carrollton has finally been approved for 287G funding so that our city can participate in the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency’s Illegal Immigration Enforcement program. “We have applied for this funding before but we have been held up by Federal Budgeting issues. It was really the cooperation and support of Congressman Kenny Marchant that cleared the way for us to get the funding necessary for Carrollton to participate and we thank him for that,” said Miller. “Congressman Marchant knows how much this means for Carrollton. Our time spent with regional, state and federal leaders really helps bring giant returns for the Carrollton.”


But her opponent, Ron Branson, points out that she was against the 287g program. Branson is endorsed by noted bigot, Farmers Branch mayoral candidate Tim O'Hare.

Gotta love municipal politics... Surely this warrants nomination for the Texas Dim Bulb Award

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Progressive Blog Roundup

Miscellaneous
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/6 20:36:05 (1102 reads)

It's Monday Tuesday and time for the Texas Progressive Alliance Weekly Blog Round-Up.

CouldBeTrue from South Texas Chisme notes Republican-run government favors crony money over Texans' health. Asarco, a proven polluter, is given a permit to start polluting again and Abbott says lead poisoning landlords have a right to privacy.

John Coby at Bay Area Houston, thinks Bob Perry should go to Hell.

Doing My Part For The Left's Refinish69 joins Austin high school students in Breaking the Silence.

WhosPlayin writes about the disturbing trend for hospitals to require payment up front for expensive services like chemotherapy. Even "non-profit" hospitals like U.T.'s M.D. Anderson are doing this, even while reducing free care and racking up huge surpluses.

Off the Kuff looks at the race for Harris County Sheriff and foresees immigration issues playing a big role.

The Texas Cloverleaf wonders why Governor 39% appointed a policy nerd to chair the Transportation Commission, rather than someone who knows anything about roads. Cronyism perhaps?

In the wake of the SCOTUS decision approving voter ID legislation last week, PDiddie of Brains and Eggs fact-checks the need for it.

North Texas Liberal's Texas Toad takes a look at the new Republican culture war over something just as useless:
allowing guns in national parks. Thank you, John Cornyn.

WCNews at Eye On Williamson has this post on the Reaction To Perry's TxDOT Appointments.

McBlogger take a moment to talk about the state of the TTC and Guv. 39%'s appointments to the Transportation Commission.

Lightseeker shares his opinion On Trusting Free Market to Regulate Government over at Texas Kaos.

Vince at Capitol Annex shows another example of Voter ID Idiocy, this time highlighting an editorial from the Texarkana Gazette's pseudo-ivory-tower-intellectual editorial board and explains why such thinking is typical of suburban newspaper editors.

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Craddick's Grown Daughter Getting Free Health Insurance. You're paying for it.

The Nimrods Never Cease to Amaze Me
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/5 18:13:46 (1914 reads)

Embattled Speaker of the Texas House, Tom Craddick recently attacked three opponents for extending state health insurance for employees who only work part time.

It was revealed today by the Lone Star Project that Craddick himself, using a law that he co-authored in 1996, is keeping his 37 year old affluent daughter on the State of Texas Employee health-care plan.



This is despite the fact that she has not a state employee, and has earned over $664,000 in the past 5 years "working" for Craddick's campaign and operating her own company "Direct Contacts".

Yep, the affluent daughter of a millionaire mud-peddler in the oil and gas industry can't be expected to go into the free market and purchase health insurance.

Children of single mothers in the pink-collar ghetto be damned when it comes to making SCHIP available to the citizens of our state. As long as the immediate family members of our corrupt state legislators are well taken care of.

It's not "Justice". It's "Just Us".

You're already paying for universal health care coverage. Demand that you get what you're paying for.

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"Riverwalk" in Flower Mound?

The Editor's Column
Posted by WhosPlayin on 2008/5/5 7:23:37 (1330 reads)

Seeing this video makes me sort of glad to live in Lewisville:


Why do some city councils feel it necessary to fill every damn acre of green space, and pave over every bit of wetlands, and chop down every tree?

I hope the citizens of Flower Mound can continue to hold off this development.

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