Northlake Notes – September 2018

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Northlake Mayor Peter Dewing

The Good and Unpleasant:

The Good: Northlake’s policies, location, and ordinances continue to attract new business. We are in discussions to bring additional commercial and retail businesses to the Town. We have one of the lowest tax rates in DFW. Our location to major transportation hubs, exceptional schools, and housing options for current and future employees are major factors the companies have been looking for in DFW.

Credit and debit cards are now accepted by the Town to pay utility bills: Please read the utility bill, which will explain how to setup an account, or call the Town.

Improvements to Cleveland-Gibbs from FM 407 to FM 1171 are on schedule to be completed by the end of the year or the first quarter of 2019. Also, sewer, road and drainage improvements at Dale Earnhardt have begun, utilities are being moved. TxDOT is continuing to repave 35W during the evening hours.

The budget I am proposing to the council will keep the current 0.2905 cent tax rate the same that is below the effective rate. If approved in September we will be able to improve Town services, which include: accounting, public works, administration oversite, and provide an additional officer to provide 24/7 police response/coverage.  We will still have a balanced budget while at the same time improving services, not decreasing them.

Town Hall will be moving to “Commons Circle, Suite 300, Northlake, TX  76226” before the end of the year. The current location will be staffed for a short period of time (about a month) to accept utility bill payments. Please check the website for updates and additional information.

The Unpleasant: The council will be discussing issuing debt (Certificate of obligation (CO) in the amount of $12 million) to improve the entire water system for both pressure plains that impact health, safety and quality for everyone in Northlake and will be funded without increasing taxes or water/wastewater rates. The current commercial and residential development will fund the debt service without increasing taxes or rates the Town has established. Some may ask why the Northern pressure plane for primary residential (Canyon Falls, Harvest, NRE, Highlands, Stardust, Prairie View …) is $3M and the Southern pressure plane is $9M for the commercial properties located by SH114 and 35W. It is because the northern water system was properly engineered.

The southern water system in 1999 was not properly designed or engineered to be self-sufficient.  We are attempting to correct the lack of planning and ensure both residential and commercial property has a reliable water source verses being at the mercy of external wholesale water providers. FYI, the commercial property contributes over 51% of the taxes and keeps our residential rate low.  Just as a reminder, the previous council passed a homestead exemption for the residents and at least some of the council is willing to continue this.

Due to weather and logistical issues (part was shipped to a different site and misplaced) the traffic light at FM 407 and Harvest Way has been delayed and should be installed within the month.

TxDOT is still studying the need to expand FM 407. Please share your comments and concerns at the public meetings, and let Denton County TxDOT know your concerns. They can be reached at 940-387-1414. Make comments to their website not on your community Facebook page.

Some people are out to jeopardize the Town’s financial stability, public safety (police), health and quality of life (public works) for all.

Last word:  My apology to both Mr. Montini and Lambert, after the previous article I wrote. I heard from both of them, and they emphatically told me they will vote and make decisions based on what is best for the Town and residents.  So I mischaracterized two of the new Council members. I look forward to civil conversations and working with both of them that will lead to improving Northlake’s future for all residents.

I still have not heard from the Councilperson that has publically spoken against every residential and commercial development since 1999 and believes everything needs to stop (business, residential, road improvements, water and wastewater infrastructure, police, and schools), and stirs up controversy on social media with disinformation.

If anyone has suggestions on how to improve these types of notices (single community focused event), please let me know. If you like the stability, services, and projects the Town is working on let the Staff and Council know.

I encourage communications to be on public record.  I believe in total transparency, and when statements are made by public officials via their official e-mail, they are available to the public without hiding behind social media. If you hear or see something on social media that interests you, contact the Town to voice your views. All voices should be heard and not only a few who hide on the internet. Your voice and opinions matter. Contact information for staff and councilmembers is located at www.town.northlake.tx.us

I am excited that the Town has a bright future and will continue to welcome everyone for generations to come.

If you have any comments or suggestions to improve your quality of life in Northlake, please let me know. If you have recommendations to improve public communications/information, please let me know. Thanks for your time.

Peter Dewing, J.D., CWO3/USMC (ret), Mayor, 940-390-4303, [email protected]

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