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News Review
Week In Review, Aug. 3, 2012
Posted Date: 8/3/2012
Week In Review Image

Aug. 3, 2012
Here is the latest edition of Week In Review - a series of weekly messages from the Mayor and City Council to help Richardson residents and businesses keep up to date on events at City Hall. A list of links for stories in this edition is available at the bottom of the page.


City Council to Discuss 2012-2013 Proposed Budget on Monday
On Monday, Aug. 6, City Manager Dan Johnson will present the proposed 2012-2013 Budget during the City Council’s regularly scheduled work session meeting. The proposed budget was filed today and is available on the City’s website.

The City Council on Monday will also set dates for public hearings on the budget and proposed tax rate. Hearing dates are recommended to be Aug. 20 and 27, with budget adoption anticipated for Monday, Sept. 10.

The proposed property tax rate for the support of the 2012-2013 General Fund expenditures is submitted at a rate of $0.63516 per $100 of assessed valuation, reflecting no change from the 2011-2012 tax rate.  

The budget presentation and the public hearings will be available for viewing on the City’s CITV cable channel or live on-demand through the City’s website. CITV is available for Time Warner Cable customers on channel 16 or for ATT U-Verse customers on channel 99. City Council work session meetings begin at 6 p.m. The Council’s regular meetings begin at 7:30 p.m.
Link to full document of proposed 2012-2013 Budget:


Charter Amendment Election to Take Place Nov. 6
At its regular work session meeting Monday, the Richardson City Council approved an ordinance to call for a charter amendment election in November. The proposed amendment would change Richardson’s charter to provide for the direct election of the City’s mayor.

Currently, under the Richardson City Charter, a council member is appointed to the position of mayor by the council members. Under state law, the City Charter may be amended by initiative of the City Council adopting an ordinance calling an election on proposed amendments, or by petition, if a proper petition is submitted and signed by a number of qualified voters of the City equal to at least five percent of the number of qualified voters of the municipality, or 20,000, whichever number is smaller. On July 5, a petition to call the election was submitted to the City Secretary’s Office. A total of 4,556 signatures were submitted, and 3,051 were verified, meeting the required number of at least 2,499 qualified Richardson voters.

The election will take place on the next available uniform election date, which will be Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012.

Click the link below to watch Monday’s City Council vote:


Richardson Purchases Property on Central Expressway
This week the City closed a contract to purchase the Continental Inn, located at 758 South Central Expressway, and the adjacent property located at 750 South Central Expressway. The properties cover 3.36 acres of land, cost $2.2 million, and are strategically located in the West Spring Valley redevelopment corridor.

Demolition of the Continental Inn and adjacent property is already under way and is expected to be complete by mid-September. The property will be used as part of a retail redevelopment plan for the West Spring Valley Corridor.

The West Spring Valley Corridor is one of six Enhancement/Redevelopment areas identified in the City of Richardson's 2009 Comprehensive Plan. The Corridor consists of 197 acres and was selected for the inaugural study. The area is generally bounded by Coit Road, Central Expressway, Spring Valley Road, and single-family residences and an auto sales lot on the north.

Click the links below for more information about the redevelopment project:


Follow Richardson Today on Facebook and Twitter for Tour of Alamo Drafthouse
Alamo Drafthouse DFW is hosting a tour next Friday to give moviegoers a preview of what the Austin icon will bring to Richardson when its first Metroplex location opens in the City next year.

The tour is only open to the media, but you can get a sneak peek as Richardson Today provides live coverage of the tour on its Facebook and Twitter pages beginning Friday afternoon.

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema has developed a loyal following over the years and offers a unique movie-going experience. The 35,350 square-foot Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Richardson will be a state-of-the-art theater with 100 percent digital projection.

Richardson used an economic incentive package to lure the development so it could serve as a catalyst for the shopping center, attracting other enviable retail to the City. The Heights Shopping Center was built in the late 1950s and early 1960s and has been a focus of revitalization efforts.

Click the links below to follow Richardson Today on Facebook and Twitter: 


Positive West Nile Virus Tests Result in Mosquito Spraying This Week and Monday
The Richardson Health Department is planning to spray a portion of the southeastern area of the City Monday, Aug. 6, due to a positive finding of West Nile virus in a mosquito monitoring station.

Weather permitting, Monday’s spraying will take place in the area from East Arapaho Road south to Buckingham Road, and Bowser Road east to Jupiter Road.

In addition, the Health Department sprayed portions of the southwestern and northeastern areas of the City this week due to two positive human cases of West Nile virus and one positive test result from a mosquito monitoring station.

Richardson schedules spraying events between 10 p.m. and 3 a.m. to limit exposure to people who may wish to avoid contact with the pesticide used to control mosquito populations. In order to minimize human exposure, the Health Department typically does not schedule spraying events on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. The City utilizes an ultra-low volume fogger that disperses pesticide at a rate of 6 oz. per minute, which is effective at impacting mosquito populations and is sensitive to the environment.

The Richardson Health Department schedules mosquito sprayings based on positive findings of West Nile virus in mosquito traps placed around the City (see map) or if a human case is confirmed. Once located, the area around the positive finding is targeted for spraying in an attempt to help limit the spread of the disease.

Spraying is one measure utilized to help limit exposure, but citizens should also remain vigilant in protecting themselves when going outside.

To protect from mosquito bites, people are asked to follow the Four D’s of protection:

  • DRAIN standing water around the home,
  • Use insect repellent containing DEET,
  • Avoid being outdoors at DUSK and DAWN when mosquitoes are most active,
  • And DRESS to protect yourself with long sleeves and pants to reduce skin exposure.
Spraying to control the population of mosquitoes and the spread of the West Nile virus is a last resort, and is part of a comprehensive plan the Richardson Health Department follows to control the mosquito population. Other activities include: continuous monitoring of mosquito test pool results, using larvicide to prevent mosquito eggs from hatching along creeks, and public education efforts. All areas of the City are continuously monitored, and further sprayings will be scheduled based on mosquito surveillance used to monitor the spread of the West Nile virus.
 The above map shows locations of mosquito monitoring sites.

Mosquito Spray Aug. 6 

 Aug. 6 spraying area

City Council to Consider Sign Ordinance Amendments
The City Council on Monday met with members of the Sign Control Board to discuss proposed improvements to the City’s sign ordinance. The ordinance will be on the Monday, Aug. 13, City Council meeting consent agenda.

The changes would make the ordinance easier for businesses to read and understand, would eliminate inconsistent regulations and would address new types of signs such as electronic signs.

Other major changes include:

  • Reorganizing the ordinance to arrange regulations by sign type
  • Creating a minor modification process in addition to the existing variance option
  • Adding an appendix with supporting materials such as pictures and diagrams to illustrate sign ordinance regulations

One of the most significant additions is regulations to allow electronic signs, a current development trend. Each message would be required to be displayed for at least 10 minutes before changing, and a change of message would have to occur in two seconds or less. Flashing, moving, animated, revolving or similar types of messages would not be allowed, and just one electronic sign would be allowed per street frontage.

Under the new ordinance, vehicles with affixed signs would also be regulated. Such vehicles would have to be set back from the road, would have to have a bona fide transportation purpose and would have to be parked in a single, designated parking space.

The final ordinance reflects approximately six months of review by the Sign Control Board and City Council, and the Chamber of Commerce Retail Consulting Group was briefed on the proposal in May.

Click the link below to watch Monday’s City Council discussion:


August Richardson Today and Fall Recreation Guide Mailed This Week
The August edition of Richardson Today began arriving in mailboxes this week. The latest edition focuses on community health and wellness and the announcement of a new Methodist Richardson Medical Center Bush/Renner campus hospital. Other top stories include the opening of Fire Station 4 and progress on the Main Street/Central Expressway corridor study. The August edition also includes the 2012 Fall Parks and Recreation Guide.

Richardson Today is mailed to every residence in the City and is also available at the Heights and Huffhines Recreation Centers, the Senior Center, City Hall and at the Richardson Public Library. A Richardson Today interactive edition is also accessible through the link below. Ask your local mail carrier if you live in the City and do not receive your copy of Richardson Today.

Click the link below to read the latest edition of Richardson Today, as well as archived editions:


Aimee Nemer Sworn in as Richardson City Secretary
Richardson’s new City Secretary, Aimee Nemer, was officially sworn in by Mayor Bob Townsend at Monday’s City Council work session.

Nemer was appointed City Secretary in June and started her tenure with the City on Monday. Nemer was previously City Secretary for the City of Murphy, a position she had held since November 2004. She succeeds former City Secretary Pam Schmidt, who retired April 30.
Aimee Nember Oath

Click the link below to watch Monday’s swearing in ceremony: 


Parks and Recreation Assistant Director Honored by Special Olympics Texas Regional Division
Robbie Hazelbaker, Assistant Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Richardson, was recently honored as an Outstanding Community Leader by Special Olympics Texas – Area 10 and the local Richardson Roadrunners Delegation. Through his work organizing the Richardson Corporate Challenge over nearly 15 years, Hazelbaker has helped raise more than $1,030,000 for Special Olympics Texas and the local Richardson Roadrunners team.
Pictured are Alice Bremlow from the Area 10 office, Robbie Hazelbaker, Steve Scobee, Sr., head of the Richardson Roadrunners delegation, Marti Bishop, also from the Richardson Roadrunners delegation and members of the Richardson Roadrunners Special Olympics team.

Click the link below to read the full press release:


“Operation Hydration” Collects Bottled Water for USO
Last week’s “Operation Hydration 2012,” sponsored by DFW AT&T veterans, collected 529 cases of water and $622 to support the United Service Organizations (USO) at Fort Hood in Killeen. The event was held last Friday at Richardson City Hall.

Bottles of water collected will directly benefit the troops and family members stationed at Fort Hood. The base is home to 46,000 service members, 89,000 family members and has 22,000-30,000 National Guard and reserve troops. Water will be served to soldiers in USO centers, outbound flight support, welcome home ceremonies and USO programs. The USO at Fort Hood operates three centers and served 241,000 guests in 2011.
Water Donations 


National Night Out Planning Begins with Aug. 7 Meeting
The first planning meeting for this year’s National Night Out (NNO) event (to be held Oct. 2) will be a potluck dinner at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012, in the Grand Hall at the Richardson Civic Center, 411 W. Arapaho Rd. Neighborhood Crime Watch Block Captains, Neighborhood Association Safety Facilitators, Crime Watch Patrol Coordinators and persons responsible for planning NNO parties, are invited to attend.

This annual meeting brings Neighborhood Watch leaders together for fellowship, to exchange ideas and to plan for National Night Out. Also, last year’s Neighborhood Award Winners will again be recognized by the Police Department. NNO packets will be available at the meeting, and a drawing will be held to assign the NNO 2012 specialty block party visits.

Neighborhood Watch Leaders are encouraged to invite those who may not have an organized Neighborhood Watch on their street to join in the fun and fellowship and to find out the advantage of having a Neighborhood Watch on their own block.
NNO logo
For more information on Richardson’s NNO 2012, visit or contact the Richardson Police Department Crime Prevention Unit at 972-744-4955.

Senior Awareness Day is Saturday
The Fourth Annual District 112 Senior Awareness Day (co-hosted by State Representative Angie Chen Button and the cities of Richardson, Garland, Sachse and Rowlett) will be held Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at the Granville Arts Center Atrium, 300 N. Fifth St. in Garland.

Senior Awareness Day is put on to educate the seniors of Richardson, Garland, Sachse and Rowlett about community resources available to them as well as to provide them a weekend of great entertainment.

The event will include exhibitors, entertainment, refreshments and door prizes. The Dallas Area Agency on Aging and benefits counselors will be available to answer questions and provide assistance on Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and other programs for seniors.

“All Round Talent” Competition Judging Begins with 61 Entries
The Eisemann Center’s All Round Talent competition, part of the 10th Anniversary celebration Community Arts Day, drew 61 entries. Judges are reviewing entries and will invite finalists to a live audition to be held Aug. 18.

Competitors include solo singers and musicians, duets, singer-songwriters, comedians, clowns and jugglers, and dancers. The 138 people who applied range in age from 6 to 81 and are from Richardson as well as many other cities in the Metroplex.

Five entries are past winners of the Wildflower! Arts and Music Festival’s Budding Talent and Battle of the Bands competitions and will receive automatic entries into the Sept. 16 Showcase performance, which will take place at the Eisemann Center. Other Showcase performers will be selected by the panel judges following the live audition. 
All Round Talent 


Eisemann Center Presents 2012-2013 Single Show Tickets Go on Sale Monday
Single ticket sales for the 10th Anniversary Eisemann Center Presents season will begin Monday.

Season highlights include “Jeff Garlin – Built for Comfort” on Oct. 12, The Oak Ridge Boys on Oct. 27, “Monty Python’s Spamalot” on March 19-20, 2013, and “Ed Asner Starring as FDR” on April 27, 2013. The season also includes the ViewPoint Bank Theatre Comedy Series, the Family Theatre Series, the Keyboard Conversations® series with Jeffrey Siegel, and many more music and theatre performances.

Tickets are selling fast but are still available for “An Evening With Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin” on Sept. 15, a special performance that is part of the 10th Anniversary celebration.

Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling the Eisemann Center Ticket Office at 972-744-4650. Ticket Office hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and one hour before performances. Group discounts are available for 10 or more by calling 972-744-4657.

Click the link below for information about the Eisemann Center Presents 2012-2013 season and a ticket order form:


Review of Richardson Reads One Book Selection is Thursday at the Civic Center
Humorist, author, actress, professor and book reviewer Rose-Mary Rumbley will review the Richardson Reads One Book 2012 selection, “One Amazing Thing,” at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in the Grand Hall at the Richardson Civic Center. The review had previously been scheduled to take place at the Library.

Rumbley delivers hundreds of speeches every year, including talks to more than 75 book clubs in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. She has been dubbed as “the best public speaker in North Texas” by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s David Leiber and has written several books including two humorous looks at the history of Dallas.

The program is sponsored by the Friends of the Richardson Public Library and is free and open to all. Doors will open at 10 a.m. For more information, call 972-744-4376 or visit the Richardson Reads One Book website at


Methodist Richardson Medical Center to Host Free Women’s Health Event Saturday, Aug. 11
Methodist Richardson Medical Center’s “Girl Talk” will focus on learning how to live healthfully as a modern woman. The free event will take place 9:30 a.m.-noon Saturday, Aug. 11 at the Eisemann Center.

Mayor Pro Tem Laura Maczka will emcee the event, which will feature informative talks from physician experts about women’s health issues as well as general wellness. Guests will also receive free health screenings for blood pressure, blood glucose, total cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglycerides. (Health screenings are available to women ages 18 or older and require a 10-hour fast.)

The keynote speaker will be Dale Smith Thomas, who will speak about “Superwoman Syndrome” and share entertaining insights and lots of laughter. A dynamic and sought-after speaker, Thomas has made numerous TV appearances including on “Dr. Phil,” CMT and VH1.

Space is limited, so register by calling 972-4-DR-LINE or visit  


Richardson Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
This is Lilac! He is a domestic short hair, neutered male about two years old. He came in as a stray in February and is up to date on all vaccinations. He is very friendly and good with other pets. Contact the Animal Shelter (972-744-4480) about Licac or other animals available for adoption.

Animal Shelter Facebook Page


 Related Links
City Council videos:
City Council agenda:
City Council meeting documents:

Find Richardson Today on Facebook and Twitter

 Bob Townsend
Bob Townsend
Place 1
 Laura Maczka
Mayor Pro Tem
Laura Maczka
Place 4
 Mark Solomon
Council Member
Mark Solomon
Place 2
 Scott Dunn
Council Member
Scott Dunn
Place 3
 Kendal Hartley
Council Member
Kendal Hartley
Place 5
 City Council Member Steve Mitchell
Council Member
Steve Mitchell
Place 6
 Amir Omar
Council Member
Amir Omar
Place 7