Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Questionable Intelligence Of Farmers Branch

Farmers Branch's positives:
•good city parks
•a pretty decent library

Farmers Branch's negatives, as seen by the outside world:
•property tax base reliant upon residences
•no beer and wine sales and thus no nice restaurants and no bar scene
•no major grocery store
•sales tax revenue derived primarily from one Wal-Mart store
•no high school sports tradition
•no nighttime entertainment venues
•aging and neglected infrastructure
•police department with a jones for giving tickets

Farmers Branch's only negative as seen by the city council:
•too many "Mexicans"

So the city council in its collective wisdom passed Ordinance 2903 requiring apartment complexes to obtain and maintain copies of documents showing tenants to be U.S. citizens or legal residents. Judge Sam Lindsay struck down 2903 Friday because he said the U.S. Constitution gives the federal government exclusive jurisdiction over immigration. The fight for 2903 has cost the city $800000 plus they may have to pay the attorney fees for the opposition.

Anticipating a loss the city council passed Ordinance 2952 expected to go into effect in mid-September. It includes rental houses as well as apartments. Potential renters will now have to go to city hall, swear they're citizens or legal residents and pay a $5 fee to get a permit to rent. The city will use a federal database to determine the potential renters' status. Landlords renting to tenants without the permit can be fined up to $500 per day.

Farmers Branch is surrounded by Dallas, Addison and Carrollton. None of those cities have such rules and all have rental units. Why would a renter go to such lengths just to live in Farmers Branch? Just what does Farmers Branch have to make it so appealing other than the cheap rent landlords will now have to offer to attract tenants?

Think of this from the point of view of someone who has spent decades building up a rental inventory in Farmers Branch to help pay for retirement. Then, beyond their control but fully within the control of a select few, their investments produce less income.

Think of the Farmers Branch homeowner who gets transferred or otherwise wants to sell the house. The list of potential buyers is reduced because of the culling of investment-landlords.

Think of the Farmers Branch taxpayers who will have to pay for a lost lawsuit and will most likely have to pay for another.

All because of a select group of politians who prey on a population frenzied by a perception that "Mexicans" are taking over America.

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