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Thursday, September 29, 2022
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Is the Dallas City Manager Doing Enough to Fight Crime?

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Dallas City Manager T.C. Broadnax | Image by Washburn University

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Mayor Johnson took issue with the city manager in January 2021 when Dallas citizens faced long wait times for 911 responses attributed to a staffing shortage, The Dallas Express reported.

Johnson publicly asked City Manager T.C. Broadnax to address the problem to figure out how to bring staffing at Dallas Police Department’s 911 call center up to par.

“We are counting on our city manager to correct these issues immediately,” Johnson tweeted in June 2021. “Our residents expect and deserve to have their emergency calls answered in a timely manner.”

The City of Dallas is authorized to have 110 emergency operators but has filled only 84 of those openings with employees, some of whom are still in training, according to WFAA.

“We’re probably not paying appropriately,” Cara Mendelsohn, councilwoman for Dallas’ 12th District, told WFAA. “We’re not paying enough, and the Dallas Police Department does recognize that.”

Mayor Johnson penned a column for The Dallas Morning News in 2020 that touched on City employee pay. In it, he claimed the top City of Dallas employee salaries are bloated, and anyone making over $60,000 per year should take a pay cut to help ease city budget issues.

“The city manager in Dallas makes $406,850 in salary annually,” Johnson wrote, “higher than $400,000 basic salary earned by the president of the United States.”

In 2021, Broadnax’s annual salary jumped to $436,621.23.

Johnson, who earns $80,000 per year, said he would give back $20,000 of his salary and pointed out that Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s salary is $153,750 a year, roughly what the leader “of a small city office in Dallas can earn.”

“I’m no fan of the state taking away local control over budgeting,” Johnson wrote. “But it’s difficult to defend the eye-popping salaries at City Hall while telling state leaders we’re already fiscally responsible and don’t need them to rein us in. … Just remember that this is your government, not theirs. It’s time to put service, not salaries, first.”

Crime rates have continued to climb in Dallas in 2022. A recent break-in at the Dallas Museum of Art saw the perpetrator destroy an estimated $5.1 million in damage to art and artifacts.

Robberies and assaults are up; when comparing crime statistics from April ’21 to ’22, Dallas saw a 1.69% increase, The Dallas Express reports.

“Violent crime rates are on the rise, and the City of Dallas has failed to produce an action plan to curb crime and improve the safety of our community,” Darrouzet told The Dallas Express.

Louis Darrouzet, CEO of the Metroplex Civic and Business Association (MCBA), feels that if Dallas intends to attract new businesses and families, the current upward crime rates and “rapid trajectory” must be addressed by a city manager who is aware of and attentive to those needs.

“We need an aggressive, pro-growth planning department that will respond to the people’s needs,” he told The Dallas Express. “Dallas is growing quickly, and we cannot continue to miss these new opportunities that could greatly benefit our community.”

Darrouzet recently took issue with the job performed by City Manager Broadnax, joining the Dallas Mayor and several other council members seeking to relieve him of his duties, The Dallas Express reports.

Patricia Munoz of the Dallas County Tejano Democrats is not as convinced as other civic leaders.

“I am not sure about being removed,” Munoz said of Broadnax. “All his advancements, his work needs to be very closely looked at. Not only his, but I feel the mayor’s too.”

Munoz said that she has heard the mayor can be difficult to work with. She added she is not sure why Johnson and council members are at odds with Broadnax but said the matter should be looked into more closely, especially regarding his alleged role in the City’s troubled construction permitting operations.

“I would also like to know what is really going on with the two of them,” she said. “What is driving [the] difficulties on both sides? It just does not seem right.”

“Why?” Munoz asked. “The delays and all [this] finger-pointing really do need to be investigated seriously. The delays and all these finger-pointing really do need to be investigated seriously.”

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mike
mike
3 months ago

All he cares about is his wallet!! He should have been fired a long time ago.

Anna Williams
Anna Williams
Reply to  mike
3 months ago

Thats how I feel about Cornyn and Cruz. They do nothing for the state but talk about the 2nd Amendment.

No one is taking away guns, if they had a lot of children would be alive. Challenge the new Chief, it’s happening in this country. Why don’t you apply for some of these jobs. The police I am sure would love too have you.

Kap
Kap
3 months ago

No. And neither is any other politician. Crime is getting worse and worse.

Anna Williams
Anna Williams
3 months ago

Mayor Johnson had a problem with Rena Hall. Was don’t right rude and disrespectful. What is the new Chief doing? Rena Hall upped the training.

Mayor you want to know where crime is? Go to the Highland Hill community is! It’s a drug den and the elderly people who live there had pride in their community. The majority of the elderly served in the Two’s, Germany and Japan and pay taxes.

There is a food desert in the neighborhood. What have you done about that. Maybe it’s not the City Manager, maybe it’s you. I think it’s you who has the problem. Not the City Manager color seems to be the problem. First Rene Hall, now the City Manager.

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