Pillow Talk – Grow West

by Perry Pillow, AATC's Director of Government Affairs

AATC's beloved home, Fort Worth, TX.

Fort Worth’s economy continues to outperform other metropolitan regions in the country according to Erica Estrada, Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce’s Manager of Domestic and International Recruitment. Estrada recently spoke at AATC’s March independent rental owners (IRO) meeting about the Fort Worth Chamber’s 2018 strategic plan and Fort Worth/Tarrant County’s strengthens and challenges.

A recent study by the Fort Worth Chamber found Fort Worth’s strengthens to be: 1) the fastest growing among the 20 largest U.S. cities; 2) drawing new residents from all fifty states; 3) districts (West 7th, Northside, Magnolia, Camp Bowie, etc.) at different stages; and 4) vast reserve of undeveloped land. The challenges identified are: 1) residential-use zoned land dominates tax base; 2) residents are increasingly dependent on jobs in other cities; and 3) low visibility among large U.S. cities.

The strategic plan also found Fort Worth’s occupational strengthens are transportation, production, aerospace and geotechnical engineering, but there is an increasing jobs-to-housing ratio. In other words, there is insufficient affordable housing to meet the needs of an expanding workforce. This housing gap is an opportunity for multifamily housing owners and operators.

AATC PAC SUPPORTS CANDIDATES IN 2018 PRIMARY ELECTIONS: AATC PAC supports AATC member State Representatives Stephanie Klick (HD 91) and Craig Goldman (HD 97), as well as, state representative Republican incumbent Charlie Geren (HD 99) in the March 6th primary elections. AATC PAC endorses Tarrant County Justice of the Peace incumbent Democrats Sergio DeLeon (P5) and Lisa Woodard (P8).  AATC PAC also supports Republican Bill Brandt in the Precinct 3 Justice of the Peace race. The unexpected resignation of Republican incumbent Congressman Joe Barton (TX 6) caused a domino-effect with eleven Republicans (including Tax Assessor and former Barton Chief of staff Ron Wright) and five Democrat candidates. NAA PAC supports Ron Wright in this race. Wright’s move created an opening at Tax Assessor with four Republicans and one Democrat filing to fill this vacancy. NAA PAC is also supporting Republican Kay Granger (TX 12); Republican Roger Williams (TX 25); and Democrat Marc Veasey (TX 33).

2018 NAA CAPITOL CONFERENCE – Next week, Sherry Jordan, Nicolle Block, Candy Maxey, Dawn Waye, Char McCurdy and Paul Brown along with AATC staff members John Mitchell and Perry Pillow will travel to Washington, D.C. to meet with the Tarrant County congressional delegation. On your behalf, this group will be aggressively advocating for changes in federal laws and regulations that impact your business including service/support animals; Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) litigation reform; and national flood insurance reauthorization.; federal cybersecurity standards; and infrastructure investment.

2018 MUNI ELECTIONS – More than fifty candidates have filed for the May 5th municipal elections in AATC’s service area. City councils and mayors are up for election throughout AATC’s service area including two at-large and two single-member Arlington city council seats. In district 6, long-serving at-large council member Robert Shepard is challenged by perennial candidate Chris Dodson. Two candidates have filed for the open Arlington district 1 seat including Helen Moise and Dr. Barbara Odom-Wesley (former mayor Elzie Odom’s daughter).  Arlington council incumbents Shari Capehart and Dr. Victoria Myers are unopposed. Bedford incumbent Dave Gebhart is opposed by Dan Cogan while incumbent mayor Jim Griffin and incumbent place 1 council member Rusty Sartor are unopposed.  Euless incumbent place member Harry Zimmer is opposed by Tim St. Clair while Molly Maddux and Salman Bhojani are vying for the open place 6 seat. Grapevine long-serving incumbent mayor William Tate and place 1 council member Paul Slechta are unopposed, and place 2 incumbent Sharron Spencer faces Carlos Merla. Three incumbent Haltom City city council members have opponents including Brent Weast taking on Trae Fowler for place 4, Willis O’Dell opposing Bob Watkins in place 5, and Chris Bethel challenging Ricky Brown for place 6 while place 3 incumbent Lin Thompson’s opponent withdrew. In Hurst, Henry Wilson is unopposed for mayor while place 5 incumbent Bill McLendon is opposed by Jeff Childers.  Jessica Martin and Cathy Thompson have filed for the open place 4 seat and Cindy Shepard, Howard Shotwell, and Chad Householder are vying for the open place 7 seat. In Mansfield, four candidates have filed for the open place 3 and place 5 seats: Mike Leyman and Brent Parker for place 3 and Tamera Bounds and Julie Short in place 5. Place 4 incumbent Darryl Haynes is opposed by Casey Lewis. Burleson incumbent place 1 council member Stuart Gillaspie faces Shannan Sutter; in the place 3 open seat Katherine Reading faces Dan Taylor; and place 5 incumbent Dan McClendon is unopposed. Long serving North Richland Hills mayor Oscar Trevino is unopposed as are place 2 council member Rita Oujesky and place 6 incumbent Scott Turnage. Taylor Steele and Brent Barrow are competing for the open place 4 seat.

LUNCH & LAW 2018 – To help you navigate the various legal issues impacting your business in 2018, AATC will once again be offering a series of Lunch & Law Seminars on February 15, April 19, May 31, June 28, August 16, October 25, and December 13 featuring AATC member attorneys. Lunch & Law Seminars are one-hour, over-lunch discussions on hot legal topics facing our industry including service/support animals; early lease terminations; towing; bankruptcy; habitability/duty to repair; eviction appeals; resident screening; and renting to non-U.S. citizens. These sessions are great opportunities to interact with an AATC member lawyer on a less formal basis. Lunch & Law Seminars begin at 12:00 noon at AATC’s office (6350 Baker Blvd, Fort Worth 76118). Availability is limited to 36 attendees. The cost is $49 per attendeeLunch will be provided. No shows will be billed, and cancellations must be received 48-hours in advance. Lunch & Law Seminars

are not part of the STAR program. For more information about AATC’s Legal Services Program or Lunch & Law Seminars contact Perry Pillow by email at ppillow@aatcnet.org or phone at (817) 616-0354.