Local business group seeks to add diversity to Haltom City Council by getting local small business owners to run
HALTOM CITY, TX, October 14, 2021 /24-7PressRelease/ — Although the current Haltom City Council has members who have held management jobs, it does not have any members who have had substantial experience starting, owning or operating a small business in Haltom City.
“No one on the City Council has been through the process of getting a permit to open a business here,” said Joe Palmer, Communications Director of Haltom United Business Alliance, a group of local business people committed to making the city more business friendly and bringing more small businesses to the city.
“It would be valuable to have a few small business owners on the City Council,” said HUBA Member Ron Sturgeon, a longtime Haltom City business owner.
During the 2020 election cycle, HUBA sent an issues questionnaire to all the candidates for Haltom City Mayor and for Haltom City Council that addressed issues of concern to the local business community, such as the proper role of government in regulating the number of a particular kind of business in the city, sign rules and regulations, the city’s table of uses, liquor sales in Haltom City and plans for redeveloping NE 28th Street, said Sturgeon.
“We got only one response, which we mailed to all eligible voters, from a candidate who ended up dropping out because he didn’t meet the residency requirements,” said Sturgeon.
“All of the candidates for City Council last time made the claim that they were business friendly, but they haven’t done much to back up that claim,” added Sturgeon.
Haltom City Council has not taken up HUBA’s proposal for simple changes to the Haltom City sign ordinance HUBA, has not taken HUBA up on its offer to mentor new businesses through the CUP process or its suggestion that the city track inquires by entrepreneurs who want to open businesses in Haltom City or its request to expand membership it the city’s open economic development committees to local business owners who do not live in the city, noted Sturgeon. HUBA also presented a third-party study with recommendations for bringing more small businesses to Haltom City, but it was not considered.
“A lot of Haltom City voters know that a vibrant small business community is crucial to the quality of life in the city and want the kinds of choices and job opportunities that more small businesses can bring to the city,” said Sturgeon.
“Some in Haltom City say HUBA is a special interest group trying to “take over the city”. We are indeed a special interest group, representing businesses in Haltom City, but we are no different from activists for lower taxes or better streets or from the fire PAC that lobbies for the fire department,” said Palmer.
“We would like to see two of the seven council seats occupied by members that have owned a business. Two of seven places is far from a takeover, but the insular nature of the council and its resistance to change is evident; they should want 2 business people on city council for that added experience,” added Sturgeon.
Business owners or others interested in running for a seat on Haltom City Council should contact HUBA Communications Director Joe Palmer at [email protected] or (682) 310-0591.
About Haltom United Business Alliance
Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) wants to give members of Haltom City’s business community an advocate and to keep those businesses informed about issues that affect them. They want to make sure Haltom City is business friendly and nurture small business growth, including automotive businesses, and bring more restaurants including breweries and a major grocery store to the city. New businesses and growth in existing businesses will create a stronger tax base which will allow the city to pay its first responders wages that are competitive with surrounding cities while improving Haltom City’s facilities and infrastructure. Anyone who owns a business in Haltom City is eligible to join. Dues are $20 annually or $50 for a lifetime membership, and membership is 100% confidential. To join, contact Joe Palmer at (682) 310-0591 or by email at [email protected]. Visit the group’s Facebook at Haltom United Business Alliance.
About Haltom City
Haltom City is a medium-sized city between Dallas and Fort Worth in Tarrant County, TX. The city is diverse and majority working class, with a growing population that is approximately 10% Asian-American and 45% Hispanic. Haltom City benefits from being only minutes from both DFW Airport and Downtown Fort Worth, with direct access to major highways including I-820 and SH-121. Small businesses that have historically provided products, services, and jobs to residents included a once thriving automotive industry. The city has seen a decline in small businesses, especially automotive businesses. The city is healthy financially, with median household income growing around 8% in the past year. Haltom City has an opportunity for continued growth through undeveloped land and many vacant buildings, especially in major corridors close to the city’s center. The city has good staff and a city manager who is interested in seeing more businesses, but they can only do as directed by the City Council.
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