City Approves Drilling Ordinance

City Approves Drilling Ordinance by Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe, Denton Record-Chronicle, Jan. 16, 2013

A fellow councilman compliments Chris on his ability to listen to citizen input during the public hearing and incorporate their comments into amendments to the ordinance.

Chris makes the motion to approve the ordinance, with amendments that include increased setback. Council approves the motion with amendments.

City Eyes Bond for Fire Stations

City Eyes Bond for Fire Stations by Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe, Denton Record-Chronicle, Jan. 7, 2013

Chris offers a compromise to speed up approval of bonds for fire station upgrades. He proposes to combine the $15 million proposed for fire stations with $55 million in bond propositions, scheduled for a 2014 election, and move the bond election from May to November. Council seems to favor the compromise.

City Airport May See Some Changes

City Airport May See Some Changes by Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe, Denton Record-Chronicle, Dec. 3, 2012

The city’s director of aviation briefs Council on several matters, including a proposal to change the name of the airport and a request for approx. $350,000 in public improvements.

Chris responds that, before he could vote on this matter, he wants to hear input from airport tenants and other stakeholders.

Denton City Council Approves Rezoning for Former Fairhaven

Denton City Council Approves Rezoning for Former Fairhaven by Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe, Denton Record-Chronicle, Aug. 22, 2012

Chris tells the leader of the Bell Avenue Historic Conservation District that he understands the neighborhood’s distrust of the plan to rehabilitate Fairhaven put forth by the developer, who was seeking rezoning of the site.

However, Chris says, he can support an ordinance that meets the needs of both the applicant and the neighborhood.

After a lengthy closed session with the city attorney during the meeting, council accepts the rezoning ordinance, with attached strict conditions relating to exterior modifications and demolition.

Denia Fights to Preserve Pastoral Charm

Denia Fights to Preserve Pastoral Charm by Candace Bernd, for the Denton Record-Chronicle, Dec. 31, 2011

When the University of North Texas announces plans to route some of its stadium traffic down a narrow, two-lane street, the sole east-west route through the Denia neighborhood, neighbors press city officials for relief. Chris works with city staff and the neighborhood to help resolve the traffic issue.

In the end, the city agrees to neighbors’ pleas for the blocking of right-turn access from Willowwood to Bonnie Brae. The university then builds a new access from UNT Blvd. to Eagle Point to accommodate some of its stadium traffic.

Concerns on Resignations Arise

Concerns on Resignations Arise by Lowell Brown, Denton Record-Chronicle, Dec. 7, 2011

The city’s representative on the Denton County Transportation Authority board had resigned from the board in a letter dated Sept. 15, 2011, and addressed to the mayor and the City Council. The resignation was effective Nov. 30, 2011.

In council discussion in early December of a replacement to DCTA, Chris is surprised that all council members have not seen the letter, dated in September, until the first week in December.

Because the full council is not told of the resignation until December, and the alternate was unavailable for a DCTA meeting on Nov. 17, the city had no representation at that meeting, which included a vote on bylaws.

Despite explanations proffered by the mayor, Chris is not assuaged. He objects to the secrecy and strongly requests that all future correspondence addressed to the full council be conveyed promptly to all members.

City Plans Bond Sales

City Plans Bond Sales by Lowell Brown, Denton Record-Chronicle, Feb. 3, 2012

At the same time the city is considering both a fall bond election for street maintenance in 2012 and bond sales of certificates of obligation (COs) to finance utility projects, the city is in talks with the University of North Texas (UNT) and O’Reilly Hotel Management about a proposed convention center of unknown cost, to be located on the UNT campus.

In the discussion, assistant city manager Bryan Langley notes the city also could sell COs to finance the convention center project.

Chris asks why the council would “unilaterally” fund a convention center with certificates of obligation (CO), a type of bond that does not have to go before taxpayers but can be approved solely by a council vote.

The city manager responds that the revenue generated by the project would pay the debt service, with any shortfall made up by the developer.

In an interview with the writer, Chris says he wants the issue aired out. He says he has faith in the voters to decide if this project would be beneficial to the city.

City OKs Rezoning for New Complex

City OKs Rezoning for New Complex by Lowell Brown, Denton Record-Chronicle, Sept. 22, 2011

Chris is the dissenting vote in a rezoning request by Crosswind Development Partners LLC to build a 209-unit apartment complex at the corner of Eagle Dr. and Bernard St. The 5-story, 600-unit complex is 65 ft. high, sits on 2 acres and includes an underground parking garage. Each unit is slated to have four bedrooms and rents by the bedroom.

At the time, four large apartment complexes are in progress or have been completed; collectively, they add 1,962 bedrooms to the city inventory.

Because he is worried about the burgeoning high-density housing situation in Denton, Chris votes against the rezoning.

Council Seeks Input on Plan

Council Seeks Input on Plan by Lowell Brown, Denton Record-Chronicle, Aug. 15, 2011

After the census of 2010, Denton had to redraw its districts to ensure districts are of equal population. In the proposed new district map, the Denia neighborhood is divided, with the western end included in District 3. Most of Denia, however, remains in District 4.

As Denia has a Small Area Plan, the first in Denton approved by council, neighbors ask that district lines be altered slightly to allow the entire neighborhood to remain in District 4.

Chris concurs that this is logical and supports the neighborhood in its request. The western boundary of District 4 is pushed to I-35W, and Denia is “put back together.”