Pleasant Grove Residents Want Own Council Seat

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Head to southeast Dallas – and you’ll find an old community with a strong identity. “You’re in Pleasant Grove,” said Sabrina Harris, who was raised here. “Yea, yea, it’s well known.”

Politically, though, Pleasant Grove has no identity at all, making up a small part of four different city council districts.

As the city of Dallas undergoes redistricting, people Saturday morning packed council chambers for one final public forum. Many are fighting to keep their own communities together.

“Pleasant Grove is – was the poster child of gerrymandering,” said local attorney Domingo Garcia, who sits on the redistricting commission. “Because people shop there; they go to church there; and they’re neighbors. And they’ve been split up for too long.” Garcia is pushing for a new map that would give Pleasant Grove a district all its own.

With Hispanics now making up 42 percent of the Dallas population, he says, his map – known as “Plan 16’ would also improve their representation on city council.

“Currently, we have 3 majority Latino Hispanic opportunity districts. This new plan would create 5,” says Garcia.

Bill Betzen, meanwhile, has lead the charge for citizen involvement in the map-making process. His map, “Plan 3” would also increase minority representation. It would make the biggest changes to the current council, but attempts to simplify and centralize districts.

“This map puts everyone within 10 miles – at the most – of their representative. So, it’s really more compact,” he says. “It’ll be easier for people to run for office – because you’ll really be running in your own neighborhood.”

The last option, “Plan 5”, meanwhile, tries to preserve the current district number 5, which stretches across south Oak Cliff.

Supporters argue breaking up the district would weaken that community.

“It destroys political representation, which people have fought for, for over 50 years,” said Fredrick Douglas Lewis.

A redistricting commission will vote Tuesday to select one of the three maps under consideration. Their recommendation will be presented to city council members, who are expected to follow-up with their own vote Wednesday.

To take a look at the proposals of the three maps under consideration and general information on the process, click here.

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  • todeepen

    Not a bad idea since a few elected officials can’t do the job- let the folks who live in the community run it–then they won’t have politicians to deal with. “Throw the bums out”! All of them….all over this country–clean house….all the way to the top! Nobody get’s re-elected. Power to the people of the United States of America. Elected officials have ruined this country.

  • todeepen

    “Political representation”? What a joke. The only representation that exist is only self serving for political gain. If true community / local, state & federal political representation existed this country would not be in the hole that it is in. American freedoms have been lost to corporate outsourcing a.k.a source of “government revenue”.

  • miike

    I would nt claim Pleasant Grove if you paid me. First the residents of Pleasant Grove [if they care] should clean that trash hole up and ,make it look like a REAL part of this city. Myself and many others DO NOT consider this area a part of dallas due to the filth thats piled up in this area. Filth in the form of garbage and people. You wanna be treated like everyone else..behave and live like everyone else and stop destroying the neighborhood that you CLAIM to care about!

  • Rick111

    With the size of the population of Dallas, there needs to be quite a bit of re-districting done. Neighborhoods that don’t belong together are thrown together. People arent represented properly. Ordinances that are good for one area are NOT good for another(wrong way parking for example). Dallas is a joke to be perfectly honest.

  • Rick McDaniel

    Both, Dallas City and Dallas County, government will continue to be riddled with corruption, no matter how the districting is done.

    That’s because both, have candidates who do not care about the entire city or the entire county……..they just pander to a small part of either, in their own districts, where they get elected, and supported, even in the face of criminal convictions.

    Just multiply those, into Washington, DC, and you will quickly understand the level of corruption, in government.

  • Johnny

    Um…poor urban communities have been gerrymandered out of authentic representation forever…

    I have little sympathy for these folks.

    They should have their own seat, perhaps, but they are hardly disenfranchised given their relative wealth

  • Scot Fahey

    How about Pleasant Grove Residents form their own city, and LEAVE Dallas.
    Might work, might not, but what have you to loose>

  • Steve

    So tired of latino supremacists like Bill Betzen and Domingo Garcia and other race hustlers like John Wiley Price destroying what was once a great city, Dallas is covered in graffiti and crime is through the roof and all these fools can think about is a power grab for their own race, it’s disgusting.

  • Omar

    The Kleberg Area has so much in common with Pleasant Grove, more then the Red Bird Area. The said thing is that Domingo Garcia’s Plan has been passed and will go to the City Council. It seems like no one listens to us down here. It keeps the same Gerrymandering District of 8, and we need to stop this now. If I have to go to City Council, then I will. We have a Hispainc Majority here in Kleberg in Southeast Dallas, and the people shop, eat, worship in The Grove, and we don’t get enough attention here in the Southeast. The only winners in theses maps are Lake Highlands, and West Dallas since they are all going to be in one district.

  • pam

    Can we vote to de-annex Pleasant Grove? It’s such an ugly area. People that support this redistricting plan will argue that it’s because the city doesn’t do enough for the area. I argue that other parts of Dallas shouldn’t have to pay to clean up after people that trash their own neighborhood.

    • Brothaman

      Pleasant Grove is not a bad part of town !! Punk ass

  • Bill Betzen

    Sadly Plan 3, the one I worked on, was voted out of consideration Saturday evening at the long Commission meeting after the public forum. The good news is that Plan 16, the plan it appears will win the vote on Tuesday, is still a strong improvement over the current redistricting lines we have lived with for 20 years It will erase over 125 miles of gerrymandered district lines. Only about 40 more such gerrymandered miles remain for us to clean up in 2021. There are now 609 miles of City Council district boundary lines in Dallas. Plan 16 will reduce that by over 20%! This is real progress!

  • Brothaman

    You people must not remeber white people used to live all over Dallas !! Till they ran to the country !! They should have stayed !!!!

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