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Readers talk back about real estate, elementary schools, and the Dallas CVB.


“The Moral Majority social police are alive and well in Dallas.”


The Real Estate Market


In an effort to represent accurately the status of the Dallas real estate market, our April cover story revealed what $250,000, $500,000, and $1.2 million can buy in 27 neighborhoods across town.


While I appreciate what your article was attempting to show, I still take offense at the house in the M Streets that was chosen to represent the $500,000 mark. The McMansion at 5931 Mercedes Ave. has none of the historic value and charm of the many homes in our area. The structure is built on a slab instead of pier and beam; it does not include the front-yard stoop; it does not have a front-porch entryway; and it sets out further on the property and towers over every other home on the block. We are in the process of having our area deemed a Conservation District, but it is a tedious process. Let’s hope by the time we are a Conservation District, there will be homes left to preserve.


Susan Willison
Dallas


I look forward to reading D Magazine every month. Your standards of journalism are high, yet you still provide a fun and entertaining approach. However, I am extremely disappointed that you didn’t list The Colony in your real estate article. Two hundred and fifty thousand dollars would almost buy a mansion in The Colony, and the quality of life here is wonderful. We are a strong group of 34,000 citizens—treat us equally! Other than that, keep up the excellent work.


Tye Thomas
The Colony


Making the Grade


Also in April, Jessica Shapard researched “The Best Elementary Schools in Dallas,” using a unique methodology from Just for the Kids, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of education statewide.


Jessica Shapard mentioned finding the best public elementary schools is no easy feat. The article was well-researched; however, it did miss at least one exemplary school: B.B. Owen in The Colony (Lewisville ISD). On the recent TAKS test, B.B. Owen’s four third-grade classes were the only ones in the district to have a 100 percent pass performance.


Tom Drake
Plano


EDITOR’S NOTE: “The Best Elementary Schools in Dallas” were chosen using criteria from Just for the Kids (www.just4kids.org), which determines how well a school is doing when compared to the performances of other schools statewide with similar demographics. B.B. Owen may have a good third grade, but other schools across the state are outperforming it. Had we printed the entire upper-income list, Owen would have ranked 145.
Also in that article, we incorrectly stated that Bowie Elementary in DISD is a Blue Ribbon winner. Actually, the Blue Ribbon recipient is  James Bowie Elementary in Richardson. We regret the error.


Please Be Our Guests


In April’s “Topless Bars and Bottom Lines,” Adam McGill wrote about the bleak outlook for the Dallas convention business.


I find it interesting that two of the “excuses” listed for our declining convention business include a moralistic mayor and a lap dance or two. If these are considered some of the main reasons why the Dallas convention business is headed for “catastrophe,” then we are indeed in trouble. Relying on strip joints to close deals proves that the CVB does not have truly skilled salespeople in place.


Susan Dockett
Dallas


Your article reveals that the Moral Majority social police are alive and well in Dallas. Our civil and economic liberties prosper best when Big Brother stays out of the marketplace and the bedroom. What consenting adults consume, inhale, perform, read, or view in the privacy of their own homes or adult social clubs is their own concern. Prohibition against alcohol in the 1920s and our “War on Drugs” were both total failures. But the big losers are taxpayers who foot multibillion-dollar bills each year. The economy and citizens of Dallas will continue to suffer as potential visitors take their business to more friendly environments!


Larry Penner
Great Neck, NY


Kudos for a great article on the Dallas convention business (or lack thereof). I know Doug Ducate and Dan Dobson, and they were exactly on target with their comments. Keep up the good articles. I always like reading the truth.


Ron Trammell
Dallas


The Civil Service Disagrees


Publisher Wick Allison hammered the ineffectiveness of Dallas city government in his April Publisher’s Note, “Dallas: The City That Doesn’t Work.”


I heartily disagree with your assertion that Dallas is the city that doesn’t work. The employees I have encountered in my four years with the city as its civil service director have shown me that the spirit of public service is alive and well in city government. Tirelessly these dedicated public servants carry out the city’s business with one thing in mind—do whatever it takes to improve the lives of Dallas’ many residents.


I also beg to differ with you that the problems of the City of Dallas are caused by a civil service system that comparatively speaking is very flexible, holds employees accountable for their performance, and provides broad managerial discretion. Employees who fall short of the mark are disciplined every day. With wrongful-termination charges and protective legislation in place, there isn’t a public- or private-sector employer who doesn’t proceed judiciously through the steps of discharging an employee these days. It is serious business. I urge you to look elsewhere to find out why the “good” people are leaving the City of Dallas.


Patricia Marsolais
Civil Service Director, Dallas


COMING NEXT MONTH
The 50 richest Dallasites and exciting in-town getaways.


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Letters to the editor should be sent to: Editor, 4311
Oak Lawn Ave., First Floor, Dallas, TX 75219 or via e-mail to [email protected]. Please include a daytime phone number and the city in which you live. Letters may be edited for length and clarity.

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