The city’s newest council member — promising a tough look at budgets, better representation for residents in far north Fort Worth and development in District 4 — took his seat at the dais Tuesday night.
Cary Moon, a developer and president of the Heritage Homeowners Association, won the May 9 election against incumbent Danny Scarth, unseating the longtime councilman with 60 percent of the vote.
“I was thinking of what a privilege it is to be here, to come into City Hall, to get a parking pass and have a chance to serve and what Fort Worth means to me,” Moon said after he took the oath of office, adding thanks to his family, voters and campaign volunteers.
Scarth, executive director of Hope Media, was seeking a sixth term. He presented other council members and Mayor Betsy Price — all of whom were re-elected or did not face challengers — with a new clock for the pre-council chambers and gave select city employees flowers and words of thanks.
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“This job is really not easy, but there are rewards,” Scarth said before he left the dais. “The rewards come in the people you meet, the relationships you build. They come in being able to see a city thrive and grow.”
His council colleagues praised him and gave him a copy of a Frederic Remington bronze of a cowboy on a horse.
Scarth, a native of east Fort Worth, was first elected in 2006. Redistricting in 2013 changed the boundaries of the predominantly eastern district.
Now it includes much of east and northeast Fort Worth from Interstate 30 and Sandy Lane to Golden Triangle Boulevard and Interstate 35W. The problems the district faces are diverse, from rapid development and the need for new roads and parks in the far north, to redevelopment and old infrastructure in the east.
Price thanked Scarth for his time on the City Council and talked about his work — fighting dilapidated apartments in Woodhaven, focusing on a sustainable budget, and providing leadership on the gas drilling ordinance, homelessness and access for people with disabilities.
“I will remember him personally for making me feel incredibly welcome four years ago and for being a straight shooter,” Price said. “Whether you like what Danny says or not, you know where he stands.
“The people spoke in an election, and we will carry out that will tonight, even though we may or may not like it.”
In addition to Price, all the council members — Sal Espino, W.B. “Zim” Zimmerman, Gyna Bivens, Jungus Jordan, Dennis Shingleton, Kelly Allen Gray and Ann Zadeh — took the oath of office Tuesday.
Moon joins the council just as the 2016 budget process ramps up. His campaign spoke of big plans, including creating an arts district in the eastern part of the district, something like the trendy Bishop Arts District in Dallas, and setting specific development standards in the booming far north.
Caty Hirst, 817-390-7984
Fort Worth council briefs
▪ The City Council unanimously approved spending $2.5 million from the 2014 bond program for road and pedestrian improvements at the Six Points Urban Village. In the same vote, the council also voted to expand the urban village boundary out to Oakhurst Scenic Drive, which abuts Riverside Park. All members were present.
▪ Council members unanimously approved plans for dispersing permanent supportive housing for the homeless — which is intended to get the hardest-to-house, chronically homeless people off the streets. The guidelines created by a task force say that supportive housing should be dispersed throughout Tarrant County; the housing should be in neighborhoods that are predominantly residential, with surrounding property values that is stable or increasing; and the site should have access to public transportation and resources such as grocery stores.