Christine Lee, Irving Reporter
Residents in Irving are paying $100 for a ticket to the mayor's state of the city address, unless they watch it on TV.
Hundreds of people will gather in Irving to hear Mayor Beth Van Duyne's State of the City address, but those who can't afford the $100 tickets have to wait weeks to watch it on television and online.
"This is one of our signature events," said Chris Wallace, the Greater Irving Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce president and CEO.
JoAnn Goin, the group's chairwoman, said the nonprofit organization has hosted the annual speech for 31 years.
"We sell out every year, so if 700 people are buying tickets, it's definitely working," she said.
Chamber officials said people who cannot afford a ticket have other options, including chamber publications.
"We'll be tweeting tonight it'll be on Facebook, so there will be a lot of opportunities via the chamber site as well as the city sites to log in," Wallace said.
"If people want information, it's there," Goin said. "They just have to apply themselves to get it."
The city plans to air the State of the City address on its TV station and websites in a couple of weeks. They are hoping to have it on-demand next week.
Wallace expected the mayor to address a number of topics, including proposals for a convention center hotel, the progress of plans for an entertainment center and the expansion of Dallas Area Rapid Transit's Orange Line, which is set to open this July.
"We had 26 economic development wins, including corporate relocation [and] several companies that were retained here that were new retail projects," Wallace said.
"Irving is global headquarters to five Fortune 500 companies," Goin said. "She's probably going to mention that we are also the home of 11 nationally recognized small businesses in our city."