Dallas City Council Kills Proposal for New Concrete Plants in Joppa

Temeckia Derrough teared up and sat down Wednesday after the City Council denied two corporate giants permission to install new concrete plants in the oldest black community in Dallas."Our voices were heard from the Joppa community," she said as her voice wavered. "They listened to us. They heard us."Her show of emotion followed hours of heated discussion, months of deferrals, questions about $72,000 in missing community donations, and concerns about the environmental impacts.Council member Kevin Felder, who represents Joppa, pushed for the denial and won it in a 9-5 vote. He fended off Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway, other council members and representatives of Martin Marietta and Union Pacific Railroad, which proposed building the plants.Felder, who presented a petition with more than 200 signatures from Joppa residents opposing the plants, said those who spoke in favor were part of “a small group of people trying to control a whole neighborhood.” He told Joppa residents that they deserve better."Your health is worth more than any economic development that any corporation can offer,” Felder said. “Put your health first. I am not going to leave you without any economic development. But I believe you have a right to breathe clean air."The vote Wednesday was about two new plants on the site, as well as a rezoning plan. The City Plan Commission had overwhelmingly approved the plans and heard little opposition.But the bitter divisions in Joppa grew as the plan made its way to the City Council. The item was pushed back multiple times as the companies, community members and Felder tried to work out an agreement.  Continue reading...

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