From Crime to Evictions, Busy Monday of Discussions For Dallas City Leaders

A number of different meetings on Monday will address major issues impacting the city

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Many important conversations will be happening within Dallas's leadership on Monday.

From evictions to the 2020 census and violent crime, there are several topics to cover at different meetings taking place throughout the day.

Addressing violent crime

At 1 p.m., the Public Safety Committee will hear an update from Deputy Chief Teena Schultz with Dallas police on the 2020 Violent Crime Reduction Plan, which was implemented at the start of this year.

Click here to download the full meeting agenda for Monday.

The data so far show that aggravated assaults are 30% higher right now compared to last year.

City officials also said homicides are on pace to match those of last year, which was already a record breaker.

"Domestic violence is up by about 5%. So we've got an issue with violent crime. I don't want to see us go in the wrong direction with public safety," said Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson.

Here is the data reported for July alone:

City of Dallas

Dallas isn't alone in this reported upticks in crime. Several major cities across the country -- including Houston and San Antonio -- are also dealing with increases in violent crime.

City of Dallas

Still, combating violent crime is something Mayor Johnson told NBC 5 last week that he wanted the city's next budget to focus on.

"Violent crime right now in the City of Dallas is unacceptably high right now, even in the middle of a pandemic," said Mayor Johnson.

In a new budget plan released by City Manager T.C. Broadnax Friday, Dallas Police get about the same money as last year, but social programs also get more money as well.

Click here to read more.

For the rest of the year, Chief Hall's plan aims -- among several other things -- to work with the city manager implement community-based support programs and expand the "RIGHT Care" program, which sends specially trained officers with medical professionals to mental health calls instead of just patrol officers.

The city is also looking at a proposal to ban coin-operated amusement devices inside convenience stores.

Evictions looming?

Meanwhile, the city's Workforce, Education, and Equity Committee will provide an update on evictions assistance and bridging the digital divide in the city.

According to the city officials, the city is bracing for an eviction avalanche. Due to financial constraints, eviction proceedings are expected to increase exponentially once tenant protections expire.

They're looking at data from The Eviction Lab at Princeton University, which analyzes and ranks state eviction protections.

City of Dallas

According to the study's COVID-19 Housing Policy Score Card, Texas ranked at #50 out of 50 states because few to no tenant protections in the state were identified in the review.

The Workforce, Education, and Equity Committee is also looking at a new public-private effort to help Dallas' immigrant population.

The City of Dallas Emma Lazarus Resilience Fund will provide $500,000 in financial assistance to Dallas immigrant and refugee individuals and families who are impacted by COVID-19 and ineligible for federal COVID-19 relief programs.

The funding is administered by the Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT) and will be disbursed through non-profit organizations.

The fund offers one-time support of $500 to $1,000 per family.

The CFT is asking for donations for the fund through its website.

Digital divide

The committee is also conducting a technical feasibility study for developing a network, such as a point-to-multipoint private cellular, to connect students in their homes.

City of Dallas

These plans are in conjunction with Dallas ISD's efforts to broaden internet access to students and teachers they transition to remote working and distance learning.

2020 Census

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the deadline for the 2020 Census had initially been moved to Oct. 31, 2020.

Earlier this month, the United States Census Bureau officially announced Sept. 30 as the new deadline -- citing the need to deliver numbers to the White House on Dec. 31, 2020, as their reason for moving up the deadline.

Dallas has shifted their outreach during COVID-19 from boots on the ground outreach and awareness to virtual engagement.

The Workforce, Education, and Equity Committee is asking for the council to spread awareness and help rally residents to get involved.

Here's what to expect in the next month:

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