Tag Archives: Brianna Chacon

Where is the end to this monstrosity?

Five years of residence in the rapidly growing city of Princeton, Texas, affords me the right to ask out loud … when and where will there be an end to the eyesore along US Highway 380 that just annoys the daylights out of me?

I refer to the “luxury” apartment complex that sits fallow along the south side of the highway. There has been virtually no sign of human life at the partially built project for a year. It was supposed to spring to life about, oh, a year ago. It didn’t happen.

The city manager who oversaw the permit process, Derek Borg, is gone. He’s been replaced by Mike Mashburn. I asked Mayor Brianna Chacon for some information on the project and she referred me to “legal counsel,” who she said is handling all matters, answering all questions¬†related to this boondoggle.

I have no inside info to share. I have no inside knowledge of what’s going on and who’s talking to whom. I have no way of pushing this project along. All I have is this forum that I am using on occasion to bitch out loud about a project that is looking more and more like a major municipal embarrassment.

Mayor wants to build city identity

Princeton (Texas) Mayor Brianna Chacon and yours truly are of like minds on an important subject.

We both happen to agree that the city over which she presides lacks a personality, an identity, a characteristic that defines it.

She wants to change the direction the city has been traveling for the past decade or even longer. I happen to agree wholeheartedly with her intent.

To be clear, I am going to declare that I wrote about this very thing some weeks ago. Chacon a few days ago mentioned it publicly in a State of the City speech she delivered at the Princeton school district administration building. I will not presume for an instant that she got the idea from my blog. However, it is heartening to believe that we are of like minds.

Seek an identity, Princeton | High Plains Blogger

Chacon announced her intention to enact a residential building moratorium. She wants to build up the city’s infrastructure, to bring it up to speed to provide for the thousands of people who have moved here in the past two decades.

The population today is estimated at about 28,000 residents, which is roughly 11,000 more people listed on the 2020 Census. “We grew too quickly,” Chacon told the Princeton ISD admin building crowd. Princeton has become a classic “bedroom community” comprising thousands of new homes.

Residents say they love living here, Chacon said, adding that the city needs to “give them a reason” for why they have embraced this community.

Chacon said she is excited about the city’s decision to hire Mike Mashburn as its new city manager. She believes he brings a refreshing new outlook to municipal management. It’s too early to tell whether Mashburn is the right man for the task, but I, too, am optimistic.

Chacon said the city’s identity is hidden from view. “We have been piecemealed together,” she said of Princeton’s growth history. Her intent, as I heard her say it the other day, is to craft a municipal identity for Princeton, giving it a personality.

Brianna Chacon and I are singing off the same page. Welcome aboard, Mme. Mayor.

Homebuilding ban? For now … yes!

Princeton Mayor Brianna Chacon has planted the seed of an idea that needs to germinate and grow into a verified municipal policy.

She wants the city she governs to enact a moratorium on new home construction. Details are scant. Indeed, they don’t seem to exist in any fashion.

But I think the mayor is onto something the city council should consider and should consult heavily with its legal counsel on how to make it happen.

Princeton’s growth has been spectacular over the course of the past decade. The 2010 Census pegged the city population at just shy of 7,000 residents; the 2020 Census lists the population at 17,027 people; the current estimated population stands at around 28,000, according to city officials.

The city has grown too rapidly, Chacon told the council at the end of its regular Monday evening meeting. It needs to stop building residential units at the breakneck pace under which it has been operating.

I am going to report more on this idea in a later blog post. For now I am going to stick with what has been reported.

The city clearly must honor the building permits it has issued. It cannot face any possible litigation from aggrieved builders and real estate agents. And as I drive around the areas near my home, I see many acres of land that have been platted and prepared for construction. The city has installed hundreds of utility outlets on the properties, which suggests to me the city has many building permits that need to be honored before it pulls the plug on future construction.

Chacon reminded council members that the city has limited resources and it must spend that money on developing infrastructure that hasn’t kept pace with the home construction. “We grew too fast,” Chacon told the council.

Streets need improvement, Chacon said, apparently acknowledging the complaints she likely has heard from residents about the condition of streets in some of our older neighborhoods.

I am one Princeton resident who is interested in the details of this proposal that must come soon. How soon will it be enacted? How long does the city expect it to last? Will the city continue its push to bring more commercial development to Princeton?

I am all ears, Mme. Mayor. So, I will bet, is the rest of this city.

Mayor does the impossible

Brianna Chacon has done the seemingly impossible by replicating what I used to witness in another mayor serving another Texas city.

She has defied the laws of physics by seeming to be everywhere at once. I don’t know how the Princeton (Texas) mayor does it.

I used to joke with a former mayor of Amarillo, a considerably larger city up yonder from Princeton, about her ability to be everywhere all at one time. Debra McCartt is her name. She’s now a private citizen, but so help me as surely as I am writing these words, she was able to show up at various public functions anywhere within shouting distance of Amarillo.

So it seems with Brianna Chacon. She’s been on the job for a couple of years and has made amazing use of social media to appear to be able to clone herself on demand.

Totally amazing!


The mayor agrees: early voting is a gamble!

I had a chat this weekend with Princeton (Texas) Mayor Brianna Chacon about the upcoming election and about whether either of us should vote early.

I learned that the mayor doesn’t like early voting any more than I do, which is to say that I hate doing it.

Early voting in these Texas municipal elections does not allow voters to avoid Election Day crowds. That’s because turnout at these elections usually is pitiful. Perhaps in single-digit percentages. So, that’s no reason to vote early.

What Chacon and I agreed on is the risk associated with voting early. The risk comes when you cast your ballot for a candidate many days prior to Election Day and then your candidate says or does something profoundly stupid.

Chacon agrees about the risk one takes when voting early. I got the impression that she intends to vote on Election Day. Indeed, she said something about waiting until about 15 minutes before polling ends and then showing up to cast her ballot.

I won’t wait that long. Still, since we intend to be available to vote on Nov. 2 — which is Election Day — I’ll just bide my time and wait it out … and hope my preferred candidates don’t mess up.