Founding of the FWLNA
The Fort Worth League of Neighborhoods was founded in 1985 by four neighbors: Chris Goetz, Dr. Glenn Kroh, Mary Palko and Ben Ann Tomayko who believed in the importance of neighborhood involvement in the civic decision-making process, especially when it directly impacted the quality of life in our communities. 17 charter member neighborhood organizations signed up to join in the pursuit of forming a citywide coalition to create a strong and coordinated voice at city hall.
Today, the League of Neighborhoods still promotes the same philosophy. Drawing on the collective experience of its 30-year history as an institution, the League is recognized throughout the region as an umbrella organization advocating for neighborhoods at various levels of government and with other non-profits. Our membership is made up of associations of neighborhoods, homeowners, property owners, taxpayers and neighborhood alliances. The League continues to provide education and guidance to its member organizations and the community at large.
League Historical Highlights
- Represented collective voice of Fort Worth neighborhoods at City Hall on citywide issues affecting neighborhoods since inception of organization
- Key supporter of City’s Urban Forestry Ordinance since inception
- Has collaborated with numerous local organizations such as Scenic Fort Worth and the League of Women Voters of Tarrant County on issue advocacy and educational workshops
- Has produced annually a series of quarterly meetings focusing on speakers and topics important to neighborhoods including: City capital improvements programs and bond issues; City of Fort Worth budget; Tarrant Appraisal District appraisal process and valuations; Tarrant County District Attorney presentation on neighborhood residences claimed by squatters in adverse possession cases
- Has produced the annual neighborhood president’s summit to identify top neighborhood issues by City Council district and citywide; reports results as a service to City Council
- Has sponsored candidate forums for mayoral, city council, and Tarrant Regional Water District board elections as a service to the public
- Sponsored Neighborhood Educational classes with City of Fort Worth staff
- Sponsored with the City of Fort Worth the citywide annual Neighborhood Awards Event; continued major sponsorship and support for the event for 5 years when the City experienced budget deficits and could no longer afford to contribute financially to the event
- Mayor appointed League presidents to Chair two Task Force committees for the City of Fort Worth to provide input for the City gas drilling ordinances (2001 and 2006)
- Worked with City Council and the City planning and development staff to ensure neighborhood zoning matches what is “on the ground” in those neighborhoods – this process was beneficial to dozens of Fort Worth neighborhoods and has protected their quality of life
- During the shale gas boom years in Fort Worth (2005 – present), was key player in presenting information workshops to the public on local gas drilling ordinance issues (noise, lighting, well site location, compressor station locations, pipeline safety, etc.), leading neighborhood advocacy on balance of quality of life issues regarding well infrastructure and insuring development of minerals for residents; testified before the Texas House Natural Resources Committee on pipeline placement and quality of life issues
- Received a $50,000. federal grant from the U.S. Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to produce Fort Worth natural gas pipelines report, one of 17 such recipients in the U.S. – presented a professional report on ensuring safe pipelines to Fort Worth citizens and City Council; completed subsequent professional report for Fort Worth I.S.D. on steps to ensure safe gas drilling near FWISD schools
- Testified at City Council on numerous issues affecting neighborhoods including zoning for payday lenders; commercial encroachment into neighborhoods, placement of multiple gas line compressor stations near neighborhoods, storm water drainage projects in 40 central city neighborhoods, mixed use zoning, etc.
- Worked with City of Fort Worth staff to develop proposed gas pipeline notification zone and consultation zone ordinances
- Collaborated with the Red Cross to identify neighborhoods for disaster preparedness workshops
- Produced annual reviews of COFW proposed annual budgets for presentation to public and presentation of public comments to Council members
- Helped promote annual City bond issues through public meetings
- Asked by the City to participate as a member with industry representatives and League of Women Voters of Tarrant County representative on panel at 5 public meetings regarding placement of wastewater disposal wells inside city limits; FWLNA recommended no more placement of wastewater disposal wells inside city limits – council adopted that position unanimously
- Represented neighborhoods on community boards at the T, the COFW Stormwater Budget Panel, Tarrant County Public Health Outreach on Childhood Obesity, Tarrant County Public Health public health survey, and City’s building code review committee
- March 2014 invited with City of Fort Worth City Attorney Sarah Fullenwider to present on the neighborhood perspective on gas drilling ordinance with industry representative at University of Texas annual Land Law Conference
- Collaborated with AARP’s Walking Audits in neighborhoods for an Age Friendly Community in Fort Worth.
- Joined the Blue Zones Project to engage the neighborhoods into living a quality way of life.