Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson to deliver State of the City address on Nov. 4
DALLAS — Mayor Eric Johnson will deliver his annual State of the City address at noon on Thursday, Nov. 4, in council chambers at City Hall.
The mayor will speak from a podium in front of the dais. Dallas City Councilmembers will be invited to sit behind the mayor at their seats at the dais. Media will be invited, and the speech will be livestreamed and broadcast on the city’s public access channel.
Mayor Johnson plans to use the speech to discuss the city’s progress — including initiatives prioritized in the recently passed Fiscal Year 2021–2022 city budget — and detail policies needed to help the city get back to basics and build for the future.
The speech will fulfill a requirement of the City Charter. Beginning with last year’s virtual State of the City address from Fair Park, Mayor Johnson has made it his goal to deliver the annual remarks in a public way — returning the address to its roots — rather than during a private luncheon with business leaders.
Although the Dallas City Charter vests executive authority in a city manager, who is selected by the majority of the City Council, the City Charter requires that the mayor of Dallas “ensure that annual reports are made as to the state of the city, its financial condition, its accomplishments, and its plan and needs for the future.”
City archivist John Slate said the annual event and address has taken numerous forms over the years. While public records are incomplete, references to the State of the City and an annual message from the mayor can be found as early as 1875. That address was delivered in council chambers.
In last year’s speech, which was delivered from the Hall of State, Mayor Johnson outlined numerous priorities that have since been addressed over the past year or are beginning to be addressed, such as:
- Adequately funding public safety and overhauling the violent crime reduction plan.
- Implementing efficiency measures at the police department.
- Continuing to expand RIGHT Care.
- Fully funding and investing in street infrastructure.
- Reducing the city’s property tax rate.
- Adopting a new comprehensive economic development policy that included an emphasis on innovation and entrepreneurship.
- Addressing homelessness through a collective effort that includes Dallas County, nonprofits, shelters, and the faith community.
- Correcting issues with permitting.
- Continuing implementation of the Comprehensive Environmental and Climate Action Plan.
- Examining how the city can improve workforce development and facilitate upskilling.
- Expanding Dallas Works, the mayor’s summer jobs program for Dallas youth.