Each month Town Life Magazine along with the Flower Mound Chamber of Commerce invites a group of 12 people for an informal visit with one of our Town Council or local leaders. The group is selected based on 1st. Come 1st. Serve. This month’s guest was Ben Bumgarner and below are some of the questions that were asked.
Q: Why hasn’t this council chosen a new town manager?
A: We hired a firm that went through a very deep stack of individuals for us to consider. There were quite a few that were very distinguished. We were very lucky to have Jimmy Stathatos. He was here way longer than the normal shelf life and he is a very good leader. He brought in a culture and work ethic that bettered not just the workspace, but the entire town. Businesses were attracted to the town and so are potential residents. Jimmy had a good knack for training people up and building up staff that knows how to get things done. Because of this, we have a wonderful and more than capable interim Town Manager in Debra Wallace. Don’t tell Jimmy this, but she’s pretty much ran the town ever since I have been on council in ‘18. She’s the reason our finances are in order and that we have some of the best ratings and accolade our town. We will have a new Town Manager after Debra retires.
Q: Are you in favor of “No growth”?
A: If you would tell folks that were my age in the 80’s that the center of the metroplex was going to be 377 and 1171 by 2045, I think people would have given you the old Texan curse of “bless your heart”. That statement doesn’t happen without growth. We have over a trillion dollars of industry moving to our state from different regions of the country within the next decade. We live in a wonderful master planned community. We CAN grow! Flower Mound WANTS to grow. Why? Because our master plan is our guide for growth. We are currently a top 20 places to live in the United States in some publications and we are top 5 in Texas. People also want to retire here. I believe in our master plan and I believe in smart and sensible growth that will not just bring in tax dollars, but will beautify and contribute to the idea that is Flower Mound. People want to live here for a reason. We are one of the last towns before you break out to the west where oil and ranch land is most prevalent. We still have a great sub-rural community that loves to enjoy horseback riding and a trail system that people from all around the state come to enjoy. Flower Mound is a great mix of city life, but with a small town feel.
Q: What are your thoughts on our taxes?
A: One of the reasons I ran for local government was to lower our tax rate and pay down our debt so that, we as residents of Flower Mound, can have a better quality of life. In my last 2 years I have accomplished these things. Our reserve is healthy. Our debts are lowering. Our current tax rate is .4365. It’s come down. I will continue to work hard to not just lower our taxes, but to make sure our level of services are still high. We do pay for quite a bit in the rate. All in all I believe we see a maximum on return of investment of our tax dollars. Between our awesome and beautiful parks, trails and overall maintenance to our town infrastructure; we can thank Debra Wallace and her team for keeping the ship on an even keel for all these years.
Q: When will the Riverwalk be completed?
A: I have gotten this question asked of me a lot. First let me say that I am intrigued with “The Hub” concept. I will go and walk that district and get the input of the residents in the area to see what works for them. I avoid driving through that area because it feels tight and congested. The signage isn’t the best for traffic flow, either. I am sure the developers of the Riverwalk want to complete their project and move on from this project just as much as we want them to be finished. Only the developer of this project can answer that question. Hopefully, the restaurants will be opening by the end of July.