To the city’s detriment, current leaders refuse to acknowledge the importance of a thriving business community to the effort to help Haltom’s south and central areas.

HALTOM CITY, TX, February 27, 2024 /24-7PressRelease/ — The ongoing decline being experienced in the south and central areas of Haltom City is obvious to anyone who spends any time there. A number of stores and restaurants have closed, leaving far too many commercial vacancies (and a corresponding rise in crime) in their wake. The vacancy rate on Denton Highway is 29%, and appears to be increasing, as do vacancy rates in other major corridors in South and Central Haltom City.

Over the past several years, a group of small business owners — known as the Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) — has presented an array of well-researched strategies for consideration by the City Council. All of the ideas offered have been successfully implemented in other cities, and a majority of them are low-cost or no-cost. However, city leadership has ignored or rejected HUBA’s ideas out of hand.

In response, HUBA teamed up with the Make Haltom City Thrive Again (MHCTA) campaign to educate voters so they can make an informed choice in the next election about who’s going to lead and bring real solutions for the city. A new series of videos has been posted on the MHCTA website in an effort to do just that. The videos were produced in Haltom City, at Sturgeon’s toy museum, DFW Elite Toy Museum.

In one particular video, MHCTA founder Ron Sturgeon makes it clear that there are significant disconnects between the city and the business community. First and foremost, business owners who don’t happen to live within city limits are unable to serve in any capacity (whether voting or non-voting). They are given no opportunity to participate in the decision-making process, even when ordinances under consideration will have a direct impact on their lives, and are interrupted or cut-off when trying to speak during public hearings.

City employee and spokesperson Jayson Steele claims that businesses just want to “fleece” property owners to create more revenue for themselves. First of all, this seems to express disdain for the very concept of capitalism. Second, any business that tries to “fleece” its customers isn’t likely to survive for very long. Third, and most importantly, a thriving business community is an asset in that it not only generates profits, but it provides much-needed goods and services to the community, creates new job opportunities, boosts the city’s tax revenues, and offers so much more.

Another disconnect occurs when the city tries to use regulations to influence commerce. In the video, Sturgeon mentions that the potential buyer of an automotive business was told “we’re almost certainly not going to give you a CO to continue what he was doing because we want retail in that space.” According to Ron, “Retail’s not coming, not in any meaningful way…” and what is needed is drycleaners, swimming pool supplies, and other small businesses “that Amazon can’t steal.”

Bottom line, “If we’re going to demonize the business community, we’ve started at the wrong place.” Residents want to see a Starbucks, a grocery store, and other chain businesses but unless and until “more small businesses open and make that quarter look better” it’s just not going to happen. According to Ron, Haltom City really needs pro-business candidates to serve on the city council. A mechanism for business owners to share their wealth of knowledge and participate in the decision-making process would be helpful as well.

About Haltom City
Haltom City is a diverse, majority working-class city located between Dallas and Fort Worth in Tarrant County, TX. Haltom City is minutes from both the DFW Airport and Downtown Fort Worth with direct access to major highways including I-820 and SH-121. Due to an outdated and restrictive use matrix that discourages new business and deters growth, several areas of Haltom City have seen a decline in small businesses which provided goods and services and were a significant source of jobs, including the once-thriving automotive industry. However, Haltom City can reverse this trend and should prioritize development of inner-city land and vacant buildings, particularly in the major corridors close to the city’s center. The city is financially healthy with a capable manager and staff who would like to see diverse business development occur and need the support of the City Council to make it happen.

About Haltom United Business Alliance
Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) wants to give members of Haltom City’s business community an advocate and to keep those businesses informed about issues that affect them. They want to make sure Haltom City is business friendly and nurtures small business growth, including automotive businesses in the industrial districts, and bring more restaurants including breweries and eventually a major grocery store to the city. New businesses and growth in existing businesses will create a stronger tax base which will allow the city to pay its first responders wages that are competitive with surrounding cities while improving Haltom City’s facilities and infrastructure. HUBA believes that the southern and central parts of the city need a revitalization plan, to prevent further degradation in those areas, and wants that to happen before the inner-city experiences increased crime and more blight. As retail and office uses are in decline, it’s more critical than ever to attract new businesses. They believe that such a plan requires a strong relationship and support of the business community. Anyone who owns a business in Haltom City is eligible to join HUBA. Dues are $20 annually or $50 for a lifetime membership, and membership is 100% confidential. To join, contact Joe Palmer at (682) 310-0591 or by email at Visit the group’s Facebook at Haltom United Business Alliance.

About Make Haltom City Thrive Again
Make Haltom City Thrive Again is a movement to return prosperity to the older parts of South and Central Haltom City by luring the small businesses that have left over the past decades back to Haltom City. A vibrant business community not only allows for greater employment and choice of goods and services, but also can ease the tax burden on residents. The movement is led by local entrepreneur and business owner Ron Sturgeon. For more on Sturgeon’s ideas and background, check out his book, Keeping the Lights on Downtown in America’s Small Cities and watch the videos on his Facebook page. Ron is also the founder of the Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) which represents existing business interests in Haltom City and promotes growth of diverse businesses. HUBA is not a political action committee and does not endorse candidates. If/when Ron endorses candidates, he will do so on his own via the Make Haltom City Thrive Again organization.

For the original version of this press release, please visit here