Mayors, city officials and business leaders from around the area came together in an exchange of information at Thursday’s Mayor’s Breakfast sponsored by the Rise and Shine group and the Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce.

Waxahachie Mayor Buck Jordan opened up the event by welcoming everyone in attendance to the city and then gave a report on how the city is doing economically.

“We are very fortunate to live in a city where there are so many positive and exciting things that are going on. It is an exciting time in Waxahachie just like many of the cities in the area. Waxahachie’s sales tax revenues continue to increase. The city serves as a retail, entertainment and dinning destination in Ellis County,” Jordan said.

“Economic development is also a high priority in Waxahachie,” he said. “A new economic development advisory committee has been recently been formed and includes some wonderful members with great experience and knowledge in these areas.”

Recent developments in the city have included construction starting on a new fire station and a renovation of Waxahachie ISD’s football stadium that is nearing completion. Jordan said the new stadium is a state of the art facility and will play an important part in the city for years to come.

Following Jordan, Red Oak Mayor Allen Hugley told the audience despite hard economic times the city has been able to achieve goals, complete projects and bring in development. Some of the projects in the city included the competition of the expansion project on Red Oak Road and the development of a new city park on the west side of Interstate 35E, south of Red Oak Road, that will serve residents in the western side of the community. The construction of the new Walmart is under way and should be finished by the end of March.

“This last year in Red Oak has been pretty basic for us. It has been about functioning and working through the plans that we have in place. We have been functioning in Red Oak with a pretty tight budget for a while now. This last year the city has been able to achieve some things regardless of that,” Hugley said. “We are also encouraged by the employment picture. Our Triumph (Aerostructures) project is moving forward very quickly. They hope to begin construction before the end of the month and their goal is to have that project up and running by the end of June.”

Ovilla Mayor Bill Vansyckle described Ovilla as a town that is becoming a city. The city has an active economic development commission and one of its goals is to bring in more commercial business. Vancyckle said he encourages businesses owners to stop by and visit with city staff and the city council because they are always interested in new ideas to help with growth.

Vansyckle also said Ovilla Heritage Day is coming up at 9 a.m. Sept. 24 and the theme is “Our Children Are Our Future.” There will be a parade and booths set up with vendors.

DeSoto Mayor Carl Sherman encouraged cities in the best southwest region to work together to bring development and jobs to the communities as a whole, which is good for all residents. 

Sherman said DeSoto has seen “a lot” of infrastructure development and has just completed the first phase of a four-lane expansion on Cockrell Hill Road, which was a $10 million project, and is about to start on the second phase.

Midlothian Mayor Boyce Whatley agreed with Sherman that it’s important to build partnerships and work together with neighboring cities. He said one example of that is the best southwest regional dispatch center for police and fire – which Midlothian has done by working with Red Oak and Ovilla to regionalize its 9-1-1 dispatch operations.

After the presentations, attendees were encouraged to participate in networking-based activities.

Contact Andrew at andrew.branca@wninews.com or 469-517-1451.