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'Time for a change': Dallas city council will consider firing city manager, memo says

The council meeting will "consider taking appropriate action related to the performance of the City Manager including discipline or removal."

DALLAS — The Dallas City Council is moving to potentially oust City Manager T.C. Broadnax, calling a special meeting for Wednesday, according to officials and a memo obtained by WFAA.

The council meeting will "consider taking appropriate action related to the performance of the City Manager including discipline or removal," said the memo, which was signed by councilmembers Paula Blackmon, Cara Mendelsohn, and Gay Donnell Willis.

Mayor Eric Johnson is backing the move for a change, telling WFAA in a statement he believes "it is time for a change in city management."

"Council has made it clear in recent days that they also believe it is time for a change," Johnson said. "We are ready to move forward and discuss how best to build for the future of our great city and its amazing people, and that is why I have placed the item on the City Council’s agenda for next week.”

Broadnax said in a statement that periodic performance review is critical to him and all City employees to demonstrate progress and ensure transparency for all. 

"I am proud of the hard work which has led to accomplishment of many goals related to the City Council’s eight strategic priorities and look forward to sharing the R.E.A.L. impact we continue to make to improve the lives of Dallas residents in ways that are responsible, equitable, accountable, and legitimate, together as One Dallas," Broadnax said in a statement.

Blackmon confirmed the council is considering removing Broadnax.

“Systems issues are not being addressed," Blackmon said. "From the data breach to 911 to homelessness to permitting, we are not showing improvement."

“It’s time to hold people accountable," Blackmon said.

Blackmon’s been working on the backup in the permitting process and she says that’s opened her eyes to “systems issues.”

Blackmon said the city needs to be honest about these issues and have a plan to address them and she doesn’t feel that from the city manager.

She also told WFAA that Broadnax was asked to resign by noon Friday and that a special meeting was called when he didn't. 

Mayor Pro Tem Chad West said he didn't really understand what the request for discipline is for and that he didn't know where it was coming from.

"Whether we ask him to resign or stay, it is all part of the council review process," West said. "I support a discussion in executive session where the entire Council has an opportunity to discuss where we see our relationship with the city manager going forward. Whatever happens, everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. We’re all professionals here and we should remember that.”

Broadnax was hired as city manager in 2016, arriving in Dallas from Tacoma, Wash., where he was also city manager.

Over the last year, Broadnax has dealt with several issues related to city staffing and technology, including severe staffing shortages at the city's 911 call center.

The 911 call center issues came to a head last summer when a young 6-year-old girl died of a stabbing after the police response was delayed.

Johnson called on Broadnax to fix the staffing shortages, calling the issue "absolutely unacceptable."

Broadnax last year was also faced with a massive city-data loss that impacted police files. Broadnax was criticized for learning about the data loss in April 2021 but not informing the council until August, when the story broke in the news.

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