This was an October 2013 article in the Dallas Morning News.
Long accused of allowing south Irving to fall into decline while Las Colinas and Valley Ranch flourished, council members made the oldest part of the city a priority when Gonzalez came on board. Months after his arrival, the city’s years-long difficulty in finding a private partner ended when the council hired Delbert McDougal of Lubbock to redevelop the area.
McDougal was one of many prominent Lubbock residents who wrote letters in support of Gonzalez being named city manager there. His son, Marc McDougal, was mayor at the time and had supported Gonzalez’s bid for Irving city manager.
Gonzalez since 2011 has not responded to questions about whether he introduced or recommended the McDougals to the City Council. The city ended its contract with the McDougals’ Heritage District LLC in March after the parties’ five-year partnership didn’t result in any new construction projects. The council took over or forgave more than $30 million in loans made to McDougal entities and is now trying to sell several parcels of land that were collectively bought for almost three times the assessed value.
McDougal companies also received $1.2 million spent for consulting fees and expenses, including at least $59,500 in a housing allowance some council members didn’t know about. That partnership’s lack of construction is a primary reason City Council member Joe Putnam wants Gonzalez replaced.
“It was because of his management and his recommendation and his judgment that the city of Irving now has a $57.6 million liability on a project that has absolutely accomplished nothing,” Putnam said.
We deserve better