Mayor Parker Highlights Fort Worth's Progress and Priorities at State of the City Address

On October 6, Mayor Mattie Parker updated more than 1,000 local business leaders at the Fort Worth Chamber’s annual State of the City address. With one two-year term in the rearview mirror and embarking on her second term, Mayor Parker described that state of the City as strong, and provided several highlights illustrating the community’s momentum for those in attendance. 

Public Safety 

Mayor Parker told the crowd that public safety remains the top priority for City leadership. She contrasted public safety in Fort Worth compared to other large cities by illustrating that Target made plans to close stores in New York, Portland, Oakland, and Seattle due to organized retail crime. While some cities across the country face shortages of hundreds of police officers, Mayor Parker said the Fort Worth Police Department is on track to be at full strength by 2026. She promised an all-encompassing approach to public safety that includes staffing, innovative programs, and technology. 

From the newly passed Fort Worth city budget, Mayor Parker highlighted that an additional 106 positions were funded for the police department, in addition to 76 new positions for the fire department. She also noted that the homicide rate had declined 18% compared to 2022. 


An emerging issue in Fort Worth is the rise in homelessness and the challenges that accompany working to get people the resources needed to find permanent shelter. The City of Fort Worth utilized one-time American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to construct housing. In total, the City has allocated more than $40 million to tackle the issue of homelessness, much of that in partnership with Tarrant County. The City is also continuing participation with UpSpire, an organization that creates employment that reduces or removes barriers that contribute to homelessness. 

Property Taxes 

Another core pillar of Mayor Parker’s address was on the topic of property taxes. She stressed the need to find a balance between providing the core services that Fort Worth residents depend on – public safety, roads, libraries, parks, utilities – with the local property tax burden. In the latest City budget, Mayor Parker and the Fort Worth City Council implemented an additional $20,000 homestead exemption for senior citizens. They passed the largest tax rate cut in the past 34 years, marking the fifth time in the past six budgets cycles that the property tax rate was decreased. 

The Mayor concluded by highlighting education and workforce initiatives the City is working on, and enhancing their ability to attract and retain employees by increasing City salaries and implementing a more robust family leave policy for new parents. 

Evidenced by the nation-leading population growth and increased economic activity, Fort Worth is on a strong trajectory for the future. With good government and a strong business community, Fort Worth can continue to prosper for years to come. 

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