October 11, 2007
Don't think pink

Don't they have anything better to do in Farmers Branch than this?

Some residents of this Dallas suburb that tried to ban apartment rentals to illegal immigrants now want the city to regulate which colorful hues people can paint their homes.

Although the City Council hasn't decided whether to consider any house paint restrictions, Hispanic leaders say it's yet another effort to target Latinos in the city.

"I believe controlling the color you paint your house is basically profiling the Hispanic community," said Elizabeth Villafranca, whose family owns a Mexican restaurant in Farmers Branch. "We all know who paints their homes tropical colors."


Victorian homes are often painted bright blue or peacock green, buildings in South Beach typically have outside lights in electric purples and yellow and structures in Santa Fe blend into the desert landscape with earthen reds or dark tans.

But most homes in Farmers Branch are brick, with trim or shutters painted in neutral colors. A handful are more brightly colored, such as one wooden home with Kelly green trim or an upscale two-story house with one burnt orange side.

Residents Matt Burton and Robin Bernier proposed the color standards at a city council meeting earlier this month, presenting photos showing homes with shades they found unsightly.

Burton didn't immediately return a message for comment, and a telephone number for Bernier was not available.

But Bernier, who also supported the city's apartment ban, told The Dallas Morning News: "When you paint your house some fluorescent or garish color scheme, you negatively affect my (home) value."

For now, city officials plan no action.

"We're going to look into it and see what the legal ramifications are," said city spokeswoman Nicole Recker.

When homeowners associations do this sort of thing, most normal people think they're a bunch of prigs. When an entire city contemplates doing it, you have to wonder what's in the water supply. ITPT gives it the response it deserves.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on October 11, 2007 to The great state of Texas