Axios Dallas

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Happy Monday! Wise people change their minds.

🥵 Today's weather: No cooldown yet. High of 101.

🎵 Sounds like: "Bradman"

🚩 Situational awareness: A bipartisan group of senators has reached a gun safety framework deal that includes enhanced background checks for people under 21, funding for mental health and school safety and state grants for "red flag" laws.

Today's newsletter is a wicket-y 952 words — a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: 🏏 Pro cricket is coming

A rendering of a cricket stadium with fireworks

A rendering of the new stadium in Grand Prairie. Illustration courtesy of HKS

The first Major League Cricket stadium — and home of the USA Cricket National team — will be in Grand Prairie.

Driving the news: The new stadium will replace the ballpark of the now-defunct minor league baseball team, the AirHogs. Construction will start this summer and the venue will open next year.

  • Ross Perot Jr. and his longtime business partner, Anurag Jain, are among the investors.

Why it matters: This is America's first foray into major league cricket, and the Grand Prairie stadium could put North Texas in the running to host a Cricket World Cup one day.

  • The last International Cricket Council Men's Cricket World Cup, held in 2019, had a broadcast audience of 706 million.

Between the lines: North Texas was chosen because of its warm climate, strong fan base, centralized time zone and the presence of other major sports venues, the league tells Axios.

Zoom out: Major League Cricket is also planning stadiums in other areas where the sport is popular, including San Jose, Seattle, and Orange County, Calif.

What they're saying: "The ceiling for cricket's growth in the U.S. is incredibly high, with the passion for the game at the grassroots level I've observed in Texas proof of its potential," Jain said in a statement.

Flashback: Cricket is older than baseball.

Learn more about the sport.

2. ❌ Dallas City Council will consider firing city manager

Illustration of Dallas City Hall with lines radiating from it.

Photo illustration: Allie Carl/Axios. Photo: Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

The Dallas City Council could vote to discipline or fire city manager T.C. Broadnax during a special meeting this week.

What's happening: Three council members and the mayor have asked to review Broadnax's employment.

  • Council members have expressed frustration with the city manager's handling of the broken permitting system, homelessness and last year's massive data loss.

Details: Broadnax is the chief executive of the city and reports to the City Council.

  • He started in the role in February 2017 after serving as city manager in Tacoma, Washington.
  • Broadnax's salary is $410,000 a year, and his contract includes a $700 monthly car allowance and a year's salary as severance.

What they're saying: "These are system issues, and it just appears that we don't have the leadership in place to fix these systems," council member Paula Blackmon told D Magazine.

  • "It didn't have to be this way," Mayor Eric Johnson wrote in an email to constituents. "It still doesn't."

The other side: "Periodic performance review is critical to me and all city employees to demonstrate progress and ensure transparency for our residents, taxpayers, and stakeholders," Broadnax said in a statement.

3. Leading the "patriot wing" in jail

Smoke bombs and flags at the US Capitol

There are definitely better ways to make friends. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Guy Reffitt, the Wylie man who became the first person convicted at trial for playing a role in the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, has made friends with some of the other insurrectionists he met in the "patriot wing" of the Washington, D.C., jail, according to the New Yorker.

Why it matters: The friendships formed in the jail unit are emblematic of a consolidation of right-wing extremism that has taken place since Jan. 6.

What they're saying: One attorney for a different Jan. 6 defendant said the political views of defendants in the so-called "patriot wing" were growing increasingly extreme.

  • "It was almost cult-like," attorney Stephen Brennwald said in a hearing last fall, per the New Yorker story.

Details: Reffitt, who was turned in to the FBI by his son, was taught to play a card game — Magic: The Gathering — by Jessica Watkins, a bartender and militia leader from rural Ohio who is awaiting trial on charges of seditious conspiracy and obstruction of an official proceeding.

  • Reffitt and Watkins helped start a tradition of singing the national anthem every night.
  • Reffitt, who was recorded saying he was going to drag members of Congress out of the Capitol "kicking and screaming," now believes the events of Jan. 6 were staged by police to entrap him.

Zoom out: Former President Trump said at a rally in Texas this year that the prosecution of Jan. 6 rioters is a "disgrace" and floated the idea that if he were re-elected he'd pardon them.

What's next: Reffitt is scheduled to be sentenced later this month, per the New Yorker.

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4. 🗞 Burnt ends: Bite-sized news bits

Illustration of a mustang wearing glasses and reading the news on a phone.

Our puns deserve a colt following. Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🤑 Inflation in North Texas has climbed to 9.1% — higher than the national average. (DMN)

🪧 About 400 people gathered Saturday in Downtown Dallas to advocate for gun control. (Texas Tribune)

🏳️‍🌈 Seven of the 31 members of a white supremacist group that were arrested near a Pride event in Idaho are from Texas. (WFAA)

🍼 55 tons of baby formula were delivered to DFW airport. (KERA)

🦫 Buc-ee's is building a 75,000-square-foot store outside San Antonio, which means the largest gas station in the world will once again be in Texas. (Dallas Observer)

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5. 👋 Meet Axios Dallas' newest reporter

A woman wearing an orange sweater, drinking a cup of coffee

Welcome Naheed to team Axios Dallas. Photo courtesy of Luka Dharsi

We're excited to announce that Naheed Rajwani-Dharsi is the third reporter on our Axios Dallas team.

  • Naheed is a former criminal justice reporter for the Dallas Morning News and joins us from HKS, where she wrote about architecture and renovations of historic Dallas sites.
  • She'll cover economic development and public safety. And cricket!

Meet Naheed: After growing up in Tarrant County, Naheed spent several years in Los Angeles, where she sorely missed her family, late-night Whataburger runs and not having to pay state income tax.

  • She lives in Las Colinas with her husband and their dog, Luka. 🏀
  • She's always on the hunt for the best ice cream shops. Send recs. 🍨
  • Fave Dallas thing: The sweet, sweet sound of "Let's go, Mavs" at the American Airlines Center.

The bottom line: Support from you and our members helped make this happen. Thank you!

Reach out to Naheed, and follow her on Twitter @naheedrajwani

Our picks:

🧮 Mike is stoked to see Axios Dallas growing.

👯‍♀️ Tasha is excited to be reunited with her favorite coworker. Sorry, Mike.

😃 Naheed is ready to take over this newsletter — and bump off Mike and Tasha.

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