Reporter’s Notebook: Of departures and festivals
Cofer resigns… Rick Cofer, the vice chair of the Parks and Recreation Board, resigned several hours after City Council approved his reappointment to the board. His resignation came just hours after a concerned constituent emailed Council Member Kathie Tovo, who had nominated him to the position, and pointed to his past treatment of women. Cofer, a former Travis County prosecutor and longtime Democratic activist, was a candidate to be chair of the county Democratic Party in 2017, but dropped out of the race shortly before the Austin American-Statesman reported that Cofer had twice as a prosecutor been reprimanded by supervisors for inappropriate conduct; once for slapping a defense attorney on the buttocks with a folder in open court, and another time for telling a female colleague to use sex appeal to win over male jurors. Cofer admitted that his behavior had been unprofessional. Tovo provided a statement: “As Vice Chair of the Parks and Recreation Board, Rick Cofer has been a strong leader and has championed important initiatives, including recycling in parks and aquatics funding. On Thursday afternoon, he decided to resign. I respect his decision, and I appreciate all of his service to the City of Austin.” Cofer told the Austin Monitor: “I appreciate the opportunity that the City Council gave me to serve on the Parks Board these last four years. I’m looking forward to spending more time at the Butler Trail and all the other awesome parks in Austin.”
Goodnight, sweet Hooters… This week is your last chance to say goodbye to Austin’s only Hooters, located at South First Street and Riverside Drive. A ceremonial demolition will take place this Wednesday, March 13. The demolition will clear space for the first development under the new South Central Waterfront Initiative, RiverSouth. Once complete, the RiverSouth project will be a 15-story office building featuring “a green roof, ground-level dining and retail … environmentally friendly features, improvements to the streetscape and active transportation infrastructure in the area, and funding towards affordable housing in Austin,” according to a press release.
Some pretty amazing things happen during SXSW. A last minute opportunity and luck of the traffic gods turned into my meeting the truly inspiring Congresswoman @AOC. I’m so excited about her leadership and our future looks so bright. @DyanaforChair pic.twitter.com/ebzVJ9vwWo
— DeliaGarzaD2 (@DGarzaforD2) March 9, 2019
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— Jimmy Flannigan (@JimmyFlannigan) March 9, 2019
Just kinda bumped into Belgian Deputy Prime Minister @alexanderdecroo last night. I absolutely love that #SXSW puts Austin in the world stage and expands our opportunities for international dialogue. It’s kinda like traveling the globe but without any of the hassle! pic.twitter.com/ahGQXGW0Vf
— Natasha Harper-Madison (@CM_Natasha_D1) March 9, 2019
This week’s Reporter’s Notebook comes from the notebooks of Jack Craver and Elizabeth Pagano.
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