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Stories by Jo Clifton

Thursday, February 21, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Mayor talks taxes, mobility at RECA lunch

Mayor Steve Adler faced a friendly crowd at Wednesday’s Real Estate Council of Austin meeting. He spoke about his hopes for the future, outlined challenges the city faces in the areas of mobility, affordability and property taxes and answered questions…

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 by Jo Clifton

City survey: Austinites’ satisfaction up

Austinites have expressed a very high level of satisfaction with city services, with overall satisfaction 21 percent higher than the national average for cities with a population of more than 500,000, Chief Performance Officer Kimberly Olivares told Council at Tuesday’s…

Thursday, February 14, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Buda seeks passage of aquifer storage bill

Buda’s explosive growth, from about 7,300 people in 2010 to nearly 17,000 today, coupled with a changing climate that brings both floods and drought, means that the city has to carefully manage its water resources.The city is hoping to move…

Monday, February 11, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Updated: Human Resources director faces ethics complaint

Joya Hayes, director of the city’s Human Resources Department, misused city resources and abused her position by directing staffers to care for her child while Hayes attended meetings, according to a complaint filed by the Office of the City Auditor.The…

Friday, February 8, 2019 by Jo Clifton

City, UT to work together on moving Red River

City Council unanimously agreed Thursday to enter into an agreement with the University of Texas to facilitate the relocation of Red River Street between East 12th Street and East 32nd Street in order to develop a new arena to replace…

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Local officials unite to fight property tax caps

Just hours after Gov. Greg Abbott delivered his State of the State address on Tuesday, declaring school finance reform, property tax relief and teacher pay raises to be emergency items on the legislative agenda, county officials from around the state…

Tuesday, February 5, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Harper-Madison removes three commissioners

After just one month in office, District 1 Council Member Natasha Harper-Madison has signaled her intent to remove three sitting commissioners from their respective commissions, and a fourth is already gone. One of those commissioners, Bryan King of the Board…

Friday, February 1, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Firefighter off for one day for ‘disrespect’

After finding that a male firefighter under his command spoke in a disrespectful manner to a female firefighter, Austin Fire Chief Joel Baker suspended the firefighter for just one day, to the dismay of the female firefighter. Baker did not…

Thursday, January 31, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Who’s serving on City Council committees?

It’s finally time for the first City Council meeting of the year – and consequently, time to reconstitute Council committees. But anyone expecting big changes in the membership of those committees would probably be mistaken, though there will be some…

Wednesday, January 30, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Council considering emergency shelter resolution

The number of homeless people in Austin continues to grow, yet shelter for these people has not kept pace, according to data gathered by the city and the Ending Community Homelessness Coalition, or ECHO. On any given day, there were…

Tuesday, January 29, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Development fees could help parks department, study shows

The city of Austin could collect approximately $360,000 from development reviews done by the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, according to a cost of service study done by the Matrix Consulting Group at the request of City Council.Currently, the department…

Tuesday, January 22, 2019 by Jo Clifton

EMS leader seeks changes in retirement system

Selena Xie, the newly elected president of the Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services Employee Association, has a mission. She wants to change the retirement system for EMS workers so it is more in line with the systems for other public…

Thursday, January 17, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Better session ahead, legislators say

Senator Kirk Watson told those gathered at the Real Estate Council of Austin luncheon on Wednesday that he is “more optimistic than I have been in the past by quite a bit” about the possibility of resolving numerous problems related…

Friday, January 4, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Auditors find misuse of city resources

An Austin Energy employee suspected of driving intoxicated in a deadly crash misused his city vehicle by driving to locations outside the scope of his work and misused work time to hunt on city property, according to an investigative report…

Wednesday, January 2, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Troxclair looks forward to new adventures

After four years in office as the first Council member from Southwest Austin’s District 8, Ellen Troxclair is stepping down. But her departure from Council doesn’t mean we won’t see her at City Hall, she told the Austin Monitor during…

Wednesday, January 2, 2019 by Jo Clifton

Houston: Council should be nonpartisan

In her final speech from the Council dais, Ora Houston urged her colleagues to encourage diversity at every level and to put partisan issues aside. The city’s first representative of District 1 said it is important to look at and…

Wednesday, December 26, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Renteria looks at 2018 and beyond

As he starts his second four-year term at City Hall, District 3 Council Member Pio Renteria says he plans to concentrate on affordable housing in the coming year, just as he did in 2018 and the three previous years.Fresh off…

Friday, December 21, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Cronk reflects on first year in Austin

Less than a year after taking over as Austin’s city manager, Spencer Cronk calls himself “the luckiest person in the world.” He recognizes the many challenges Austin faces, but city administration is what he has chosen to do with his…

Monday, December 17, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Action ramps up in appraisal district suit

Action continues to ramp up in the battle between the Travis Central Appraisal District and firms representing property owners seeking hearings to lower the appraised value of their properties.Last month, Texas ProTax Austin, Five Stone Tax Advisors, 46 commercial property…

Thursday, December 13, 2018 by Jo Clifton

City’s federal housing funds in jeopardy

The city of Austin could lose a significant amount of federal funding if President Trump follows through on his threat to shut down the federal government on Dec. 21. Various national publications reported Trump making the threat if Congress refuses…

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