beta
 

Stories by Jo Clifton

Thursday, September 6, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Council members talk about the budget

As City Council begins its final work session on the budget this morning in preparation for next week’s budget setting meetings, the Austin Monitor asked Council members to tell us the most important aspects of the Fiscal Year 2018-19 budget.Both…

Wednesday, September 5, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Powell Lane apartments win first-round OK

City Council last week unanimously approved on first reading a zoning change for 8 acres in North Central Austin with just a few questions and little discussion. The developer’s representative, Alice Glasco, said the magic words – affordable housing –…

Tuesday, September 4, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Despite owners’ wishes, historic zoning advances

Staff won a preliminary victory in its quest to zone a 1923 West Austin house historic against the owners’ wishes last week. The City Council vote was 6-3, but with two members off the dais and not voting, the final…

Friday, August 31, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Council OKs Smoot Terrace Park Historic District

Council gave final approval Thursday to creation of the Smoot Terrace Park Historic District just west of downtown, after neighbors decided to eliminate three properties owned by people who signed a valid petition opposing the historic district.That meant Council could…

Thursday, August 30, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Some Austin waterways unsafe for swimming

According to a new report from the Environment Texas Research and Policy Center and the Frontier Group, many of the state’s creeks, rivers and beaches are too polluted for swimming or wading – and that includes the Colorado River at…

Tuesday, August 28, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Council rejects campgrounds with bar

On a vote of 6-5 last Thursday, City Council rejected a zoning change that would have allowed a developer to put a campground with rental recreational vehicles as well as a bar at the end of a narrow lane in…

Friday, August 24, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Troxclair brief opposes city’s ballot language

Writing on city of Austin stationery, City Council Member Ellen Troxclair has filed an amicus brief with the Texas Supreme Court in support of a writ of mandamus seeking to overturn the ballot language Council proposes for a proposition requiring…

Friday, August 24, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Council OKs Shady Lane project on first reading

Council approved multifamily zoning for the Flats on Shady at 1125 Shady Lane on first reading Thursday, with only District 3 Council Member Pio Renteria dissenting. The developers at Barton Creek Capital plan to build about 300 units, with 15…

Thursday, August 23, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Citizens simply ask for more at budget hearing

A significant majority of those who spoke at Wednesday’s public hearing on the city’s Fiscal Year 2018-19 budget seemed pleased with the money city staff had recommended allocating to their specific interest. Several praised City Council and City Manager Spencer…

Wednesday, August 22, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Police union contract includes surprises

The union representing police officers has presented the city with a proposed contract, as well as a study by Angelou Economics challenging the city’s well-worn assertion that Austin officers are paid more than their cohorts in other Texas cities.In addition,…

Tuesday, August 21, 2018 by Jo Clifton

City, EMS negotiators reach tentative deal

Labor negotiators for the Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services Employee Association and the city of Austin have reached a tentative agreement. Council is scheduled to discuss the proposal today in executive session.Union President Tony Marquardt said union members have been…

Monday, August 20, 2018 by Jo Clifton

City facing two suits over ballot wording

On Friday afternoon, attorney Bill Aleshire filed suit on behalf of a voter against the city of Austin over language City Council adopted to describe the proposition on the November ballot related to CodeNEXT or any other rewrite of the…

Friday, August 17, 2018 by Jo Clifton

‘Godfather of progressive politics in Austin’ dies

Ken Wendler Jr., who has been described as the “godfather of progressive politics in Austin,” passed away on Aug. 13 at the age of 88.Wendler served as chairman of the Travis County Democratic Party from 1972 to 1980.Two of his…

Thursday, August 16, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Should Board of Adjustment have outside counsel?

Two members of the city’s Board of Adjustment argued strenuously in favor of providing outside legal counsel for the board when it is interpreting city code, but the assistant city attorney who has been advising the board for several years…

Wednesday, August 15, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Traffic law enforcement still a not topic

Even though traffic law enforcement and street safety is a top priority for the Austin Police Department, the majority of officers have little time to devote to such enforcement, given their other priorities, such as responding to citizens’ calls and…

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Reagan going to court over sign rule secrecy

Billy Reagan, the owner of Reagan Signs, the best-known billboard company in the city of Austin, is looking forward to going to court later this month to try to find out why the city won’t let him see communications between…

Thursday, August 9, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Council seeks review of insurance appeals

Last month, Chuck Lesniak retired from the city of Austin after 28 years, most recently as the city’s environmental officer. However, his involvement with the city is continuing as he urges City Council to establish a third-party appeals process that…

Monday, August 6, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Lower public safety bill cuts tax growth

Austin taxpayers will catch a break from the typical sharp escalation of city taxes, utility bills and other fees, so that the owner of a median priced home of $332,366 will pay only about $78 more in 2019 than they…

Monday, July 30, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Cronk wants to change assistant city managers

City Manager Spencer Cronk announced via memo to department directors on Friday that he plans to make major changes in the city manager’s office.Cronk said he was appointing Chief Financial Officer Elaine Hart, who served as interim city manager for…

Tuesday, July 24, 2018 by Jo Clifton

Fourth candidate enters race for District 8

Frank Ward, 36, threw his hat in the ring for the District 8 City Council seat on Monday with the endorsement of the current occupant of that seat, Council Member Ellen Troxclair. Troxclair, the only Republican on the dais, recently…

Back to Top