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Fully-Local • Non-Partisan • Public-Service Journalism
 

Stories by Sean Saldaña

Watson reflects on his mayoral campaign: 'A new beginning'

As Mayor-elect Kirk Watson prepares to assume his third term, he’s chosen to stick to his campaign messaging: He wants to cut down on the red tape involved in the development process, work across the ideological spectrum and play the…

In D9, Qadri wants to ensure 'an abundance of affordable housing'

Just past 10 p.m. on Dec. 13, after a night frantically pacing around the Whip In shaking hands, posing for pictures and checking on election updates, Zohaib Qadri – more commonly known as Zo – felt comfortable declaring victory in…

Anthony Bradshaw wants 'to see an Austin, Texas, that is successful'

On Oct. 18, KVUE and the Austin American-Statesman livestreamed a debate that included all six of the candidates running for mayor. The 90-minute affair included questions about Austin’s pressing issues – affordability, homelessness, policing and transit – as well as…

Gary Spellman looks to disrupt Austin politics

With hair to his shoulders, an aggressive distaste for politics and officially $0 raised, Gary Spellman is hardly what one imagines when envisioning a typical candidate for elected office – something he embraces wholeheartedly. Recounting an interaction, he says, “I…

Featured Collection: police contract negotiations

City, police union resume labor contract negotiations

The city of Austin and the Austin Police Association returned to the bargaining table Wednesday after a brief hiatus stemming from an impasse on oversight provisions. The city initiated the pause early this month after the police union said it…

Kirk Watson, a 'fixture' of Central Texas, wants to be mayor again

The way Kirk Watson tells it, his career in public office started with bad news. After working behind the scenes in Texas Democratic politics and in the state bureaucracy for a few years, he was diagnosed with testicular cancer in…

Virden positions herself as the 'common-sense' candidate for mayor

Jennifer Virden is about as much of an Austinite as someone can be. Born and raised in Northwest Hills, she’s eager to tell potential constituents how she went to Doss Elementary, that she’s an Anderson Trojan, and that she holds…

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District 9 Council candidates chat with the 'Monitor': Part II

 Read Part I of the series here. Linda Guerrero brings to the table an institutional knowledge of parks and environmental issues, along with expertise on affordability and transportation more broadly. In addition to being an AISD teacher for nearly three decades,…

District 9 City Council candidates chat with the 'Monitor': Part I

Read Part II of the series here. With Council Member Kathie Tovo term-limited and six candidates who have raised more than $25,000 so far, District 9 is thought to be one of the more competitive races this local election season.…

Austin Police Department Budget, 2012-2022

During the 2020-21 budget process, City Council cut $31.5 million from APD’s budget, citing the protests and “community outcry against the disproportionate impact of police violence on Black Americans, Latinx Americans and other non-white ethnic communities,” according to the approved…

Celia Israel seeks to be a progressive voice for Austin

Celia Israel announced her run for mayor early, on January 11, almost a full 10 months before election day. She said her motivation to run was her desire to tackle the biggest issues facing Austin today: affordability and transportation. Israel…

Phil Brual, the UT Austin student running for mayor

On Nov. 8, Austin will elect a new mayor, and already a number of high-profile candidates have entered the race.  And among those candidates is Phil Brual, a 21-year-old University of Texas student born and raised in Austin.   In many…

As the pandemic drags on, 24/7 dining makes a return to Austin

Last month, Bennu Coffee was able to reach a milestone it had been after for months: resuming the 24/7 hours of operation it had gained a reputation for among Austinites. At the moment, only Bennu’s Highland location is open around…

City Council to meet for special session on housing supply

City Council is convening Nov. 30 to discuss what Mayor Steve Adler has called one of Austin’s “greatest present challenges” – housing supply. In a City Council Message Board post co-authored with Council Member Alison Alter last Wednesday, Adler outlined…

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