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Tag Archives: Watershed Protection Department

Lengthy delay predicted for some environmental rules

Environmentalists looking forward to changes in city regulations requiring new developments to include more green infrastructure may be disappointed to hear that the final piece in that project may be delayed until mid-2024. City Council adopted some of the rules…

Council adopts new stormwater rules

After considerable delay and discussion, City Council finally approved new environmental regulations related to drainage, landscaping and green stormwater infrastructure on Thursday. Mackenzie Kelly was the only Council member to vote no, and Natasha Harper-Madison was off the dais. Last…

Flash Flood Alley could see some action on flood relief

In the wake of 2017’s Hurricane Harvey, the Texas Legislature directed the creation of a plan that could guide state and local flood control policy. Now the regional plan concerning Central Texas is getting close to the finish line.  Set for…

As affordability concerns linger, Planning Commission postpones enviro code changes

The Planning Commission postponed a vote Tuesday on a complex package of environmental and water quality code amendments. Commissioners say much work remains to understand the full impact of the changes, especially as they relate to housing affordability.  While many…

Featured Collection: Austin Energy 2022 rate case

Austin Energy ramps up outreach for proposed rate changes

Austin Energy has entered the public hearing phase of its base rate review process, following its proposal to raise service costs. The monthslong dialogue with stakeholders and city staff, slated for resolution by City Council in November, has surfaced predictable…

Watershed Protection delivers long-awaited report on trash in creeks

The Environmental Commission heard a long-awaited presentation on trash in Austin creeks at its meeting last week. Two years ago, in response to a City Council direction, the Watershed Protection Department launched a comprehensive study on trash, including dockless mobility…

Environmental Commission recommends watershed code changes despite equity concerns

At its regular meeting last week, the Environmental Commission voted to recommend a group of watershed-related Land Development Code changes to City Council, along with a set of recommendations on public engagement and equity. The amendments to Title 25 of…

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Planning Commission worries new environmental regulations could make housing more expensive

After expressing concerns over the impact of new water quality and drainage regulations on housing affordability, members of the Planning Commission voted Tuesday to form a working group to tackle the code changes before giving a final recommendation to City…

Trash and scooters still clogging Austin creeks, study finds

The city’s attempts to keep garbage out of local creeks are still being stymied by discarded motorized scooters, according to the findings of a roughly six-month analysis of 20 watersheds throughout Austin. A memo released last week presented the findings…

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…

New water quality rules aim to promote green infrastructure

In a presentation to the Environmental Commission last Wednesday, staffers from the Watershed Protection Department presented a bundle of code updates aimed at improving water quality and making drainage infrastructure more environmentally friendly. “We couldn’t be more excited about the…

flood plain map

Planning Commission recommends floodplain redevelopment changes

Despite lingering concerns, the Planning Commission on July 12 recommended a tweak to floodplain regulations that would allow existing businesses within the floodplain to rebuild without special permission from City Council.  The rule change would give city staffers the power…

Trail project moves to complete Oltorf-Riverside connection

The city’s Public Works Department is gearing up to finally complete a 3.5-mile urban trail that would connect Mabel Davis and Roy G. Guerrero Park in Southeast Austin. The new trail segment would bridge the existing gap between trails ending…

Incoming code amendments will set higher bar for watershed protections

Following a direction passed by City Council earlier this month, the Watershed Protection Department has kept busy refining a number of Land Development Code amendments to further the city’s environmental goals. Deputy Environmental Officer Liz Johnston stopped by the Environmental…

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