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Top Morning Stories November 8, 2011: Election Day, Police OT for Occupy Austin

Photo by KUT News.

Election Day is Here!

What's on the Ballot?

Today Texans will decide the fate of ten amendments to the state constitution. You can find KUT's reports on all of the state propositions here. Travis County voters are also voting on two bond propositions for transportation and park projects.

The two proposals include almost $215 million in projects. On the parks side: new trails, playgrounds and picnic areas. For transportation: widening roads, repairing bridges and improving drainage.

In Travis County, Vote Where You Want

Travis County voters can cast a ballot at any polling location in the county. Election officials are trying out these new "vote centers" in hopes that they will drive up participation. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In addition to the regular precinct polling locations, the county is also allowing people to vote at some big sitesused during early voting such as the Travis County Airport Blvd. offices and the Randalls at Brodie & Slaughter.

APD Overtime for Occupy Austin

The City of Austin paid $110,000 in police overtime for the first 2 1/2 weeks of the Occupy Austin protests. That's according to an article by the Austin American-Statesman following Monday's Public Safety Commission meeting:

The city has also spent at least $96,000 in regular pay to officers who were already downtown and in the area of City Hall where the protests have been taking place. David Carter, the department's chief of staff, said that the data covers Oct. 6-22, the department's most recent pay period. "The department is striving to find the correct balance between overtime resources and on-duty resources," Carter said to the commission on Monday. "Some people have said, 'Why don't you just use all on-duty resources?' Depending on the situation in the city, we can't always do that."

The Statesman reports the protests have not affected police responses to critical calls, but they have increased non-emergency police response times by three to four minutes across the city.

Hit-and-Run Victim was a UT Student

KVUE is reporting a man killed during a hit-and-run in Austin over the weekend was a University of Texas student.

Adam Grote was scheduled to graduate from the UT School of Architecture this spring.  Now his friends and police investigators are hoping someone can help them track down the hit-and-run driver that took his life over the weekend. Shortly after 3 a.m. Sunday, 22-year-old Adam Grote was struck and killed while he walking on the shoulder of the road on a stretch of IH-35 near Riverside on the southbound side.  "He just had that personality that is irreplaceable, and he is definitely going to be missed," said James Spence, a friend of the victim's.