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Austin hires T.C. Broadnax as city manager with $470K salary

A man, T.C. Broadnax, wearing a blue suit and red tie meets with residents.
Patricia Lim
KUT News
T.C. Broadnax was hired as the next city manager for Austin. He starts in May.

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T.C. Broadnax will be making $82,000 more than his predecessor when he starts his job as Austin's city manager next month.

The Austin City Council on Thursday approved an employment agreement with a base salary of $470,000. Broadnax will also receive an array of fringe benefits, including a $5,000 per month housing allowance for six months to offset costs of a temporary residence, relocation and moving assistance; a cellphone stipend; and an "executive allowance."

The salary is about $50,000 more than Broadnax was making as city manager in Dallas. Before he was fired in 2023, Austin City Manager Spencer Cronk was making $388,000 annually.

"Austin is a vibrant city with immense potential, and I am committed to working tirelessly alongside our dedicated team to ensure its continued growth and prosperity,” Broadnax said. “Together, we will navigate challenges, seize opportunities, and build a resilient and inclusive future for all residents. I look forward to serving the people of Austin with a collaborative, transparent, inclusive and equitable approach."

Broadnax was informally offered the job last week following a town hall meeting with the community and an interview with the mayor and City Council. He beat Sara Hensley, the Denton city manager and former Austin assistant city manager, for the role.

The city manager is the highest-ranking employee at City Hall. Broadnax will be responsible for hiring and firing department heads, preparing the budget and serving as an objective adviser to the council.

Broadnax brings 30 years of experience in local government. He has been the Dallas city manager since 2017. He resigned the role in February under pressure from the City Council. He had a tense relationship with some council members for years, making it difficult for Dallas to accomplish anything.

The Dallas mayor and three council members called for his firing in 2022, amid vacancies in the city’s 911 call center and delays in the building permits office. He was criticized for his handling of millions of deleted Dallas Police Department data files that included evidence and investigations.

Before Dallas, Broadnax worked as a city manager in Tacoma, Washington, and was assistant city manager in San Antonio for six years.

Austin has been without a permanent city manager since February 2023, when the City Council fired Cronk for his handling of an ice storm that caused widespread power outages. Communication was a key failure.

Jesús Garza has been serving in the interim.

Broadnax said last week that he would prioritize emergency preparedness, including communication, upon his arrival in Austin. He also said he would focus on homelessness response and hiring a permanent police chief.

Council members sang his praises, saying his wealth of knowledge in city government made him the best fit for the role.

“I am looking forward to working with T.C. Broadnax and am excited for his leadership that he will bring to our city,” Council Member Vanessa Fuentes said.

Council Member Chito Vela shared similar thoughts Thursday.

“T.C. Broadnax is probably the most qualified city manager candidate and if we hadn't hired him the next city would have snapped him up,” Vela said. “I am glad he is coming to the City of Austin.”

Mayor Kirk Watson said Broadnax will get to work quickly on budget planning for the next fiscal year.

"He brings a wealth of experience in city management, and I am confident will help us continue to address our critical community priorities and further advance the great work that our Interim City Manager Jesús Garza and his management team have begun," Watson said.

In Dallas, Broadnax helped usher in the revitalization of Fair Park, where the State Fair of Texas is held, and the master plan for the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center. He also helped oversee operations at Dallas Love Field airport, according to his resume.

He is joining Austin as it embarks on many similar projects, including the light rail buildout known as Project Connect, the I-35 expansion, the renovation of the Austin Convention Center and the airport expansion. The city is also in the midst of reforming its housing and policing policies.

Broadnax is set to begin May 6.

Luz Moreno-Lozano is the Austin City Hall reporter at KUT. Got a tip? Email her at Follow her on X @LuzMorenoLozano.
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