Austin

News, events, and entertainment happening in and around Austin and the Central Texas counties of Travis, Hays, Caldwell, Bastrop and Williamson

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

An Austin resident, represented by attorney Bill Aleshire, is suing the city over the wording of a November ballot measure about a citywide audit.

Activists collected more than 30,000 signatures asking the city to hire a third party to conduct an efficiency audit of all its departments. Austin City Council members voted Thursday to put the question to voters.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

The Austin City Council added two items to the November ballot early this morning. The first asks voters about how much say they should have in Austin’s land development process, while the second asks whether to initiate a comprehensive city audit. Both made it to the ballot through public petitions.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

“What prevents you from talking about race?”

The trainer offered the group of nearly 90 people seated in a room on the 10th floor of the LBJ Presidential Library some suggestions: Was it fear? Maybe fatigue? Ignorance?

Whatever their reasons, this group of executive directors, educators and local government employees had gathered to do just that: spend two days talking about race.

Julia Reihs / KUT

The Austin City Council voted unanimously today to scrap CodeNEXT, the controversial overhaul of the city's land development code.

In a resolution, the council said "due to a combination of significant disruptions to the process, CodeNEXT is no longer a suitable mechanism to achieve its stated goals or address the critical challenges currently facing our City."

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Census tract 48453002411 has a lot to offer. There’s a brewery on the north edge of the tract. There’s a neighborhood park, and you’re not too far from McKinney Falls State Park. On a good day, you can drive from this part of Southeast Austin to downtown in 20 minutes.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Under a $4.1 billion budget proposed today by City Manager Spencer Cronk, Austin homeowners would pay roughly $78 more a year in property taxes and fees to the city.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Candace Hunter applied to live at the Reserve at Springdale as soon as she could. When the nearly 300-unit property opened last year, it brought much-needed affordable housing to East Austin.

Within the year, the complex – which houses Austinites earning 60 percent or less of the median income ($51,600 annually for a family of four) – completely filled up.

Austin Bold / Circuit of the Americas

Before the Columbus Crew set its sights on Austin, there was another professional soccer venture in the offing, with Circuit of the Americas as the site to host a United Soccer League team. The team debuted its colors and announced its name, Austin Bold FC, this morning.


Martin do Nascimento for KUT

Austin Mayor Steve Adler wants the city to scrap CodeNEXT and start over. 

In a post to the Austin City Council message board Wednesday, Adler asked that the city manager come up with a new process for updating the city’s 34-year-old land-use code. The mayor bemoaned “misinformation” surrounding the yearslong discussion.

Gensler/Precourt Sports Ventures

The City of Austin late Friday released the terms of its deal with Precourt Sports Ventures for construction and management of a Major League Soccer stadium in Austin. Precourt owns the Columbus Crew soccer team and wants to move the Crew from Ohio to Texas.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Austin’s Equity Office is recommending the city remove or change the names of streets, parks and markers in Austin that honor the Confederate States of America and slavery.

The office also suggests eschewing the name “Austin” altogether, as Stephen F. Austin fought to defend slavery in the Texas Revolution and supported the institution after the state gained its independence from Mexico.

Milton Hinnant/The Dallas Morning News

The Dallas Cowboys are back in Oxnard, Calif., for their monthlong training camp. The Golden State has long been a base of operations for the Cowboys – California Lutheran College in Thousand Oaks served as the team’s longest-serving venue for camp from 1963 until 1989, and the state’s hosted camps since 2001.

But, before the Cowboys migrated back to California for camp, the team spent its most productive (and controversial) summers right here in Austin, when the team annually descended upon St. Edward’s University during their Super Bowl runs of the 1990s.

Julia Reihs / KUT

Austin says it is still committed to reducing plastic waste despite a Texas Supreme Court ruling last month that forced it to end its ban on single-use plastic bags.

The city says it's continuing efforts toward its Zero Waste goal, a plan by the City Council to keep 90 percent of discarded materials out of landfills by 2040. 

Google patent database

It’s safe to say many an Austinite woke up today, looked at the forecast and, possibly, wondered what fresh, near-literal hell they’d unknowingly stumbled into during their Sunday night slumber. It’s hot.

But, hey, at least there’s conditioned air, because before that, people went to some pretty strange lengths to save themselves (and their horses) from the immutably oppressive sun.

Here's A Guide To Staying Cool During The Heat Wave

Jul 23, 2018
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

This post has been updated.

Summer in Austin is usually hot, but not this hot. The city has issued heat advisory warnings for residents to stay inside, drink plenty of water and never leave pets or children inside cars. 

The recent heat wave has brought record-breaking temperatures, according to the National Weather Service, which is forecasting a high of between 104 and 108 degrees this afternoon. Around 3:50 p.m., the temperature hit 109. 

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

It’s a strange time of year to enjoy the outdoors in Austin.  We’ve got triple-digit heat, Saharan dust filling the sky, and, you may have noticed, grackles are looking a little worse for wear.

Martin do Nascimento for KUT

A district judge has ordered the Austin City Council to put a petition on the November ballot that, if passed, would require land development code rewrites, such as CodeNEXT, to be approved by voters. 

La política de inmigración de la administración del Presidente Donald Trump ha provocado la indignación de algunos, el elogio de otros, y en algunas partes de la comunidad, el miedo.

Le invitamos el miércoles, 18 de julio, a las 7:00 p.m. en el Museo George Washington Carver y Centro Cultural para Más Allá de la Frontera: Cómo afecta la aplicación de la ley de inmigración a Austin. 

U.S. Army

Austin will be the home of the U.S. Army's new Futures Command, the installation intended to modernize the Army by developing new weapons systems and technologies.

In an announcement this morning, Army Secretary Mark T. Esper said the site in Austin will allow for an "entire modernization process under one roof." Raleigh, Boston, Minneapolis and Philadelphia were also finalists for the site selection.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Austin has endured several legal jabs from the state in the past couple months.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

The Austin City Council’s lone conservative, Ellen Troxclair, announced today that she will not run for re-election for her District 8 seat in November.

Troxclair, who represents Southwest Austin, called the decision not to run an “incredibly difficult one.”

In an emailed statement, Troxclair said she was proud to have served as "a voice of reason" and "a fiscal watchdog" on the Council and said the city's taxation and regulation had led it down an "unsustainable path."

Shelby Knowles / Texas Tribune

The controversial Texas law allowing students to bring guns into classrooms is facing another showdown as a lawsuit challenging the law heads to federal appeals court on Wednesday.

Julia Reihs

Austin is ending its ban on free single-use plastic bags at stores and restaurants after a state Supreme Court ruling against a similar ban in Laredo. But repealing the ordinance, commonly known as the “bag ban,” doesn't mean every store will start handing them out again.  

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

A city statute that governs the makeup of Austin’s Planning Commission is at the center of a legal challenge from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office.

Paxton is taking legal action to remove eight members of the 13-member commission, citing a rule that limits how many commissioners can have some sort of affiliation with real estate or land use interests.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

The Austin City Council will have the chance next month to tweak the specifics of a $925 million bond package it approved last month for the Nov. 6 ballot. But the vote was not unanimous, as some council members expressed concern about the accompanying property tax hike.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

After months of negotiation, the Austin City Council has opened the door to seizing the site of the old Montopolis Negro School in East Austin.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

This post has been updated.

It’s the Fourth of July. Here’s everything you need to know.

Julia Reihs / KUT

The City of Austin says it will no longer enforce a ban on single-use plastic bags at most retail outlets, following a state Supreme Court ruling last month that struck down Laredo's bag ban.

The court ruled Laredo's ban was at odds with state law, but urged the Legislature to pass more specific laws to allow similar bans in the future.

Callie Hernandez for KUT

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is seeking to remove eight of the 13 members of Austin’s Planning Commission. The commission is responsible for making and amending a master city plan, making recommendations to the City Council on proposed zoning changes and weighing in on land use decisions.

Gabriel C. Pérez/KUT

Film producer Harvey Weinstein is now facing sexual assault charges from a third woman. His case has focused attention on some of the darkest manifestations of stereotypical male behavior – racking up large numbers of unwilling sexual conquests. 

Two Central Texas life and relationship coaches say the case has also necessitated a close examination of what shapes the male identity.

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