Point Austin

The Road to 10-1: Catching Up

The July 15 campaign finance deadline set off a flurry of 10-1 activity, much of which we covered in the Chronicle’s July 18 overview (“Now We Begin”). Nevertheless, the campaign dust has hardly settled yet – July 18 also marked the opening of formal ballot application – so here’s a brief update on what’s been happening since. Read More | Comment »

1:45PM Mon. Jul. 28, Michael King

The Road to 10-1: NAAO Forum, or …

The short answer is: You don’t – although the Network of Asian American Organizations is to be congratulated for trying. The NAAO hosted 28 City Council candidates Saturday morning at the Asian American Resource Center, allowing roughly five minutes per candidate – and heard them all with only about 30 minutes spillover. Read More | Comment »

5:38PM Sat. Jul. 26, Michael King

Yes, We Have Candidates!

Monday, July 21, marked the opening of the official filing period for the new 10-1 City Council, and a handful of candidates took advantage of Opening Day. The early headliner was Council Member Mike Martinez, who hit City Hall in the morning for filing and a photo-op. He was joined by a half-dozen others, including a newcomer. Read More | Comment »

12:01PM Tue. Jul. 22, Michael King

The Take on Taxes

With about as many local candidates as voters in attendance, the Travis County Democratic Party hosted a “town hall” on property tax reform Friday morning, where everybody agreed with would-be County Commissioner (Precinct 2) Brigid Shea: “The appraisal process is broken.” To fix it - in the current state political climate - will take some doing. Read More | Comment »

4:08PM Fri. Jul. 18, Michael King

The Road to 10-1: Fundraising Highlights

As widely reported, the Big Kahuna in the initial City Council campaign money race (from campaign treasurer filings as of June 30) is novice mayoral candidate Steve Adler, who garnered $366,192 in contributions and had $289,896 in cash on hand. His major opponents, Mayor Pro Tem Sheryl Cole and Council Member Mike Martinez, were not so flush. Read More | Comment »

12:33PM Wed. Jul. 16, Michael King

The Road to 10-1: More to Come

Two deadlines approach in this year’s historic City Council races: the first substantial campaign finance reports (through June 30) are due at 5pm today at the City Clerk’s office, and beginning Monday, July 21, declared candidates can begin actually filing for office (through Aug. 18). Read More | Comment »

1:17PM Tue. Jul. 15, Michael King

Graves Prosecutor Under Misconduct Review

The Texas Defender Service announced today that the State Bar of Texas has found “just cause” to review allegations of prosecutorial misconduct against former Burleson County District Attorney Charles Sebesta, Jr. for his 1994 capital prosecution of Anthony Graves, for which Graves was eventually exonerated. Read More | Comment »

12:53PM Mon. Jul. 7, Michael King

Curtain Up on Mayor’s Race

In the first face-to-face meeting of the fledgling Austin mayoral race, the Central Texas Democratic Forum hosted candidates Steve Adler, Sheryl Cole, and Mike Martinez, Friday, June 20 at the Austin Bar Association. A lunch audience of about 100 people heard answers to questions running the gantlet of issues facing the city. Read More | Comment »

4:44PM Sun. Jun. 22, Michael King

Council Preview: The Cloud of Athena

The final agenda for City Council’s Jan. 23 meeting posted Friday doesn’t differ dramatically from the draft – the headline addition is a briefing on a proposed economic development agreement with athenahealth, inc. – which apparently suffers from a shortage of capital letters – to become a corporate tenant at Downtown’s former Seaholm Power Plant. Read More | Comment »

8:00AM Mon. Jan. 20, Michael King

Brown vs. Eckhardt vs. … McCombs? {Update}

Some Travis County voters were receiving a brief computerized push-poll phone survey Thursday night, from a yet to be identified polling firm called something like "Civitas Research."* There were only a couple of substantive questions – both implying that Brown is somehow in bed with Circuit of the Americas owner Red McCombs. {See Update below.} Read More | Comment »

12:15PM Sat. Jan. 18, Michael King

Come One, Come All!

Over the last several weeks, we've been compiling a catalog of potential November candidates for Austin Mayor and City Council. Here's our current master list of the entire field -- as 2014 proceeds, watch this space for additions and emendations. Read More | Comment »

5:00PM Fri. Jan. 10, Michael King

BREAKING: Council Adopts 2013-14 Budget

The headline number will be "50.27" – the property tax rate just adopted by the Austin City Council – a whopping .02 cents below the current or "nominal" rate. Council also managed to increase parks funding over time, and even tweaked the proposed Austin Police Department increase just a bit. Read More | Comment »

2:07PM Tue. Sep. 10, 2013, Michael King

Doggett on War and Peace

As the drums of war in D.C. beat furiously once again, Austin Congressman Lloyd Doggett spoke out against precipitous and unilateral U.S. action, and demanded that the Obama Administration first seek war authority from Congress. Read More | Comment »

4:24PM Fri. Aug. 30, 2013, Michael King

Andy Brown and the Bold-Faced Names

At a combination school fundraiser and political rally Thursday night, Travis County judge candidate Andy Brown announced several high-profile endorsements before an enthusiastic crowd. Read More | Comment »

2:02PM Fri. Aug. 30, 2013, Michael King

Much Heat, Some Light at Eastside Forum on APD Shooting

Feelings were high in a packed house at the Carver Museum, as Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo faced an audience audibly angry at the July 26 shooting of Larry Jackson Jr by APD Detective Charles Kleinert. Read More | Comment »

11:59AM Fri. Aug. 16, 2013, Michael King

The Food Issue: When Vegetables Aren't Enough

You can’t swing a dead armadillo in Austin without hitting a “foodie” – a variegated species ranging roughly from purist vegans through sushi savants to connoisseurs of deep-fried turkey. They pursue their gastronomic passions with singular concentration, and it’s among the blessings of living here that it takes all kinds to make an Austin ecosystem. Read More | Comment »

9:55AM Wed. Jun. 12, 2013, Michael King

Brown Makes It Official

Tuesday night, before a large and friendly Threadgills crowd, former Travis County Democratic Party Chair Andy Brown formally announced his candidacy for county judge – officially opening the campaign that has been in progress roughly since March – against former Pct. 2 County Commissioner Sarah Eckhardt. Read More | Comment »

10:00AM Sat. Jun. 8, 2013, Michael King

City Council: NI deal approved

Thursday evening, City Council closed the deal with National Instruments Corp. to provide 10 years of personal and property tax rebates in return for a major expansion and capital investment, and 1,000 new high-paying jobs. Read More | Comment »

5:00PM Fri. Mar. 8, 2013, Michael King

Young likes to insult people behind their backs – and deny it later

Peck Young Goes Away Mad

The well-traveled political consultant William "Peck" Young – in his heyday, his clients ranged from Ann Richards to Michael Dukakis, and "all the mayors of Austin from 1975 to 1997" (official bio) – is the founding Director of the Center for Public Policy and Political Studies at Austin Community College. Read More | Comment »

5:00PM Fri. Feb. 8, 2013, Michael King

Alas, Poor Santa!

On Friday afternoon, Dec. 21 – with Christmas only days away – Santa Claus stopped by the Texas Capitol to spread a little holiday cheer, asking passersby to join him in chalking inspirational notes on the driveway. What he got in return -- along with his helper, "Corey Elf" – was an arrest for "criminal mischief" and "evading arrest." Read More | Comment »

4:20PM Thu. Dec. 27, 2012, Michael King

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