Naked City

RECA Recap

Sammy Allred
Sammy Allred

The mood was relaxed and self-congratulatory at this month's Real Estate Council of Austin awards luncheon on Wednesday, Dec. 15, at the Four Seasons Hotel. The crowd of about 150 developers, real estate agents, bankers, and others in the land business enjoyed a steak meal and the banter of KVET's Sammy Allred and Bob Cole, who appear to be making an annual gig out of RECA's holiday awards luncheon. For the second year in a row, the pair took turns poking fun at each other and some of their favorite targets, including Smart Growth, Cap Metro, light rail, and Vice President Al Gore's anti-sprawl platform.

At one point, Sammy and Bob not-so-respectfully disagreed on whether Mayor Kirk Watson has been doing a good job. "I think Kirk Watson is to Austin just as Ronald

Reagan was to the country," said Bob, expressing admiration for Watson's leadership; Sammy countered, "He's a socialist!" When attendees were asked informally to vote for or against the mayor (with a show of applause) they split nearly down the middle, with Watson's supporters making just a little more noise than his detractors. "That wasn't as convincing as I thought it was going to be," said Bob. Other targets of criticism included the Austin American-Statesman, as well as television and radio news, the apathetic voting public, and SOS.

As a joke, outgoing RECA president David Armbrust was awarded with a pair of white doves said to symbolize the nature of his tenure. Texas Turnpike Authority Chair Pete Winstead replaces Ambrust as president in 2000.

Finally, RECA also recognized former Austin City Council member and outgoing Lower Colorado River Authority manager Mark Rose with its Commendation of Excellence for helping seal a series of contentious long-term deals designed to ensure Austin's water supply years into the future -- thereby keeping the city safe for development. For his part, Rose (who will be taking a job as head of Public Strategies Inc., a private consulting firm, next year) offered that Austin faces many infrastructure challenges if the city is going to cope with growth, ranging from a functional transit system to school improvements. "It's going to take tremendous leadership to make that happen," he said.

  • More of the Story

  • Naked City

    Off the Desk

    Naked City

    Despite Sen. Gonzalo Barrientos' concerted efforts, the CAMPO board rejects peer review on a vote of 11 to 8.
  • Naked City

    Against all odds and expectations, Hyde Park Baptist Church agrees to negotiate with neighbors on the construction of a proposed five-story parking garage in Hyde Park.

    Naked City

    Amarillo ISD Superintendent warns Forgione: Greater accuracy in dropout reporting doesn't necessarily mean better ratings under the TEA's accountability system.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle