City Council

Photo Credit: Emmanuel Briseño | Daily Texan Staff

The City of Austin is now looking into ways to waive the requirement for students to have a co-signor for leases when using financial aid to pay for housing.

In a resolution passed last week by the City Council, the city manager was tasked with finding viable options for assisting students in guaranteeing a lease. The city manager has until Jan. 19, 2018 to report back to the Council with their findings.

When filling out a housing application, individuals must often either have credit or a “guarantor” who can co-sign the lease. Guarantors provide the housing authorities a contractual assurance that if the resident cannot pay rent, the guarantor will.

Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo, sponsor of the resolution, said students often have not developed credit of their own. Simultaneously, those who are relying on financial aid might lack a parent or other relative who can guarantee their lease, Tovo said.

“It’s an important (issue) to talk about,” Tovo said. “There are some students who might have challenges finding an apartment if they have a parent without a credit history or with a credit history that causes issues to that student, yet that student may have financial aid that will more than cover their rent.”

Students have been a protected class under the city’s Fair Housing laws for years, so Tovo said she’s glad they are continuing to make it easier for students to obtain housing in Austin.

Micky Wolf, student body vice president, approached Tovo’s office about this resolution in the spring. He said the issue of helping students who lack a guarantor was part of the platform he and student body president Alejandrina Guzman ran on earlier this year.

“(This) is something that goes a really long way toward making campus both more accessible and more affordable for students,” said Wolf, Plan II and business honors senior.

The resolution also tasks the city manager with working with higher education institutions in the area to develop a tenants’ rights education and awareness program for students.

The Austin Apartment Association, which represents apartment owners, signed on in support of the resolution prior to its passage. Paul Cauduro, director of government relations for the association, said his organization did not even realize students were facing this issue.

“We’re more than willing to help work with the city on fixing any wrongs that may be occurring,” Cauduro said. “We look forward to delving into a little more what this is all about.”

Austin Tenants’ Council, which focuses on tenants’ rights, was excited to hear about this resolution since members have often heard stories of students facing this issue, said executive director Juliana Gonzales.

Gonzales said at the same time, she fears the education portion of the resolution will fall to the wayside.

“We really need to make sure the city manager is accountable for following up on (the second) part of the resolution,” Gonzales said. “I’d be curious to hear, come January 2018, what is the city manager going to recommend in terms of those tenant education processes for kids, and how are the higher education institutions going to be compelled to participate in those programs?”

The Austin City Council approved funding for an Ebola preparedness plan Thursday.
Photo Credit: Mariana Munoz | Daily Texan Staff

As the Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department continues to monitor two individuals for signs of the Ebola virus, nearly seven months after the first American patient was diagnosed, the Austin City Council approved supplemental funding Thursday for Ebola preparedness.

The City Council accepted $183,906 from the Texas Department of State Health Services to fund public health preparedness planning and responsiveness for Ebola and other infectious diseases, according to Janet Pichette, chief epidemiologist at the Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department.

“We receive public health preparedness dollars [every year], and this is extra money to help accelerate preparedness planning,” Pichette said.

The health department works with the University in times of emergency, such as last fall, when a UT student was monitored for Ebola after potentially being exposed. The department is the initiator of all emergency infectious disease response, said Bob Harkins, associate vice president for campus safety and security.

“In any infectious disease scenario, the lead and dictating agency ends up being Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services,” Harkins said. “For example, when Ebola situation erupted last fall, they notified us of the person.”

The University’s response protocol is the same for all infectious diseases, including the mumps case diagnosed in a student Wednesday, Harkins said.

“[The health department] usually talk about our responses and notifications and precautions and stuff,” Harkins said. “The UHS and the Healthy Horns’ side of the house are the ones that respond and pass information to the campus in terms of what we do.”

Public health junior Angela Yang said she thinks the public health information system at the University is adequate.

“I feel like UHS does a lot about general public health, and what things not to do and how to keep disease from spreading,” Yang said. “In the most recent case with mumps, there was only one case, but they sent out a mass email to everybody before it [got] out of hand.”

The department received $682,000 for the next fiscal year starting in July, in addition to the City Council-approved funding, Pichette said. The money will fund two temporary positions in the public health department for Ebola responsiveness.

“We pretty much have an idea of how to do it because of events in the fall,” Pichette said. “People don’t realize we continue to monitor people for 21 days after they come back from Ebola-impacted countries. Right now, we have two people in our community that we are monitoring twice a day.”

However, the health department is involved in much more than just responding to infectious disease emergencies, Pichette said. 

“There’s a lot that the people don’t realize the health department is involved in, and that’s okay,” Pichette said. “We’re doing our job; nothing’s happening, so you don’t hear about it. When something goes wrong, that’s when you hear about it.”

The funding will not impact the way the University responds to emergency situations, according to David Vander Straten, medical director of University Health Services. 

“We would [still] coordinate very closely with [the health department],” Straten said. “Our specific population would be the students. If there were concerns in terms of students traveling from countries [marked] by the [Center for Disease Control], we could be notified by the health and human services department.”

Photo Credit: Chelsea Purgahn | Daily Texan Staff

The University will conduct a study about Asian-American quality of life in Austin funded by the Austin City Council. 

On Thursday, the Council approved to pay the University $139,758 for a one-year period of research. The study will focus on five major Asian-American subgroups in the Austin area: Filipino, Chinese, Korean, Indian and Vietnamese.

The fast-growing population of Asian-Americans in Austin — an increase from 3.3 percent of the population in 1990 to almost 5 percent in 2000 and around 6.5 percent today — inspired the study.

Social work associate professor Yuri Jang, the study’s principal investigator, said Asian-Americans have not historically been the focus of research to help identify community needs.

“Asian-Americans [are] a growing population that is underserved and understudied,” Jang said. “This is a unique opportunity to explore unexplored populations because the Asian-American voice is usually unheard.”

The study will primarily focus on Asian-American Austinites ages 18–70 and involve a compiled database of resources that could benefit Asian-Americans in the city. The goal is to have data for public policy recommendations in the future, as well as to improve overall quality of life for Asian-Americans in the city, said Richard Yuen, a forensic and clinical psychologist.

Yuen, who chairs the committee responsible for community research, said the Asian-American population is the fastest-growing ethnic minority group in Austin.

“Unfortunately, the city does not understand nor know much about this rapidly growing population of Austinites,” Yuen said. “Asian-Americans are not known to be activists in the community [and] not known to engage in voting or politics or community projects. Here, we want to have some strong public policy recommendations for programs in all areas that is supported by our research data, not only to benefit Asian-Americans but Austin as a whole.”

Different Asian-American student groups on campus have expressed interest in the study, including the Vietnamese Students Association and the Chinese Student Association, Yuen said.

Tram Ngyuen, mechanical engineering sophomore and president of the Vietnamese Student Association, said she feels that Asians are often overlooked in the city.

“We are looked as neither a minority or a majority,” Ngyuen said. “We are often used as tools to prove another point rather than an ethnic group that can stand on its own. This study is important to show how Asian-Americans have changed throughout this country’s history. We are not an invisible minority. We are a culture that has thrived and grown so much.”

Yuen said this study gives an opportunity to delve directly into the community to identify issues in a diverse population. 

“One of our most important issues … is being able to capture enough opinions from the various age groups so that we can disaggregate the data and understand there is acculturation and generational differences,” Yuen said. 

Photo Credit: Griffin Smith | Daily Texan Staff

Austin City Council voted unanimously Thursday to pass amendments to the city code that will change the way adult-oriented businesses receive permits to open. 

With the new amendments, adult-oriented businesses, such as strip cubs and pornography shops, now need to be 1,000 feet away from museums and libraries. This is in addition to the current code, which required the businesses to be 1,000 feet away from other adult-oriented businesses. The requirement also applies to day cares, schools, parks and churches. 

Areas of downtown zoned for “mixed use” will also require the businesses go through “conditional use” process, instead of a “permitted use” process, to open.

A permitted use process requires potential businesses to meet certain criteria and be individually approved by the city planning department. A conditional use process requires all those steps as well as a public hearing jointly held between the business and the planning commission.

Planning and Development Review Department staff member Jerry Rusthoven said the changes will be grandfathered in — so adult-oriented businesses already operating, subject to Chapter 245, will not have to obtain new permits.

“This ordinance takes place on April 26,” Rusthoven said. “The mayor made a statement under state law. Adult-oriented businesses are subject to Chapter 245 under local government code. … They’re okay if they are already open.”

Mayor pro tem Kathie Tovo sponsored the resolution and said it was important to address the fact that in certain areas of downtown, strip clubs could open for business without a public hearing. 

Tovo said businesses should have the opportunity to discuss whether adult businesses nearby are appropriate for the area.

“This will not prohibit adult businesses from opening up where zoning categories are appropriate — just have them come in front of council to determine if they are,” Tovo said. “It requires them to [meet] a higher level of review — a public hearing — which means other businesses can come and weigh in, residents, anyone who wants to. Then, the planning commission would make a decision, and it can be appealed to the City Council.”

While the ordinance will not affect already-opened and operating strip clubs, Expose Men’s Club manager Ryan Miller said the new ordinance is bad for Austin’s economy.

“Pretty much all that’s doing is making it more difficult to obtain a [sexually-oriented business] license,” Miller said. “A lot of people don’t agree with this kind of business, but, you know, we produce jobs and probably got 15 employees at this club and then dancers — we probably have a couple hundred. It’s just going to make it more difficult for new clubs to open and pull money out of the Austin area, and people are going to go out of town to open new clubs.”

Individuals who proposed a strip club on Fifth Street and Congress Avenue are still in the permitting process, and they have not gotten their site plan approved yet, Rusthoven said.

Randell Salinas, international relations and global studies alumnus, said because there is already a regular crowd that frequents Sixth Street, close to the proposed Fifth Street and Congress Avenue strip club location, the culture will remain the same even if the strip club isn’t constructed.

“You’re not going to change the type of people that are going to go downtown,” Salinas said. “What’s another bar or club or gentleman’s club?”

A street performer performs on Sixth Street during SXSW. On Thursday, Austin City Council withdrew a proposed amendment change to city code that would have limited street performers from “playing musical instruments and making noise that is plainly audible” and soliciting after 1 a.m. in the city’s entertainment districts.

Photo Credit: Marshall Tidrick | Daily Texan Staff

Austin’s street performers, or buskers, are waiting for more clarification on their rights after Austin City Council decided not to vote on city code amendments Thursday.

The Council withdrew a proposed amendment change to city code that would have limited buskers from “playing musical instruments and making noise that is plainly audible” and soliciting after 1 a.m. in the city’s entertainment districts.

Don Pitts, music program manager of the Economic Development Department, said city staff and the Music Commission agreed 1 a.m. was a good cutoff time.

“The current curfew is 10 p.m.,” Pitts said. “Staff agreed with the Music Commission that since the Entertainment Districts have a sound curfew of 2 a.m., conventional wisdom would allow a curfew more in line with the entertainment districts [including Warehouse and Sixth Street].”

The proposed amendments were pulled from the Council’s agenda Thursday after a lack of support from stakeholders, Pitts said.

Street performers run the risk of arrest because the city code is unclear, according to Linsey Lindberg, who regularly performs and busks. Police officers often ask performers to show a permit or move along.

“Right now, it’s so vague that cops can shut you down at their own discretion,” Lindberg said. “Sometimes they’re fine, but, other times, they’d rather not deal with you. The cops still have the right to arrest you if they feel you are being disrespectful and breaking the rules.”

Pitts said any amendments to city code regarding buskers need to clarify buskers’ rights and outline the ways they might potentially violate city code.

“It’s putting [Austin Police Department] in a precarious spot to be enforcing something so gray,” Pitts said. “I was not for the permit process for a long time, but it’s a way for us to protect buskers. There just needs to be some code on who is enforcing it. Nothing too subjective or that leaves stuff up to interpretation.”

APD Lieutenant Christian Malanka said APD employs the lowest level of enforcement appropriate for an offense committed by a busker.

“We most often secure voluntary compliance, but will issue citations for repeat offenses,” Malanka said. “In the rare occasions we have made arrests of street performers, the arrest was the result of outstanding warrants, and not violation of the solicitation or noise ordinance violation.”

Sofia Dyer, a Plan II and Russian, East European, and Eurasian studies sophomore, offers mind-reading sessions on South Congress. She performs as “The Girl Who Knows,” a mentalist who predicts what objects audience members are holding, or chooses the correct card  passersby draw from a deck. 

“One of the challenges of street performance is it can be very difficult to get people to stop,” Dyer said. “Pedestrians on the street are usually going somewhere. Most of the time, they didn’t come out to see you perform for 20 minutes.”

Lindberg, better known as “Mama Lou Strongwoman,” works as a liason between buskers and the Council to advocate for street performers. She said she feels City Council is doing their best to balance busker rights with concerns from people of the city. 

“Buskers aren’t just people who are trying to make enough money to eat dinner, but truly artists in Austin,” Lindberg said.

The People’s Community Clinic, located on 30th street and I-35, has decided to open a new location on Camino la Costa. Austin City Council voted Thursday to waive building permit fees for the new location.
Photo Credit: Griffin Smith | Daily Texan Staff

After 45 years, the People’s Community Clinic is expanding its reach and building a second Austin location in hopes of making health care more accessible for its patients.

The Austin City Council voted Thursday to waive building permit fees for the clinic’s second location on Camino La Costa, in northeast Austin, to cover extra expenses. About 15 percent of the clinic’s patients live within two miles of the current location, and the second location will allow more convenient access to health care for patients who live in the northeast Austin area.

City Council member Ora Houston, a co-sponsor of the bill, said she has watched the clinic grow past its ability to serve the current need.

“They do primary health care for children and adults and seniors,” Houston said. “They’ve been over close to my neighborhood for the last, maybe, 10 or 15 years right down the access road, and it’s always packed. They’ve outgrown their space.”

The Council waived $33,803.12 in construction fees for clinic’s new facilities.  

The People’s Community Clinic is currently fundraising to build the new facilities, the clinic’s CEO Regina Rogoff said. 

“We are raising $16 million to turn this old building into a brand new community asset,” Rogoff said. “When we bought it, it was an old, rundown eyesore of a building. We are converting it into a medical practice that will serve the community.” 

Volunteer nurses and doctors started the clinic in 1970. The clinic was originally located in the basement of the Congregational Church on Guadalupe Street, across from the UT campus, according to Rogoff. It moved to its current location in 1990.

“It was started by volunteer doctors and nurses who perceived a need that young people particularly were not getting access to family planning,” Rogoff said. “There was clearly a gap, so they started a volunteer clinic that opened two nights a week. It’s now grown into a full family practice that covers the life cycle of the family.”

Rogoff said the clinic served primarily UT students, many of them women, when they were still located on Guadalupe Street.

“There was a lot of political activity around UT back then,” Rogoff said. “There was a movement around women to regain control of their reproductive health, and that was the ethos that People’s Community Clinic was born into.”

The clinic has since shifted its consumer base, Rogoff said.

“We aren’t really serving the original population,” Rogoff said. “We are serving low-income families. It’s shifted because we have a strong pre-natal program. We had over 900 babies born into the practice, and [then we] bring them in as new patients.”

The clinic has a strong focus on women’s health issues, Rogoff said.

“Not necessarily because we want to exclude men, but because women tend to use health care more, especially when you have prenatal services,” Rogoff said. “And although men would benefit from reproductive services, females go in for family planning more. The numbers tilt toward women, [but] we welcome men.”

City Council member Gregorio Casar sponsored the bill because the clinic will have a location in his district: District 4. 

“I’m very excited to help support People’s Community Clinic as they set roots in the St. John’s neighborhood and expand access to critical, low-cost health care services,” Casar said in a statement Thursday. “This clinic will support our entire city’s fiscal and physical health.”

The building should be completed in November, Rogoff said.

As part of an initiative to increase public participation during meetings, Austin City Council displayed texts and tweets from local residents on a projector screen throughout its Thursday meeting.
Photo Credit: Rachel Zein | Daily Texan Staff

The Austin City Council attempted to boost public participation in Council meetings Thursday by projecting a livestream of community members’ texts and tweets on the wall.

Although most of the messages were relevant to the meeting agenda, the word-clouds and texts the Council presented also prominently featured Internet memes, such as “doge,” as well as the word “poop.” Eventually, the Council disabled the text-stream service.  

At the meeting, Council members also discussed the formation of a public engagement task force, which will include UT experts.

Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo said she plans on launching a separate student advisory council.

“I see it as a separate project, but I hope the public engagement task force would have some representatives on [the student advisory council],” Tovo said. “This would be a student group to advise my office and make sure we have good communication.”

Robert Svodoba, co-director of the UT Student Government City Relations agency, said the group plans to meet with Tovo to establish a mutually beneficial relationship.

“We already talked to her during the campaign, but just from a City Relations standpoint to introduce ourselves and present ourselves as a resource and outlet for students,” Svoboda said. “[We wanted her] to gauge student opinion and to find out how she can reach out to students and how we can reach out to her.”

Tovo said the Council will discuss restructuring City Council meetings to make them more accessible. She said she anticipates future Council meetings will be shorter and more frequent.

“We are trying to improve the process so we have more and more effective public input earlier in the process,” Tovo said.

City Council members Sheri Gallo, Ann Kitchen, Ora Houston and Leslie Pool are working with the mayor’s office to have a draft resolution establishing the task force ready for next week’s City Council meeting. The task force will report back to the Council after six months to make recommendations on how to further improve community engagement in Council meetings.

“We only talked about it as a general idea,” Tovo said. “The task force, as I understand it, would not be Council
members. It would be something we kick off to help us revise our process — but not comprised of Council members. That’s one thing my colleague has taken up and is working on a resolution for next week’s agenda.”

Pool said she is optimistic about the City’s plan to expand and diversify public input at Council meetings.

“Building on this sort of engagement we’re having this evening, the entire Council feels it’s a key component of our ability to work in a transparent and accountable way if we understand the various avenues of public engagement,” Pool said.

This year, Austin City Council will have public hearings to promote public participation in local government, a priority of Mayor Steve Adler. The first public hearing Thursday will discuss how the Council will govern under the 10-ONE system.

Photo Credit: Daulton Venglar | Daily Texan Staff

Members of the Austin City Council are considering making structural changes to the Council’s decision-making process and will discuss the proposed changes at a public hearing Thursday. 

The Council, which began its term Jan. 6, will discuss moving government hearings to committees before making decisions at general, public meetings.

City Council member Kathie Tovo, the only City Council member who has served previous terms, said restructuring a new decision making process is among council’s top priorities. Tovo said not all hearings would be restricted to committee meetings.

“We are soliciting feedback from the public,” Tovo said. “Most hearings will be moved to committees, but some will still have to be heard in front of the Council, such as zoning and annexation. There are [topics] required by city ordinance, and some by state law, to be heard in front of Council.” 

Mayor Steve Adler said he thinks the restructuring will make public engagement more meaningful.

“Every district representative is chairing a citywide committee and needs to develop a citywide constituency,” Adler said. “Traffic, congestion and affordability are citywide issues. Since those are most pressing, we’ve come out of the box real quickly to restructure the way we do government.”

Adler said he did not realize how much the public wants to participate in local government before his election.

“One of the real takeaways was the sheer number of people that were calling offices when we weren’t there,” Adler said. “It was overwhelming — the number of people who want to talk with one and all of the City Council members.”

The City Council will hold a public discussion about moving hearings to committees before coming to an ultimate decision at a general Council meeting.

City Council member Ann Kitchen said she appreciated how the City Council united to tackle its first initiative.

“I’m excited that we were able to do that unanimously,” Kitchen said. “We learned at orientation ways we can continue to work together for the things that we all [agree upon]. I think everybody is working on the same page. There are some differences across the districts in terms of how we fix things, but we’re all in agreement [on this].”

Last week, the new City Council completed a three-day orientation. Tovo said she enjoyed the opportunity to get to know the other City Council members. 

“I had an opportunity to meet with all Council members and do introductions — to hear their ideas and share mine,” Tovo said. 

Adler said orientation is meant to be informative, but it’s also a chance for new members to discuss ideas.

“The session on open meetings generated a lot of conversation,” Adler said. “We have to find the right balance in that area. A lot of it is nuts and bolts — not romantic or sexy stuff, but important stuff.”

City Council member Ora Houston said the logistics of City operations are the most challenging to learn.

“There’s so much to learn, and now I can see how the City operates behind the curtain,” Houston said.

Mayor Steve Adler gets sworn in by Municipal Judge Sherry Statman at Austin City Hall on Tuesday evening. City council members were also sworn in at the event which celebrated the 10-1 system of geographic representation with one council member per district. 

Photo Credit: Daulton Venglar | Daily Texan Staff

Austin’s newly elected mayor and council members took their oaths of office Tuesday during an inauguration ceremony held at City Hall, becoming Austin’s first city council elected under the new single-member district system.  

The system, also known as 10-1, reorganized the city council’s structure from six city-wide seats to 10 single-member geographic districts.

During the ceremony, council members drew from a bag of black and white marbles to determine their term limits so that future council member elections will occur on a staggered basis. Delia Garza of District 3, Gregorio Casar or District 4, Don Zimmerman of District 6, Leslie Pool of District 7 and Sheri Gallo of District 10 drew white marbles and will serve 2-year terms. The remaining five members will serve 4-year terms.

The members then selected a new Mayor Pro Tem, District 9’s Kathie Tovo, with a 10-1 vote.

Mayor Steve Adler said the new council will operate more transparently and make it easier for the public to be involved. In the past, debates around especially contentious issues, like a ban on so-called "stealth dorms," would stretch meetings past midnight.

“You won't have to be at City Council at 3 a.m.,” Adler said.

With seven female councilmembers and three Hispanic members, the new council represents the cultural, geographic, economic and political diversity of the city, according the Adler.

“I’m hoping that you see yourself on this dias, and if you don’t, rest assured that we’re going to make sure that you’re sitting at the table with us together as we shape our city’s future,” Adler said.

The council will meet Thursday to address city administration and governance. Adler said the council will work to promote affordability and better-paying jobs.

“We can’t let the story of Austin be a tale of two cities,” Adler said. “We are losing people and whole communities, and with that, we are losing our city’s soul.”

Photo Credit: Mike McGraw | Daily Texan Staff

Attorney Steve Adler defeated Austin City Council member Mike Martinez in a runoff election Tuesday for Austin mayor.

Tuesday concluded Austin’s first election under the 10-ONE system, which reorganizes the City Council’s structure from six citywide elected officials to 10 single-member districts. 

Both citing transportation and affordability as the city's main issues, Adler and Martinez led an eight-man race for mayor in the general election to advance to the runoff. At his election watch party, Adler said his election to the mayor’s office means progress is possible, but there is a lot of work ahead.

“This election does not deliver the new way forward; this election only gives us the opportunity to deliver the new way forward,” Adler said. “There is much work to do to deliver the new way forward and we are ready to begin today.”

Adler said opportunity is what makes Austin special, and he intends to protect that aspect.

“The Austin we celebrate is one where everybody is good enough and nobody is too good,” Adler said. “We celebrate a city where it doesn’t make any difference what your last name is. Whether as a young musician, or a tech entrepreneur, a dishwasher, an executive, an academic or a longtime resident on a fixed income, we deserve and expect to find opportunity in Austin.”

After early voting totals showed Adler leading Martinez by 40 percentage points, Martinez conceded the election early in the night. Addressing his supporters, Martinez said he would continue to support the city outside of elected office.

“The sun will come up tomorrow, and we are still Austin freaking Texas,” Martinez said. “I’m not going anywhere. I love this city, and I called Steve [Adler] and told him I am 100 percent committed to supporting him and his vision for Austin.”

In citing his accomplishments during his eight years on the City Council, Martinez listed his work with Capital Metro and supporting the city’s move to 10-ONE.

“Those districts have chosen who they want to represent them going forward. That was the whole premise behind single-member districts,” Martinez said. “I believe we’re going to have one of the best City Councils we’ve ever had.”

At Adler's party, actress Beth Broderick said Adler would be a positive force behind the change in Austin.

“I really feel that Austin is at a crossroads and that we have to make a lot of decisions about what kind of city we want to be moving forward, and that means smart growth — that means bringing a lot of disparate coalitions together to get things done,” Broderick said. “I really had an instinct from the minute I sat down with Steve that this was a guy who had the executive experience to know how to do that.”

NAACP Austin President Nelson Linder said Adler brings new leadership to the mayor’s office in a time when it is greatly needed.

“I think he’s part of the spirit of 10-ONE; I think he’s got a vision; he’s going to be inclusive, and we need new leadership,” Linder said. “I think the times demand new leadership with a firm vision, and he’s interpolated that in every aspect I’ve seen.”

With Martinez’s defeat, Kathie Tovo will be the only returning member on the next City Council. Tovo won the District 9 seat on the City Council after fellow City Council member Chris Riley dropped out of a runoff election between the two. As Delia Garza of District 2 and Ann Kitchen of District 5 were the only candidates to win their district races outright in the general election, seven other City Council races were decided in runoff elections Tuesday.

Austin city election runoff results


  • ​Steve Adler — 67 percent
  • Mike Martinez  33 percent

District 1

  • Ora Houston — 74 percent
  • DeWayne Lofton — 26 percent

District 3

  • Sabino "Pio" Renteria — 60 percent
  • Susana R. Almanza — 40 percent

District 4

  • Gregorio "Greg" Casar — 65 percent
  • Laura Pressley — 35 percent

District 6

  • Don Zimmerman — 52 percent
  • James "Jimmy" Flannigan — 48 percent

District 7

  • Leslie Pool — 66 percent
  • J.E. "Jeb" Boyt — 34 percent

District 8

  • Ellen Troxclair — 50.2 percent
  • Ed Scruggs — 49.8 percent

District 10

  • Sheri Gallo — 55 percent
  • Mandy Dealey — 45 percent

Additional repoting by Jacob Kerr.