Making growth pay for itself!

Category Archives: Events

Events organized by Change Austin

What does Reboot 10-1 Mean? A full debate, for starters.

We’ve had some media inquiries about the Independent Texans’ event on Thursday, September 29 at 7 pm at Austin Energy. They want to know how we’re planning to “reboot 10-1”. We’re keeping that discussion close to our vest right now because we like surprises as much as the Mayor does. Screen Shot 2016-09-14 at 12.06.55 PM

It was a real big ($81M) surprise when Adler misled his own council last December on the Pilot Knob fiasco, diverting the newly implemented water impact fees to what amounts to a slush fund to be used for anything under the guise of a fund for “affordable housing”. The Mayor’s message was clear — ‘you can forget about growth paying for itself.’

Now we have a rushed “Go Big” $720 million transportation bond that is really $1.5 billion, according to city management. What’s more, no one is talking about what these bonds mean for the third rail in Austin politics — the SOS initiative — mentioned on page 19 of this Memo to Marc Ott from Robert Goode, Assistant City Manager.

We will also hold one of the few debates on the “Go Big” $720 million transportation bonds in Austin with or without the bond proponents who are refusing to attend this debate with Roger Falk. You can contact the proponents at Move Austin Forward, though no phone is listed, to ask them to debate.

Who is Roger Falk? He’s a local business guy who grew up in Austin and is sick about what is happening to Austin — especially to musicians and small businesses. Falk knows his stuff, has done a deep dive into the documents for the bonds, and is willing to face off with anyone. 

If you know anyone from any of the groups that are supporting the bonds who’s willing to debate, have them contact Linda Curtis at 512-657-2089 or

After 6 failures of geographic representation plans put on the ballot by Council, Austin’s civic activists used the petition process that finally brought a great plan to the voters — for 10 geographic districts (with the Mayor elected at-large) — and first independent citizens redistricting commission in Texas to draw the lines.

The 10-1 system has brought substantial change to Austin, but it’s clear that we’re not done yet. At critical junctures, the City is still not following the Texas Open Meetings Act. The City continues with rush deals — like this massive transportation bond. And the City is still not moving to de-incentivize growth as the only genuine starting point to address affordability.

Councilwoman Ora Houston will be moderating the debate. Longtime Democratic former consultant, Peck Young, and longtime independent Linda Curtis, will share a proposal with you on how Austin can reboot 10-1.

Be there — 10-1 folks and many of you newbies to Austin wondering where’s the love in a city that some think is getting just a tad too big for its britches.


Independent Texans…it’s redundant!

Citizens Hearing on City Mismanagement

Please attend a Citizen’s Hearing on City Mismanagement and why the 10-1 Council needs new management.

Is Austin going in circles or just thinking about how to get out of this mess?
Is Austin going in circles or just thinking about how to get out of this mess?

Why we’re holding this event is because the City Council turned down our request for a public hearing.

Thursday, March 24, 6:30 to 8:30 pm
Austin Energy Community Room
721 Barton Springs Road
Reply to reserve a seat now or !

This event comes just before the performance review by the City Council of its chief executive officer, City Manager Marc Ott on March 29th.

This hearing is an attempt to advance the 10-1 movement by urging that the 10-1 Council get its own new management. (Learn more about the issues here at Manage Austin Better. Be sure to read excerpts from the Zucker Report here too.)

Marc Ott has been City Manager since 2008. He is up for review and a raise, while he has presided over mistaken projects that are costing Austin residents far too much for THIS (10-1) City Council to ignore. In his first year, the City gave stunningly short notice to a $2.3 billion deal for biomass (aka the “wood chip burner” in Nacogdoches), resulting in a $54 million dollar per year payout by Austin Energy ratepayers for 20 years — with no electricity in return. The City of Austin cannot get out of this 20-year contract! How has this and other decisions under Mr. Ott affects YOU and your neighbors, is the subject of this hearing.

The results of which will be given to your city council member and Mayor before they deliberate, likely in private, on Tuesday, March 29th.

Listen up citizens! Austin is in crisis with no foreseeable way out without a new course.

We must insist that the 10-1 Council seriously address the affordability crisis and the gross mismanagement of our city…because they are intimately related.

Reserve a seat by replying to this message  
or feel free to call us!

Share this message across our wonderful, but nonetheless troubled city from here or on this event page on Facebook.

Come ready to have your say and to fill our your own evaluation of the City Manager’s performance.

PS Under Marc Ott’s leadership, we see the promise of 10-1 slipping away. If you’re OK with that, don’t show up at this hearing.

Local control in the crosshairs, come to Bastrop Saturday!

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 1.31.07 PMY’all come on out to Bastrop this Saturday — regardless of party or persuasion — for the “Building the Rural-Urban Coalition for Local Control” meeting put on by the non-profit League of Independent Voters of Texas.
Click here to view the agenda.
Click here to reserve a seat.

Besides….our own Brian Rodgers, is speaking on his alternative to the Chamber of Commerce’s model for economic development which stresses unbridled population growth with the costs passed on to you. 

This event is appropriately being held in Bastrop, home of the Texas water wars, as an unholy alliance of the real estate lobby, water marketers and some leading state politicians now in session want to move large quantities of water underlying Lee and Bastrop counties to the I-35 growth corridor.
With the legislature now in session, it’s likely to be a bumpy ride with the rights to local control clearly in the cross-hairs. So show up or forever hold your peace! 

PS Linda didn’t make the runoff for Texas House District 17, but ran a surprisingly strong race as an independent in 3 weeks, coming in third in a five-way race. She is currently locked in a battle with Bastrop County on alleged election misconduct to ensure a fair runoff…also a topic on Saturday that Fred Lewis will be speaking on. More here in today’s Statesman.  

This Monday night – Double Feature! Manchaca Library @ 6:30-8 pm

Brian Rodgers Poses as Magician on Where the Money Went

Bill Oakey:  What Citizens Must Do About the City Budget 

Bill is one of the most effective citizen activists in Texas who got the Texas legislature to enact two bills into law.  One was the over-65 freeze on school property taxes.  The other was a “truth in taxation” law, which reformed the guidelines for public hearing notices on property taxes published by all statewide taxing entities.  Currently, Bill is working on plans to address out-of-control property tax and utility rate increases in the Austin area.

Brian Rodgers: Groundbreaking New Study reveals $100 million/year sprawl subsidy

Travis County gets 70% of its money from City of Austin taxpayers.  But where does the money get spent?   Who benefits and where do they live?    Brian will present a sneak peak of the new 27 page tax equity study to be unveiled in two weeks.

THIS Monday, August 15th, 6:30 to 8 pm
Manchaca Library, 5500 Manchaca (@Stassney)
Note:  There will also be an update on the fight for geographic representation.


Volunteer & Protester’s Meeting!

at the Carver Library, 1161 Angelina. We will do the first 40 minutes on a property tax protest Q&A with appraisal attorney Lorri Michel, then have a discussion about the cost of growth with Brian Rodgers and strategize on activities with you to — we hope — volunteer some time.  Y’all come!  Call Linda at 535-0989 or email her at for more info or just show up.