2013 Election http://kut.org en The Life of the Civic Party: Austin-Based Institute Works to Get People More Involved http://kut.org/post/life-civic-party-austin-based-institute-works-get-people-more-involved <p>Voting in elections. Volunteering. Calling up elected officials. All ways to be civically involved. All things that Texans don't exactly do in large numbers.</p><p>A study earlier this year by the <a href="http://moody.utexas.edu/strauss">Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life</a> at the University of Texas at Austin found Texas ranks near the bottom on almost every aspect of civic engagement. The state's civic health is bad. The Institute is gathering people together Saturday, Nov. 9, to try to come up with some good medicine.</p><p>Institute Director Regina Lawrence talked with KUT's Jennifer Stayton before the conference about how to best get people off the civic sidelines and into the game:</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/119034569" width="100%"></iframe></p><p> Fri, 08 Nov 2013 13:59:35 +0000 Jennifer Stayton 9135 at http://kut.org The Life of the Civic Party: Austin-Based Institute Works to Get People More Involved Texas Voters Approve All 9 State Constitutional Amendments http://kut.org/post/texas-voters-approve-all-9-state-constitutional-amendments <p>Texas voters approved all <a href="http://kut.org/post/9-state-propositions-texans-will-vote-next-week" target="_blank">nine state constitutional amendments</a> on the November ballot.</p><p>The issue that received the most attention was <a href="http://kut.org/post/how-prop-6-passed-and-what-s-next-water-projects-texas" target="_blank">Proposition 6</a>. It creates a new water fund with two billion dollars from the state’s Rainy Day fund.</p><p><a href="http://kut.org/post/texans-could-vote-help-cut-veterans-property-taxes" target="_blank">Propositions 1 and 4</a> cut property taxes for disabled veterans or their surviving spouse. Wed, 06 Nov 2013 13:23:12 +0000 Laura Rice 9106 at http://kut.org Texas Voters Approve All 9 State Constitutional Amendments HD 50 Special Election Headed for a January Runoff (Update) http://kut.org/post/hd-50-special-election-headed-january-runoff-update <p class="p1"><strong>Update:</strong>&nbsp;<a href="http://www.drmikefortexas.com/" style="line-height: 1.5;">Mike VanDeWalle</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;lead a crowded field in the race to finish out Mark </span>Strama's<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> (D-Austin) term as State Representative. But the local chiropractor only </span><a href="http://www.traviscountyclerk.org/eclerk/content/images/election_results/2013.11.05/Run06/20131105d50cume.pdf" style="line-height: 1.5;">hovered around 40 percent</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> of the vote.</span></p><p>VanDeWalle was the only Republican in the race. So even though he came in first he’s still easily trails the cumulative Democratic vote. That’s something VanDeWalle knows his team will have to address during the runoff.</p><p> Wed, 06 Nov 2013 05:09:44 +0000 KUT Staff 9102 at http://kut.org HD 50 Special Election Headed for a January Runoff (Update) Election Day: Where and How to Vote in Travis County http://kut.org/post/election-day-where-and-how-vote-travis-county <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="400" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" scrolling="no" src="https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=200067868711691151591.0004d8d9beaa324d6bc23&amp;msa=0&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;t=m&amp;ll=30.280416,-97.737465&amp;spn=0.118593,0.188484&amp;z=12&amp;output=embed" width="550"></iframe></p> Tue, 05 Nov 2013 16:42:20 +0000 Andrew Weber 9093 at http://kut.org If Proposition 6 Passes, What Comes Next for Water in Texas? http://kut.org/post/if-proposition-6-passes-what-comes-next-water-texas <p style="margin-bottom: 15px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 16px; line-height: 24px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(68, 68, 68);">When voters go to the polls this year, many of them will have only as much information about the constitutional amendments they’re voting on as is&nbsp;<a href="http://www.sos.state.tx.us/elections/forms/2013-sample-ballot.pdf" style="color: rgb(23, 78, 130); -webkit-transition: all 0.2s ease-in-out; transition: all 0.2s ease-in-out; font-weight: bold;">provided on the ballot</a>.</p> Tue, 05 Nov 2013 16:05:37 +0000 Mose Buchele 9090 at http://kut.org If Proposition 6 Passes, What Comes Next for Water in Texas? Three Ways Voter ID Could Affect You This Election Day http://kut.org/post/three-ways-voter-id-could-affect-you-election-day <p class="p1">It’s <a href="http://kut.org/post/election-day-forecast-voter-turnout-id-law-and-thunderstorms" target="_blank">Election Day</a> and, if you didn’t <a href="http://kut.org/post/early-voting-underway-what-voters-need-know-nov-5-election-update" target="_blank">vote early</a>, today is your final chance to cast a ballot on <a href="http://kut.org/post/9-state-propositions-texans-will-vote-next-week" target="_blank">nine proposed state constitutional amendments</a>, along with a few <a href="http://kut.org/post/meet-candidates-hd-50-special-election" target="_blank">local elections</a>.</p><p>This election is also the first one with the state’s new <a href="http://kut.org/post/justice-dept-suing-texas-over-voter-id-law" target="_blank">voter ID</a> law in place.</p><p>For Agenda Texas, KUT's Ben Philpott breaks down what you should expect at the polls this Election Day.<br /><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/118593143" width="100%"></iframe></p><p> Tue, 05 Nov 2013 11:58:59 +0000 Ben Philpott 9088 at http://kut.org Three Ways Voter ID Could Affect You This Election Day Election Day Forecast: Voter Turnout, ID Law and Thunderstorms http://kut.org/post/election-day-forecast-voter-turnout-id-law-and-thunderstorms <p class="p1"><span class="s1"><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Tomorrow is Election Day, and in addition to the much-publicized voter I.D. law, a weather forecast of thunderstorms tomorrow and recent flooding events could hurt voter turnout. Some voters have also expressed concern about the need to sign an affidavit if the name on their photo I.D. does not exactly match the name on their voter registration.</span></span></p><p class="p1"><span class="s1"><a href="http://www.dallasnews.com/news/politics/headlines/20131026-voter-id-law-causing-hiccups-at-polls-over-name-discrepancies.ece">Some worry </a></span>that the affidavit is one more hoop to jump through in order to get to the vote itself. Travis County Clerk, Dana Debeauvoir, told KUT News the voter I.D. law and affidavits may throw off some voters at the polls, which requires voters to initial next to their names as proof of identification.</p><p> Mon, 04 Nov 2013 21:57:42 +0000 Emily Mathis 9085 at http://kut.org Election Day Forecast: Voter Turnout, ID Law and Thunderstorms Early Voting Underway: What Voters Need to Know for the Nov. 5 Election (Update) http://kut.org/post/early-voting-underway-what-voters-need-know-nov-5-election-update <p><strong>Updated Friday, November 1 at 7:37am:</strong> Early voting ends today for the Nov. 5 election.</p><p>There are <a href="http://www.traviscountyclerk.org/eclerk/Content.do?code=E.47" target="_blank">19 early voting locations in Travis County</a> and several mobile locations.</p><p><strong>What's On the Ballot:</strong></p><ul><li>Austin residents will vote on the <a href="https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/801238-final-affordable-housing-bond-voter-information.html" target="_blank">city’s $65 million affordable housing bond</a>. Voters <a href="http://kut.org/post/map-how-prop-15-affordable-housing-bond-lost" target="_blank">narrowly declined</a> a proposed $78.3 million bond last November.</li><li>There's a special election in <a href="http://www.fyi.legis.state.tx.us/fyiwebdocs/PDF/house/dist50/m1.pdf" target="_blank">Texas House District 50</a> to fill the seat vacated by former State Rep. Mark Strama. Strama <a href="http://kut.org/term/mark-strama">announced his resignation last spring</a>. Fri, 01 Nov 2013 12:37:08 +0000 Emily Mathis & Laura Rice 8980 at http://kut.org Early Voting Underway: What Voters Need to Know for the Nov. 5 Election (Update) Are Bonds Austin's Best Way to Support Affordable Housing? http://kut.org/post/are-bonds-austins-best-way-support-affordable-housing <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">This November, </span>Austinites<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> are being asked to approve a $65 million affordable housing bond. The money would go toward building and renovating affordable housing projects; purchasing land to build affordable housing on; and funding of ongoing affordable housing initiatives. You can </span><a href="https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/811870-travis-county-sample-ballot-for-nov-5-2013-joint.html" style="line-height: 1.5;">see a sample ballot here</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span></p><p>But it was just one year ago that voters <a href="http://kut.org/post/map-how-prop-15-affordable-housing-bond-lost">rejected a similar bond proposition</a>.</p><p>With that recent loss, some have asked whether issuing tax-supported municipal bonds is the best way to fund affordability in Austin.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/117624452" width="100%"></iframe></p><p> Tue, 29 Oct 2013 15:42:27 +0000 Joy Diaz 9044 at http://kut.org Are Bonds Austin's Best Way to Support Affordable Housing? Meet the Candidates in HD 50 Special Election http://kut.org/post/meet-candidates-hd-50-special-election <p>The early retirement of former State Rep. Mark Strama, who's now heading Google Fiber's operations in Austin, means we're going to have a special election on November 5th to pick someone to fill out the rest of Strama's&nbsp;term.</p><p>Strama's&nbsp;term ends January 2015, which means the winner of the special election will also have to win the 2014 March primary and November General Election as well if they want to represent Central Texas in the 2015 Legislative session.</p><p>So to help you decide who gets your vote, we've put together a short bio of each candidate, including endorsements and top campaign issues.</p><p> Wed, 23 Oct 2013 18:57:40 +0000 KUT Staff 8963 at http://kut.org Meet the Candidates in HD 50 Special Election Texans Could Vote to Help Cut Veterans' Property Taxes http://kut.org/post/texans-could-vote-help-cut-veterans-property-taxes <p>When Texans go to the polls beginning Monday, they&rsquo;ll have the chance to vote on nine constitutional propositions. Two of them would cut property taxes for disabled veterans or their surviving spouse.&nbsp;</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Both propositions have their origins in an oversight and look to tweak current laws to give returning Texas veterans and their families property tax breaks.</span></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/115512578" width="100%"></iframe></p><p> Wed, 16 Oct 2013 15:17:14 +0000 Ben Philpott 8944 at http://kut.org Texans Could Vote to Help Cut Veterans' Property Taxes Expanding Reverse Mortgages on November Ballot http://kut.org/post/expanding-reverse-mortgages-november-ballot <p>Texans head to the polls later this month to vote on constitutional amendment propositions. Though water funding is receiving the most attention, there are 8 others to consider, including one that expands the use of what&rsquo;s called a reverse mortgage in Texas.</p><p>A reverse mortgage is a financial tool that allows senior citizens to receive equity payments each month while staying in their home. The reverse mortgage is paid back, with interest, only after the house is sold when the owner either moves out or dies.</p><p> Fri, 11 Oct 2013 13:00:00 +0000 Ben Philpott 8911 at http://kut.org Expanding Reverse Mortgages on November Ballot Only Days Left for Texans to Register to Vote This November http://kut.org/post/only-days-left-texans-register-vote-november <p>The last chance to register to vote in the Nov.&nbsp;5&nbsp;election is Monday. And there&rsquo;s another wrinkle for some: This is the first statewide election that requires voters to show photo ID.&nbsp;</p><p>If you don&rsquo;t have one of six approved government-issued photo IDs to bring with you to vote on Nov. 5, you can get an election ID certificate. I spoke to Travis County Voter Registrar Bruce Elfant at a Fiesta supermarket in South Austin, where he was getting the word out near a table set up by Department of Public Safety staff.</p><p> Thu, 03 Oct 2013 20:28:15 +0000 Veronica Zaragovia 8852 at http://kut.org Only Days Left for Texans to Register to Vote This November Learn More About Austin's $65 Million Affordable Housing Vote Tonight http://kut.org/post/learn-more-about-austins-65-million-affordable-housing-vote-tonight <p>A year after voters <a href="http://kut.org/post/surprise-over-prop-15-rejection-austin">narrowly rejected the proposal</a>, the Austin City Council is once again asking voters to approve tens of millions of dollars for affordable housing.</p><p>The City of Austin will host the <a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/event/2013-affordable-housing-bond-community-information-session-0">first of four community information sessions</a> today about this November&rsquo;s $65 million affordable housing bond.</p><p> Thu, 03 Oct 2013 13:46:32 +0000 KUT Staff 8845 at http://kut.org Learn More About Austin's $65 Million Affordable Housing Vote Tonight