Austin

News, events, and entertainment happening in and around Austin and the Central Texas counties of Travis, Hays, Caldwell, Bastrop and Williamson

What We Learned at The Texas Tribune Festival

Oct 19, 2015
Image via Josh Guerra/Texas Standard

From Texas Standard:

This weekend, as thousands of politicians and political insiders gathered for the 2015 Texas Tribune Festival, more than a few GOP members were talking about what they plan to make a priority in the next Texas legislative session.

Here's what they told Texas Standard.  


Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT

A local non-profit is offering to replant trees lost along the Blanco River during the Memorial Day floods, but the trees are more than just replacements. They also might help mitigate future flooding.


KUT News

Austin City Council members are one step closer to requiring fingerprint-based background checks for Uber and Lyft drivers in the city. But the local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Austin Urban League have sent a letter to City Council alleging that these kinds of background checks discriminate against minorities.


At last check, Smithville's Hidden Pines Fire has claimed 40 home structures and burned over 4,000 acres. While the fire is 25 percent contained, officials say the low humidity and dry conditions may fuel the fire for a week or more. 

With scores of firefighters from across the state coming to Central Texas to help battle the blaze, officials are requesting donations of supplies, time and money in the days ahead. Below is a list of outlets accepting assistance, as well as a map of shelters for residents, pets and livestock displaced by the Hidden Pines Fire. 

KUT News

The Austin City Council today will tackle rules on transportation network companies, short-term rentals and so-called accessory dwelling units.

These decisions have been a long time coming, because, at least in the case of short-term rental rules, postponements have been rampant.


From Travis County

From the Austin Monitor: With less than a month to go before Election Day, the first organized effort to oppose Travis County’s $287 million Civil & Family Courts Complex bond has finally materialized.


Miguel Gutierrez Jr./KUT News

Our Friday coverage of the Hidden Pines fire is here.

A wildfire that started Tuesday in Bastrop County continues to spread, thanks in part to high, shifting winds on Wednesday, officials say. 

Timeline: Before Manor Was Manor

Oct 14, 2015
Houston & Texas Central Railway, via the Woodson Research Center and the Museum of Houston

This week with our partners KLRU and the Austin Monitor, KUT launched a reporting project called Austin's Eastern Frontier, a series that examines the population boom and its effects on transportation, housing, health and healthcare. 

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT

From the Austin Monitor: The Ethics Review Commission voted unanimously to sanction City Council Member Don Zimmerman for two violations of city campaign finance code Tuesday night. They also voted unanimously to issue a written reprimand to Zimmerman, though they did not recommend prosecuting the matter further.

Dennis Nauert

Austin has a new and bigger dental clinic for patients living with HIV and AIDS. The new Central Austin location can serve 1,600 patients within a 10-county service area.

Paul Scott, the executive director of AIDS Services of Austin, says an oral health indicator is usually a first sign that something’s going on related to an HIV infection.

flickr.com/gjmj

How much does the layout of a neighborhood affect the health of the people who live in it?  That’s a question researchers at Texas A&M will try to answer by taking a closer look at the Mueller Development in Austin. They’ll do so with a $2.7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health.

John Shapley/KUT

Austin Mayor Steve Adler has set a goal to end veteran homelessness in the city by Veterans Day. This year, that’s Nov. 11. Despite reports that have said the mayor has had to push back that date, Adler says he’s sticking to his deadline.


Ilana Panich-Linsman/KUT

The second weekend of the Austin City Limits Festival is upon us.

If you don’t go to ACL, you may just view the two-weekend music event as a headache that consumes a lot city attention and resources. But, the thousands of visitors it brings to the city pump millions of dollars into the Austin economy – $194 million last year, according to C3 Presents. 

Paul Woodruff for KUT

The second weekend of Austin City Limits starts today.  There’s one difference from last week—Florence and the Machine is headlining Sunday night instead of The Strokes. And Modest Mouse is playing instead of Alabama Shakes. If you look at the line up overall, Florence Welch and Brittany Howard, the lead singer of Alabama Shakes, are the only female performers in the top ten performing slots. It’s a trend seen at music festivals across the country. 


Todd Wiseman/Texas Tribune

Increased operational fees for the ridesharing companies Uber and Lyft are heading to the Austin City Council.

The measures were approved by the council’s Mobility Committee yesterday, along with new fingerprint background checks – to the objection of the companies.


Sara Jasmine Montgomery for KUT

From the Austin Monitor

Everyone is aware that Austin has major traffic problems, but not everyone agrees on how to fix them. A new report, however, may help bridge some of those gaps by presenting the 10 most popular ideas that community members generated and supported during an outreach effort earlier this year.

Mayor Steve Adler, City Council Member Ann Kitchen and others will attend a press conference Thursday morning to announce the release of the MobilityATX Findings Report, the outcome of a public-private partnership led by nonprofit think tank Glasshouse Policy aimed at mobilizing the public to help shape transportation policy in Austin.

A Look Back at Depression-Era Texas and Texans

Oct 7, 2015
Russell Lee/Library of Congress

This week, Yale released an archive of 170,000 photos collated in an interactive map. The project, dubbed Photogrammar, compiled photos taken by the Farm Security Administration and Office of War Information to offer a rare look into the Great Depression and the manufacturing boom that followed as the U.S. entered World War II. 

rogerho/flickr

The recent Austin Music Census collected various concerns about how the City handles permits for local music venues. But, a new way of doing business has been moving its way through the city's bureaucracy.


Pu Ying-Huang/KUT News

The University of Texas at Austin held its second and final public forum on how the school should implement a new state law that will allow concealed handgun license holders to bring their weapon onto college campuses. But, while efforts to allow weapons on campus has come to prominence in recent years, the push in Texas began over 20 years ago after a mass shooting in Killeen.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUTX

If you've ever attended Austin City Limits, you know the festival is pretty strict about what you can bring inside: two sealed water bottles, no food and no large umbrellas, among other things (no audio equipment, for example — so all of these interviews were done before people entered the park).

But that list of restrictions doesn’t keep people from trying to sneak things in. 


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