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

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Austin City Council candidates scouting for new or incumbent leadership filed their first campaign finance reports Friday. Sure, it's still early going, but the fundraising cycle has ramped up in the five Council districts with races on the ballot in November.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT News

Austin is building new homes at more than twice the rate of the U.S. as a whole. Still, analysts say builders are struggling to catch up to the growing demand of homebuyers. 

Last Sunday, St. Paul Catholic Church welcomed some new parishioners into the fold, albeit briefly.

During the the 5 p.m. service last Sunday, several new faces walked into the chapel. They weren’t seeking confession or absolution, or even a good homily. They were, in the evening hours of the Lord’s Day, looking for a Bulbasaur.

via Twitter

The U.S State Department confirmed Friday morning that two Americans were killed in Thursday’s attack on a crowd during a Bastille Day parade in Nice, France.

Austin's Mediterranean food options have grown over the past few years, but still aren't as widespread as fans of the cuisine would desire. KUT's Nathan Bernier gets some recommendations from Austin-American Statesman restaurant critic Matthew Odam.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

As investigations into the police shootings of black men in Louisiana and Minnesota have begun, some may wonder what that process is like here in Austin. The Austin Police Department is no stranger to similar police shootings – most notably the 2013 police shooting of Larry Jackson and, more recently, the shooting of 17-year-old David Joseph. So, what happens after an officer uses deadly force? 

Miguel Gutierrez Jr./KUT News

Homeless advocates in Austin got a $1.1 million infusion from the federal government to advance a relatively new, market-based approach to getting people off the streets.

KLRU-TV hosted a public discussion on civil rights, race and law enforcement Monday night, in the wake of a violent week across the country. Discussion focused around last week's fatal police shootings of two black men, Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, La., and Philando Castile in Minn., and the ambush in Dallas that killed five police officers. 

The discussion, which was simulcast on KUT 90.5 FM and KUT online, is a move toward coming up with solutions to long-persisting problems of equality, education and diversity, both in Austin and across the country.

Listen to the entire KUT broadcast, and watch an extended version from KLRU's Facebook Live below.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

It’s been one week since Baton Rouge police officers shot and killed Alton Sterling, a black man selling CDs outside a convenience store. Just a day later, Philando Castile was shot and killed by police outside St. Paul, Minn.

Then last Thursday, a lone gunman killed five Dallas police officers as protestors were winding down what was, by many accounts, a peaceful rally. The following day, the Austin Police Department ushered 37 new police officers onto the force.

Spencer Selvidge / KUT

In the photo, a curly-haired woman stares into the camera wearing a red lifeguard bathing suit, holding a long, red rectangular flotation device over her shoulder.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT News

If it seems like most of the people you meet in Austin just moved here from some other state, it turns out, many of them have. 

Restaurant Review: Otoko

Jul 7, 2016
Ricard B. Brazziell/Austin American-Statesman

Otoko offers high end Japanese food, but it's also one of Austin's most expensive restaurants with a fixed price menu starting at $150. Is it worth it? KUT's Nathan Bernier asks Austin American-Statesman restaurant critic Matthew Odam about his latest review

Today is the birthday of sorts for Texas’ favorite brain tonic: Dr Pepper.

The first DP was served in 1885 in a Waco pharmacy by proto-soda jerk Charles Alderton, and years later the “King of Beverages” quickly gained a grassroots following throughout the southwest after its recipe began being distributed out of Dublin, Texas.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

The Austin Police Department’s new program to address homelessness is about a month old. A few weeks ago, officers took to the streets of West Campus and downtown Austin. Their goal was to better understand the needs of people experiencing homelessness who often congregate in these neighborhoods. 

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Steps past a motorized gate and calf-deep in dung-spotted grass, Rick Cofer looked upon the acres of land that make up John Trevino Jr. Park. The entire park, Cofer said, is 330 acres. Yards in front of him, a herd of cows sought shade on a Texas summer afternoon.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

According to the City of Austin’s latest annual performance review released June 22, the time it takes Austin police officers to respond to high-priority calls has been steadily increasing over the past five years.

Ilana Panich-Linsman for KUT

In a vote that pit representatives of the city’s lowest-income districts against their colleagues, Austin City Council members narrowly approved an 8 percent homestead exemption on Wednesday – an increase of 2 percent over last year’s exemption. To a resident with a home worth $250,000, that equates to a nearly $23 in annual savings on their property taxes.

Texas Department of Transportation

I-35 was closed for about nine hours overnight at Slaughter Lane so the Texas Department of Transportation could begin tearing down an almost 60-year old overpass. TxDOT opened the highway ahead of schedule Saturday at 8 a.m.

A closure of I-35 is scheduled again from 11 p.m. Saturday night to 10 a.m. Sunday morning, weather permitting. Drivers will be directed off the road at the Slaughter lane exit and can pass the area via the frontage road.

KUT News

The Austin City Council met Thursday for its final meeting before the July recess. Council met past midnight and into early Friday, passing several measures, including the approval to move forward with a $720-million mobility bond.

Gabriel Cristóval Pérez / KUT

From the Austin Monitor: While most of Austin slept early Friday morning, City Council gave the green light to a mobility bond with little historical precedent.

Just after 1:30 a.m., following a tortuous and fraught discussion marked by simmering tensions that at times neared outright hostility, Council voted 8-3 to direct staff to prepare ballot language for a $720 million grab bag of road, sidewalk, bike and transit infrastructure.