Thursday, August 31, 2023

Animal Services and Austin Pets Alive! sign new agreement for Town Lake Animal Center

The City of Austin Animal Services Office (ASO) announced that the City has signed a new agreement with Austin Pets Alive! regarding the City-owned property at 1156 W Cesar Chavez St, also known as Town Lake Animal Center (TLAC).

Austin Pets Alive! (APA) took over operations of TLAC in 2011 when ASO moved into the brand-new Austin Animal Center on Levander Loop. In 2017, the Austin City Council authorized the negotiation of a 25-year agreement with renewal options allowing APA to upgrade and build on the property.

“We are excited to announce that we’ve signed an agreement with APA that gives them the ability to enhance and expand their operations, and continue the partnership between ASO and APA,” said Chief Animal Services Officer Don Bland.

“This signed contract is a sign of the City of Austin's commitment to no kill for many years to come,” said APA's President and CEO Dr. Ellen Jefferson. “APA’s lifesaving programs have been essential to the city’s progress since 1998. We are excited to cement that relationship in order to continue making Austin the safest place in America for sheltered pets, and we thank the City of Austin leadership for working so collaboratively to make this possible."

City Council Approves Appointment of Robin Henderson as Interim Chief of Police


The Austin City Council unanimously approved the appointment of Robin Henderson as Interim Chief of Police for the City of Austin at its Regular Meeting on Thursday.

Henderson has served the Austin Police Department for 26 years, most recently as Chief of Staff to Chief Joseph Chacon, who announced his retirement last week.

Henderson addressed the City Council, congratulating Chacon and thanking him for recommending her to serve as Interim Chief of Police.

“I value the trust he has put in me to move the organization forward in a positive direction,” Henderson said. “I am truly honored and humbled and I appreciate the opportunity to serve as your Interim Chief.”

In her role as Chief of Staff, Henderson oversaw all Austin Police Department operations which includes a workforce of approximately 2,200 sworn and civilian personnel. She also managed several specialized units including Peer Support, the Counter Attack Strike Team (CAST) and the Executive Protection Unit (EPU).

During her career with APD, Henderson has served in various assignments including Executive Lieutenant, Patrol Lieutenant, Cadet Training, Field Training, Internal Affairs, Person and Property Investigations, Street Response, and Patrol.

“Chief Henderson is an experienced, respected veteran of the Austin Police Department with a passion for public service and making a positive impact on the community,” Interim City Manager Jesús Garza said. “She is a true servant leader and I am confident she will do an excellent job leading the department during this time of transition.”

City of Austin Labor Day Closures


City  administrative offices and other municipal facilities will be closed

Monday, Sept. 4, in observance of Labor Day. 

City of Austin administrative offices and other municipal facilities will be closed Monday, Sept. 4, in observance of Labor Day. Business hours will resume Tuesday, Sept. 5. Closures include City Council offices, all recreation and senior centers, cultural centers, museums and libraries.

Austin Libraries

All Austin Public Library locations are closed Sunday, Sept. 3. and Monday, Sept. 4.

Utility Payment Centers
Utility Payment Centers will be closed. Customers can make payments at or pay in a variety of other ways.

Austin Resource Recovery
Austin Resource Recovery administrative offices will be closed on Monday, Sept. 4. Curbside services will not be affected by the holiday and the Recycle & Reuse Drop-off Center will be open by appointment only ( Download the Austin Recycles App or visit to view your collection schedule.

Austin Animal Center
The Austin Animal Center will be closed on Monday, Sept. 4, resuming regular hours on Tuesday, Sept. 5.

Austin Water
Austin Water’s administration offices will be closed, but the 24-Hour Emergency Dispatch Line (512-972-1000) will be available.

Parks and Recreation
On Labor Day, City of Austin parks, playgrounds, tennis centers, and golf courses will be open for their regularly scheduled hours. Please visit for operational hours of pools. City of Austin Recreation Centers, Senior Centers, Museums, and Cultural Centers will be closed on Sunday, Sept. 3 and Monday, Sept. 4. Find all Austin Parks and Recreation facility closure information at

For questions about City services or information call 3-1-1 or 512-974-2000. Service requests can also be submitted from the Austin 3-1-1 mobile app.

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

City of Austin and Austin Emergency Medical Services Association Reach Tentative Agreement

The City of Austin and the Austin Emergency Medical Services Association (AEMSA) reached a tentative Meet and Confer Agreement Monday that will be presented to the Association for approval prior to City Council consideration in mid-September. 

The City and AEMSA grew to understand and appreciate their respective priorities over the negotiation process, eventually coming to an agreement that focuses on retention that both believe will begin to address long standing critical staffing shortages. 

“We have tried to balance fiscal responsibility with filling our vacancies and retaining current talent,” said the City’s lead negotiator, Sarah Griffin. “Both sides saw this as a critical focus during negotiations."

All current employees will see a pay increase of 4% or more based on position and tenure within the department. The entry level Medic salary is increased to $24.24 an hour to assist with recruitment. To help retain the most experienced employees, additional increases were added at year 23 and year 26, providing the most tenured employees with increases of 9% - 14.5% in year one of the contract.   

“We have made good progress towards our stated goal of pay parity with our sister public safety agencies and look forward to continuing to improve conditions for our members and the community they serve in the future,” said AEMSA President Selena Xie. 

Austin Travis County EMS Chief Rob Luckritz and AEMSA President Selena Xie agreed both parties worked together to come up with a progressive but fair agreement that will take the department into the next era of the developing emergency medical services profession. 

“We are thrilled to have come to an agreement that allows the department to focus on meeting the needs for the continued growth of Austin and Travis County,” said Chief Luckritz. “This agreement also ensures we are competitive and able to recruit and retain the talent that makes Austin Travis County EMS one of the best EMS systems in the country.”

City of Austin announces winner of 2023 Circular Austin Showcase, an event highlighting local circular businesses

The City of Austin announced the winner of the 2023 Circular Austin Showcase, a pitch competition for local circular businesses focused on reuse and zero waste. Circular business models reduce the need to extract new resources from our planet by keeping materials and products in use for as long as possible. 

The event took place on August 29 in partnership between Austin Resource Recovery, the Economic Development Department and the Austin Young Chamber.  

A judging panel selected The Conscious Pet as this year’s winner following pitches from eight finalists. Two of the finalists participated as Reverse Pitch Innovation Fellows. Scoring criteria included business viability, fundability, circular economy/ zero waste impact, economic impact and local job creation, along with effectiveness of pitch delivery. 

Mason Arnold with The Conscious Pet will receive a $12,000 cash prize. Kelly Rytlewski with Heartening will receive a $1,000 cash prize for placing second. In addition, all competitors gained valuable feedback from the judges.  

Mason Arnold (second from left) accepts the cash prize at the Circular Austin Showcase from Meghan Doherty (left), Tara Levy and Maddie Morgan.
Mason Arnold (second from left) accepts the cash prize at the Circular Austin Showcase from Meghan Doherty (left), Tara Levy and Maddie Morgan.

 Finalists from the Circular Austin Showcase included:   

  • diaperkind is a modern cloth diaper service that emphasizes zero waste, zero laundry and zero chemicals. 
  • Dispoze is focused on improving recovery infrastructure for lithium-ion batteries. The organization aims to refurbish recovered batteries for reintroduction into US supply chains and offset the carbon emissions caused by the mining of precious metals. 
  • Frontier Resource Recovery aims to create scalable agricultural solutions to restore the environment. 
  • Heartening* plans to create a product line of pallet-able patio furniture made from upcycled wooden pallets and recycled textile cushions. 
  • Pyrocycling* plans to use carbon filter pads from Deep Eddy Vodka to harvest agricultural minerals directly from treated municipal sewage. 
  • Sleep, Never creates quality slow fashion, that is suitable for a fast-paced world. 
  • The Conscious Pet provides nutritious, sustainable food for dogs and for the planet. 
  • Wanderlust Wine the world's largest wine-on-tap winery with a mission to change the world through wine by utilizing sustainable, recyclable and reusable packaging and practices. 

*Winners of the 2023 [Re]verse Pitch Competition 

"The Circular Austin Showcase is an exciting event that supports local businesses that keep materials out of the landfill through innovative reuse solutions,” says Richard McHale, Interim Director for Austin Resource Recovery. "We congratulate and thank all of the finalists who are helping Austin toward a zero waste future, especially The Conscious Pet." 
Judges for the Circular Austin Showcase included: 

  • Adrienne Longenecker, Executive Director at Colorado River Alliance           
  • Clarissa Simmons, Co-Founder at Make at Rosie    
  • Brandi Clark Burton, Founder & Chief Inspiration Officer at The Austin Common and EcoNetworking    
  • Erika Haskins, Head of Partnerships at Make Startups
  • Juli Berwald, Science Writer & Author
  • Skyra Rideaux, Principal Consultant & Owner at Skyra Rideaux LLC

"The Circular Austin Showcase is a great chance to connect local entrepreneurs to critical funding and resources to grow their businesses," says Sylnovia Holt-Rabb, Director of the Economic Development Department. "This is also an important opportunity to inspire and educate the investment community on the social, environmental and economic benefits of circular economy businesses." 

The Circular Austin Showcase is a program created by the City of Austin’s Circular Economy Program. The event is focused on connecting local investors to circular economy entrepreneurs and business owners. The Showcase aims to help Austin reduce waste, help our planet and grow the local circular economy. 


About the Circular Economy Program   

The City of Austin Circular Economy Program’s mission is to attract, retain, and grow businesses, non-profits, and entrepreneurs in the zero waste industry in order to create well-paying local jobs, attract investment, and support the necessary infrastructure for a resilient circular economy in Central Texas. The program is a partnership between Austin Resource Recovery and the Economic Development Department

About Austin Resource Recovery   

Austin Resource Recovery (ARR) is a department of the City of Austin. We provide essential services that protect people and our planet. We collect recycling, composting, trash, large brush, bulk items and dead animals. We also sweep the streets, recycle and safely dispose of household hazardous waste, and provide community outreach and education. ARR is driving the global transformation of traditional waste management to sustainable resource recovery. Learn more at  

About the City of Austin Economic Development Department  

The City of Austin Economic Development Department supports business growth, creative industries, and local communities. These programs build an equitable, sustainable economy to improve the lives of all Austin residents. To learn more about helpful resources, visit and subscribe to our newsletter. Connect with us @AustinEconDev on Facebook@AustinEconDev on X, and @AustinEconDev on YouTube

About the Austin Young Chamber 

The Austin Young Chamber supports the Central Texas business community through initiatives and efforts designed to build and strengthen a diverse young professional workforce. Connect with the Austin Young Chamber on FacebookInstagramLinkedIn, and learn about upcoming programs at

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport breaks ground on terminal expansion with West Gate Expansion project

Dozens of Central Texas and Austin leaders gathered today at the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS), including Congressman Doggett, Congressman Casar, Austin Mayor Kirk Watson, and Austin City Councilmembers Vanessa Fuentes and Ryan Alter to celebrate the groundbreaking of the West Gate Expansion. This project is one of the near-term Journey With AUS expansion projects that will improve the Central Texas airport that continues to serve a record-breaking volume of passenger and airline activities.

“This is just the start of a series of transformative airport projects that will modernize and improve the AUS experience for everyone,” said Mayor Kirk Watson. “We know more is needed, and more is coming to make travel comfortable, exciting and easy. The Journey With AUS will bring unique changes to the traveler experience as we navigate turning this 24/7 facility into an active construction site. The flurry of construction activities mixed with passengers and airport operations will be a big change for our community as we make progress on this project and other expansion projects, like a new concourse, but it will be worth it to have a home airport every Austinite can be proud of.” 

The West Gate Expansion project will increase terminal space beyond its current gates 33 and 34 totaling an additional 84,500 gross square feet over three levels of apron, concourse and mezzanine space. The expansion will add amenities that children, families, and travelers of all ages will enjoy such as new food and retail spaces, public art through the City of Austin Arts in Public Places Program, more seating areas, the largest restrooms in the terminal, quiet places for relaxation and private rooms for nursing or pumping, and an exciting third-level outdoor public patio with amazing views of the city skyline. The project will construct three new gates that will eventually offset the closure of existing gates during future construction activities.
“Following the post-pandemic surge in air travel demand, we must modernize and improve our airport,” said Robert Goode, Interim Assistant City Manager. “I applaud the teams at the Department of Aviation for their fast-acting responsiveness in bringing this project from conception to breaking ground in and look forward to providing our airport guests with more space, more amenities and an improved experience.”
The Austin-Bergstrom International Airport is dedicated to expanding in an environmentally conscious way by setting a goal of a 3-Star certification sustainability from the Austin Energy Green Building (AEGB). Like all airport improvements, no local Austin taxpayer dollars will be used to fund the project. The improvements will be funded through traditional airport development funding sources, such as airport cash reserves, current and future airport revenues and future revenue bond proceeds. AUS is currently evaluating opportunities for federal grant funding to support the project.
Enabling work began this summer and the expansion is estimated to open in 2026. In the meantime, travelers can expect construction walls during demolition work between gates 33 and 34, but a longer-term wall will be built by spring 2024. It is also important to note that the concession, I Vinni, on the concourse between gates 29 and 30 will be permanently removed in early 2024. Furniture in waiting areas will be moved to accommodate the expansion progress, but additional seating will be added to the concourse walkway. Although the area is under construction, all current gates on the west side will remain operational. 
“This project will deliver much-needed relief for our travelers and our airport,” said Somer Shindler, AUS Chief Development Officer. “This is just the beginning of our journey to invest billions of dollars into our airport over the next decade to serve the needs of travelers and airline partners today and in generations to come, all while driving economic prosperity for our community.”

For Media: Click here for a media kit with photos of the event, a project fact sheet, Journey With AUS program fact sheet and b-roll of the event

Nominations Now Open - 2023 Diversity in Contracting Awards

Aug 30, 2023 02:29 pm

black and brown image featuring SMBR logo that read nominations are now open for the 2023 diversity in Contracting Awards


The Small and Minority Business Resources (SMBR) department has opened nominations for the 18th Annual Diversity in Contracting Awards. Prime contractors, prime consultants, and certified firms can nominate themselves or their chosen business for this distinguished award.

Firms that contribute to the City of Austin's economic health through exceptional business practices and customer service and demonstrate high community involvement through civic and community projects and activities are encouraged to apply. 

The deadline to complete and submit the online nomination form is Monday, September 25, 2023, at 5 p.m. Applications submitted after the deadline will not be accepted. Winners will be announced at the 18th Annual Diversity in Contracting awards ceremony in December. 

Applications will be reviewed by the SMBR team, and award determinations will be based on previous award history, City of Austin contract performance, and compliance with the M/WBE and/or DBE Programs. Businesses that have been awarded by SMBR in the past 5 years are ineligible. Nominees for Women and Minority categories must be certified by the City of Austin.

For the past 17 years, the Small and Minority Business Resources (SMBR) Department has celebrated the accomplishments and successes of prime contractors, prime consultants, and firms certified as Minority or Women-Owned Business Enterprises. We look forward to honoring you again this year. 

Click here to nominate

Travis County Resident Dies Following Amebic Infection


With unusual heat, precautions urged when swimming in natural bodies of water 

AUSTIN, Texas - Austin Public Health is reporting the death of a Travis County resident after developing an illness caused by an amebic meningitis infection. The resident became ill after swimming in Lake Lake Lyndon B. Johnson (LBJ) in August.  

"Although these infections are very rare, this is an important reminder that there are microbes present in natural bodies of water that can pose risks of infection,” said Austin-Travis County Health Authority Dr. Desmar Walkes. “Increased temperatures over the summer make it ideal for harmful microorganisms to grow and flourish." 

There are many risks associated with swimming in natural bodies of water, including amebic infections. To reduce the risk of infection precautions include: 

  • Limit the amount of water going up your nose. Hold your nose shut, use nose clips or keep your head above water when taking part in warm freshwater-related activities. 

  • Avoid water-related activities in warm freshwater during periods of high water temperature and low water levels. 

  • Avoid digging in or stirring up the sediment while taking part in water-related activities in shallow, warm freshwater areas.  

Amebic meningitis does not occur if water is swallowed, but can be fatal if forced up the nose, as can occur when jumping into water, diving, water-skiing or other water activities. It is not found in salt water, or in properly maintained and chlorinated pools. 

Symptoms of an amebic meningitis infection — an infection of the brain — start with severe headache, fever, nausea and vomiting and progress to stiff neck, seizures and coma and can lead to death. These rare infections usually occur when it is hot for prolonged periods of time, which results in higher water temperatures and lower water levels. 

Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) infections are rare, with only 39 known infected individuals in Texas between 1962 and 2022. PAM can cause severe illness up to nine days after exposure. 

A sample specimen from the case has been sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for further identification. 

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Re-Imagining the Ney, Sept. 17 through Oct. 21, 2023


A Month-Long Series Shaping the Future of the Elisabet Ney Museum
The Austin Parks and Recreation Department in partnership with the Friends of Elisabet Ney Museum present "Re-Imagining the Ney," a month-long series of events dedicated to shaping the future of the Elisabet Ney Museum through an interpretive plan. "Re-Imagining the Ney" will focus on an inclusive and community-centered approach to updating the historic landscape around the museum.

Schedule of Events:
  • Draw Your Own Path: Museum Day, September 17, 2023, noon to 5 p.m.
  • A Night in 19th Century Austin: September 21, 2023, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
  • A Night of Process: October 5, 2023, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
  • A Night in the Landscape: October 12, 2023, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
  • A Community Art Bash: October 21, 2023, 3 to 8 p.m.
All events will take place at the Elisabet Ney Museum, 304 E. 44th Street, Austin, TX 78751.

Through this program, visitors can learn about specific aspects of Ney’s life while contributing ideas for upcoming programs and exhibitions at the Museum. Each one of the "Re-Imagining the Ney" events will focus on different biographical topics on Ney’s life, culminating with the day-long event "Re-Imagining the Ney: A Community Art Bash" on October 21.

"Re-Imagining the Ney" will happen in partnership with the Parks and Recreation Department and Friends of Elisabet Ney Museum. Upgrades to the studio and grounds are made possible through City of Austin Capital Improvement Project funds. For more information, please visit the project webpage.
About Elisabet Ney
Elisabet Ney (1833-1907) was a groundbreaking German radical Progressive, suffragist, abolitionist, gender non-conformist, and celebrity sculptor. In 1871, Ney left a meteoric artistic practice in Germany as a political refugee, resettling in Southeast Texas. Twenty years later, she restarted her career in Austin, creating some of Texas’s most iconic statuary, some of which reside in the Capitol buildings in Washington, D.C., and Austin. Her pioneering leadership in arts advocacy and the state’s suffragist movement inspired generations. To learn more about Elisabet Ney and the Ney Museum click here

Road Closures on Mearns Meadow Blvd. for Construction to Reduce Flooding Along Little Walnut Creek


Phases of construction on Mearns Meadow Blvd. Phase 1 is from Rutland Dr to Parkfield Dr. Phase 2 is from Parkfield Dr to Mountain Quail Dr. Phase 3 is from Mountain Quail Rd to Quail Valley Blvd. Phase 4 is from Quail Valley Blvd to Boyer Blvd.

The Capital Delivery Services Department will begin Phase 1 of construction on the Little Walnut Creek Flood Risk Reduction Project this Saturday, August 26. Work hours will be from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and construction of Phase 1 is expected to wrap up in Spring 2024. During construction Mearns Meadow Boulevard will be closed to through traffic from Rutland Drive to Parkfield Drive. Detour signage will be posted to guide travelers in the area.  


During construction equipment operators will excavate a 20' deep trench along Mearns Meadow Boulevard to install 13-foot by 10-foot concrete box culverts. Upon completion of the project, floodwater will be diverted to these box culverts, which will run under Mearns Meadow Boulevard from Quail Valley Boulevard to the Mearns Meadow Detention Pond in Quail Creek Park. The culvert will be installed in four phases of construction along Mearns Meadow Boulevard. Breaking construction into different phases will limit the extent of road closures throughout the project. Upon completion of each phase, the impacted segment of Mearns Meadow Boulevard will be repaved and reopened to through traffic.  


The Little Walnut Creek Flood Risk Reduction project aims to reduce flooding for homes and roads near Little Walnut Creek. The project is managed by Capital Delivery Services in partnership with Austin Watershed Department and includes a pipe to carry floodwaters, pond improvements at Quail Creek Park, and upgrades to wastewater pipes. To date the project contractor has focused on pond improvements near Rutland Drive to improve water quality and reduce flooding in the area. The anticipated completion of all four construction phases is early 2026.

Learn more about the Little Walnut Creek Flood Risk Reduction Project

Take Precautions Against Toxic Algae in Our Waterways


Recent lab results have detected toxic algae in some of our local waterways. The intense heat and lack of rain make the perfect conditions for toxic algae to build up, creating floating algae mats that could contaminate the surrounding water with dangerous toxins.  

Contact with toxic algae can be dangerous and lead to neurological problems for people and animals. In 2019, a blue-green algae bloom sickened and killed several dogs in Austin. Symptoms in animals include staggered walking and excessive salivating. In humans, it can cause stomachache, headaches, dizziness and vomiting. 

While the algae mats themselves are very toxic and harmful, toxins in the water surrounding the algae mats may remain at levels low enough to avoid harm to humans and animals. Harmful algae have been found in Barton Springs Pool, but continued monitoring by Austin Water shows that the levels of toxins are, for now, too low to be considered harmful to the public at this location (see the Algae page for a list of monitoring sites).  

When swimming outdoors or going near waterways take the following precautions:  

  • Do not drink water directly from lakes, creeks, or springs.  
  • Do not touch or get near algae. 
  • Do not let your pet touch or get near algae. 
  • Rinse yourself and your pet off immediately after contact with water from these waterways. 
  • Do not let your pet drink from outdoor waterways. 
  • Do not let your pet lick their fur after getting into the water until you have thoroughly rinsed them off. 

If you become sick after swimming and suspect that you have been poisoned by toxic algae, seek help from your healthcare provider or call the Texas Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222. Report symptoms and suspected illness on the Algae page. For more information including efforts to contain and reduce toxic algae in our waterways please read Watershed Protection’s recent press release on toxic algae in our waterways.  

Need a License for Your Food Truck? The Process Just Got Easier


Austin Public Health’s Environmental Health Services Division (EHSD) has started a pilot program to simplify the process to get a mobile food vendor license. Previously, applicants had to schedule an appointment to have their application reviewed for approval. The new pilot program, which began on July 17, allows for applicants to come into the EHSD office located at 1520 Rutherford Ln., Building 1, Suite 205 Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for review of their application without an appointment. Bilingual staff are available to assist with application review and further information. 

This new pilot program comes in response to an 87% increase in applications for mobile food vendor licenses since last year. For more information on fees and the application process, visit our Mobile Vendors License page. 

Oakwood Cemetery Archeological Project Community Meeting on September 19

Join the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department along with members of the Oakwood Cemetery archeological project team from the University of Connecticut (UConn) and the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) for a virtual community meeting on Tuesday, September 19 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. The research team is conducting DNA and isotopic analysis on individuals whose graves were discovered in 2016 during the restoration of the Oakwood Chapel. At the meeting, researchers will update the community about the work completed to date and share next steps in the process.  

Austin Parks and Recreation announced a partnership in 2020 with UConn and UT Austin to undertake DNA and isotopic analysis at no cost to the City of Austin to better understand the lives of the men, women, and children who were discovered at Oakwood Cemetery in 2016 when the chapel was under renovation. The DNA analysis offers a unique opportunity to learn more about identities, familial connections, and life experiences. Additionally, the UConn team is conducting isotopic analysis, which may provide additional insights into the individuals’ diets and regions of origin.  

The community meeting is part of ongoing programming and community engagement related to the Oakwood Cemetery archeological project. Registration for the September 19 meeting and information about the archeological project can be found at

Austin Energy welcomes feedback on Generation Resource Plan update

Austin Energy is seeking community feedback as it updates the Resource, Generation and Climate Protection Plan to 2030 (2030 Plan). The 2030 Plan commits Austin Energy to continue safely delivering clean, affordable and reliable energy sufficient to meet customer demands while pursuing the City of Austin's climate protection and sustainability goals.  

The utility will hold both virtual and in-person meetings and distribute a survey to gather input from stakeholders throughout its 437-square-mile service territory. The Speak Up Austin site and the survey are translated into all City of Austin Tier 1 languages (Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Vietnamese, Arabic, Korean, French and Hindi).


Resource Generation Plan Update - Community Meetings

Aug. 29 from 2-3 p.m. - Small-Mid Businesses - Virtual – click to register

Aug. 29 from 7-8:30 p.m. - All Customer Classes - In-Person - register on Community Meetings Page

Aug. 30 from 6-7 p.m. - Residential - Virtual – click to register


The primary goal of the 2030 Plan update is to consider and respond to changing customer demand, market conditions, emerging technologies, federal funding opportunities and other dynamics while maintaining Austin’s commitments to strong carbon reductions. The flexibility built into the plan allows Austin Energy to take a closer look at current conditions and make necessary updates to meet our goals.

The survey and additional information can be found at

Sunday, August 27, 2023

Awardees Selected for New Program to Create More Affordable Housing in Austin

The Austin Housing Finance Corporation announces that 20 participants have been selected for the Austin Small Developer Training Program, a new program led by Capital Impact Partners and HousingWorks Austin. This program will help provide small developers with training, mentorship, networking, and potential pathways to financing for eligible real estate projects in Austin. The cohort of awardees began their training in July and will continue through October 2023. 

The Austin Small Developer Training provides opportunities to historically excluded and overlooked small-scale real estate developers, helping to create more affordable housing and job opportunities locally. Less than five percent of housing developers in the United States are people of color, and only one-third of housing developers in this country are women.  

“The Austin Small Developer Training program will empower each real estate developer to confront the top industry challenges faced in Austin,” explains James May, Housing and Community Development Officer for the Austin Housing Finance Corporation. “We know these business strategies and industry connections will be critical resources to help bring more affordable housing investment throughout Austin.” 

Those selected for the free, four-month program have demonstrated a commitment to affordability and fair housing in Austin. Participants will learn strategies for finding more attainable land opportunities for small-scale development and learn from zoning experts, who will walk through the process and best practices to avoid common delays and challenges.  

“We are excited to welcome these 20 developers, to help them grow over the course of the Austin Small Developer Training, and to see the impact they will create as they work to bring more affordable housing and investment into historically underserved communities,” said Raymond Guthrie, Chief Investment Officer and Head of Capital Deployment for Capital Impact Partners and CDC Small Business Finance, each of which is part of the Momentus Capital branded family of organizations

Capital Impact Partners has trained more than 200 developers through its Equitable Development Initiative and also provides financing for eligible real estate projects in Austin. With its partners, they have formed a referral network of regional community development financial institutions and local lenders in order to connect developers with other sources of financing. Capital Impact Partners collaborated with HousingWorks Austin, a nonprofit organization that aims to increase the supply of affordable housing in Austin by providing research, education, advocacy, and thoughtful, workable affordable housing policy recommendations. 

"The Small Developer Training Program strongly aligns with our mission to educate individuals about affordable housing and increase housing opportunities through new development, explains Nora Linares-Moeller, Executive Director of HousingWorks Austin. “What better way to expand housing opportunities than training new developers to bring new perspectives and build needed affordable housing in Austin? We couldn't be more thrilled to be a part of this important endeavor for the city.” 

a group of 20 participants for the Austin Small Developer Training

Austin Small Developer Participants 

  • Affordable Central Texas | Monica Medina 
  • ALEON Properties, Inc. | Charmane Sellers 
  • Aligned Wealth Partners | David Thompson II 
  • Blackland CDC | Andy Bucknall 
  • Blackshear Neighborhood Development Corporation | Cynthia Mathis-Gaines 
  • Boomers Collaborative Foundation Inc | Carol Lilly 
  • Castillo Acquisitions, LLC | Anthony Castillo 
  • Chestnut Neighborhood Revitalization Corporation | Lex Miller 
  • Drenner Group | Temaria Davis 
  • Equidad ATX | Ashton Cumberbatch, Jr. 
  • GreenSphere, Inc & The Property Center | Mo Sheikh 
  • Haslem Development Corporation | Kandra Haslem 
  • Hayat Brown | Curtis Wilkins 
  • Industry ATX | Megan Etz 
  • LT Development Partners | Lezlie Le 
  • Manifold Real Estate | Mila Santana 
  • Nill Consulting | Ryan Nill 
  • Spark Root Development and Construction | Daniel Canizales 
  • Titan Valuation LLC & Deets Development | Stephen Brown 
  • Thoughtful Development Partners LLC | Zeeshan Malik 


How the Austin Small Developer Training Program Will Help  

The Austin Small Developer Training program has been specifically crafted to confront the top challenges real estate developers face in Austin. Local industry leaders will provide capacity-building and insights to participants on successfully navigating the local review process, preparing financial applications, and leveraging business partnerships with community members.  

Developers will also learn strategies for finding more attainable land opportunities for small-scale development and learn from zoning experts, who will walk through the process and best practices to avoid common delays and challenges.  

In 2017, the City of Austin adopted its Strategic Housing Blueprint, which included a 10-year aspirational goal to construct 60,000 affordable housing units for households at or below 80 percent of the median family income, and an additional 75,000 units for households earning more than 80 percent of the median family income.  

To access affordable housing and developer resources, visit


About the Austin Housing Finance Corporation 

The Austin Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) was created as a public, non-profit corporation and instrumentality of the City of Austin. The mission of the AHFC is to generate and implement strategic housing solutions for the benefit of low- and moderate-income residents of the City of Austin.  

About Capital Impact Partners 

Capital Impact Partners is transforming how capital and investments flow into communities to provide people access to the capital and opportunities they deserve. We work to champion key issues of equity and social and economic justice by deploying mission-driven financing, capacity-building programs, and impact investing opportunities. Capital Impact is part of the Momentus Capital branded family of organizations, including CDC Small Business Finance and Ventures Lending Technologies. 

About HousingWorks Austin 

HousingWorks Austin is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. They advance their mission to preserve and increase the supply of affordable housing through research, education, and advocacy in Austin, Texas and the surrounding region, with a commitment to ensuring those most in need have access to safe and affordable housing. HousingWorks Austin is guided by the maxim, “All Kinds of Homes, in All Parts of Town, for All Kinds of People.” 

Austin Animal Center Releases Updated Distemper Numbers

Austin Animal Center (AAC) continues to see increases in distemper, a deadly disease affecting unvaccinated dogs. In the month of August, the Center has received 39 positive results from 94 dogs tested.

“As expected, the dogs testing positive are generally under a year old and have only been in the shelter for a few weeks, meaning they didn’t have time to build up appropriate vaccination immunity before being exposed,” said AAC’s head veterinarian Dr. Debbie Elliott. “We are seeing a range of symptoms, from dogs that aren’t showing any signs to dogs developing seizures. We have been working with experts at the University of Wisconsin Shelter Medicine Program as well as our partners at Austin Pets Alive! to provide treatment and slow the spread of disease through the shelter.”
Canine distemper affects domestic dogs and ferrets, and can infect wildlife (including raccoons, coyotes, foxes, and skunks). It is caused by canine distemper virus (CDV). The virus is spread through close contact with infected animals, most commonly from respiratory droplets and less commonly from urine or feces. The virus does not survive well in the environment, but there is still potential risk of spread via contaminated items like bowls and toys.

“Prevention through vaccination is hands down the most effective tool our community has,” Dr. Elliott said. “It is vital that dog owners make sure their dogs are completely vaccinated.”
Austin Animal Center continues to seek fosters and adopters for healthy, vaccinated dogs at the shelter. All adoption fees are waived and staff is available to process walk-in fosters from 11 am to 5 pm every day.
“Getting healthy dogs out allows us to create space to isolate sick animals and protect incoming vulnerable dogs,” said Dr. Elliott.
This Saturday, August 26, is Clear the Shelters, a national adoption promotion. AAC will have dozens of volunteers available between 11 am to 7 pm to help families find a new pet.
Learn more about Canine Distemper here:


About the Animal Services Office
The City of Austin Animal Services Office operates the Austin Animal Center, and is the municipal shelter for the City of Austin and unincorporated Travis County. Austin Animal Center provides shelter to more than 11,000 animals annually and safely places more than 95% of all pets. Our goal is to keep pets with their families and in their communities, provide a safe place for homeless animals, promote responsible pet ownership, and preserve the human-animal bond.