Austin mayor, city manager, to host town hall Tuesday and hear from residents how to spend tax dollars

Austin is considering a program that would allow more residents to contribute to local candidates in elections.

Austin is considering a program that would allow more residents to contribute to local candidates in elections.

City leaders are gearing up to write the fiscal year 2018-19 budget and on Tuesday, May 15, Mayor Steve Adler and City Manager Spencer Cronk want to know how residents would spend their tax dollars.

The two top city officials will hear from residents Tuesday night between 6:30 and 8 p.m. inside Austin Central Library at 710 W. Cesar Chavez St. The event is part of a new approach by city leaders to align budget expenses with the set of strategic priorities council members approved in their Strategic Direction 2023.

Those council-adopted strategic outcomes include: economic opportunity and affordability; mobility; health and environment; culture and lifelong learning; safety and government that works for all.

“A city’s budget is a reflection of a city’s values, so it’s important for me that we engage as many different voices in the process as possible,” Cronk said. “Community participation is vital to ensuring that we develop a city budget that works for everyone.”

This will be the only citywide budget town hall; however, each council member is scheduled to host district-specific budget town halls to hear from his or her constituents. Residents can also access the city’s online survey tool to prove feedback.

The district-specific budget town hall schedule is as follows:

District 2 with Council Member Delia Garza: Wednesday, May 16, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Learning and Research Center, 2800 Spirit of Texas Drive.

District 3 with Council Member Pio Renteria: Saturday, May 19, 10 to 11:30 a.m. at Oswaldo A.B. Cantu/Pan American Recreation Center, 2100 E. Third St.

District 6 with Council Member Jimmy Flannigan: Monday, May 21, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Spicewood Springs Library, 8637 Spicewood Springs Road.

District 5 with Council Member Ann Kitchen: Tuesday, May 22, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the South Austin Senior Activity Center, 3911 Manchaca Road.

District 9 with Council Member Kathie Tovo: Monday, June 11, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Austin City Hall, 301 W. Second St.

District 10 with Council Member Alison Alter: Monday, June 18, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Shalom Austin, 7300 Hart Lane.

District 7 with Council Member Leslie Pool: Tuesday, June 19, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Northwest Recreation Center, 2913 Northland Drive.

District 8 with Council Member Ellen Troxclair: Thursday, June 21, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Austin Pizza Garden, 6266 Hwy. 290.

*District 1 occurred on Saturday, May 12.
**District 4 has not been announced.
By Christopher Neely
Christopher Neely is Community Impact's Austin City Hall reporter. A New Jersey native, Christopher moved to Austin in 2016 following years of community reporting along the Jersey Shore. His bylines have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun, USA Today and several other local outlets along the east coast.


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