12:41 PM Oct 25, 2019 CDT

Coffee With Impact: JT McCormick went from a horrific upbringing to being a CEO

Severe neglect, sexual abuse, violence, poverty: JT McCormick readily and publicly discusses these defining aspects of his upbringing. Told in shocking detail, it quickly becomes evident for those who attend his speeches that the stories of his childhood are necessary to elucidate how he emerged from it all to become what he describes as a success story.

El Chipiron closes on South Lamar Boulevard

El Chipiron, a Spanish tapas restaurant at 2717 S. Lamar Blvd., Ste. 1085, Austin, announced its closing …

The Austin Metro has the fifth highest wildfire risk in the United States and city leaders are pushing for more preparation

The Austin Metro is the only area not in California to rank in the top five most wildfire vulnerable metropolitan areas in the country, according to a report published in September by data analytics company Core Logics.

Austin election guide 2019: learn about what's on the ballot, where to vote and more

This election, both the city of Austin and Travis County ballots include referendums. Here is a guide to what's on the ballot, where to vote and more information.

Here are the questions Austin voters will decide on the Nov. 5 ballot

Citizens forced a vote on two propositions in the city, while Travis County commissioners brought an item …

Plans for Joslin Foreign Language Elementary School could be included in future school changes scenarios

Austin ISD announced in a news release Oct. 21 that it had received a $284,000 grant for South Austin’s Joslin Elementary School, one of 12 schools named as a possible closure in the district’s ongoing school changes plan .

Some Austinites praise citizen-initiated petitions as essential; others say they show democracy's vulnerabilities

This November, although there are no candidate races on the ballot, Austin voters will see a pair of questions that, for months, have riled up city officials, citizen groups and a wide range of stakeholders.

Neighborhood note: Bird viewing station complete at Dripping Springs Ranch Park

Offering an opportunity for residents and visitors to bird-watch in the Dripping Springs community, the city celebrated the opening of of its new bird-viewing station Oct. 21, according to a news release by the city.

Leader in effort to recall Austin mayor, council members, says handling of homelessness issue ‘pushed people over the edge’

Our Town Austin, a special purpose committee created to try and recall Austin’s mayor and five City Council members, will begin canvassing the city for the tens of thousands of signatures needed to force a recall election, one of the group’s executives said.

0.38% of registered voters turn out in Travis County on first day of early voting

Just over 3,000 people—or 0.38% of registered voters—cast their ballots on the first day of early voting Travis County.

Neighborhood notes: Southern Oaks Girl Scouts to host annual carnival at Tanglewood Forest Park

The Southern Oaks Girl Scouts host their seventh annual community carnival Nov. 2 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m at Tanglewood Forest Park, located at 9801 Curlew Drive, Austin. The Girl Scout troop will lead carnival games and family- friendly activities.

St. Michael's Catholic Academy will see addition of new educational wing

St. Michael’s Catholic Academy announced plans for a new campus and curriculum expansion project Oct. 22. The private school located at 3000 Barton Creek Blvd., Austin, will design a new academic wing called the Hub for Advanced Learning Opportunities on the 50-acre Barton Creek campus. Construction is anticipated to begin in May, according to a press release.

Central Texas transportation agency seeks input on 2045 long-range plan

A Central Texas transportation planning agency started its public input process Oct. 21 for its 2045 long-range plan , which looks at how the region will be connected over the next 25 years.

Q&As: Learn about this year's four Sunset Valley City Council candidates ahead of the Nov. 5 election

With early voting underway from Oct. 21-Nov. 1 for the Nov. 5, 2019 election, residents in Sunset Valley can …

Canopy at Westgate Grove to bring affordable condos to Westgate area

Note: This article was updated Oct. 22, 2019 to reflect an updated school zoning list sent by Compass Communications.

Thriveworks Coaching & Counseling open in South Austin

Thriveworks Coaching & Counseling opened this summer in Onion Creek at 10816 Crown Colony Drive, Ste. …

City of Austin completes Slaughter Lane and S. First Street improvements

The city of Austin earlier this fall completed construction at the intersection of Slaughter Lane and South First Street, an element of the Intersection Safety/Vision Zero project.

Election 2019: Hays County pilots new countywide polling system alongside hybrid machines

When Hays County voters go to the polls this fall, they will join the electorates of more than 60 other Texas counties in being able to vote at any polling location across the jurisdiction, not only during early voting, but also on Election Day.

Anna's Toy Depot moving to Brodie Oaks Shopping Center

Anna’s Toy Depot will move Nov. 1 to 4220 S. Lamar Blvd., Austin, in the Brodie Oaks Shopping Center from …

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott will send state agency to clear homeless encampments under Austin overpasses, monitor water quality

Less than 24 hours after Austin City Council moved to further adjust a pair of laws that impact the homeless population, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s office said the governor will send in state agencies to address and monitor Austin’s homelessness challenge.

Austin City Council approves zoning changes for controversial 97-acre “urban village” on East Riverside

As protesters’ chants carried into chambers from outside City Hall, Austin City Council members voted 6-3 to approve zoning changes for 4700 Riverside, a 97-acre mixed-use project planned at the intersection of East Riverside Drive and South Pleasant Valley Road.

Austin’s new homelessness ordinances ban camping on sidewalks but allow sitting and lying down

City Council banned public camping from sidewalks throughout the city but will permit sitting and lying down unless it is 15 feet from an operating business in an Oct. 17 vote that marked a major step forward in the strenuous debate over a pair of laws that directly impact the homeless.

GUIDE: How to use Hays County's new hybrid voting machines

See all of Community Impact Newspaper's local election coverage, including candidate Q&A's and polling …