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Election results: Austin voters overwhelmingly pass decriminalization of marijuana

(Isabel Lanaux/Austonia)

In this weekend election, local voters chose by overwhelming margins to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, end “no-knock” warrants, raise the homestead exemption on school district property taxes and stay connected to Capital Metro.


Austin

Proposition A

For: 85%

Against: 15%

Total votes: 81,959

Austin voters overwhelmingly voted to pass Prop A, which will decriminalize possession of less than 4 oz. of marijuana in as well as eliminate “no-knock” warrants. While that amount of weed was already decriminalized in Austin, the decision will cement it into city code.

Police will still be able to seize marijuana but will not be able to charge most Austinites for an offense.

Leander

Proposition A

For: 59%

Against: 41%

Total votes: 4,778

Leander voters are holding strong with Capital Metro, with 59% voting for Proposition A. CapMetro runs a commuter bus route from Leander to downtown Austin, on-demand Pickup services and a commuter rail link to Austin. Supporters hoped for increased connection to Austin through the light-rail system that will be developed as part of Project Connect.

Had the partnership been voted down, the city would have owed an estimated $42.3 million as a penalty before a 1% sales tax was redirected to Leander's general revenue fund to be used for economic development, public transportation and infrastructure to support growth.

Proposition B

For: 58%

Against: 42%

Total votes: 4,643

On Prop B, voters have decided to divert the 1% sales tax to the city’s general fund.

Texas

Proposition 1

For: 87%

Against: 13%

Total votes: 929,196

Voters chose to reduce schools' property tax bills imposed on disabled residents or those over the age of 65 by a landslide.

Proposition 2

For: 85%

Against: 15%

Total votes: 939,531

Voters chose by a huge margin to raise the homestead exemption Texans can take on their school district property taxes from $25,000 to $40,000.


Popular

With deposition and trial looming, Elon Musk has offered $44B for Twitter, again
Shutterstock

Elon Musk has proposed once again to buy Twitter for $54.20 a share.

The news that Musk is offering to carry on with the $44 billion buyout was first reported by Bloomberg. Now, a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission shows Musk made the proposal in a letter to the tech giant on Monday.

The New York Stock Exchange temporarily halted trading in Twitter stock twice Tuesday, first because of a big price move and the second time for a news event, presumably the announcement of Musk's renewed offer.

While the per share offer price on this latest proposal remains the same as the original offer, it’s unclear if Musk has made other term changes or if Twitter would reject it. According to other reports, a deal could be reached this week.

The stock closed at $52.00/share Tuesday, indicating market uncertainty around the $54.20 offer.

After Musk informed Twitter of plans to terminate the original agreement in July, Twitter sued. A trial has been expected in Delaware Chancery Court on Oct. 17.

With the proposition of a buyout on the table again, it revives the question of whether Musk might move Twitter from San Francisco to Central Texas.

He’s done so with some of his other companies. Tesla’s headquarters in southeast Travis County had its grand opening earlier this year and tunneling business The Boring Company moved to Pflugerville. At least two other Musk companies, SpaceX and Neuralink, have a Central Texas presence without being headquartered here.

Technology journalist Nilay Patel this afternoon voiced concerns that owning Twitter and Tesla together could be problematic for Musk, as his Tesla manufacturing facilities in Germany and China are both in countries that have disputes with Twitter over content moderation and censorship.

Telsa shares fell after the Twitter news became public, before rallying to close up, at $249.44.

Austin rents nearly double in a year and are now in the top 5 nationwide
Dwellsy

While searching for a place to live, Austin renters will face monthly rates of nearly $3,000, a recent guide from rental marketplace Dwellsy shows.

The median rent in August this year was $2,930, a more than 86% increase since August 2021. That’s $820 more than the nationwide median asking rent in August and puts Austin just below the Bay Area, Boston and New York for large cities with the most expensive asking rent.

“Within this group, Austin, TX stands out for the highest increases in asking rent, which has nearly doubled since this time last year,” the study notes.

Outside of those large cities, however, others are seeing even higher rent spikes. Metro areas that ranked above Austin in one-year increases include those like Kansas City, MO with a 112% change in rent since last August and Tucson, AZ with a 124% change.

The data reflects large apartment communities, single-family homes and 2-6 unit buildings.