It's Election Day, and nearly 65% of Austin voters have already cast a ballot before the day began.
Short lines made it easy to vote on Election Day in Austin. There will also be Election Day watch parties, mostly virtually, taking place after polls close.
Here is the latest election information:
11:30 a.m.: Local election results are in
Election results are complete for Travis County with two council races headed for the Dec. 15 runoffs. And along with those results, the city learns Proposition A—a 15-year, $7.1 billion overhaul of the local transit system—passed.
9:05 p.m.: Presidential race too close to call in Texas
Most of Travis County presidential votes have been counted, but an estimated one-quarter of all Texas votes are yet to be counted so far.
For ongoing vote totals for the Texas presidential race, click here.
8:50 p.m. John Cornyn retains U.S. Senate seat
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn has been elected to his fourth term after beating Democratic challenger MJ Hegar, Texas Tribune projects. Here is more background about the U.S. Senate race.
8:10 p.m. Early voting results for Prop A & B as well as U.S. Senate, House races in Texas
Project Connect and the Prop B mobility bond both have significant leads based on early voting results released Tuesday night.
And, at least in Travis County, challenger MJ Hegar leads U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, in local early voting totals. There are also several local U.S. House races that already have significant returns recorded. Most notably, challenger Wendy Davis leads District 21 incumbent U.S. Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas.
7:45 p.m. Austin City Council results begin to emerge
Several Austin City Council seats are up for election in 2020. Here is what we know based on early votes that have already been tabulated.
- Alison Alter leads in crowded race for Austin City Council District 10 seat with early votes tallied
- Jimmy Flannigan has a narrow lead in the Austin City Council District 6 race with early votes tallied
- Leslie Pool leads in Austin City Council District 7 race with early votes tallied
- Greg Casar leads in Austin City Council District 4 race with early votes tallied
- Vanessa Fuentes leads race for Austin City Council District 2 seat, with early votes tallied
- Early voting results: Austin City Council
7:20 p.m. Polls close quietly at The University of Texas campus and at Austin Central Library
The University of Texas had no lines at campus polling locations after polls opened Tuesday morning.
There were no reported lines at The University of Texas campus or Austin Central Library in downtown Austin, two of the highest-profile polling locations in the city.
5:05 p.m.: 43,000 have voted in-person on Election Day with two hours left to go
Travis County voters cast their ballots at the Southpark Meadows Shopping Center location in far south Austin during the highly anticipated 2020 general election.
With two hours left to vote and many Austinites getting off work for the day, more than 43,000 Travis County residents have cast their ballot on Election Day, according to the Travis County clerk.
Most of the 178 Travis County polling locations report little to no wait times for voters to cast a ballot.
As of 5 p.m., only one site, Old Quarry library branch in Northwest Hills, reports an extended wait time. It reportedly will take at least 50 minutes to cast a vote at this location, although similar county reports have proven to be unsubstantiated when reviewed earlier in Election Day.
The only other county polling site reporting a delay is located in Manor, where a 50-minute-plus wait is also reportedly occurring.
Polling locations in north-central Austin have little to no wait times for voters mid-afternoon.
According to one campaign worker in front of St. Matthew's Episcopal Church in Northwest Hills, approximately 200 people have voted at the polling location so far today.
Another nearby spot, St. John's United Methodist Church in Allandale, also reported no wait times despite short-lived reports from Travis County that voters were waiting at least 20 minutes to cast a ballot.
Another common Election Day polling location, Congregation Beth Israel in Rosedale, had little activity as well, according to one on-site petitioner.
There may not be any polling sites in Austin's central core reporting extended wait times as of late Tuesday afternoon.
If you want to rock the vote in style, consider stopping by Austin Central Library from 6-7:30 p.m. to enjoy live music while casting a ballot. Jack Craver of Austin Politics Newsletter reports Progress Texas is hosting live music at polling sites across Austin on Election Day.
2:50 p.m.: Election Protection group reports no issues at Austin-area polling sites
Despite reports of a brief wait on Travis County's wait time map, the polling site at Juan P. Navarro Early College High School had no wait time mid-afternoon.
A volunteer from Election Protection, a polling site watch group, reports no major issues at Austin-area polling locations. Election Protection is a national, nonpartisan coalition of various nonprofit and advocacy groups that seek to protect and defend the right to vote.
1:30 p.m.: Petitions to recall Austin Mayor Steve Adler circulating at Ben Hur polling location
Ben Hur Shrine Temple in north-central Austin is also reporting slow lines, with more poll workers and campaign volunteers than voters.
However, one notable difference at this location is a campaign to recall Austin Mayor Steve Adler. The Adler recall initiative reportedly needs 61,000 valid signatures by January to qualify for a May mayoral recall election.
At least two people signed the petition on their way to vote after the lunch hour.
Jason Scott, who supports the recall initiative, was on West Anderson Drive on Tuesday waving a sign pointing voters toward the Ben Hur polling location. Some people honked, he said, while others gave him a thumbs down in response to the recall effort.
The Austin-born resident said he disagreed with Adler's decision to close down Austin during the pandemic. He also criticized the lift on Austin's camping ban.
"It's really a bad case of mismanagement," Scott said. "Just watch, there's about to be a big change politically."
Locally owned businesses have suffered most during quarantine measures, Scott said, while big-box national stores such as Walmart have benefited.
"We need to be able to restart the economy," he said.
12:15 p.m.: Lines remain short at most Austin voter locations, including spots with a reported wait
There were no lines at Greater Mt. Zion Baptist Church in East Austin despite reports of longer-than-usual waits at the polling location.(Joe Lanane)
Despite claims earlier in the morning that lines at Greater Mt. Zion Baptist Church were 20-50 minutes long, according to Travis County's wait time map, a poll worker at the site reports "relatively mild turnout" and no extensive wait times. The poll worker attributed the inaccurate report to a potential tech glitch in how they report wait times to the county.
The wait time map has since been updated heading into the noon hour to show that almost all polling locations in Travis County have short wait times between zero and 20 minutes. Only Avalon Pool and Amenity Center in Pflugerville reports an excessive wait time of 50 or more minutes. No other polling site reports wait times that exceed 20 minutes.
At other polling locations throughout Austin, voters could walk in almost immediately to cast a ballot.
10:20 a.m.: First-time poll worker reports no lines at Twin Oaks library branch
Poll workers set up outside of Twin Oaks library branch in South Austin on Election Day.Joe Lanane
Nothing unexpected has occurred so far at the Twin Oaks library branch in South Austin. A first-time poll worker, who declined to give their name, said they are glad to work the polling site to ensure there are more than enough voting locations open on Election Day.
"It's a generational handing of the baton because this position is usually served by retired people and the elderly," the poll worker said. "I felt like this was a call to action, and other than voting it just feels very hopeful to participate."
10 a.m.: South Austin house becomes pickup spot for Texas Democrats
Caitlin Gabor, right, hands out campaign literature to volunteers at a Texas Democrats pickup spot in South Austin.(Joe Lanane/Austonia)
Between two South Austin polling sites is an unofficial pickup spot for Texas Democrats volunteering today. Volunteer Caitlin Gabor is working a makeshift work station to hand off campaign literature to workers—who then will work the neighborhoods to target voters who have not yet cast ballots. Gabor said this is her first time engaging in political activity.
Volunteers, who come and go from the South Austin home, picking up campaign pamphlets, report that many voters still benefit from information about polling locations and how to cast a vote during COVID-19.
9:40 a.m.: South Austin Recreation Center has no lines after morning rush
Outside of the South Austin Recreation Center, located near the South Lamar Boulevard-Oltorf Street intersection, was reportedly busy when polls opened Tuesday morning but has since died down.
Gloria and Charles Saucedo campaign outside of South Austin Recreation Center on Election Day.Joe Lanane
Gloria Saucedo and her husband Charles, have set up outside of the recreation center to support Gloria's sister, Austin ISD District 2 candidate Ofelia Maldonado Zapata. The polling location is located in AISD District 2, Gloria said, and her sister is one of three candidates running for the open seat.
The couple anticipates more voters to arrive after the work day concludes around 5:30 p.m. Polls close at 7 p.m.
8:40 a.m.: East Austin polling site has no lines
Cinque Kiara sells t-shirts benefiting Carment Kiara's Youth Organization outside Carver library branch in East Austin. (Joe Lanane/Austonia)
Cinque Kiara sells custom T-shirts that encourage voting while standing outside of the Carver library branch polling location, but there weren't many voters to solicit potential donations for the Carment Kiara's Youth Organization, which benefits from the shirt sales.
According to a worker for the Julie Oliver campaign, the site had a 15-20 minute wait at the start of voting Tuesday, but voters have walked right into the East Austin library branch with no wait since the first hour of voting.
8:20 a.m.: Petitioner seeks signatures for local election reforms
Ernest Smith collects signatures for Austinites for Progressive Reform outside of the Millennium Youth Complex on Election Day. (Joe Lanane/Austonia)
There was no line to vote at Millennium Youth Complex in East Austin, with campaign volunteers outnumbering voters at this time. There was a short line right when polls opened, said Ernest Smith, a volunteer for Austinites for Progressive Reform. Smith was seeking signatures for a petition that could force several election reform initiatives on the local ballot in May 2021.
The reforms include moving the mayoral election to align with presidential election years. Austin Mayor Steve Adler was elected in 2014 in the first local race to be held in November instead of May when most local elections occur in Texas. He was reelected in 2018 during another off-presidential election.
The petition also seeks a ballot question to reform campaign finance rules and make Austin a ranked-choice voting city, the same way Maine will cast ballots Tuesday. Additionally, the reform group seeks to realign Austin's political structure to a mayor-council form of government.
Smith had less than a handful of signatures so far but anticipated more foot traffic during the lunch rush.
8 a.m.: Walk-up COVID-19 testing site is also a polling location on Election Day
Qualifying voters can vote curbside as part of a new Travis County program. (Joe Lanane/Austonia)
Givens Park, a walk-up COVID-19 testing site during the pandemic, doubles Tuesday as an Election Day polling site. A poll watcher for a civil rights group said there was a 10- to 15-minute wait when polls opened at 7 a.m. but there has been no line since.
Every polling site, including the Givens Recreation Center, offers curbside voting as part of an initiative from Travis County. That means poll workers come to your car to help qualifying voters—mostly seniors and voters with special needs—cast a ballot.
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Austin has been in the national spotlight for more than extreme growth—the last two years have brought a handful of violent crimes, missing persons cases and shootings.
Some of the most heartbreaking cases have yet to be solved. Here's a small update on some ongoing, high-profile cases in Austin.
Moriah Wilson | Suspect still on the run
Star biker Moriah Wilson was found dead in her East Austin home.
Professional cyclist Moriah “Mo” Wilson’s alleged killer, Kaitlin Armstrong, is still on the run and was last spotted leaving LaGuardia Airport in New York City on May 14—three days before the Austin Police Department obtained a warrant for her arrest.
Wilson was shot to death in her home on May 11 just hours after she went swimming with fellow cyclist Colin Strickland, who Armstrong had previously dated. Strickland said it was never a secret that he dated 25-year-old Wilson and had “no indication” Armstrong would react violently, as she had been dating other people as well.
While Wilson’s family said they don’t believe she was romantically involved with anyone, the case is being investigated as a crime of passion.
Investigators believe Armstrong might be using her sister’s name, Christine Armstrong, in New York State. A $5,000 reward has been issued for information leading to her capture.
Timothy Perez | Missing since March 2022(Robert Perez)Conroe couple Robert and Sandra Perez haven’t seen their son, 32-year-old Timothy Perez, since he left to go visit his brother in Austin on March 5. The couple said he got lost and called Robert for help at 1 a.m. before the call disconnected.
"He said, 'Dad, come get me, I'm lost,'" Robert Perez told Austonia. "I said, 'Pull, over,' but he just hung up, and we were never able to get a hold of him."The Austin Police Department found Timothy’s car—cold and with an empty tank—around 15 miles from his brother’s home at 4:30 a.m. the same morning
Timothy was last spotted again that morning when Round Rock Police responded to a welfare check called in by St. William Catholic Church. RRPD photographed him, said Timothy refused to identify himself and left without incident; Timothy wasn’t reported missing until a few days later.
According to EquuSearch, Timothy’s phone pinged briefly in Conroe on March 16 but hasn’t been located since. RRPD officials said they believe Timothy is voluntarily missing based on his interaction with officers.
But his parents think Timothy might've suffered a nervous breakdown and still drive from Conroe to Austin every few days to look for their son.Due to the sighting at the church, APD closed its missing person case on April 8 but Round Rock Police still lists Timothy as missing.
Timothy is a 6'2, 180 lb. Hispanic man with shoulder-length black hair, a full beard, and brown eyes. Anyone with information on Timothy Perez's disappearance can call the family's private investigator at 512-844-7933.
Jason Landry | Missing since December 2020
More than 31,000 acres were combed through to find missing Texas State student Jason Landry. (Caldwell County Sheriff's Office)
Texas State University student Jason Landry went missing on Dec. 13, 2020, after his car was found abandoned in Luling as he was driving home from nearby San Marcos to Missouri City, Texas, for winter break.
Landry’s car was found crashed with keys still in the ignition and all of his personal possessions, including his clothing, some with drops of blood, and phone, but no one in sight.
As conspiracies have swirled around the internet about what might've happened that night, Capt. Jeff Ferry, who is the lead investigator on the case, said "no doubt this is a tragedy… but it’s not a crime.”
More than a year later, friends and family of Landry are still searching for him and have erected billboards reminding locals of his disappearance and offering a $10,000 reward: one going southbound on I-35 and another along U.S. Hwy. 183 north of Luling.
The billboards were leased for 13 weeks in April but they may extend the rental—meanwhile, the case is in the hands of the Texas Attorney General Cold Case and Missing Persons unit. Anyone with information is asked to call (512) 936-0742.
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Elon Musk’s spacecraft and rocket company SpaceX could be moving into Central Texas with an industrial facility in Bastrop County.
Bastrop County property records show that an entity tied to the Boring Company purchased the land near what it already owned along FM 1209. Then in early June, a 46.5-acre tract was transferred from the Boring Company’s entity to SpaceX.
In a June 6 filing with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, SpaceX gave notice for "Project Echo," a nearly 30-acre warehouse at 816 FM 1209. The project, just a 20-minute drive from Tesla's Giga Texas factory, was authorized to start construction early this month and has an estimated completion at the end of March 2023.
Meanwhile, the SpaceX jobs are for a facilities engineer and a senior application software engineer. The facilities engineer would be tasked with enabling SpaceX to achieve its long-term mission while the software engineer position would create systems to enable rapid build and reuse of the Starship—a reusable rocket the company is developing to carry cargo and people to space—as well as designing manufacturing software that will be used for Starlink, the company’s network of satellites providing internet access.
SpaceX has a site in South Texas along with a rocket testing facility an hour and a half drive north of Austin, in McGregor. Last year, job postings indicated SpaceX's plans for an Austin factory.
This brings an expansion of Musk’s companies in the region, with Tesla’s headquarters in southeast Travis County and the Boring Company based in Pflugerville.
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