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city hall charlie austin city council
(Charlie L. Harper III)

Austin police officers, experts and local leaders will speak with City Council members on Thursday about how to institute sweeping changes to policies at the Austin Police Department in response to public outcry about racism and violence that led to weeks of protest in May and June.

The meeting is livestreaming on ATXN1.


"The objective is to bring to the forefront an open and public conversation about the challenges we will face implementing these big structural changes," said Austin City Council Member Jimmy Flannigan, chairman of the council's Public Safety Committee, which is hosting the discussion on Thursday.

Neither Police Chief Brian Manley nor City Manager Spencer Cronk will be at the workshop, Flannigan said.

Public comment will not be allowed—invited participants only—but the public may watch the proceedings.

The meeting is billed as "a conversation between front line officers and community experts to discuss General Orders and Tactics."

The invited speakers are:
  • Sergeant Mike Crumrine, a founding member and current president of the Lesbian and Gay Peace Officers Association
  • Officer Anna Jackson, an officer at the APD North substation
  • Corporal Marcos Johnson
  • Officer Thomas Villareal, vice president of the Austin Police Association

Last month, in the wake of clashes between police and anti-brutality demonstrators, and after the testimony of hundreds of people calling for change at the police department, the City Council unanimously passed a series of resolutions calling for an overhaul of the APD's budget, practices and leadership.

Austin Police Chief Brian Manley, whose job was on the line after several council members and hundreds of residents called for his removal, ultimately hung onto his position. Two weeks ago, Cronk—who has the power to fire Manley—told the members of the council's Public Safety Committee that the chief is "committed" to overhauling practices.

That committee, which is charged with overseeing these changes, will host a series of workshops to work out what changes should be made, and how they should be put into effect, Flannigan said.

Agendas for those meetings will be posted on the City Council website here.

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.