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Opinion: Austin faces four major challenges—and they are becoming larger and more urgent


Editor's Note: This is the last political column Austonia will run in a series of opinion pieces. The views displayed here are not those of Austonia. View past opinions, including contrasting views to this one here.

Matt Mackowiak has lived in Austin from 1984-2003 and since 2011. He is the Travis County Republican chair and co-founder of Save Austin Now PAC, a nonpartisan political action committee that advocates for policies and candidates that support quality of life issues and public safety.

If you've lived in Austin more than three years, then you've almost surely experienced the same thing that I have.

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Former UT athlete weighs in on the challenges ahead from college athletes profiting off their name, image and likeness

Shea Morenz played football and baseball at UT before going pro. (Shea Morenz)

Editor's Note: Shea Morenz is the chief executive of Morenz Group which provides strategic guidance and expansionary capital to privately held companies. He earned an MBA from the University of Michigan in 2002 and a BBA in finance from The University of Texas at Austin where he lettered in both football and baseball and received Southwest Conference Academic Honors, graduating in '97. He was a first draft choice with the Yankees in '95, where he played professionally for five years.

College football conference realignment and the controversial "Fair Pay for Play" ruling seems inevitable when you consider that eight of the top 10 biggest outdoor stadiums in the world host Saturday College Football games where the athletes on the field are paid $0. As a capitalist, I can get behind both of these concepts. As a former collegiate and professional athlete, I struggle mightily with their implementation and, importantly, with the reality that amateur sport as we know it will no longer exist.

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Opinion: Constructive Optimism is a belief system I have for the future of Austin politics


Editor's Note: Joah Spearman is the former vice chair of the Austin Music Commission, former chair of AIDS Services of Austin, and is the founder and CEO of Localeur. He has lived in Austin for more than 15 years and experienced the city's growth. This opinion does not reflect that of Austonia.

Optimism is defined as hopefulness and confidence about the future or the success of something, and in my 16-plus years living in Austin, the optimism many hold about Austin's future appears to be at a critical inflection point.

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