(Emma Freer/Austonia)

After a contentious campaign period, and two failed transit initiatives in 2014 and 2000, Austinites voted to approve Proposition A, which permanently raises the city's property tax rate to help pay for Project Connect, a $7.1 billion plan to overhaul the local transit system.

Unlike other races this election cycle, the results weren't close. Prop A passed by a nearly 19% margin, which local political analysts and transit advocates attributed to record-breaking turnout, a younger electorate and a new approach to transit planning.

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(Capital Metro/Twitter)

Austin is making public transit electric by introducing the first interoperable charging buses in the country. In partnership with Siemens Mobility and Proterra Inc., Capital Metro now has 12 zero-emission electric buses on the roads.

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(Emma Freer/Austonia)

Past transit invesment, including the building of I-35, displaced Austinites.

On Nov. 3, Austin residents will vote on Proposition A. If approved, it will increase the city's property tax rate by around 20% to help pay for Project Connect, a $7.1 billion overhaul of the local transit system.

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Progressives Against Project Connect held rally in front of Capital Metro's East Austin headquarters September 30, 2020.

It's a well-worn cliché in American politics that Progressives want to raise your taxes whereas Conservatives want to cut them. But the reality is more e nuanced. At least in Austin this fall, where some Progressives are taking a stand against a tax increase known as Proposition A.

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(Capital Metro)

Rendering, Project Connect station

The Austin City Council on Friday unanimously approved a measure to add to the November ballot the massive $7.1B "Project Connect," a 20-year overhaul of Austin's transit system that would include a new light rail and "rapid bus" lines.

The council plans to add it to the ballot in a formal order next week, members said. Then it's up to voters to decide whether to approve it.

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(City of Austin)

Austin Mayor Steve Adler delivered his annual "State of the City" address Wednesday—virtually.

This story has been updated to include quotes from the mayor's speech.

Austin Mayor Steve Adler delivered his annual "State of the City" address Wednesday evening, in which he discussed the coronavirus pandemic, police funding, the local economy, homelessness, transit and equity issues.

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Project Connect, thanks to COVID-19, now faces a tougher, murkier political journey through the next several months. (Capital Metro)

Just a few weeks ago, Capital Metro and supporters of its $9.8 billion light rail-plus plan had the wind at their backs.

A proposed November rail referendum sure to be teeming with transit-friendly Democrats eager to show up and have their say in the presidential election. A Central Texas road system snarled through most of the daylight hours, even on Saturdays. A robust local economy, with everyone working and likely in a generous mood toward a huge government public works proposal.

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