Budget Town Hall – Participation Details

Hello Neighbors!
As a follow up to the email that went out to OWANA members last week, below is information about joining in and participating in Councilmember Tovo’s Budget Town Hall on Monday, July 19. Please consider participating if you have opinions on how the City should prioritize funding for this upcoming fiscal year.
When: 5:30-6:30 pm, Monday July 19
What: CM Tovo and Interim Budget Officer Kerri Lang will discuss the proposed FY22 budget, followed by a moderated Q&A session.
After you submit your registration, you will receive an email containing the video link and call-in number. Attendees can submit questions via the chat function in real time. Attendees who will be calling in and not using the video platform should email their questions for the panelists at budgetqa@austintexas.gov.
For more information on the budget process, budget documents, and to provide feedback, visit: AustinTexas.gov/Budget.
Kathie Tovo and her staff continue to provide updates through Twitter (@kathietovo) and Facebook: www.facebook/ktovo. (You do not need a Facebook account to access the City Council page.)

4th of July Celebration!

We missed celebrating Independence Day with everyone last year, and we hope you can join us for a small celebration this year. Details are as follows; spread the word and we hope to see you there!

Sunday, July 4 (of course!), about 6-8pm at West Austin Park, where you’ll have a view of the  HEB/Austin Symphony fireworks show.

Casey’s New Orleans Snowballs will be there from 6-8pm!
The Almost Readys will entertain us with live music!

We’ll also have an assortment of games like bocce ball, corn hole, ladder ball, etc.

Bring your own picnic dinner/drinks and come by to meet old friends and make new ones!

Please keep in mind that there may be unvaccinated children and others at the event; continue to social distance per CDC guidelines.

Rezoning of UT’s ‘Gateway Tract’

You may have heard (and if you  haven’t, you’re in the right place!), the City Council has initiated zoning cases on properties in our neighborhood currently owned by the The University of Texas. This property includes the land occupied by the Gateway Apartment and the Open Door Preschool.

There is not a request for specific zoning from UT, nor is there a recommendation from the City staff on any proposed zoning districts at this time.

The City of Austin will be holding a public meeting to receive your input and ideas on any potential future development of the property.

Some neighborhood residents have met to discuss the potential rezoning, and their thoughts are summarized in this document.

The public (and virtual) meeting about the site will be held on Monday, June 21, 2021 6:00 – 8:00 PM. Details are below. If you would like to be included on the email list for notification for future meetings, email the Case Manager with the City of Austin, Wendy Rhoades, at Wendy.Rhoades@austintexas.gov.

Please be advised that due to the anticipated large number of meeting participants, those wishing to speak will be given 1 minute of speaking time. If you would prefer to provide written input, you can submit it to Speak Up Austin and/or email Wendy Rhoades.

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Celebrating Halloween Safely

Many of our neighbors have been discussing if and how to safely celebrate Halloween this season.

For your reference, below is information for safely celebrating Halloween. We encourage you to take some time to read through these and adapt them how you see best for your family, so everyone can have a fun holiday and stay healthy!

The CDC offers these guidelines for those that do go trick-or-treating, and those that decide to offer candy to the trick-or-treaters. They include keeping trick-or-treaters at least 6 feet apart, wearing masks, and for those offering candy, keeping distance from the trick-or-treaters and offering candy in individual bags. The City of Austin’s guidelines are below.

Following the above guidelines, OWANA strongly discourages door-knocking for trick-or-treaters, and those handing out candy should stay outside, wear a mask, and find a way to offer the candy at a distance from the children. And of course, please do not go trick-or-treating or distribute candy if you are feeling sick and/or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control also offers these guidelines for making Halloween activities (from visiting a pumpkin patch to having a costume parade) more safe.

A few other articles and stories on how people are celebrating Halloween this year:
Parents Don’t Have to Cancel Halloween With These Creative Ideas (National Geographic, 10/5/20)

No Trick or Treat: Americans Get Creative to Celebrate Halloween Safely (National Public Radio, 9/24/20)

Thank you for your cooperation in keeping our neighborhood safe and healthy. Happy Halloween and have fun!

Local Election Forum

Hello Neighbors!

The Old West Austin Neighborhood Association invites you to attend our Virtual Election Forum, Tuesday, October 13, at 7pm. October 13 is the first day of early voting.

The forum will feature an overview presentation from Capital Metro as well as speakers representing both sides of the important Project Connect (Proposition A) measure, followed by audience questions about the proposition.

We’ve also invited candidates for the AISD School Board who will each briefly share their vision for Austin schools.

Join the meeting via Zoom here. 
The meeting ID is 474 967 8778 and the password is 2020vote.