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[00:00:03]

JUNE 11TH, 2021.

[CALL TO ORDER]

UH, WE HAVE FORM I'M NOW CALL THIS MEETING, CALLING THIS MEETING OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S A WINTER STORM TASK FORCE TO ORDER.

UH, WE

[2A. Welcome and purpose of the Listening Session.]

HAVE COUNCIL MEMBER KITCHEN HERE.

WHO'S GRACIOUSLY AGREED TO, TO PROVIDE SOME WORDS, UH, TO US THIS EVENING AND TO THE CITIZENS WHO HAVE JOINED US.

I BELIEVE WE HAVE, UH, THREE PEOPLE SIGNED UP FOR OUR CITIZENS COMMUNICATION AND SPEAKING FOR OUR LISTENING SESSION, WE HAVE THREE STATEMENTS THAT VICE CHAIR, UH, THAT THE AUSTIN WILL READ INTO THE RECORD AND WE WILL OF COURSE HAVE DISCUSSION.

WE WILL, UM, AS WE HAVE THREE INDIVIDUALS, I WILL GIVE THEM EACH 15 MINUTES TO SPEAK.

UM, AND THEN WE WILL HAVE FIVE MINUTES OF QUESTIONS DISCUSSION, UH, WITH EACH PERSON.

OKAY, PATRICIA.

[2B. Listening Session – community members and organizational representatives provide testimony on their experiences during and in that aftermath of Winter Storm Uri.]

UM, I'M, I'M FIRST GOING TO TURN THE FLOOR OVER TO COUNCIL MEMBER KITCHEN.

THANK YOU.

UM, I WANTED TO, I REALLY APPRECIATE THE CHANCE TO, TO COME AND JUST VISIT WITH YOU ALL FOR A FEW MINUTES TONIGHT BEFORE YOU GET YOUR MEETING STARTED.

AND AS YOU TALK TO THE FOLKS WHO HAVE CALLED IN, UH, I WANT TO REITERATE AND THANK YOU AGAIN.

UH, ALL OF YOUR PARTICIPATION IS VERY HELPFUL FOR THE COUNCIL, UM, AND HEARING FROM YOU, YOUR IDEAS, YOUR EXPERIENCES, UM, WHAT YOU'D LIKE US TO THINK ABOUT AS WE MAKE IMPROVEMENTS IS REALLY IMPORTANT.

I KNOW IT'S WAS REALLY A VERY TRAUMATIC EXPERIENCE, A TOUGH EXPERIENCE, AND IN FACT, A DANGEROUS EXPERIENCE FOR MANY PEOPLE ACROSS AUSTIN AND WITH CLIMATE CHANGE.

UM, WE NEVER EVER WANT TO REPEAT THIS EXPERIENCE AGAIN, BUT WE KNOW WITH CLIMATE CHANGE THAT WE HAVE TO BE PREPARED.

SO THIS IS, UH, YOU KNOW, WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO DO AS A COUNCIL AND WHAT YOU ALL ARE ENGAGED IN IS HELPING US MAKE SURE THAT WE LEARN FROM THIS EXPERIENCE.

WE MAKE ALL THE CHANGES THAT NEED TO HAPPEN.

UM, AND WE MAKE SURE THIS DOESN'T HAPPEN AGAIN.

SO, UM, I AM, UH, I WANTED TO LET Y'ALL KNOW THAT SOME OF THE THINGS THAT, THAT I HAVE HEARD, UM, I AM THE CHAIR OF THE COUNCIL'S WATER COMMITTEE.

SO WE'RE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE.

AND WHAT WE HAVE BEEN DOING AS PART OF THAT IS, IS WORKING WITH OUR, UH, WATER STAFF, UM, AS THEY PREPARE THEIR AFTER ACTION REPORT, UH, WE'VE HEARD FROM SOME INDIVIDUALS AND WE'VE ALSO HEARD FROM, UM, FROM THE WATER STAFF ON WHAT KINDS OF THINGS THEY'RE LOOKING AT, AND THAT, THAT INCLUDES THEIR EMERGENCY RESPONSE PLAN.

UH, THE WATER UTILITY HAS, UH, AN EMERGENCY RESPONSE PLAN THAT THEY ARE IN THE PROCESS OF REVISING BASED ON WHAT THEY'VE LEARNED AND WHAT ALL OF US HAVE LEARNED.

AND THAT INCLUDES, UM, ENGAGING WITH, YOU KNOW, WORKING WITH THE COMMUNITY.

IT'S NOT SOMETHING THAT THEY HAD INCLUDED IN THEIR, UM, UM, EMERGENCY RESPONSE PLAN IN THE PAST.

BUT I THINK ONE THING THAT WE HAVE ALL LEARNED IS HOW IMPORTANT IT IS TO COMMUNICATE AND ALSO TO WORK WITH FOLKS IN THE COMMUNITY SO THAT WE'RE ALL READY AND PREPARED.

UM, THE WATER UTILITY HAS DONE THINGS LIKE NOW THEY'RE WORKING THERE.

THEY WILL HAVE A STOCK STOCK PILE OF WATER, WHICH THEY'VE ALREADY PUT THAT IN PLACE.

THEY'RE LOOKING AT A WHOLE RANGE OF THINGS, INCLUDING WINTERIZATION, UM, AND THINGS LIKE, UH, THE, UM, AMI, WHICH IS THOSE AUTOMATED METERS, WHICH HELP PEOPLE DETERMINE WHETHER OR NOT THEY HAVE A LEAK.

SO THAT'S NOT ALL INCLUSIVE BY ANY MEANS.

THERE'S A WHOLE RANGE OF THINGS THAT WE NEED TO DO FROM THE AUSTIN WATER PERSPECTIVE, WHICH THEY ARE ENGAGED IN ANALYZING WE'VE HAD SEVERAL DISCUSSIONS ABOUT IT AND WE WILL BE GETTING AN AFTER-ACTION REPORT FROM THEM.

THE OTHER THING THAT I WANTED THAT WAS TOP OF MIND FOR ME DURING THIS WHOLE, THIS, YOU KNOW, THIS WHOLE SITUATION THAT WE ALL WENT THROUGH IS, UM, THE CONCERNS FOR OUR MOST VULNERABLE PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY.

UM, PARTICULARLY OUR SENIORS AND PEOPLE LIVING AT HOME, UH, DISABILITIES.

WE FOUND THAT WE DIDN'T HAVE A WAY WE MEANING THE CITY DID NOT HAVE A COMPREHENSIVE WAY TO REACH OUT TO THESE, TO THESE FOLKS, OR EVEN TO UNDERSTAND WHO EVERYBODY IS THAT'S AT RISK.

ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS DONE THAT YOU MAY ALL BE AWARE OF THAT WAS DONE WITH, UM, WITH LOTS AND LOTS OF VOLUNTEERS WAS TO CALL A HUGE LIST OF SENIORS, PEOPLE OVER A CERTAIN AGE, UH, TO, TO HELP IDENTIFY THOSE THAT MIGHT NEED FOOD MIGHT HAVE NEEDED FOOD AND WATER WHOSE ELECTRICITY WAS OUT, WHO, UH, DIDN'T HAVE FAMILY OR OTHER ASSISTANCE.

[00:05:01]

UM, OUT OF THAT EFFORT, WE HAVE REQUESTED THAT THE COMMISSION ON SENIORS GIVE SOME THOUGHT TO THAT APPROACH SO THAT WE CAN INSTITUTE SOMETHING THAT IS MORE REGULAR AND NOT MORE REGULAR THAN THAT.

IT'S MORE STRUCTURED, UH, SO THAT WE'RE PREPARED NEXT TIME.

AND WE KNOW WHO OUR AT RISK FOLKS ARE IN THE COMMUNITY SO THAT WE CAN, UH, BE IMMEDIATELY PREPARED TO, TO HELP THEM.

I KNOW THAT ALL OF YOU EXPERIENCED A WHOLE RANGE OF THINGS.

UH, WE ALSO HAVE TALKED TO LOTS OF CONSTITUENTS AND WE'RE ENGAGED IN TRYING TO GET PEOPLE, WATER, UH, TRYING TO, UM, HELP WITH COMMUNICATION.

UH, WE FOUND THAT A LOT OF NEIGHBORHOODS ORGANIZE THEMSELVES OR WORKED WITH PEOPLE ON THEIR BLOCK, UH, TO HELP THEIR NEIGHBORS.

SO, UM, UNDERSTANDING ALL OF THAT AND PUTTING MORE STRUCTURE AND COORDINATION TO HOW THE CITY RESPONDS IS ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I'VE LEARNED THAT I THINK WILL BE VERY IMPORTANT.

WE HAD TOO MUCH OF A FRAGMENTED RESPONSE.

UH, THE COMMUNICATION WAS NOT COMPLETE IN ALL AREAS, UM, AND JUST ALL OF THOSE, UM, ISSUES CONTRIBUTED TO THE, THE, THE, UM, CONTRIBUTED TO THE SUFFERING THAT PEOPLE WENT THROUGH AND ARE STILL EXPERIENCING.

SO I WANT TO SHARE THAT WITH YOU, UM, AND LET YOU KNOW AGAIN, HOW MUCH I APPRECIATE, UM, HEARING FROM YOU ALL.

UM, AND, UH, WOULD INVITE ANY OF YOU ALL TO REACH OUT TO MY OFFICE.

AND I'M REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THE REPORT THAT YOU ALL ARE PREPARING WITH YOUR IDEAS, UM, AND THE IDEAS THAT YOU'RE HEARING FROM, FROM PEOPLE LIKE THOSE WHO HAVE CALLED IN TONIGHT.

I MEAN, TAKING YOUR TIME ON A FRIDAY EVENING IS, IS VERY MUCH APPRECIATED.

UM, AND, AND KNOW THAT EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU ARE IMPORTANT, AND THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE CALLED IN YOUR STORIES ARE VERY IMPORTANT TO US AND YOUR IDEAS ARE VERY IMPORTANT TO US.

UM, SO I REALLY APPRECIATE THE CHANCE TO SHARE THAT WITH YOU.

THANK YOU SO MUCH, COUNCIL MEMBER KITCHEN, AND FOR JOINING US AND FOR CARING ABOUT WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO DO HERE IN SUPPORTING US WITH COUNSEL AS WE PREP TO PRESENT TO YOU.

UM, DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY QUESTIONS FOR COUNCIL MEMBER KITCHEN BEFORE SHE HAS TO LEAVE? THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

CUTE.

AND IF THERE'S ANYTHING THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO TALK ABOUT AFTER THIS FIELD, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO REACH OUT TO MY OFFICE AND, AND, UM, SAY I SAY THE SAME THING TO THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE CALLED IN, AND I KNOW THAT YOU ALL WILL HAVE A VERY PRODUCTIVE CONVERSATION TONIGHT, SO THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, PATRICIA.

CAN YOU HEAR ME? OKAY.

WELL, EVERYONE, WE NOW HAVE TWO MORE TASKS FOR SOME MEMBERS WHO HAVE JOINED.

SO WE ARE, WE ARE GOOD TO GO ON QUORUM AND PLUS ONE, UM,

[Citizen Communications]

PATRICIA, HOW MANY CALLERS DO WE HAVE WAITING? WE HAVE FOUR COLORS.

OKAY, EXCELLENT.

SO TWO, THE FOUR COLORS.

WE WELCOME YOU.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US ON YOUR FRIDAY EVENING.

UM, WE ARE HERE, UM, AS MEMBERS OF THE WINTER STORM TASKFORCE TO HEAR, UM, ANY, UH, YOUR EXPERIENCE DURING WINTER STORM HEARING IN FEBRUARY TO HERE.

UM, ANY IDEAS, FEEDBACK PLANNING YOU FEEL SHOULD BE IMPLEMENTED, ANYTHING YOU WANT TO SHARE WITH US? UM, IT IS HELPFUL TO US IN PREPARING A REPORT TO SUBMIT TO CITY COUNCIL REGARDING THIS ISSUE, HOW IT AFFECTED THE CITIZENS OF AUSTIN AND TRAVIS COUNTY PROPER AND WHAT THEY CAN DO BETTER IN THE FUTURE TO PREVENT A LOT OF THE CALAMITY THAT WE ALL, UH, IN FEBRUARY INTO MARCH.

SO, UM, I'M GOING TO GIVE YOU EACH 15 MINUTES TO START.

IF YOU NEED A LITTLE BIT MORE, WE'LL DO THAT.

AND WE HOPE YOU'LL BE WILLING TO STAY IF YOU'RE COMFORTABLE, UM, TO ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS WE HAVE OR, OR ALLOW US TO DIG IN ANY DEEPER WITH ANY, IF ANY FACTS YOU PRESENT, UM, THAT, YOU KNOW, IT'S ALL VERY HELPFUL TO US WHEN YOU DO BEGIN, IF YOU WOULD, UM, STATE THE DISTRICT YOU LIVE IN, AND ALSO HOW YOU HEARD ABOUT OUR TASK FORCE MEETING THIS EVENING, THAT WOULD BE EXTREMELY HELPFUL TO US AS WELL.

OKAY.

PATRICIA, WHO IS OUR FIRST SPEAKER? THE FIRST SPEAKER IS DYLAN MANSHACK.

OKAY.

DYLAN MANSHACK UM, WOULD YOU SAY SOMETHING SO WE CAN MAKE SURE WE CAN HEAR YOU? YES.

CAN YOU HEAR ME? YES, WE CAN ALL HEAR YOU.

YOU HAVE THE FLOOR, PLEASE BEGIN.

AWESOME.

UH, SO GOOD AFTERNOON.

MY NAME IS DYLAN MANN SACK, AND I WANT TO THANK YOU GUYS FOR LETTING ME SPEAK, UH, I JUST HAVE A FEW BULLET POINTS WITH PERSPECTIVES FROM MY TIME, VOLUNTEERING AND EXPERIENCE IN THE STORM, AND I WON'T TAKE TOO MUCH OF YOUR TIME.

SO I REALLY APPRECIATE THE

[00:10:01]

OPPORTUNITY.

THANK YOU, DYLAN.

AND WOULD YOU TELL US WHICH DISTRICT YOU LIVE IN IF YOU KNOW, AND, AND HOW YOU HEARD ABOUT OUR MEETING THIS EVENING? OKAY.

YEAH, SO I LIVE IN DISTRICT THREE, UM, AND I BELIEVE I HEARD ABOUT THE THING TO A NEWSLETTER OF ONE OF LIKE THE COMMUNITY GROUPS.

OKAY, EXCELLENT.

THANK YOU.

YEAH.

UM, SO FIRST I JUST WANT TO SAY HOW GRATEFUL I AM FOR THE AID GROUPS AND THE DOZENS OF GROUPS OF VOLUNTEERS, UH, BRAVING THE STORAGE, PROVIDE FOOD AND WATER.

UH, WHEN EVERYTHING WENT OUT, GROUPS LIKE THE FEARLESS IN K AUSTIN, MUTUAL AID, AUSTIN, URBAN LEAGUE, UH, AND MORE, UH, WE'RE FEEDING PEOPLE, PUTTING PEOPLE IN HOTELS, SAVING COUNTLESS LIVES AS AUSTINITES FOR OUTSIDE OF THE ARTS BUILDING COVERED IN A LAYER OF SNOW OR FREEZING IN THEIR TENTS IN THE WOODS, WAITING FOR RESOURCES THAT DIDN'T COME AND HELP THANKFUL.

I AM FOR THOSE VOLUNTEERS THAT GOT IN THEIR FOUR WHEEL DRIVE VEHICLES AND DROVE OUT THERE TO PULL PEOPLE OUT OF SHELTER.

AND WHILE THE CITY WAS ON ZOOM, I'M THANKFUL FOR THE LOCAL BREWERY THAT STARTED PUMPING WATER THROUGH ITS TANK TO SUPPLY THE COMMUNITY, INCLUDING MYSELF WITH WATER.

UH, AND THEN DAYS LATER THE WATER COMES BACK ON AND THE CITY SHOWS UP WITH THE BIG WATER JUGS THAT DIDN'T GET USED BECAUSE THEY ALREADY HAD WATER BY THAT TIME.

SO IT'S JUST DISAPPOINTING TO ME BECAUSE I DON'T PAY TAXES FOR THE CITY NOT TO DO ITS JOB, ESPECIALLY.

SO WHEN IT MATTERS, I WOULD RATHER MY TAX MONEY HAVE GONE TO THIS ORGANIZATIONS, THOSE VOLUNTEERS, THEN TO A CITY THAT WAS HORRIBLY UNPREPARED, EVEN WHEN THEY HAD ALL THE RESOURCES AT THEIR DISPOSAL.

I KNOW A THEATER TEACHER THAT STEPPED UP INTO THE CRISIS RESPONSE ROLE AND HAD NEVER DONE IT BEFORE, BUT HAD TO, BECAUSE OUR CITY FAILED TO OUR COMMUNITY STEPPED UP AND THE CITY DIDN'T, THEY SERVE THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE WITH HOT MEALS, GALLONS OF WATER, DIAPERS, AND EVEN DOG FOOD.

AND WHEN THE STORM IS PREDICTED TO LAST A WEEK, THE CITY ANNOUNCED THE WARMING SHELTERS WERE GOING TO OPEN UNTIL WEDNESDAY LEAVING THE HOMELESS AND OTHERS TO FEND FOR THEMSELVES FOR THE REST OF THE WEEK.

AND THE COMMUNITY HAD TO PUSH TO GET THE CITY TO EXTEND THE SERVICE TO LAST LAST, THE ENTIRETY OF THE STORM.

HERE WE ARE FOUR MONTHS LATER ABOUT A CRISIS RESPONSE WHEN COMMUNITY GROUPS AND MUTUAL AID ORGANIZATIONS NEVER STOPPED SERVING GRANTS AND FUNDING SHOULD BE GIVING DIRECTLY TO THOSE COMMUNITY AND MUTUAL AID GROUPS SO THAT THEY CAN CONTINUE TO DO THE JOB THAT THE CITY FELL TO DO.

EVERY NEIGHBOR WE LOST, ESPECIALLY THE MOST VULNERABLE THOSE LAPS AROUND THE CITY, BECAUSE THE COMMUNITY DID IT PART.

AND WE HAD BEEN GIVEN THESE CONVERSATIONS, HAVING THESE CONVERSATIONS FOR, FOR, FOR MONTHS NOW WITHIN THEIR OWN CIRCLES.

AND MAYOR ALDO SHOWED UP AT ONE OF THEM.

I BELIEVE THAT I WAS AT FOR 10 MINUTES AND THEN LEFT BEFORE WE EVEN HAD A CONVERSATION.

SO I HOPE THIS DOESN'T FALL ON DEAF EARS, BUT BASED ON HOW LONG IT TOOK TO MAKE QUORUM, I'M AFRAID IT ALREADY HAS.

I HOPE I'M PROVED WRONG.

I THINK YOU GUYS, FOR TAKING THE TIME TO HAVE THIS CONVERSATION, BECAUSE THIS DIALOGUE IS LONG OVERDUE.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, DYLAN.

AND DO YOU HAVE ANY FEEDBACK IF YOU, IF YOU DON'T MIND MY ASKING WITH REGARD TO, UH, WHAT PLANNING YOU THINK THE CITY NEEDS TO HAVE IMPLEMENTED IN THE FUTURE BASED ON YOUR EXPERIENCE? WELL, I KNOW ONE THING THERE IS SUCH AN ISSUE WITH COMMUNICATION WITH THESE COMMUNITY GROUPS.

I MEAN, IT'S LIKE HOW MANY DAYS FOR US TO FIGURE OUT, OH, HEY, LIKE WE CAN GO TO THESE BREWERIES AND THEY CAN PUMP WATER FOR US.

YOU KNOW? I MEAN, THOSE ARE THINGS THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN WHEN WE KNEW THE STORM WAS COMING, THAT SHOULD HAVE ALREADY BEEN SET UP, YOU KNOW? AND SO IT'S REALLY DISAPPOINTING BECAUSE THERE'S SENSE THINGS THAT WERE GOING ON THAT NEIGHBORS STEPPED UP TO DO.

AND IT'S JUST, I UNDERSTAND THE CITY IT'S UNPREPARED.

IT WAS UNPREPARED FOR SOMETHING OF THAT NATURE, BUT IF OUR COMMUNITY CAN STEP UP, I THINK THE CITY HAS TO STEP UP TO MAKE SURE THEY ARE COMMUNICATING WITH THESE GROUPS.

THEY ARE HOLDING TOWN HALLS WITH THESE GROUPS.

THEY ARE GIVING FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES FOR THESE GROUPS.

LIKE, I MEAN THAT WE HAVE SUCH AN OVER-SATURATION OF COMMUNITY GROUPS AND NONPROFITS IN OUR CITY AND SOME COORDINATION AND SOME FUNDS WOULD GO A LONG WAY TO HELPING FIX A LOT OF THESE PROBLEMS THAT JUST COMPOUND AND COMPOUND AND COMPOUNDS AND CAUSES JUST FOR THE REST OF OUR ENTIRE CITY, ESPECIALLY WHEN SOMETHING LIKE A WINTER STORM HAPPENS.

THANK YOU.

ANY OTHER TASK FORCES, WOULD YOU, WOULD YOU LIKE TO ASK DYLAN ANY QUESTIONS OR PROVIDE ANY FEEDBACK ON WHAT HE SHARED WITH US THIS EVENING? YES, JEFFREY.

UM, HI, THIS IS, UM, THIS IS TAX MEMBER, JEFFREY CLEMENS.

UM, I'M ALSO DISTRICT THREE.

UH, SO GOOD TO MEET YOU DOIN.

UM, YES.

UM, AND I REALLY APPRECIATE YOU COMING AND TALKING TO US TONIGHT AND PROVIDING YOUR PERSPECTIVE.

UM, YOU MENTIONED THAT THEATER TEACHER WHO YOU SAID STEPPED UP, UM, DO YOU, WOULD YOU BE COMFORTABLE PROVIDING THEIR NAME FOR US? JUST SO THAT WAY WE COULD HAVE THAT.

IF YOU REMEMBER IT, DO YOU WANT TO, IF YOU WANT TO REACH OUT TO ME THROUGH EMAIL, I CERTAINLY CAN.

I JUST DON'T FEEL COMFORTABLE DOING IT LIVE BEFORE ASKING THEM.

OKAY, SURE.

NO PROBLEM.

ALL RIGHT.

UM, THAT'S REALLY THE ONLY QUESTION I HAD.

THANK YOU.

DO WE HAVE YOUR EMAIL, DYLAN? SHOULD PATRICIA HAVE IT? OKAY.

UH, SHE SAID, YEAH, THAT'S NOT.

I'LL EMAIL HER AGAIN.

OKAY.

AND I ALSO LIVE IN, IN DISTRICT THREE AND, AND, UH, I KNOW WE WERE A DISTRICT THAT, THAT HAD SOME OF THE WORST OF IT, UM, IN TERMS OF LACK OF WATER AND TOTAL BLACKOUT IN TERMS OF ELECTRICITY FOR DAYS.

UM, I DEFINITELY FEEL YOUR PAIN AND ECHO YOUR SENTIMENTS, AND I APPRECIATE YOU TAKING THE TIME TO CALL IN AND SPEAK WITH US.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

I APPRECIATE THAT.

THANK YOU.

[00:15:03]

ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR DYLAN? OKAY.

THANK YOU, DYLAN.

PATRICIA? YES.

WHO IS OUR NEXT SPEAKER? KB BROOKENS.

OKAY.

WOULD YOU PLEASE SAY SOMETHING KB, BROOKLYN, SO WE CAN MAKE SURE WE CAN HEAR YOU.

WE JUST HEARD ME.

YES.

WE CAN HEAR YOU NOW.

UM, WOULD YOU, WOULD YOU PLEASE TAKE THE FLOOR AND IF YOU DON'T MIND, UM, UH, LET US KNOW THE DISTRICT YOU LIVE IN AND, UM, HOW YOU HEARD ABOUT OUR MEETING THIS EVENING.

WE'D APPRECIATE IT.

YEAH, SURE.

UM, I LIVE IN DISTRICT TWO AND I HEARD ABOUT THE MEETING THROUGH, UH, SENDING AN EMAIL TO THE EQUITY OFFICE.

THANK YOU FOR THAT.

AND, AND PLEASE, UM, PLEASE SHARE WITH US WHERE WE'RE READY TO HEAR WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY.

ALL RIGHT.

AWESOME.

UM, SO THANKS SO MUCH FOR DOING, FOR, UH, SPEAKING TO THOSE FACTS EARLIER.

UM, I ALSO WANTED TO, UH, ADD ON AND SAY THAT, UM, A LOT OF, KIND OF LIKE CITY PLANNING AND, UH, TALKS THAT ARE ABOUT THE WINTER STORM.

LIKE THERE'S NO DOUBT THAT THAT WAS A REALLY EGREGIOUS AND TERRIBLE TIME FOR A LOT OF US.

UM, I'M THINKING OF LIKE ACCESSIBLE WAYS FOR PEOPLE TO ENGAGE WITH THIS MOMENT.

AND, UM, OVER THE PAST COUPLE OF MONTHS, I'VE BEEN TOYING WITH THE IDEA OF DOING LIKE AN ARTISTIC PROJECT.

UM, SO LUCKILY BECAUSE OF THE SUPPORTIVE, UH, OFTEN MUTUAL AID, I WAS ABLE TO KIND OF LIKE GET A PROJECT, UM, OFF THE GROUND, WHICH IS LIKE HAVING ARTISTS, UM, TALK ABOUT THE WINTER STORM.

UM, AND I THINK THAT LIKE CITY POLITICS, ESPECIALLY BECAUSE THESE MEETINGS ARE LIKE DURING TIMES WHERE PEOPLE WORK AND, AND THINGS LIKE THAT.

UM, AND BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF EDUCATION, REALLY, LIKE, I DIDN'T EVEN PERSONALLY KNOW A LOT ABOUT ARCHIVE AND ALL OF THAT STUFF UNTIL THE WINTER STORM, UM, HAPPENED.

I THINK THAT ACCESSIBLE POINT THAT WE SHOULD DEFINITELY MAKE SURE THAT, UH, THE WINTER STORM TASK FORCE AND THE CITY AS A WHOLE MAKE SURE THAT WE THINK ABOUT IS LIKE, UH, ENGAGING PEOPLE TO ART.

SO I'D LOVE TO, UM, YEAH, SEE AND RECOMMEND IS, UM, REALLY THAT THE CITY INVEST IN ARTISTS, UH, TALKING ABOUT THE WINTER STORM.

UM, CAUSE I THINK IT WOULD BE A GREAT, UH, PIECE OF OUTREACH, ALSO A GREAT PIECE OF, UH, UNDERSTANDING, UM, OF LIKE PEOPLE TALKING ABOUT THROUGH ART, WHETHER IT BE POETRY, MUSIC, VISUAL, ART, ET CETERA, UH, WHAT THIS TIME HAS BEEN LIKE FOR THEM.

THANK YOU.

AND HAVE YOU, HAVE YOU FLESHED OUT, UM, A SPECIFIC FIRST PROJECT OR WHAT, WHAT YOU THINK THAT LOOKS LIKE IN ANY MORE DETAIL? UH, YEAH, SURE.

SO, UM, MY PROJECT SPECIFICALLY, BECAUSE WRITING IS MY PRIMARY DISCIPLINE IS AN ANTHOLOGY.

SO LIKE ANTHOLOGY OF POETRY AND FICTION AND NON-FICTION, UM, WITH BLOOD JUST OFTEN ARTISTS AND MAYBE, UM, EVEN LIKE COMMUNITY MEMBERS, UM, THROUGH SOME INTENTIONAL OUTREACH, LIKE TALKING ABOUT, UH, THE WINTER STORM, HASN'T BEEN LIKE QUITE PICKED UP BY A PUBLISHER OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT, BUT LIKE, YOU KNOW, UM, I'D LOVE SOME SUPPORT ON THIS PROJECT AND LIKE IF MUSICIANS OR SOMETHING WE'RE WANTING TO DO THIS, LIKE I JUST THINK IT WOULD BE A GREAT PROGRAM TO PUT SOME FUNDS INTO AT THE CITY LEVEL AND DO SOME OUTREACH TO COMMUNITIES TO HAVE, UM, YOU KNOW, LIKE ASSETS LIKE THIS.

UM, YEAH, AS WE'RE THINKING ABOUT LIKE WHAT OUR CITY IS GOING TO BE, HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE TO SPEAK WITH ANYONE WITH THE, WITH, UM, THE CITY OF AUSTIN ARTS DEPARTMENT ABOUT THIS? NO.

NO, I DON'T THINK I HAVE A CONNECT THERE.

OKAY.

I CAN, I CAN MAKE AN ATTEMPT TO HELP YOU WITH THAT.

AND DOES PATRICIA HAVE YOUR EMAIL INFORMATION? YES, PATRICIA DOES.

OKAY.

AND THANK YOU.

AND DO YOU WANT TO SHARE WITH US ANYTHING ABOUT YOUR PERSONAL EXPERIENCE DURING THE STORM OR, OR EXPERIENCES, YOU KNOW, OTHERS HAD THAT YOU THINK WOULD BE HELPFUL TO US IN, IN, UH, DEVELOPING A REPORT FOR CITY COUNCIL TO DO BETTER IN THE FUTURE? YEAH, I MEAN, I THINK DYLAN MORE OR LESS THAT IT WAS JUST LIKE, YOU KNOW, THE SUPPORT THAT I REALLY GOT DURING THAT TIME.

UM, AND IT WAS HARD.

I WAS WITHOUT WATER FOR A LITTLE BIT, BUT SOME FRIENDS WERE WITHOUT ELECTRICITY AND THINGS WAS MORE SO THROUGH COMMUNITY ORGANIZATION.

SO I DEFINITELY ECHO AND WOULD APPRECIATE LIKE MORE FUNDS FROM THE CITY BEING DISPERSED INTO COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS, UM, FOR, YOU KNOW, THINGS LIKE THIS, IF WE'RE NOT GOING TO AS A CITY, UM, REALLY HAVE MORE LIKE DISASTER PREPAREDNESS AS CLIMATE CHANGE, YOU KNOW, CONTINUES TO BE A PROBLEM.

DEFINITELY.

I DEFINITELY AGREE WITH THAT.

DOES ANYONE ELSE HAVE QUESTIONS FOR KB OR COMMENTS ON WHAT KB HAD TO SAY? YES, CATHERINE,

[00:20:01]

THANK YOU, AP.

THIS IS KATHERINE GONZALEZ THINK OPERATIONS AND PROGRAMS DIRECTOR AT YOUTH.

AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I WOULD BE INTRIGUED WITH IS PARTNERING UP WITH YOU ON THIS ANTHOLOGY.

SO I WILL BE REACHING OUT TO YOU SEPARATELY AS WELL.

ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE, UM, ARE HAVING DIFFICULTY WITH AS A TASK FORCE IS GETTING THE YOUTH PERSPECTIVE.

UM, I THINK THE THING THAT CONCERNS ME MOST AS SOMEONE WHO SPENDS THE MAJORITY OF MY TIME, TALKING WITH TEENS AND PRETEENS IS, YOU KNOW, WHAT HAPPENED DURING THE WINTER STORM, AS MUCH AS I WOULD LIKE TO BELIEVE IT WAS A ONE-TIME THING, IT WILL ONLY CONTINUE AND IT WILL ONLY GET WORSE.

AND OUR YOUTH HAVE LOTS OF THINGS TO SAY ABOUT NOT ONLY THEIR EXPERIENCES DURING THE WINTER STORM AND HOW POWERLESS THAT FELT.

AND FOR ADULTS, WE FELT POWERLESS.

IMAGINE TAKING THAT ONE STEP FURTHER AND BEING A CHILD OR A TEENAGER.

UM, THEY HAVE LOTS TO SAY AND NOT A LOT OF GREAT WAYS TO SAY IT BECAUSE LET'S BE FRANK.

THEY'RE NOT GOING TO SHOW UP AT A LISTENING SESSION, NO MATTER HOW MUCH I PROD AND POKE AND ENCOURAGE AND COKES.

UM, I LOVE THE IDEA OF USING ART TO ENGAGE THEM, LET THEM TELL THEIR STORIES.

SO I APPRECIATE YOU BRINGING THAT TO THE FOREFRONT.

AND I LOOK FORWARD TO TALKING WITH YOU MORE ABOUT HOW WE CAN MAKE THAT HAPPEN.

YES.

THANK YOU FOR THAT.

AND I VERY MUCH APPRECIATE IT AND LOOK FORWARD TO CHATTING WITH YOU ABOUT THIS MORE YET.

IT'S JUST LIKE, YOU KNOW, UM, LEGISLATION FOR ONE REASON OR ANOTHER CAN BE REALLY INTIMIDATING.

UM, AND LIKE GETTING INVOLVED POLITICALLY BESIDES LIKE, YOU KNOW, PROTESTS, WHICH SEEMS LIKE THE MOST ACCESSIBLE THING FOR FOLKS RIGHT NOW.

UM, I THINK THIS ART IS AN ENTRY POINT, LIKE TO HAVING SOMETHING TO SAY AND SAYING SOMETHING AND, YOU KNOW, UH, THAT I DUNNO THROUGHOUT HISTORY, UM, ART HAS BEEN KIND OF A VEHICLE FOR CHANGE AS WELL.

SO I APPRECIATE YOU SEEING THE, UM, VALUE IN THAT.

ALSO I THINK THIS IS A GREAT TIME TO, UM, GET YOUTH INVOLVED.

ARTISTICALLY, I THINK THIS IS THE FIRST YEAR THAT WE'RE EVER GOING TO HAVE LIKE A YOUTH POET LAUREATE AND AUSTIN, AND I'D LOVE TO GET THEM LIKE ENGAGED WITH THIS, UH, PROCESS AS WELL.

I THINK THAT'S OUT OF THE AUSTIN LIBRARY FOUNDATION, UM, THAT THAT PROGRAM IS KICKING OFF.

SO YEAH, JUST WANTED TO BRING THAT TO PEOPLE'S ATTENTION.

SO THANK YOU CATHERINE, FOR THAT.

YOU'RE WELCOME KV.

I ALSO WANT TO MENTION, BECAUSE WE, WE WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYONE IS AWARE TESTIFYING IN FRONT OF THIS, UH, TASK FORCE.

IT ALL LISTENING SESSION IS NOT THE ONLY WAY TO MAKE YOURSELF OR MAKE YOUR STORY KNOWN.

SO OF COURSE YOU CAN EMAIL IT IN.

WE ALSO HAVE THE SPEAK UP AUSTIN DOC WORK, PATRICIA, CORRECT ME IF I'M WRONG, A WEBSITE WHERE YOU CAN SUBMIT IT IN TESTIMONY, PHOTOS, VIDEOS, HAND, RECORDED AUDIO, AND ALL OF THOSE COME DIRECTLY TO US.

SO MANY DIFFERENT MODES IN WHICH TO MAKE THEIR STORY AVAILABLE TO US, BUT DOESN'T REQUIRE YOU TO SHOW UP AT A LISTENING SESSION.

AWESOME.

YEAH.

YEAH.

THEN SHARING THAT ON MY SOCIAL AND THANK YOU FOR THAT.

THANK YOU.

ARE THERE ANY OTHER COMMENTS OR QUESTIONS FOR KB? THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR TIME, KB.

WE REALLY APPRECIATE IT AND I'LL BE IN TOUCH.

SO WE'LL CATHERINE.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

AND NEXT, PATRICIA, DO WE STILL HAVE TWO SPEAKERS WAITING IN QUEUE? YES.

YES.

SO THE NEXT SPEAKER IS DEBORAH WATSON.

OKAY.

DEBRA AND I, AS WE, UM, HAD TO START A LITTLE LATE, UM, I DIDN'T MEAN TO BE REMISS A RUSH.

SO I'M THE CHAIR, SERITA DAVIS, AND I'M ALSO CHAIRED THE HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION.

I'D LIKE TO GIVE EVERY TASK FORCE MEMBER A CHANCE TO JUST FORMALLY INTRODUCE THEMSELVES TO OUR SPEAKERS.

CATHERINE.

MY NAME IS KATHERINE GONZALEZ.

I'M THE CHAIR OF THE CITY'S LGBTQ PLUS QUALITY OF LIFE ADVISORY COMMISSION.

THANK YOU, JEFFREY CLEMENS.

MY NAME IS JEFFREY.

I AM THE CHAIR OF THE COMMISSION.

THANK YOU, ALETHA.

HELLO.

MY NAME IS ELISA HOUSTON

[00:25:01]

AND I'M THE FORMER CHAIR AND STILL A MEMBER OF THE AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL, EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMISSION, EARLY CHILDHOOD COUNCIL.

SORRY WE HAVE A DIFFERENT NAME.

THANK YOU, BECKY, EVERYONE, BECKY AUSTIN.

I'M SURE.

AND IF YOU CAN HEAR ME TO HEAR HIM AND MANUEL, UH, THE CHAIR OF THE VETERANS AFFAIRS COMMISSION.

THANK YOU.

AND NOW PATRICIA, WE WILL TAKE OUR NEXT SPEAKER.

NEXT SPEAKER IS DEBORAH WATSON.

DEBRA.

WOULD YOU SAY WE CAN HEAR YOU? OKAY, GREAT.

UM, AND FIVE.

OKAY.

ALL RIGHT.

I'M A DISTRICT FIVE.

AND I LEARNED ABOUT THIS.

I THINK TWO MANUALS POSTS ON FACEBOOK.

EXCELLENT.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US AND YOU HAVE THE FLOOR.

OKAY.

UH, I'M GOING TO READ MY STATEMENT THAT I SENT AND THEN I HAVE MY NOTES HERE.

I, UH, WOULD LIKE TO DISCUSS THE PROBLEM WITH BUILDERS IN THE CITY OF BOSTON, ALLOWING OUTSIDE HOT WATER CLAUSES TO BE BUILT ON CONDO PORCHES WITH VERY LITTLE INSULATION, AS WELL AS HELP FIVE PORCHES, THAT HOUSE FIRE SPRINKLERS SHOULD BE BUILT WITHOUT ANY INSTALLATION.

OUR CONDO WAS BUILT IN 2008, WHICH IS FAIRLY RECENT.

AND WE HAD SO MANY DOMESTIC PIPES BURST AND FIRE SPRINKLERS FIRST, INCLUDING THE MOST RECENT ONE LAST FRIDAY, THIS CONTINUES TO HAPPEN.

WE SUFFERED TREMENDOUS AMOUNT OF DAMAGE.

WE'RE TRYING TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO PREVENT THIS FROM HAPPENING AGAIN, AS WELL AS HOW TO PAY FOR ALL THE DAMAGE.

UM, THIS HAPPENED TO US IN 2001 11, AND NOW AGAIN, SOME STRICTER GUIDELINES NEED TO BE SET FOR ANY FUTURE BUILDING IN THIS COUNTY.

AND WE HOMEOWNERS NEED SOME, YEAH, BELIEVE WE ARE.

OUR BUILDER WENT BANKRUPT.

WE HAVE A 47, UH, UNITS, THE CITY OF AUSTIN INSPECTOR APPROVED THIS CONDO.

AND YET THERE'S HARDLY ANY INSULATION.

THERE'S NO INSULATION ON THE OUTSIDE PORCH, WHICH HOUSE, THE FIRE SPRINKLERS AND ALL THE THIRD FOUR UNITS HAVE HARDLY ANY INSTALLATION ON THEIR THIRD FLOORS, WHICH IS UNHEARD OF IN 2008.

ON TOP OF THAT, THERE IS A PARTICULAR KIND OF PIPE CALLED KITEC PIPE, WHICH WAS USED ALL OVER AUSTIN.

AND IN 2008 ACROSS THE UNITED STATES, ALL THIS INFORMATION WAS COMING OUT THAT THIS PIPE WAS NOT GOOD.

AND THEY HAD A MAJOR LAWSUIT.

THEY WENT OUT OF BUSINESS.

AND THE LAST TIME YOU COULD FILE THAT LAWSUIT WAS IN JANUARY, 2020.

NONE OF US WHO OWN THIS CONDO KNEW THAT THAT OUR CONDO WAS BUILT WITH KITEC PLUMBING.

SO WE ALL FEEL, UM, NONE OF US ARE RICH HERE.

WE ALL FEEL OVERWHELMED.

WE HAVE STILL SO MUCH DAMAGE AND WE REALLY DON'T KNOW HOW WE'RE GOING TO PAY FOR IT.

AND I HAD MY REAL ESTATE.

I'M FROM TEXAS.

I WAS BORN HERE, BUT I HAD A REAL ESTATE LICENSE IN CALIFORNIA.

AND I'M JUST KIND OF SHOCKED AT WHAT'S ALLOWED HAPPENING HERE IN TEXAS.

AND A LOT OF THE WORKERS AND CARPENTERS AND CONTRACTORS AND PLUMBERS, I'VE TALKED TO SAID, A LOT OF DEALS ARE DONE UNDERNEATH THE TABLE.

A SLAP ON THE BACK AND HEADS ARE TURN THIS WAY IN THAT WAY.

AND I FEEL LIKE THAT'S WHAT HAPPENED TO OUR COMPLEX AND WE ARE STUCK WITH THE BILL AND, UM, IT'S NOT FAIR TO US.

AND SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE ABOUT STRICTER GUIDELINES AND HOW CONDOMS GET IMPROVED IS THAT IT JUST BEING BUILT, LEFT AND RIGHT WITHOUT, UM, ANYBODY BEING ACCOUNTABLE FOR IT.

UM, THE WINTER FREEZE FOR US WAS AWFUL.

THE ALARM STARTED GOING OFF.

YEAH.

AND, UM, I FORTUNATELY THOUGHT TO GATHER IT TEAMS SINCE IT HAPPENED TO ME IN 2011, TO LEARN HOW TO TURN OFF OUR FIRE SPRINKLER PIPES, AS WELL AS OUR DOMESTIC AND THE FIRST TRUCK THAT CAME THE FIRE.

UH, OUR, UH, MAN WAS SO EXHAUSTED AND WORRIED BECAUSE HIS OWN PIPES HAVE BURST AND HE HAD AN INFANT BABY AT HOME.

AND, UM, SO THE NEXT ONE STARTED BURST.

THEY COULDN'T EVEN GET HERE TO OUR COMPLEX.

THEY WERE SO OVERWHELMED.

SO IT WAS UP TO US.

[00:30:01]

AND, UM, MY NEIGHBOR WAS OUT OF TOWN, ALSO A BOARD MEMBER.

I'M A BOARD MEMBER AND I COULDN'T EVEN STOP THE FLOOD COMING TO MY UNIT BECAUSE HE HAD A CAT NEXT DOOR.

AND I WAS DIRECTING VOLUNTEERS THAT WERE HELPING SWEEP OUT THE WATER IN MY UNIT, AS WELL AS MY YOUTH AND MY NEIGHBORS NEXT DOOR, WITHOUT THE CAT ESCAPING, WE HAD NO WATER IN THREE OF OUR BUILDINGS, NO WATER OR HEAT FOR TWO WEEKS, OUR HOT WATER CLOSETS.

THE HEAT IS TIED TO THE HEAT INSIDE.

WHILE WE ONLY LOST ELECTRICITY FOR A DAY FOR, FOR LIKE A FEW HOURS, WE STILL HAD NO HEAT BECAUSE OUR HOT WATER CLOSETS, ALL THE WATER HAD TO BE ALL DOMESTIC WATER HAD TO BE TURNED OFF AND THAT FED OUR HEAT.

ONE OF OUR BUILDINGS HAD NO HOT WATER OR WATER FOR THREE WEEKS.

SOMEBODY CALLED TO CHECK ON ME, I GUESS, BECAUSE OF MY AGE.

AND I WAS SO GRATEFUL BECAUSE I WAS ABLE TO GET SOME DIFFERENT VOLUNTEER ORGANIZATIONS THAT CAME OUT AND BOUGHT WATER.

WE HAD A SWIMMING POOL AND WE WERE ALL GETTING BUCKETS OF THE WATER FROM THE POOL TO FLUSH OUR TOILETS.

THE NATIONAL GUARD FINALLY CAME, BUT IT WAS AT THE VERY END.

AND LIKE THE OTHER GENTLEMAN THAT SPOKE FIRST, WE HAD THIS HUGE CONTAINER WATER THAT JUST SAT OUT THERE AND WENT TO WASTE.

UM, HM, YOU SEE HERE.

UM, OH, AND THE CONDO INSPECTOR THAT, UH, THAT APPROVED THIS CONDO, HE RETIRED.

SO WITH HIM RETIRING AND OUR BANK AND OUR DEVELOPER GOING BANKRUPT, WE'RE JUST REALLY, REALLY STUCK.

UM, I DON'T UNDERSTAND HOW THE CITY CAN ALLOW CONDO DEVELOPMENTS WHO BUILT WITHOUT INSTALLATION.

I OWNED A HOUSE IN HYDE PARK FOR YEARS AND WE HAD SNOW AND I REMEMBER IT GETTING DOWN TO 11 DEGREES AND MY HOUSE WAS BUILT IN THE FORTIES.

AND I GUARANTEE YOU, I HAD INSTALLATION ON MY HOME, BUT THIS WAS BUILT IN 2008.

AND OUR FIRE SPRINKLER COMPANY SAID THAT ARE COMPLEX AND ANOTHER CONFLICT WHERE SOME OF THE WORST I'VE SEEN IN AUSTIN.

UM, THE FACT THAT ANOTHER SPRINKLER JUST BURST ON FRIDAY, WELL, IT DIDN'T BURST.

IT WILL SLOWLY, THERE WAS A CRACK THAT'S FOUR MONTHS AFTER.

SO WE'RE VERY CONCERNED THAT OUR WHOLE FIRE SPRINKLER SYSTEM IS COMPROMISED.

WE HAVE HUGE GAPS IN OUR SIGHTINGS ON OUR BACK PORCHES AND OUR ENTRY WAYS.

I MEAN, IT'S AWFUL.

I CAN'T EVEN COUNT.

I HAVEN'T EVEN BEEN ABLE TO COUNT AS WELL OVER 50 SHOOT HOLES.

THEY'RE STILL OPEN AND WE'RE BY A GREENBELT.

SO WE ALREADY KNOW THAT WASP MAKING MESS INSIDE.

AND WE'RE CONCERNED THAT SQUIRRELS AND RACCOONS AND BIRDS ARE GOING TO SAY MAKING THIS AND FIVE.

AND WE'RE HAVING A REALLY HARD TIME EVEN FINDING A CONTRACTOR LIKE THE CONTRACTOR THAT I HIRED GOT MOST OF MY WORK DONE, AND MY NEIGHBOR HIRED HIM AND HE KEEPS GOING AWOL.

HE'S BEEN LIVING WITH HIS IN-LAWS SINCE FEBRUARY 15TH, A NEWLY WET.

AND, UM, YOU KNOW, I DON'T KNOW IF THERE'S ANY ASSISTANCE.

I MEAN, I THINK FEMA'S GOING TO PAY OUR $5,000 DEDUCTIBLE FOR INSURANCE, BUT WE CAN'T JUST PATCH IT UP OUR HOLES WITHOUT ADDING INSULATION.

AND IT'S HARD TO FIND ANYBODY THAT CAUSE THE FIRE SPRINKLED PEOPLE, THEY DON'T DO.

THEY DON'T REPATCH ALL THE HOLES.

SO WE HAVE TO FIND SOMEBODY WHO KNOWS HOW, WHO IS HIS LICENSE TO REBUILD.

AND THEY CAN'T JUST, THEY CAN'T PATCH HIM UP.

THEY HAVE TO TAKE OUT HUGE CHUNKS OF, OF, OF, UM, SIDING AND CEILING.

UM, AND THEY HAVE TO TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION OUR FIRES, FRANKLIN.

AND WE'RE JUST, I MEAN, IT'S METH AND I'M ON THE BOARD.

AND I AM SO SAD BECAUSE I PUT MOST OF MY RETIREMENT AS AN ART TEACHER INTO MY CONDO.

AND I'M ALSO A MUSICIAN WHO'S BEEN OUT OF WORK ALL YEAR AND JUST NOW I'M GETTING BACK TO WORK AND I'M, I'M REALLY AT A POINT WHERE WE DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT TO DO.

WOW.

THANK YOU FOR SHARING THAT WITH US.

UM, HAVE YOU HAD ANYONE FROM THE CITY REACH OUT TO YOU OR ARE THERE ANY CITY PROGRAMS TO HELP THAT YOU'VE APPLIED FOR AND YOU HAVEN'T HEARD BACK FROM ANYONE? WE, WE WOULDN'T EVEN KNOW WHO TO REACH OUT TO.

I MEAN THAT, YOU KNOW, WE'VE GOT WATER AND WE HAVE APPLIED FOR FEMA AND WE HAVEN'T EVEN BEEN ABLE TO FINISH, UM, UH, THE INVOICES FOR

[00:35:01]

OUR INSURANCE BECAUSE THE FIRE SPRINKLERS KEEP BURSTING.

I MEAN, THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL BUILDING AND THERE'S A LOT OF GOOD THINGS ABOUT IT, BUT IT, I THINK IT SHOULD HAVE NEVER BEEN BUILT.

UH, THE STREET THAT I LIVE OFF EMAIL HAS MAJOR, MAJOR FOUNDATION ISSUES.

AND THAT'S ANOTHER THING WE'RE GOING, WE'RE HAVING TO BORROW A HUGE CHUNK OF MONEY TO RE 80, 81 PEERS UNDER ONE OF OUR BUILDINGS.

YOU KNOW? I MEAN, IT'S LIKE MY SISTER SAYS, WELL, I WANT YOU OUT OF THERE.

WELL, GREAT.

WHO'S GOING TO, I KNOW AUSTIN'S HAVING A HOUSING, BOOM, BUT WHO'S GOING TO BUY THIS CONDO WHEN WE HAVE SO MUCH DAMAGE.

NO ONE'S GOING TO BUY IT.

THIS IS IN 2008.

IT SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN THERE.

CORRECT.

SO I DON'T KNOW WHAT WE CAN DO, YOU KNOW? UM, THE, I'M SURE THERE'S A LOT OF GOOD CONTRACTORS IN TOWN, BUT WE'VE ALSO BEEN DEALING WITH SOME NOT SO HONEST.

EVEN OUR FIRE SPRINKLER COMPANY, THEY WERE SO OVERWHELMED.

THIS IS ANOTHER THING.

THIS IS, I'M GOING TO SAY THIS, BUT I WANT MY NAME NOT ATTRIBUTED TO THIS BECAUSE I WON'T, I WON'T SAY WHO SAID IT, BUT I, AND I WON'T GIVE YOU OUR FIRE SPENCER COMPANY'S NAME, BUT WE THINK A LOT OF THE REASONS IT TOOK THEM ALMOST TWO MONTHS TO EVEN COME AND TURN OUR SPRINKLERS ON AND START DRESSING.

AND WE THINK THEY WERE BEING HIRED BY SAMSUNG AND ELON MUSK BECAUSE I'VE HEARD THROUGH A LOT OF PLUMBERS.

THEY WERE PAYING THEM THREE AND FOUR TIMES, BUT THE FIRES FOR THE MORE COMPANIES WERE ABLE TO PAY THEIR WORKERS.

SO THE SHORTAGE OF WORKERS AND AUSTIN WITH AWFUL AND ALL THESE NEW COMPANIES ARE COMING WITH ALL THIS MONEY.

THE CITY HAS GIVEN THEM ALL THIS MONEY AND IT'S LEAVING PEOPLE LIKE US WITHOUT ANY RECOURSE, YOU KNOW, WHO WE DIDN'T GET ANY HELP FOR A VERY LONG TIME.

AND I DON'T BLAME WORKERS.

SO THESE, YOU KNOW, SOMEONE'S GOING TO PAY ME THREE TIMES AS MUCH MONEY.

I WORKED AS A TEACHER AND GOT PAID HARDLY ANYTHING.

I CAN UNDERSTAND THEM WANTING TO TAKE THOSE JOBS.

YOU KNOW, SO THE CITY NEEDS TO DO SOME PLANNING AND I DON'T KNOW WHO CAN HELP US, BUT OUR FIRE SPRINKLERS IN REALLY BAD SHAPE.

AND, UM, IT'S GOING TO HAPPEN AGAIN.

THIS IS ALREADY THE SECOND TIME IT'S HAPPENED.

AND SOMEHOW THE CITY NEEDS TO COORDINATE WITH THE FIRE DEPARTMENT, WITH THE COMPANIES THAT RUN THE FIRE SPRINKLERS AND PEOPLE THAT ARE LICENSED CONTRACTORS NEED TO BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE.

UM, I HAVE A LOT, THAT'S OBVIOUSLY BEEN HELD UP INSIDE AND BEING A BOARD MEMBER I'VE HAD TO PUT, I WAS OUT THERE EVERY DAY FOR THAT FIRST WEEK IN THE COLD, THE BITTER COLD BY MYSELF BECAUSE OUR MANAGER COULDN'T GET HERE AND THE OTHER BOARD MEMBERS WERE, COULDN'T GET HERE, THEY'RE OUT OF STATE OR OUT OF THE CITY.

AND IT SHOWS LIKE I'VE HAD HAD TO HOLD UP THIS BUILDING BY MYSELF.

NOW MORE PEOPLE WERE COMING TO HELP, BUT I, I, YOU KNOW, MAYBE AND KITCHEN WOULD COME OUT HERE AND MEET WITH US.

I DON'T KNOW.

I DON'T REALLY KNOW WHAT TO ASK, BUT I DO KNOW THAT THE CITY CAN NOT CONTINUE TO APPROVE CONDOMINIUMS WITHOUT THE BUILDERS BEING ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE DOMESTIC PLUMBING, THE FIRE SPRINKLERS.

I'M SORRY.

BUT THINK IT BUILDING A HOME IN 2008 WITHOUT INSTALLATION, WHO DOES THAT? WHO DOES IT? THAT'S HONEST.

I AGREE.

AND IF YOU WOULD LIKE, UM, AND I CAN ALSO CC YOU ON AN EMAIL, I'D BE HAPPY TO, UM, I DON'T KNOW IF YOU WERE ONTO HERE, UM, COUNCIL MEMBER KITCHEN'S COMMENTS INITIALLY, BUT I'D BE HAPPY TO SEND AN EMAIL TO CONNECT YOU BOTH AND SEE IF THERE IS SOMETHING SHE CAN DO TO HELP YOU OR REFERRALS SHE HAS FOR YOU, UM, TO HELP WITH YOUR PROCESS, TO, TO TRY TO, UH, REBUILD YOUR CONDO, UH, LITERALLY.

AND, UM, UH, ANYTHING ELSE YOU NEED THAT THE CITY THAT WOULD BE GREAT.

I DID HEAR HER SPEAK AND THAT WOULD BE GREAT.

AND I WAS VERY APPRECIATIVE AND YOU KNOW, I'M, YOU KNOW, I'M NOT, I'M NOT BLAMING ANYBODY BY THE WAY, WHO'S HERE RIGHT NOW.

I'M NOT BLAMING THE CURRENT CITY COUNCIL OR THE CURRENT MAYOR, BUT SOME THINGS HAVE HAPPENED.

I MEAN, IT'S OBVIOUS FROM OUR LEGISLATOR, WHAT KEEPS HAPPENING SUCH A JOKE, THIS PAST SESSION, THEY JUST DON'T CARE ABOUT US.

THEY DON'T CARE ABOUT REGULAR PEOPLE.

THEY CARE ABOUT THE PEOPLE THAT HAVE THE MOST MONEY AND THAT NEEDS TO STOP BECAUSE WE'RE ALL DESERVING OF RESPECT AND WE'RE ALL DESERVING OF HELP.

AND I MEAN, YOU KNOW, MY FRIENDS KEPT, MY FRIENDS HELD ME UP.

I HAPPENED TO BE, UM, A WELL-KNOWN

[00:40:01]

SINGER IN CERTAIN CIRCLES.

AND A LOT OF PEOPLE HELD ME UP AND THEY WOULD JUST SHOW UP WITH FOOD OR SHOW UP WITH A HEATER OR, YOU KNOW, LET ME GO AND STAY AT THEIR HOUSE OR GET TO TAKE A SHOWER.

SO WE HAVE GREAT PEOPLE THAT LIVE IN THIS CITY.

WE JUST NEED TO KEEP THIS BAD STUFF FROM HAPPENING.

AND CLIMATE CHANGE IS REAL AND IT'S GOING TO HAPPEN AGAIN.

SO IF WE JUST DO EVERYTHING LIKE WE'VE DONE BEFORE, THIS WILL JUST HAPPEN NEXT WINTER.

AND I DON'T KNOW HOW MANY OF US CAN, UH, CAN HANDLE IT TO TELL YOU THE TRUTH.

AND I AGREE WITH YOU THAT MOST OF US CAN'T, UM, OUTSIDE OF WEALTHY CORPORATIONS, UM, ESPECIALLY WITH NO HELP.

I MEAN, WE'VE ALL HAD TO RELY ON EACH OTHER.

THANKFULLY WE HAD A COMMUNITY OF EACH OTHER WE COULD RELY ON, BUT YES, I THINK IT WAS A COMPLETE CATASTROPHE AND FAILURE ON THE PART OF THE CITY AND THE MANAGEMENT OF THE CITY THAT, UH, THINGS OCCURRED.

AND THAT NO ONE HAS REACHED OUT FROM THE CITY IN A WAY WHERE, YOU KNOW, WHERE YOU CAN GET HELP TO ACCESS RESOURCES, THE CITY SHOULD, YOU KNOW, BE WIDELY DISSEMINATING INFORMATION.

I KNOW THEY DO HAVE SOME PROGRAMS, BUT IT SOUNDS LIKE, UM, YOU, YOU HAVE DIGITAL CAPABILITIES YET.

YOU DON'T EVEN HAVE ACCESS TO THAT INFORMATION.

SO, SO WHAT IS THE OUTREACH REALLY LIKE? UM, AND CLEARLY IT'S NOT GOOD ENOUGH.

AND IF SOMEBODY HADN'T CALLED ME TO CHECK ON ME PERSONALLY, WE WOULD HAVE NOT HAD WATER.

SO I'M GRATEFUL FOR THE VOLUNTEERS.

THEY WERE WORKING FOR THE CITY COUNCIL, THAT THE FIRST GIRL THAT CALLED ME.

SO I'M VERY GRATEFUL.

AND THEN SOMEBODY FROM EMS EMS CAME AND BOUGHT WATER AND THEN FINALLY THE NATIONAL GUARD.

SO THOSE THINGS WERE REAL POSITIVE.

THE SITES I HAVE TO PUT OUT THE POSITIVE.

RIGHT.

AND, AND, AND, AND THANK YOU FOR DOING THAT, YOU KNOW, BECAUSE THERE, THERE WAS SO MUCH NEGATIVE, BUT YOU KNOW, WHAT, WHAT, YOU'RE, WHAT YOU'RE CONTINUING TO GO THROUGH.

I AM HOPEFUL THAT, UM, THE CITY WILL HAVE SOME RESOURCES FOR YOU OR SOME DIRECTION AS TO HOW YOU CAN TRY TO GET SOME FURTHER RELIEF AND HELP WITH YOUR SITUATION.

I APPRECIATE THAT VERY MUCH.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

AND ANY OTHER TASK FORCE MEMBER HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, UM, OR, OR COMMENTS ON WHAT WE'VE JUST HEARD? UM, YES.

UM, DEBRA, I JUST WANTED TO SAY THANK YOU FOR COMING AND SHARING THIS WITH US.

UM, I HAVE TO ECHO WHAT, YOU KNOW, CHAIR DAVIS HAS SAID, WHICH IS THAT, YOU KNOW, THIS IS A GRIEVOUS PROBLEM THAT SHOULDN'T HAVE HAPPENED.

IT WAS REALLY DEVASTATING TO HEAR THAT YOU'RE ALSO STILL DEALING WITH THESE PROBLEMS, KIND OF WHAT SOUNDS LIKE DAILY OR WEEKLY.

UM, AND I THINK IT JUST HIGHLIGHTS HOW, UM, AS YOU MENTIONED THAT WE HAVE A HOUSING CRISIS, BUT I THINK WE ALSO HAVE AN INFRASTRUCTURE CRISIS THAT'S WITHIN THAT, YOU KNOW, UM, THERE ARE SO MANY, EVEN THOUGH YOUR CONDO WAS BUILT IN 2008, WE ALSO HAVE THESE CONDOS FROM THE SIXTIES AND SEVENTIES THAT ARE ALSO NOT TO STANDARD AND DEFINITELY DIDN'T WEATHER THE STORM VERY WELL.

SO, UM, THE CITY SHOULD DEFINITELY LOOK INTO THAT, UM, BECAUSE I THINK THAT WE'LL FIND THAT THERE ARE MORE OF THESE PRICES HAPPENING AROUND US EVERY DAY.

SO THANK YOU AGAIN FOR SPEAKING WITH US AND BRINGING THEM TO US.

YOU'RE WELCOME.

I HAVE A QUESTION.

UM, I'M, I'M THINKING ABOUT WHAT THE CITY COULD DO, ESPECIALLY IN RETROFITTING, UH, INSTALLATION ISSUES AND PUTTING YOUR WATER HEATER AND SPRINKLER SYSTEMS IN AN INSULATED PLACE INSTEAD OF OUTSIDE ON A PORCH.

DO YOU, FROM THE PEOPLE THAT YOU'VE HAD SO FAR, DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW FEASIBLE THAT IS REALLY TO, WELL, THEY COULDN'T, THEY COULDN'T MOVE, THEY'LL HOP THE WAY THAT IT'S BUILT.

THEY COULDN'T MOVE THE HOT WATER CLOSETS INSIDE THE UNITS.

IT WOULD BE, UM, PRETTY MUCH IMPOSSIBLE, BUT WHAT COULD HAPPEN, WHAT WOULD HELP? AND WE DON'T HAVE THE MONEY FOR THIS IS TO TAKE OUT THE, YOU KNOW, MY HOT WATER CLOSET IS COMPLETELY GUTTED.

UM, BUT TO TAKE OUT THE HOT WATER HEATERS AND TEAR, OPEN THE WALLS IN THERE AND, UM, YOU KNOW, BLOW IN INSULATION OR PUT IN, NOT THAT CHEAP R 19, BUT SOMETHING LIKE WALK WALL INSULATION.

THAT'D BE AWESOME.

AND IT'S ALL GOING TO HAPPEN ON THE THIRD AND SECOND FLOOR.

I'M ON A BOTTOM FLOOR.

AND I KNOW THIS HAPPENED ALL I KNOW THERE WERE 500,000 PIPES THAT BURST IN AUSTIN.

THAT'S WHAT THE PLUMBERS TOLD ME, 500,000 PIPES THAT BURST.

SO, YOU KNOW, THE LEAST DAMAGING TO PEOPLE'S HOMES.

CAUSE A LOT PEOPLE CAN'T, YOU KNOW, THERE'S A COUPLE OF PEOPLE THAT HAVE LOST A LOSS, HAVE LOST A WALL'S LOSS INSIDE THEIR HOMES, BUT IT'S TO RETROFIT ALL THE HOT WATER CLOSETS AND ALL AND ALL THE COMPLEX, BUT THERE'S NO WAY WE'D EVER HAVE THE MONEY TO DO THAT.

NOT EVEN CLOSE, YOU KNOW? SO THAT WOULD HELP BECAUSE IF YOU, AND IF THEY COULD ALSO HAVE AN ENGINEER COULD FIGURE OUT IN THE NORTH, WHAT SOME OF THE GUYS HAVE TOLD ME IS THAT ONCE AGAIN, TEXAS FOLLOWS DIFFERENT RULES.

THEY

[00:45:01]

SIT IN THE HOT WATER CLOSET, YOU INSULATE, YOU WRAP ALL THE PIPES AND YOU CUT THE DEFECTIVE PIPES, THE KITEC, WHICH RUNS THROUGH THE WHOLE BUILDING.

SO YOU'D HAVE TO JUST COMPLETELY DESTROY OUR BUILDING, START OVER.

BUT AT LEAST IF YOU COULD INSULATE THE PIPES ON THE PORCHES, THAT WOULD, THAT WOULD GIVE US LIKE AN 85% CHANCE OF IT NOT HAPPENING AGAIN.

BUT THEY SAID IN NORTH OWNERS PUT A LITTLE HEATER INSIDE THE HOT WATER CLOSET, AND THEY HAVE IT PLUGGED IN DURING THE, UM, WHEN IT GETS REAL COLD.

BUT THAT'S WHAT THEY SAID.

THAT'S WHY IN CHICAGO.

AND IT LOOKS LIKE THAT THEY DON'T HAVE THINGS THAT BURST BECAUSE, BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT THEY DO, YOU KNOW, BUT YOU KNOW, THEY PUT THEM INSIDE THE HOT WATER CLOSET.

YEAH.

WE COULDN'T PUT THE HOT WATER CLOSET INSIDE.

THEY WILL TOTALLY DESTROY THE INTEGRITY AND THE, UH, IT WOULD JUST DISTORT THIS, THIS WHOLE COMPLEX.

SO THE ONLY THING IS TO WORK WITH WHAT WE'VE GOT, BUT WE NEED MANY MAJOR INSTALLATION.

THAT'S ANOTHER THING OUR INSURANCE WON'T COVER.

THEY'RE ONLY GOING TO TAKE IT BACK TO WHAT IT WAS.

SO IF THIS WAS BUILT WITH MISSING A LOT OF INSULATION, THEY WON'T PAY FOR THAT, EVEN THOUGH IT SHOULD NEVER BEEN APPROVED WITHOUT INSTALLATION.

SO THAT'S A PLACE WHERE CITY HEALTH REALLY COULD COME IN.

BUT I THINK BECAUSE THE CITY, YEAH, UPGRADE PEOPLE'S HOUSES SO THAT THEY ARE NOT SO SUBJECT TO THOSE KINDS OF WEATHER EVENTS, THEY COULD, THEY CAME IN AND, AND RETROFITTED OUR HOT WATER CLOSET AS WELL AS OUR PORCHES WHERE THE SPRINKLERS BURST, UM, THAT COULD MAKE A HUGE DIFFERENCE.

AND I'M, I MET, UH, AN ARTIST, SO I NEEDED A LITTLE BIT ABOUT CONSTRUCTION AND MY REAL ESTATE BACKGROUND, BUT I MEAN, I'M NOT AN ENGINEER, A MODEL PLUMBER.

SO, UM, EVERYONE THAT COMES JUST KIND OF FEEL SORRY FOR US.

WELL, THANK YOU.

AND YOU DO HAVE OUR, OUR SYMPATHY AND WE'RE, WE'RE DEFINITELY GOING TO TRY TO MAKE WHATEVER RECOMMENDATIONS WE CAN.

ALL RIGHT.

I APPRECIATE IT VERY MUCH.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

DOES ANYONE ELSE HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR, OR COMMENT? WE HAVE TIME.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US THIS EVENING.

WE REALLY APPRECIATE YOUR FEEDBACK AND YOU SHARING THAT WITH US.

I KNOW THIS CONTINUES TO BE DIFFICULT FOR YOU AND, AND IT'S EXTREMELY PAINFUL TO SHARE AS YOU CONTINUE TO GO THROUGH THIS.

THANK YOU, PATRICIAN.

DO WE HAVE ONE MORE SPEAKER? THAT'S THE FIRST WEEK? YES, WE HAVE OUR FINAL SPEAKER.

IT'S KRISTEN HAS SOME KRISTEN HAS NAME.

WOULD YOU SAY SOMETHING SO WE CAN MAKE SURE WE HEAR YOU? THIS IS CRISPIN.

OKAY.

WE CAN HEAR YOU.

YOU HAVE THE FLOOR, PLEASE LET US KNOW YOUR DISTRICT AND HOW YOU HEARD ABOUT OUR MEETING.

SURE.

WELL, FIRST OF ALL, THANK YOU SO MUCH.

UM, FOR GIVING ME THIS OPPORTUNITY.

UM, I AM KRISTIN HASSEN.

I LIVE IN DISTRICT FIVE AND I'M HERE REPRESENTING AUSTIN PETS ALIVE, WHICH IS IN DISTRICT NINE.

AND, UM, WE WERE CONTACTED BY A TASK FORCE MEMBER, UH, CLEMENS WHO CONTACTED US ABOUT THIS, UH, OPPORTUNITY, UM, WHICH WE'RE REALLY, REALLY GRATEFUL TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF AND SPEAK TONIGHT.

I'M GOING TO TELL YOU A LITTLE BIT ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED WITH PETS, BUT I JUST WANT TO REFRAME ALL OF THIS TO SAY THAT, UH, I ACTUALLY WORKED AS THE DEPUTY SEATS OF AUSTIN ANIMAL CENTER FROM 2015 TO 2017.

I NOW SERVE, UM, OVERSEEING OPT-IN PET FLIES, NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMS, INCLUDING THE HUMAN ANIMAL SUPPORT SERVICES PROGRAM.

UM, AND WE HAVE MADE A FAIRLY DRAMATIC SHIFT OVER THE PAST COUPLE OF YEARS TO PUT EVEN MORE EMPHASIS ON THE, THE PEOPLE BEHIND THE PREPS, THE OTHER END OF THE LEAF.

UM, AND THE REASON FOR THIS IS THAT, UH, IN YOUR AVERAGE AMERICAN CITY, 65% OF PEOPLE OWN PETS, UM, 95% OF THOSE PEOPLE CONSIDER THOSE PETS TO BE FAMILY AND PARENT AUSTIN, WHICH IS, UH, UH, UNDOUBTEDLY AMERICA'S MOST PET LOVING CITY.

UH, THE PERCENTAGE OF PEOPLE WHO OWN PETS IS EVEN HIGHER.

AND WHAT WE KNOW PARTICULARLY SINCE COVID IS THAT FOR MANY FOLKS, THEIR ANIMAL IS THEIR PRIMARY CONNECTION IN THE WORLD.

AND SO, UM, I AM A PERSON WHO COMES FROM A HUMAN SOCIAL SERVICES BACKGROUND, BUT HAVE MADE THIS TURN TO,

[00:50:01]

UM, ANIMAL WELFARE OVER THE LAST DECADE WITH THE BELIEF THAT WHEN WE HELP PEOPLE, WE HELP ANIMALS.

SO I WANTED TO FRAME WHAT I WAS GOING TO SAY, BECAUSE WHEN YOU HEAR STORIES LIKE THE LAST CALLER, IT'S HARD TO IMAGINE WE'D BE TALKING ABOUT ANIMALS.

UM, BUT WHAT WE FOUND DURING THE COLD SNAP WAS THAT, UM, WHEN PEOPLE COULDN'T GET HELP FOR THEIR PETS, THEY WEREN'T GETTING HELP FOR THEMSELVES.

AND SO THAT WAS FOR US PETS ALIVE.

THAT'S IN.

SO I'M GONNA MAKE THIS, I'M JUST GONNA, YOU, UM, PULL YOU UP, DO AS THE WAVES THAT APA ASSISTED, UM, TALK ABOUT THREE AREAS WHERE THE CITY, UM, WAS NOT PRESENT, UM, THAT REALLY POSE CHALLENGES FOR OUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS AND THEIR PETS.

AND FOR THINGS SPEAKING AS A FORMER AUSTIN ANIMAL CENTER EMPLOYEE AND A TIME, UH, OPEN ADMISSION ANIMAL SHELTER WORKER, UM, WHAT, WHAT WE THINK NEEDS TO HAPPEN, UM, IN THE CITY NEXT TIME.

SO, UM, FIRST, PRIOR TO THE STORM, UM, THAT'S A COUPLE OF DAYS BEFORE THE STORM AUSTIN PETS ALIVE, UM, RECOGNIZE THAT THIS IS GOING TO BE A CATASTROPHIC SITUATION FOR PETS AND PEOPLE AND BEGIN DISTRIBUTING ON MATH SUPPLIES TO FAMILIES, UM, EVERYTHING FROM FOOD TO WATER, UH, TO WARM BLANKETS.

UM, AND WE WERE DISTRIBUTING THESE BOLTS, UM, AT THE HOMELESS AND CABINET ENCAMPMENTS.

UM, AND, UH, AND AS WELL AS, UM, AT OCCUPIED FLAGS, WE HAD COUNTLESS PEOPLE COMING BOTH TO DONATE, BUT ALSO TO UTILIZE THE SUPPLIES.

AND, UM, I WAS PERSONALLY DELIVERING SUPPLIES TO ENCAMPMENTS UP UNTIL THE POINT THAT, UM, THE ICE ON THE GROUND.

I LITERALLY COULDN'T WALK TO ANY WORK BECAUSE I COULDN'T STAY UPRIGHT.

UM, BUT WE KNEW PEOPLE WERE REALLY GOING TO NEED HELP.

THEY'RE TRYING TO GET AS MUCH FOOD OUT AS WE COULD ONCE THE STORM HIT, UM, AUSTIN PETS ALIVE SINCE LOSE POWER, UM, FOR TWO DAYS AND WATER FOR THREE DAYS.

SO PARTLY WE HAD SAT THERE 24 HOURS, UM, TRYING TO CHART FOR THE MORE THAN A HUNDRED ANIMALS THAT WERE ON SITE.

UM, BUT WE ALSO RECOGNIZED EARLY THAT THE CITY, UH, SHELTER, THE ANIMAL CENTER CLOSED AND THE GATE WAS COMPLETELY SHUT AND THERE WAS NO SIGNAGE OUT FRONT.

UM, AND UNFORTUNATELY PEOPLE WERE ALSO CALLING US SAYING THEY COULD NOT GET THROUGH TO 3, 1, 1.

AND WE WERE ALSO TRYING TO CALL 3, 1, 1 I COULD NOT GET THROUGH.

UM, AND SO BECAUSE OF THE, THE FIRST MORNING, UM, UH, OF THE, OF THE ACTUAL, ACTUALLY THE NIGHT BEFORE THE STORM HAT, UM, WE BROUGHT A, WE MADE SIGNS AND WE SAID, UM, THE CITY OF SULFUR IS CLOSED.

IF YOU NEED HELP CALL AUSTIN PETS ALIVE, OR EMAIL AUSTIN PETS ALIVE.

AND WE CREATED A SPECIAL ADDRESS AND WE LEARNED A LOT FROM AUSTIN'S AMAZING MUTUAL AID GROUPS.

WE STARTED A ANIMAL MUTUAL AID FACEBOOK GROUP, UH, AND IT WAS CALLED, UH, EMERGENCY COLD OR AUSTIN PETS ALIVE CALL THAT EMERGENCY FACEBOOK GROUP.

UM, ALL IN ALL, I THINK ABOUT 2000 PEOPLE DOING THAT GROUP OVER THE DAYS OF THE STORM.

UM, BUT WE KIND OF KNEW THAT WITH AUSTIN ANIMAL CENTER CLOSING, WE WERE GOING TO HAVE TO HAVE PEOPLE HELPING PEOPLE.

AND INDEED THAT'S WHAT HAPPENED.

UM, SO, UH, AAC REMAINED CLOSED.

UM, PEOPLE COULDN'T BRING ANY ANIMALS, UH, AND THEY COULDN'T GET HELP FOR THE MOST PART.

UM, ALTHOUGH ANIMAL CONTROL DID RESPOND TO SOME EMERGENCY CALLS.

SO WE WERE, UM, SPENT THE ENTIRETY OF THE STORE AND MOST OF US WITHOUT POWER OURSELVES, BOTH WITH STAFF AROUND THE CLOCK AT AUSTIN PETS ALIVE, BUT ALSO, UM, FACILITATING MUTUAL AID FOR PET OWNERS INTO WHAT WE WERE FINDING WAS THAT PEOPLE WOULDN'T LEAVE THEIR HOUSES, THAT THEY COULDN'T GET SOMEWHERE FOR THEIR PETS TO GET WORMS. AND SO THE MUTUAL AID TOOK MANY FORMS. UM, IN SOME CASES, PEOPLE OFFERED TO HOUSE THE OTHER PEOPLE'S ANIMALS, AND A LOT OF FOLKS TOOK ADVANTAGE OF THAT.

UM, IN OTHER CASES, PEOPLE NEEDED MENTALLY LIFE-SAVING MEDICATION FOR THEIR ANIMALS.

UH, THEY COULDN'T GET TO A VETERINARIAN AND THEY WOULD HAVE AN ACUTELY ILL ANIMAL AND WOULD NEED A RIDE.

UH, IN OTHER CASES, PEOPLE WOULD FIND CUTS FREEZING IN THE COLD, UH, AND HAVE NO WAY TO GET THEM HELP BECAUSE THEY COULDN'T GET THROUGH TO THE ANIMAL SHELTER.

AND IT WAS CLOSED.

UH, ONE OF MY, ONE OF MY FAVORITE SUCCESS STORIES OF OUR MUTUAL AID SYSTEM WAS THAT A TEACHER EMAILED US FRANTICALLY, UM, AND POSTED ON THE FACEBOOK PAGE.

WE CREATED AS WELL, UH, THAT THERE, HER CLASSROOM PET WAS A BEARDED BLIZZARD THAT THE KIDS LOVED A LOT AND THE POWER HAD GONE OUT AT SCHOOL AND SHE COULDN'T GET THERE.

AND SO, UM, A GOOD SAMARITAN, UH, GAVE HER A RIDE, GOT HER TO THE SCHOOL AND THEY THOUGHT THE BEARDED DRAGON WAS JUST CEASED, BUT, UH, SHE HELD IT IN HER LAP AND WORKED IT UP AND IT, IT CAME BACK TO LIFE.

SO AS SHE GOT THERE JUST IN THE NICK OF TIME, UM, BUT WE SAW SO MANY PEOPLE THAT WOULDN'T, THEY NEEDED A PLACE FOR THEM IN THEIR ANIMALS AND HE DID HELP.

UM, THE OTHER THING THAT, SO ALL IN ALL WE RESPONDED TO ABOUT 2000 REQUESTS, UM, THROUGH BOTH THE FACEBOOK PAGE AND EMAIL, UM, WE DIRECTLY

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HELPED ABOUT 250 TO 300 PETS DISTRIBUTED ABOUT 6,000 POUNDS OF FOOD AND SUPPLIES.

UM, AND WE STAYED OPEN AND OPERATIONAL EVERY, ANY TIME THAT WE COULD, UH, TRAVEL OR, UM, HELP WE DID.

SO, UM, DESPITE THE FACT THAT WE ALSO RELIED ON THE COMMUNITY WHO BROUGHT US, UM, LOTS OF GASOLINE AND GENERATOR, SO THAT WE COULD KEEP THE ANIMALS THAT AUSTIN PETS ALIVE, WARM.

SO IN CONCLUSION, UM, WE ARE ASKING FOR, FOR THINGS TO BE CONSIDERED.

UM, FIRST, UH, I ALSO SIT ON THE BOARD OF THE NATIONAL ANIMAL CONTROL ASSOCIATION AND NACA BELIEVES THAT ANIMAL SERVICES AGENCIES SHOULD BE OFFICIALLY DESIGNATED ON ESSENTIAL SERVICES AND REMAIN OPEN DURING ALL EMERGENCY SITUATIONS FOR ANIMALS, CLOSING THE ANIMAL SHELTERS, SORT OF THE EQUIVALENT OF CLOSING, BOTH THE HOSPITAL AND THE POLICE DEPARTMENT.

THESE ARE REALLY CRITICAL FUNCTIONS, PARTICULARLY FOR PEOPLE THAT CONSIDER THEIR ANIMALS COULD BE, UH, COULD BE FAMILY AND PET TOO.

UM, THEY'D GET LOCKED IN THE STORM AND NEEDED HELP.

NUMBER TWO, UM, IF 3, 1, 1 IS NOT GOING TO BE A RELIABLE PLATFORM FOR PEOPLE TO GET THROUGH FOR PET ISSUES.

UM, WE NEED A BACKUP PLAN.

THERE WERE SO MANY FOLKS WHO NEEDED HELP.

UM, OUR VOLUNTEERS AND STAFF WERE TRYING TO GET TO ANIMALS AS QUICKLY AS WE COULD, THAT WERE STUCK IN THE COLD AND NEEDED EMERGENCY HELP.

UM, BUT THERE, BUT UNFORTUNATELY MANY FOLKS COULDN'T GET THROUGH TO, UM, 3, 1, 1 AND WERE UNABLE TO GET HELP.

NUMBER THREE, UM, ANIMAL CONTROL NEEDS TO REMAIN, UM, MOSTLY FUNCTIONAL WHILE ANIMAL CONTROL DATE, EARLY ON RE RESPOND TO A FEW CALLS.

UM, THEY WERE LARGELY, UH, UNABLE TO RESPOND TO DURING THE STORM.

AND, UM, THEY STATE THAT AS, BECAUSE THEY DIDN'T HAVE APPROPRIATE EQUIPMENT, WHICH VERY WELL MAY BE TRUE.

UM, BUT WE WOULD RECOMMEND THAT THEY FORM A PARTNERSHIP WITH THE POLICE DEPARTMENT OR BUY SOME SPECIAL EQUIPMENT TO AT LEAST A COUPLE OF THE VEHICLES CAN REMAIN OPERATIONAL BECAUSE THERE WERE ANIMALS THAT WERE DYING AND DID DIE IN THE COLD BECAUSE THEY COULDN'T GET HELP.

AND LASTLY, UM, AUSTIN IS THE HEART OF HUMAN ANIMAL SUPPORT SERVICES, WHICH IS A COMPLETE REVOLUTION IN HOW WE CARE FOR HOMELESS PETS.

AND THE CORE OF IT IS THAT WE HAVE TO HELP PETS IN THEIR COMMUNITIES.

AND, UM, OFTEN ONE OF THE ONLY, UH, MAJOR US ANIMAL WELFARE CITIES NOT PARTICIPATING, UM, ALL IN ALL HOT HOT CITIES REPRESENTS, UH, 44 MILLION RESIDENTS.

AND IN THE CITIES THAT ARE HOT COMMUNITIES, UM, THEY WERE MUCH MORE EQUIPPED TO DEAL WITH THIS SITUATION AND THEY ACTED QUICKLY, THE SHELTER STAYED OPEN.

UM, ANIMAL CONTROL WAS ABLE TO RESPOND, BUT THEY ALSO USED MUTUAL AID.

AND AUSTIN PETS ALIVE IS PROUD TO HELP.

WE WERE SO HAPPY TO BE ABLE TO HELP THE COMMUNITIES, BUT NEXT TIME AROUND, WE NEED TO DO THAT IN PARTNERSHIP WITH A FUNCTIONING ANIMAL SERVICES DEPARTMENT.

AND THAT WAS WHAT WE DID NOT HAVE THIS TIME.

SO IT'S OUR HEALTH THAT YOUR RECOMMENDATION WILL BE THAT THE CITY PUT THE PLAN IN PLACE AND REQUIRES ANIMAL SERVICES TO BE CONSIDERED ESSENTIAL AND REMAIN OPEN.

THOSE ARE ALL EXCELLENT IDEAS.

UM, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THAT.

UM, AND SOMETHING, I DON'T BELIEVE WE'VE WE BREACHED OR ADDRESSED THIS THOROUGHLY, UM, SINCE YOU'VE BEEN HAVING OUR LISTENING SESSIONS.

UM, ARE THERE ANY QUESTIONS ANYONE HAS, OR, OR DISCUSSION OR FEEDBACK OR SPEAKER, UH, KRISTEN, THIS IS, UM, UM, TASK MEMBER, J JEFFREY CLEMENS WHO REACHED OUT TO YOU ALL, AND THEN JUST WANTED TO SAY, THANK YOU AGAIN FOR PROVIDING YOUR TESTIMONY TONIGHT.

UM, LECTURE DAVID SAID, UM, SOMETHING THAT WE HAVEN'T REALLY HAD THE CHANCE TO TOUCH ON AND THINK ABOUT, BUT I THINK THAT YOU'RE EXACTLY RIGHT THAT, UM, UM, ANIMAL SERVICES IS AS MUCH ABOUT HUMAN SERVICES AS IT IS JUST ABOUT TRYING TO SAVE THOSE ANIMALS.

UM, AND SO I THINK THAT THERE'S SO MUCH THAT WE CAN LEARN FROM AUSTIN PETS ALIVE AND, UM, YOU KNOW, WHAT YOU ALL DID, UM, WAS TREMENDOUS.

UM, LIKE YOU SAID, YOU HELPED HUNDREDS OF ANIMALS AND ANSWERED THOUSANDS OF REQUESTS.

UM, AND THAT'S SOMETHING THAT, YOU KNOW, HONESTLY, </