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[2022 City Council Candidate Forum District 3]

[00:00:07]

WELCOME TO THE CITY OF AUSTIN, DISTRICT THREE CANDIDATE FORUM.

I AM CAROL E ECHO CAMP WITH THE LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS, AUSTIN AREA.

OUR LEAGUE PARTNERS WITH THE CITY OF AUSTIN ETHICS REVIEW COMMISSION TO HELP EVERYONE GET TO KNOW THE CANDIDATES VYING FOR THEIR VOTE AS A LOCAL CHAPTER OF THE LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS, WE ARE A NONPARTISAN POLITICAL ORGANIZATION FOUNDED OVER 100 YEARS AGO.

OUR MEMBERSHIP CONSISTS OF MEN AND WOMEN PROMOTING INFORMED AND ACTIVE CIVIC PARTICIPATION DESPITE THE DIVISIVENESS IN OUR COUNTRY.

YOU ALL CANDIDATES SIT HERE AS EXAMPLES OF THE GOOD THINGS IN OUR DEMOCRACY.

IF ELECTED, YOU WILL REPRESENT THE CITIZENS OF THIS DISTRICT AND WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO AFFECT CHANGE AT A LOCAL LEVEL.

TODAY'S QUESTIONS WERE CREATED AND EDITED BY THE LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS OF THE AUSTIN AREA, WITH INPUT FROM COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS, GOVERNMENT ENTITIES, AND THE GENERAL PUBLIC.

NO CANDIDATES WERE GIVEN THESE QUESTIONS IN ADVANCE.

THESE FORUMS WILL BE AVAILABLE AT THE CITY OF AUSTIN, ATX N NETWORK IN THE ARCHIVES ALONGSIDE ALL OF YOUR CITY COUNCIL AND COMMISSION MEETINGS THIS EVENING.

CANDIDATES, YOU'LL HAVE TWO MINUTES FOR YOUR OPENING STATEMENT AND ONE MINUTE CLOSING STATEMENT, AND YOU'RE GOING TO BE GIVEN ONE MINUTE TO ANSWER THE QUESTIONS.

WE HAVE A TIMEKEEPER UP HERE, AND THESE VERY NICE LADIES WILL HOLD UP A BIG GREEN CARD DURING YOUR OPENING ONLY.

THAT SAYS A MINUTE.

SO YOU'RE HALFWAY THROUGH.

THEN DURING THE QUESTIONS YOU'RE GONNA GET, NOT THE MINUTE WILL START, YOU'LL GET THE HALFWAY MARK AT 30 SECONDS, AND THEN YOU'LL GET A STOP SIGN.

SO WHEN YOU STOP, DON'T STOP MID-SENTENCE, FINISH THE SENTENCE, NOT THE WHOLE THOUGHT AND PARAGRAPH, BUT JUST YOUR SENTENCE AND DON'T MAKE IT SO ABRUPT.

AND, UH, DO THAT FOR US AND IT'LL BE REAL SMOOTH FOR YOU.

SO WE ASK THAT THE CANDIDATES REFRAIN FROM ANY PERSONAL ATTACKS ON THEIR OPPONENTS, AND WE ASK OUR LIVE AUDIENCE ALSO TO REFRAIN FROM REACTING IN SUPPORT OR OPPOSITIONS TO THE STATEMENTS BY THESE CANDIDATES.

THIS IS HOW OUR DEMOCRACY WORKS.

SO LET'S GET STARTED.

WE'RE GONNA BEGIN IN BALLOT ORDER, AND THEN EACH QUESTION, AS I EXPLAINED EARLIER, WILL ROTATE.

AND THE FIRST THREE OF YOU WILL BE A GROUP, AND THE SECOND THREE OF YOU WILL BE A GROUP.

AND WE'RE GONNA ASK A DIFFERENT QUESTION, BUT ON THE SAME GENERAL TOPIC.

SO OUR OPENING STATEMENT, UH, CANDIDATE VELASQUEZ, YOU WILL START OFF BECAUSE YOU'RE FIRST LISTED ON THE BALLOT BY A DRAWING.

HELLO.

UM, MY NAME IS VELASQUEZ.

FIRST AND FOREMOST, THANK EVERYBODY FOR BEING HERE.

UH, I AM, UH, FOURTH GENERATION EAST AUSTINITE, AND I AM IN THIS RACE BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF URGENCY AROUND AFFORDABILITY.

I WAS RAISED BY A SINGLE MOTHER RIGHT DOWN THE STREET IN EAST AUSTIN, UH, MAKING $25,000 A YEAR ADJUSTED FOR INFLATION.

THAT WOULD BE ABOUT $48,000 A YEAR, AND MY MOTHER WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO AFFORD ANYTHING IN EAST AUSTIN.

UM, YOU HEAR A LOT ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL, THE TALE OF TWO CITIES, AND I'VE LIVED IT.

I CAN SPEAK WITH INTELLIGENCE, AUTHORITY, AND TRUST IN THE COMMUNITY ABOUT THE DISPARITIES FACING OUR CITY.

IT'S SAID RIGHT NOW THAT YOU HAVE TO HAVE A MINIMUM OF A HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS TO LIVE COMFORTABLY IN AUSTIN, TEXAS.

WITH THE MEDIAN INCOME BEING ABOUT $65,000 AND THE AVERAGE PRICE OF A HOME BEING ABOUT $600,000, THOSE NUMBERS JUST DON'T ADD UP.

AND THAT'S NOT THE, THE AUSTIN THAT I WAS BORN INTO.

AND IT'S NOT THE AUSTIN THAT I WANT TO LEAD FUTURE GENERATIONS.

I HAVE A PROVEN TRACK RECORD AS A COALITION BUILDER AND COMMUNITY ORGANIZER.

UM, WE, OUR AFFORDABLE AUSTIN PLAN CALLS FOR, UM, EXPANDED BROADBAND ACCESS, A HOLISTIC APPROACH TO OUR HOUSING CRISIS, UM, CHECKING WHICH ONE OF OUR CHECKING OUR CITY ROSTERS TO SEE HOW MUCH OF OUR OF OUR STAFF CAME BACK TO THE OFFICE WHEN THEY COULD HAVE CONTINUED TO REMOTE WORK.

AND, UM, AND PUTTING A FOCUS ON FULL DAY PRE-K.

UM, I'M PROUD TO SAY THAT I HAVE BEEN ENDORSED BY EVERY SINGLE LABOR UNION MAKING AN ENDORSEMENT IN THIS RACE, ALONG WITH A, A FAIR AMOUNT OF GOOD DEMOCRATS, INCLUDING, UH, CONGRESSMEN JOAQUIN, GO COUNTY ATTORNEY, ZA COUNTY JUDGE ANDY BROWN, UM, AND CONSTABLE GEORGE MORALES.

UH, I WOULD BE HONORED TO HAVE Y'ALL SUPPORT AS WELL.

THANK YOU CANDIDATE SILVA.

GOOD EVENING, AND THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME.

MY NAME IS DANIELLA SILVA.

MY PRONOUNS ARE SHE, THEY, I AM A FIRST GENERATION TEXAN PROUD DAUGHTER OF AN IMMIGRANT, UNAPOLOGETIC, PROGRESSIVE, UH, MEMBER OF THE L G B T Q COM COMMUNITY.

UM, I'M WORKING CLASS, UH, RENTER AND I HAVE DEDICATED MY ENTIRE LIFE TO SERVICE AND I'M RUNNING FOR CITY COUNCIL BECAUSE THE STATUS QUO JUST ISN'T WORKING ANYMORE.

[00:05:01]

AND I FIRMLY BELIEVE IN BEING THE CHANGE THAT YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE WORLD.

DISTRICT THREE DESERVES A REPRESENTATIVE WHO'S NOT ONLY GOING TO TALK THE TALK, BUT WALK THE WALK.

SOMEONE WHO CENTERS EQUITY, JUSTICE, AND SUSTAINABILITY IN EVERYTHING THEY DO, NOT ONLY PROFESSIONALLY, BUT PERSONALLY WITH A BACHELOR'S AND MASTER'S DEGREE FROM TEXAS A AND M UNIVERSITY POLICY EXPERIENCE ON THE STATE AND FEDERAL LEVEL, HAVING SERVED AS A PEACE CORPS VOLUNTEER IN TOGO, WEST AFRICA, WORKING IN THE NONPROFIT SPACE HERE IN AUSTIN, AND SERVING ON THE HISPANIC LATINO QUALITY OF LIFE RESOURCE ADVISORY COMMISSION.

I AM NOT ONLY CAPABLE, BUT QUALIFIED ENOUGH TO DO THIS JOB AND DO IT WELL.

IN ADDITION TO MY PROFESSIONAL AND ACADEMIC BACKGROUND, I HAVE SERVED AS AN ACTIVIST AND ORGANIZER ALONG MANY, UH, NONPROFIT ORGANIZATIONS AND MUTUAL AID GROUPS.

AND IN A TIME WHEN THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN, OF PEOPLE WITH UTERUS AND THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY ARE AT STAKE, REPRESENTATION MATTERS NOW MORE THAN EVER.

AND I WANT TO SERVE THE DISTRICT THREE TO HELP SHAPE POLICY THAT GIVES EVERYONE ACCESS TO A GREAT QUALITY OF LIFE THROUGH HOUSING, THROUGH HEALTHCARE, THROUGH ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE, AND PROTECTING OUR BEAUTIFUL GREEN SPACES.

SO PLEASE MAKE NO MISTAKE, I AM PRO-HOUSING, I'M PRO ENVIRONMENT, I'M PRO-CHOICE, AND IT WOULD BE MY DEEPEST HONOR TO SERVE AS THE NEXT REPRESENTATIVE FOR DISTRICT THREE ON THE AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL.

THANK YOU CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ.

UH, MY NAME IS GABRIELINO FERNANDEZ, THE POOR PEOPLE'S CANDIDATE RUNNING FOR THE AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT THREE.

WHEN ELECTED, OUR OFFICE WILL EMPOWER AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT THREE 92,000 RESIDENTS VOICES AT THE AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL.

DIAS.

I COME FROM THE VALIO, SO EASTERN SOUTH AUSTIN, AND HAVE LIVED AND WORKED IN DISTRICT THREE ALL MY LIFE.

I'M A 1972 GRADUATE OF JOHNSON HIGH SCHOOL.

I ATTENDED WATERS LINCOLN UNIVERSITY AND AUSTIN COMMUNITY COLLEGE, STUDYING GOVERNMENT AND HISTORY.

I POSSESS 40 YEARS OF CIVIC ENGAGEMENT IN DISTRICT THREE AS A MEMBER OF ECON, AN UMBRELLA OF NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS IN EST IN EAST AUSTIN.

I AM THE ONLY CANDIDATE WITH GOVERNING EXPERIENCE SERVING AS TRAVIS COUNTY COMMISSIONER PRECINCT FOR ZILLIONS CHIEF OF STAFF FROM 1991 TO 1994.

DISTRICT THREE IS EMBEDDED IN THE, UH, PRECINCT FOUR COMMISSIONERS, UH, BOUNDARIES.

I HAVE ALSO SERVED AS TRAVIS COUNTY DEMOCRATIC PARTY APPOINTED ELECTION JUDGE FOR PRECINCT 4 39 FOR THE PAST 15 YEARS.

AND PRECINCT 4 39 DEMOCRATIC CHAIR, TWO TERMS, AND TRAVIS COUNTY CLERK ELECTION DEPUTY JUDGE FOR 15 YEARS.

WHEN ELECTED, I WILL GOVERN WITH THE LENS OF DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION, AND WITH A HORIZON OF CLIMATE CHANGE.

PROPERTY TAX RELIEF IS ONE OF THE MOST COMMON ECHOED, AMPLIFIED ISSUES IN THE COMMUNITY.

I WILL WORK TO BRING PROPERTY TAX RELIEFS TO PEOPLE IN IN OUR COMMUNITY.

I SUPPORT BUILDING HOUSING FOR PERSONS OF 30% MFI.

I OPPOSE AUSTIN ENERGY'S PROPOSED RATE INCREASE, AND I OPPOSE THE EXPANSION OF I 35 WITH MORE LANES AND SUPPORT.

THE RETHINK IS I 35 APPROACH, AND WE NEED TO DIVERT TRAFFIC TO HH TO HH 30 LIKE IT WAS PROPOSED.

THANK YOU, CANDIDATE ALIS.

HELLO, MY NAME IS JOSE NOS.

I AM A CANDIDATE FOR AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT THREE.

I AM A TEACHER.

I AM AN IMMIGRANT.

I'M A HUSBAND, I AM A FATHER.

I WAS BORN IN MEXICO AND I CAME TO THE UNITED STATES WHEN I WAS EIGHT YEARS OLD.

WE SETTLED IN ON TOPLESS.

THAT'S WHERE I GREW UP, AND THAT'S WHERE I LIVE AND WHERE I AM RAISING MY FAMILY.

I LIVED UNDOCUMENTED FOR 20 YEARS.

UM, BESIDES THAT, I WAS, UH, ABLE TO EARN A BACHELOR'S AND A MASTER'S DEGREE FROM TEXAS STATE UNIVERSITY.

AND NOW I WORK AS A SECOND GRADE DUAL LANGUAGE TEACHER.

YOU KNOW, AS CANDIDATES, WE TALK ABOUT OUR WORKING FAMILIES AND HOW THEY'RE STRUGGLING TO LIVE IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

WELL, AS A TEACHER, I SEE THOSE STRUGGLES EVERY SINGLE DAY.

I SEE MY STUDENTS WHOSE FAMILIES SHARE A ONE BEDROOM APARTMENT.

EVEN THOUGH THE PARENTS WORK MULTIPLE JOBS, THEN THEIR STRESS IS COMPOUNDED BY INCREASES IN PRICES OF FOOD, TRANSPORTATION, HEALTHCARE, AND CHILDCARE.

AS A CANDIDATE, I'VE BEEN WALKING DISTRICT THREE AND KNOCKING ON MORE THAN 6,000 DOORS, AND I SEE THE SAME STRUGGLES THROUGHOUT THE DISTRICT ARE WORKING.

FAMILIES ARE JUST ONE CRISIS AWAY FROM FACING EVICTION, HOMELESSNESS, AND DISPLACEMENT.

SO WE

[00:10:01]

NEED TO DO BETTER BY OUR WORKING CLASS, BY WORKING FAMILIES.

WE NEED TO TAKE CARE OF THOSE THAT MAKE THE CITY WHAT IT IS.

SO, AS A CITY COUNCIL MEMBER, I WILL FIGHT FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING, TRULY AFFORDABLE HOUSING FOR THOSE WORKING FAMILIES.

I WILL BUY FIGHT FOR EQUITABLE TRANSPORTATION, FOR CLIMATE JUSTICE, FOR INVESTMENT IN EDUCATION, AND FOR PUBLIC SAFETY PLAN THAT'S CENTERED IN THE COMMUNITY.

SO IF YOU, I WOULD LOVE TO HAVE YOUR SUPPORT.

IF YOU NEED MORE INFORMATION, GO TO MY WEBSITE, WWW.JOSENOEALIASD3.COM.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, CANDIDATE WELDON.

HI, GOOD EVENING.

MY NAME IS YON WELDON AND IT IS AN HONOR TO BE RUNNING TO REPRESENT THE PEOPLE OF DISTRICT THREE.

SO WHEN PEOPLE THINK OF DISTRICT THREE, THEY MOSTLY THINK OF EAST, THE EAST SIDE, HOWEVER, AND EAST SIDE IS A A WONDERFUL DISTRICT.

I GREW UP IN SOUTH AUSTIN AND I WAS BUSTED JOHNSTON.

I LOVE DAN'S HAMBURGERS OVER ON AIRPORT.

HOWEVER, THE EAST, UH, DISTRICT THREE IS MORE THAN JUST THE EAST SIDE.

I NOW LIVE JUST SOUTH OF SOUTH AUSTIN HOSPITAL.

WE HAVE THE BAN BATTLE BEND DISTRICT.

WE HAVE, UM, UM, THAT WE'RE MUCH, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE SOUTH AUSTIN AS WELL.

I SAY EDWARDS UNIVERSITY, AND THERE'S A DISTRICT THAT'S JUST NORTH OF ME, UH, GO, YOU KNOW, SINCE I'M ABOUT THREE OR FOUR MILES SOUTH OF DOWNTOWN, THAT THERE'S SOME PEOPLE THAT THEY'D LIKE TO CONSIDER THEMSELVES CENTRAL AUSTIN.

AND THAT'S FINE.

HOWEVER, THE REASON I'M RUNNING FOR, UH, THE CITY COUNCIL IS I BELIEVE THAT THE CITY, UH, CITY IS DOING A RECKLESS JOB IN MANAGING OUR TAXPAYER DOLLARS AND ITS CORE RESPONSIBILITIES.

SO THERE ARE THREE KEY ISSUES RIGHT NOW THAT ARE, UH, CRITICAL ISSUES.

AND I HAVE PERSONAL LIVED EXPERIENCES ON EACH ONE OF 'EM.

ONE OF THEM WOULD BE HOMELESSNESS.

UM, AND I CAN'T GO INTO ALL THE DETAILS ABOUT THIS, BUT, UM, I DID RECENTLY GIVE A THREE MINUTE TESTIMONY TO THE D A C ON THIS PARTICULAR ISSUE.

AND I SPOKE A LOT FASTER THAN I WAS SPEAKING NOW.

BUT THAT IS A, THAT IS A, A VERY IMPORTANT ISSUE TO ME, IS TO DEAL WITH THE HOMELESS CRISIS THAT, UH, HAS BEEN CREATED SINCE WE LIFTED THE CAMPING BAND AND SINCE, UM, AND WHICH NEVER GOT, UM, DEALT WITH AFTER PROP B WAS PASSED.

ALSO, CRIME.

WE'RE THE SECOND WORST CRIME DISTRICT IN THE CITY.

UM, OUR, WE HAVE OVER 850 AS OF CAR THEFTS THAT HAPPENED JUST THIS YEAR.

HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS OF ASSAULTS AND BURGLARIES THAT, UM, AGGRAVATED BURGLARIES, UM, JUST THIS YEAR ALONE.

AND THE CRIME IS INCREASING.

SO, AND I DO BELIEVE THAT THOUGH, THIS IS BECAUSE OF AN EXTREME LEFTIST PROGRESSIVE MOVEMENT THAT HAS EXACERBATED THE CRIME CRISIS THROUGH THE DEFUND THE POLICE MOVEMENT THAT IS FUELING THE CRISIS.

AFFORDABILITY IS ALSO A THIRD ASPECT.

UM, I JUST WANNA SAY THAT I DO, UM, I LIVE, MY INCOME IS ABOUT 20% OF THE MAN, UH, MEDIUM FA MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME.

AND SO I UNDERSTAND, UH, AFFORDABILITY FROM A PERSONAL LEVEL.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

THESE TOPICS WERE CHOSEN.

RANDOM HA WHICH TOPICS THAT WE, OH, I'M SO SORRY.

I'M SO SORRY.

WE HAD, UH, THAT, I APOLOGIZE FOR THAT.

SO YOU'RE GONNA GET A FULL TWO MINUTES HERE TO GIVE US YOUR INTRO.

IT'S VERY EXCITING TO HEAR ALL OF YOU, BUT WE'RE LOOKING FORWARD.

HI, THANK YOU.

UH, MY NAME IS URSULA WISHNER.

MY WEBSITE IS WWW.WOOUNIVERSAL.COM.

W UNIVERSAL.COM.

UH, SO I'M ORIGINALLY FROM SHERI LANKA.

I, UH, LEGALLY MIGRATED HERE.

I GREW UP WITH NOTHING, UH, WAS, WASN'T ABLE TO, YOU KNOW, QUALIFY FOR FOOD STAMP THROUGH MY PARENTS.

SO I DIDN'T LIVE OFF GOVERNMENT ASSISTANT.

I DID EVERYTHING ON MY OWN TO, TO MAKE IT TO WHERE I AM TODAY.

I USED TO BE IN THE AIR FORCE, I USED TO FLY AIRPLANES WHEN I WAS 18 YEARS OLD.

I DONE HVAC, LANDSCAPING, CONSTRUCTION, SALES ADMINISTRATION.

I DONE A LOT OF MULTIPLE JOBS.

SO I UNDERSTAND, I CAN HONESTLY RELATE TO A LOT OF THE PEOPLE.

THE REASON THAT I'M RUNNING FOR AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL, IT'S NOT BECAUSE I WANTED TO, BECAUSE I FEEL LIKE I HAD TO, BECAUSE I'M SO TIRED OF THESE POLITICIANS THAT ARE DOING ALL THESE BLOCK WALKS CUZ THEY DON'T HAVE A FULL-TIME JOB.

MOST OF THESE PEOPLE ARE RUNNING BECAUSE THEY JUST NEED A PAY RAISE.

AND THAT REAL THING IS THAT THIS CITY IS BECOMING CORRUPT BECAUSE OUR DISTRICT ATTORNEY, JOSE GARZA, IS FUNDED BY SOMEBODY NAMED GEORGE SOROS WHO FUNDS ANTIFA AND DESTROYING THE CITY.

SO I WANNA EXPOSE EVERYONE'S CORRUPTION.

SO ONE OF THE BIGGEST THING I WANNA DO IS AUDIT ALL CITY GOVERNMENT, ALL CITY, UH, GO ALL CITY DEPARTMENTS.

AND I WANNA CREATE A DATABASE WHERE EVERYONE WILL HAVE ACCESS TO SHOW WHERE USE TAXPAYERS MONEY'S GOING.

AND I WANNA MAKE IT VERY, VERY EASY FOR PEOPLE TO FIND OUT WHERE THEIR TAXPAYERS MONEY'S GOING.

BECAUSE YOU HEAR ALL THESE CANDIDATES TELL THE SAME EXACT THINGS, LIKE, HEY, I'M GONNA DO THIS, I'M GONNA DO THIS, I'M GONNA DO THIS.

BUT ONCE THEY GET INTO THE OFFICE, YOU FIND OUT THEY ACTUALLY ACTUALLY KIND OF DUMB CUZ THEY DON'T HAVE ANY LOGIC TO DO.

SO I AM GOING TO FIX IT.

I'M GONNA SOLVE ALL THE PROBLEM.

I'M GONNA MAKE SURE THE POLICE LAW OF LAW OFFICERS, EMS,

[00:15:01]

EVERYONE'S FULLY FUNDED, AND I'M JUST GONNA EXPOSE EVERYONE'S CORRUPTION.

SO I'M GONNA BE A BIG TARGET BECAUSE I JUST WANT TO SAVE THE CITY.

I WANNA HELP THE LOCAL SMALL BUSINESSES.

I WANNA LOWER TAXES.

I WANNA, UM, MAKE SURE THAT AUSTIN IS NOT GONNA BE BECOME THE NEXT PORTAL NE SAN FRANCISCO LIKE IT'S BECOMING.

AND I WANNA REALLY, I REALLY HAVE A SOLUTION FOR THE HOMELESS PROBLEM, BUT BOTH OF ME, THANK YOU.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

IT'S VERY EXCITING TO HEAR YOUR INTROS.

UM, AND SO WE'RE EXCITED TO ASK THESE FEW QUESTIONS THAT WE CAN.

AND SO ON THIS FIRST QUESTION, UH, WE'LL BE STARTING IN THIS GROUP WITH OUR FIRST GROUP.

I, WE'LL BE STARTING WITH, UH, CANDIDATE SILVA, AND WE'RE GONNA DISCUSS HOMELESSNESS, RIGHT? AND THERE ARE MANY PUBLIC AND PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS THAT PROVIDE HEALTH SERVICES FOR THOSE EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS.

WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE IS WORKING OR NOT WORKING IN THIS BATTLE TO ADDRESS THE HEALTH AND WELLNESS OF THIS POPULATION? AND YOU'LL HAVE ONE MINUTE FOR THE ANSWERS.

OKAY, THANK YOU.

UM, WELL, THERE ARE YES, DOZENS OF ORGANIZATIONS THAT ARE DOING THE WORK.

I THINK SOME OF THE GOOD THINGS THAT ARE HAPPENING ARE, UM, ARE ADDICTION RECOVERY RESOURCES TO HELP FOLKS WHO DO SUFFER WITH DIFFERENT ADDICTIONS AS WELL AS MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES AND DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS THAT HOUSE PEOPLE WITH WRAPAROUND SERVICES, UM, TO MAKE SURE THAT NOT ONLY DO THEY HAVE SHELTER, BUT THEY HAVE CONNECTION TO FOLKS WHO CAN HELP THEM GET THEIR PAPERWORK BACK.

UM, AS WELL AS THEY'RE, UM, IF THEY'RE TRYING TO GET A JOB, THEY CAN GET NEW CLOTHING, DOCTOR'S APPOINTMENTS, UH, DENTAL CARE THAT ALL EXIST.

THE ISSUE IS THAT MOST PEOPLE JUST DON'T KNOW.

AND A LOT OF THESE FOLKS, UM, DON'T, DON'T WORK TOGETHER, NOT ON PURPOSE.

THEY JUST DON'T KNOW THAT THE OTHERS EXIST.

THANK YOU.

NOW, CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ, AND THEN WE'LL GO BACK TO CANDIDATE, UH, VELO BEFORE WE HEAD OVER TO THE SECOND GROUP.

YES.

THANK YOU FOR THE QUESTION.

UH, YES, I, I STRONGLY SUPPORT THE NUMEROUS ORGANIZATIONS, NONPROFITS THAT ARE OUT THERE OUTREACHING TO, TO THE ON HOUSE, UH, URBAN LEAGUE, UNITED WAY, UH, ALL THESE, UH, BOOTS ON THE GROUND, IF YOU WILL, EFFORTS.

AND I THINK THAT THE BEST ROLE GOVERNMENT CAN PROVIDE US BY CONTINUING TO, TO FUND THESE ORGANIZATIONS TO BE ABLE TO BETTER PROVIDE SERVICES TO, TO THESE INDIVIDUALS.

UH, THEY ALSO, UH, ASSIST IN THE TRANSITION FROM WHEN THEY WERE, UH, BEING REMOVED BECAUSE OF THE CITY ORDINANCE.

THESE ORGANIZATIONS HELP IN THE TRANSITION AND MOVING THEM FROM THE CAMPS TO SOME TO, TO HOUSING AND PROVIDING THEM RESOURCES.

MENTAL HEALTH IS ONE OF THE MOST HIGHLY NEEDED, UH, SERVICES OUT THERE FOR THE, UH, FOR THE IN-HOUSE JOBS.

WE ALSO NEED TO PROVIDE 'EM ASSISTANCE WITH JOBS AND PROVIDE 'EM WITH OPPORTUNITIES TO BE ABLE TO EMPOWER AND LIFT THEMSELVES UP FROM FINANCIAL SITUATIONS.

UH, THESE ARE, THESE ARE SOME OF THE CONDITIONS THAT MANY OF US COULD FALL IN, IN ANY DAY.

SO I THINK IT'S VERY IMPORTANT THAT, THAT WE CONTINUE TO SUPPORT THESE ORGANIZATIONS.

CANDIDATE VELAZQUEZ.

UM, I, I THINK ONE OF THE THINGS THAT THAT IS WORKING IS THE APPROACH THAT THE CITY IS TAKING TO, UM, WITH A HOUSING FIRST APPROACH.

ANYTHING ELSE WILL BE, UH, DESTABILIZING.

UM, I, I DO BELIEVE WE NEED TO BE BETTER ABOUT OUR COMPREHENSIVE MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES, UM, OUR COORDINATED ASSESSMENTS, UM, AND THEN WORK ON A REENTRY ROUND CHA REENTRY ROUND TABLE.

UM, ONE THING THAT I, THAT I DON'T THINK IS WORKING IS THE, THE COMMUNICATION BETWEEN DIFFERENT AGENCIES AND DIFFERENT, DIFFERENT, UH, SERVICE PROVIDERS THAT PROVIDE THE SAME, UH, THE SAME TYPE OF SUPPORT.

UM, BUT I ALSO THINK THAT COUNCIL CAN BE, UM, UH, CAN BE BETTER ADVOCATES AND BE MORE COMPASSIONATE AND, UH, AND GOOD ADVOCATES AROUND THE HEALTH AND SAFETY ISSUES THAT ARISE, UH, BECAUSE WE KNOW THOSE WILL BE USED AGAINST OUR UNHOUSED NEIGHBORS.

THANK YOU.

ALL RIGHT.

SAME TOPIC IN, UH, CANDIDATE.

UM, ELIS, AGAIN, MANY PUBLIC AND PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS PROVIDING HEALTH SERVICES FOR ALL THE, FOR THOSE EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS, DO YOU BELIEVE AUSTIN'S HOMELESSNESS PROBLEM IS PRIMARILY A HOUSING CRISIS OR A MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS? WHY? WELL, I, I BELIEVE THAT IT'S BOTH AND WE HAVE TO TACKLE IT, UM, IN THAT WAY.

WE HAVE TO TACKLE IT AS AN EMERGENCY.

WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE THAT OUR DEPARTMENTS ARE WORKING TOGETHER.

I SEE RIGHT NOW THAT, YOU KNOW, AUSTIN RESOURCE RECOVERY, SPENDING MONEY ON, YOU KNOW, CLEANING UP, WE SEE THE PARKS DEPARTMENT SPENDING MONEY AS WELL.

WE SEE, YOU KNOW, UH, AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH SPENDING MONEY, AND THERE'S NO COLLABORATION ON THAT.

AND THE REASON FOR THAT IS THAT THERE'S NO CLEAR STRATEGY TO, UH, TACKLE THIS PROBLEM.

AND I DO AGREE THAT IT'S A HOUSING FIRST PROBLEM.

AND I ALSO FEEL THAT BECAUSE OF THIS LACK OF COORDINATION AND STRATEGY, WE DON'T SEE THE OVERALL PROBLEM BECAUSE THEY'RE, I THINK IT'S DEEPER THAN WE ACTUALLY, WE ACTUALLY KNOW AS A TEACHER, WE

[00:20:01]

HAVE FAMILIES THAT ARE ACTUALLY HOMELESS, BUT THEY'RE DOUBLED UP WITH OTHER FAMILIES LIVING IN ONE APARTMENT, AND WE'RE NOT EVEN TALKING ABOUT THAT.

SO I THINK THAT WE NEED A CLEAR STRATEGY.

WE NEED OUR DEPARTMENTS WORKING TOGETHER AND OUR, UM, COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS WORKING TOGETHER.

THANK YOU.

CANDIDATE WELDED.

SO SORRY ABOUT THAT.

UH, SO I DO BELIEVE THAT HOMELESSNESS IS NOT A CRIME.

UH, JUST LIKE DRIVING IS NOT A CRIME UNLESS YOU ARE DRIVING DRUNK, UNLESS YOU DON'T HAVE A LICENSE, UM, OR YOU ARE A SPEEDING.

AND WHEN SOMETHING HAPPENS TO YOU, AND WHEN YOU ARE DRIVING AND YOU GET PULLED OVER FROM A POLICE OFFICER, THEN THEY GIVE YOU A TICKET, A CITATION, AND THEY DIRECT YOU TO THE, UM, TO THE MUNICIPAL COURT, UM, WITH OPTIONS.

AND SOMETIMES THEY MAY EVEN CONVEY AN OPTION.

YOU CAN TAKE DEFENSIVE DRIVING, YOU CAN DO THE FOLLOWING, BUT YOU STILL HAVE TO REPORT TO THE MUNICIPAL COURT.

WE, FORTUNATELY HERE IN AUSTIN, HAVE SOMETHING CALLED THE DOWNTOWN AUSTIN COMMUNITY COURT, WHICH IS VERY SIMILAR.

IT'S, BUT IT'S A LITTLE BIT MORE UNIQUE JUST FOR THOSE PEOPLE WHO ARE HOMELESS.

THEY HAVE THE ABILITY TO BE ABLE TO ASSIGN A CASE WORKER WHEN SOMEBODY IS CITED FOR A HOMELESSNESS VIOLATION.

AND THEY CAN HELP THEM WITH CLEARING OUT THAT TICKET.

THEY CAN HELP THEM WITH CLEARING OUT PRIOR TICKETS.

THEY CAN HELP THEM WITH RESOURCES LIKE SNAP BENEFITS AND, UH, HOUSING BENEFITS AND WHATEVER RESOURCES THEY MAY NEED TO HELP THEM GET OUT OF HOMELESSNESS.

AND IT'S A VIABLE TOOL THAT CAN HELP TRACK, UH, WHAT, WHAT THOSE THAT, UH, THOSE THAT ARE EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS, WHAT KIND OF SERVICES THAT ARE BEING GIVEN SINCE I'VE, UH, SIGNED.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

CANDIDATE WISHNER.

UM, CAN YOU JUST REPEAT THE QUESTION ONE MORE TIME SINCE I'M LAST? SURE.

NO PROBLEM IS THAT MANY PUBLIC AND PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS PROVIDE HEALTH SERVICES FOR THOSE EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS.

AND DO YOU BELIEVE THAT AUSTIN'S HOMELESSNESS PROBLEM IS PRIMARILY A HOUSING CRISIS OR A MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS? AUSTIN HOMELESS PROBLEM IS A MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS.

AND THAT MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS, IT CAN BE VARIOUS THINGS.

I ACTUALLY HAVE A REALLY BIG PLAN TO REALLY A REDUCED MENTAL CRISIS, BUT IT'S A 15 MINUTE SPEECH NOW.

UH, WHAT I ULTIMATELY, WHAT I, UH, TO MAKE IT 45 SECONDS, I USED TO ACTUALLY VOLUNTEER IN SAN ANTONIO FOR HEAVEN FOR HOPE AT FIVE 30 IN THE MORNING, SIX IN THE MORNING TO FEED, UH, ALL THOSE PEOPLE IN THERE.

SO I TRY TO REALLY DIG INTO HOW TO FIX IT.

AND IN AUSTIN, THE ISSUE IS THAT RIGHT NOW AUSTIN IS PROVIDING CRACK PIPES FOR THESE PEOPLE TO DO CRACK.

HOW DO I KNOW? BECAUSE THREE DAYS AGO I SAW SOMEONE SMOKING CRACK FROM ALL THESE KIDS AND I ASKED THEM, WHERE'D YOU GET THESE CRACK PIPES? WELL, HARM REDUCTION DOES AUSTIN INCENTIVIZING THESE PEOPLE TO DO MORE AND MORE DRUGS, AND THEY WANNA MAKE AUSTIN THIS, UH, SAFE PLACE FOR ALL THE HOMELESS PEOPLE IN THE ENTIRE WORLD.

THEY WILL DESTROY AUSTIN.

SO THIS IS REALLY A MENTAL CRISIS, AND WE GOTTA GET THESE DRUGS OFF THE STREET BECAUSE ULTIMATELY THEY HAVE TO HELP THEMSELVES.

DOESN'T MATTER WHAT YOU DO, THEY HAVE TO HELP THEMSELVES.

THANK YOU.

I'LL ASK THE NEXT QUESTION, WHICH WE'RE GOING TO TALK ABOUT POLICING NEXT.

SO WE'LL WORK WITH OUR, UH, FIRST GROUP STARTING WITH CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ.

UM, FIRST QUESTION.

AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL PASSED A VERY LARGE PUBLIC SAFETY BUDGET FOR FISCAL YEAR 20 22, 23.

DO YOU FEEL THE BUDGET PROVIDES ADEQUATE POLICE, EMS, AND FIRE SERVICES FOR DISTRICT THREE? WHY OR WHY NOT? UH, NO, BECAUSE WE ARE RIGHT NOW 255 OFFICERS FROM THE AMOUNT THAT WE NEED TO HAVE IN ORDER TO ADDRESS THE POPULATION GROWTH THAT WE HAVE.

UH, WE HAVE 155, UH, EMS VACANCIES, UH, THAT ARE VACANT, AND THAT DOES NOT PROVIDE A SAFE QUALITY NET FOR OUR COMMUNITY.

AND WE NEED TO, UH, AS A COUNCIL MEMBER, I WILL MAKE SURE THAT WE BECOME AGGRESSIVE AND, AND HAVE THOSE POSITIONS FILL SO THAT WE CAN BETTER, UH, PROVIDE A QUALITY SAFETY ENVIRONMENT FOR, FOR OUR PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY.

AND, UH, SO THAT'S WHY I SUPPORT BEING ABLE TO BRING FUNDS, ADDITIONAL FUNDS, UH, TO BE ABLE TO MY QUESTIONS.

WHY CAN'T WE HAVE TWO POLICE CANDIDATE CLASSES TO BE ABLE TO SPEED UP AND BRING UP THOSE, THAT, THAT PERSONNEL THAT IS VERY MUCH NEEDED.

AND I AM A VERY STRONG ADVOCATE OF COMMUNITY POLICING, MAKING SURE THAT THE POLICE GET OUT INTO THE COMMUNITY, ENGAGED WITH THE COMMUNITY, AND I'M A CHARTER MEMBER OF THE POLICE ACTIVITY SLEEPING.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

UM, CANDIDATE VELASQUEZ, UM, YEAH, NO, I'M A HUGE ADVOCATE OF COMMUNITY POLICING ALSO.

UM, BUT AUSTIN REMAINS ONE OF THE SAFEST, UH, UM, CITIES AMONG THE 30 MAJOR METROPOLITAN CITIES ACROSS THE UNITED STATES.

UM, BUT THE AREA THAT WE NEED TO ADDRESS IS THE SHORTAGES IN OUR EMS AND HOW THOSE FOLKS ARE PAID, AND HOW WE CAN HELP RETAIN AND RECRUIT PEOPLE.

BECAUSE AT THE, AT THE CURRENT, UM, AT THEIR CURRENT SALARY, THEY'RE HAVING A LOT OF TROUBLE RETAINING AND KEEPING FOLKS BECAUSE OF THE UN BECAUSE OF THE AFFORDABILITY ISSUE IN AUSTIN, TEXAS.

UM, AND UP TO

[00:25:01]

75% OF THEM LIVE OUTSIDE OF THE COUNTY RIGHT NOW.

UM, SO IT'S AN ISSUE THAT WE NEED TO ADDRESS.

UM, AND, AND I'LL HELP DO THAT.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, CANDIDATES.

SILVA, WOULD YOU LIKE ME TO REPEAT THE QUESTION? I GOT IT.

THANK YOU.

UM, THERE IS NOT ENOUGH FUNDING FOR OUR EMS AND FOR OUR FIREFIGHTERS.

BOTH GROUPS ARE, ARE ASKING FOR MORE SUPPORT.

THEY ARE IN NEED OF MORE BOOTS ON THE GROUND, AND IT'S JUST NOT POSSIBLE WITH, AGAIN, THIS IS, AND IT COMES DOWN TO HOUSING, IT COMES DOWN TO AFFORDABILITY.

EVERYONE IN OUR PUBLIC, UH, OUR PUBLIC SAFETY SECTOR IS STRUGGLING TO LIVE WITHIN CITY LIMITS AND MANY, IF NOT MOST, OUR LIVING OUTSIDE.

AND THERE'S ALSO A SENTIMENT WITHIN OUR NEIGHBORS THAT FEEL THAT THE FOLKS WHO ARE PROVIDING PUBLIC SAFETY ARE JUST STRANGERS WHO DON'T ACTUALLY CARE ABOUT THE COMMUNITY.

SO IT'S IMPERATIVE THAT WE WORK TO MAKE THE CITY MORE AFFORDABLE FOR OUR PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICIALS, FOR THE FOLKS WHO ARE WORKING CLASS AND THE PEOPLE WHO HELP THE CITY OPERATE.

AND RIGHT NOW IT'S JUST NOT BEING DONE.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

UM, SO STILL IN THE REALM OF POLICING, BUT A DIFFERENT QUESTION.

UM, CANDIDATE WELDIN WILL START WITH YOU THIS TIME.

AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL APPROVED A ONE YEAR PILOT PROGRAM ENABLING POLICE CRUISERS TO USE LICENSE PLATE SCANNERS AT FIXED POINTS THROUGHOUT THE CITY.

THESE CAMERAS TAKE PHOTOS OF LICENSE PLATES, STORE THEM IN A DATABASE, AND THEN POLICE USE THE DATA TO, FOR INSTANCE, FIND SOMEONE WHO'S DRIVING A VEHICLE THAT'S CONNECTED TO A CRIME.

OPPONENTS SAY THIS ENORMOUS, THE, THE ENORMOUS DATABASES THAT ARE CREATED OF INNOCENT MOTORIST LOCATION INFORMATION IS INVASIVE AND PROBLEMATIC.

DO YOU SUPPORT THIS PROGRAM? WHY OR WHY NOT? YES, I ABSOLUTELY SUPPORT THIS PROGRAM.

I WAS IN, UH, BOTH TO THE COUNCIL MEETINGS, UH, FROM THE MORNING 10:00 AM UNTIL THEY ADJOURNED, UH, WHEN THEY WERE DISCUSSING THE LAST TWO IN INCLUDING THAT VOTE.

AND I LISTENED TO, UH, CHIEF JACOB'S PRESENTATION, AND I ENCOURAGE ANYONE WHO HAS QUESTIONS REGARDING THAT TO WA GO BACK AND WATCH THAT PRESENTATION.

UM, REGARDING THE EFFECTIVE USE ON HOW THE LICENSE PLATE READERS CAN BE USED TO SAVE LIVES.

IT HAS BEEN USED TO, UH, CATCH THAT, UH, ROCK THROWER ON I 35.

IT'S BEEN USED TO SAVE PEOPLE WHO, UH, COMMITTED SEXUAL, UM, UH, OFFENSES, UM, OR AS WELL AS IT'S BEEN KNOWN TO BE USED TO, UH, REACH OUT TO SOMEBODY WHO'S, UM, UH, WHEN WE HAVE AN AMBER ALERT AND BEING ABLE TO FIND THAT VEHICLE AND POSSIBLY SAVE LIVES.

SO YES, IT WAS A VERY, UM, IT WAS A VERY WONDERFUL MOMENT TO SEE THAT THAT PASSED AND TO BEING ABLE TO RETAIN THAT DATA FOR 30 DAYS TO HELP EFFECTIVELY SOLVE CRIMES AND SAVE LIVES.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

CANDIDATE WISHNER.

I DO SUPPORT IT.

ALSO NOTE THAT I DON'T SUPPORT A POLICE SURVEILLANCE STATE LIKE CHINA, BUT I DO THINK POLICE NEED TO HAVE THE ABILITY TO DO SO IN CASE SOMEONE GET KIDNAPPED OR ALL THESE OTHER THINGS.

NOW THE THING IS THAT ONLY TWO OF US HERE AGREES WITH THIS THING.

NOW, THE OTHER CANDIDATES DO, THEY DON'T WANT THE POLICE TO HAVE THE ABILITY TO READ LICENSE PLATE READERS.

SO IF SOMETHING HAPPENED TO YOU, SOMEONE GET KIDNAPPED AND YOU CALL THE POLICE AND YOU TELL THEM LICENSE PLATE, THEY CAN'T DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT BECAUSE, UH, I KNOW OTHER, OTHER CANDIDATES, THEY WANT TO MAKE SURE THEY TAKE THAT AWAY.

SO I WANT THE POLICE TO HAVE THE ABILITY TO READ THE LICENSE PLATE READERS, BUT OBVIOUSLY I DON'T WANT THEM TO USE IT TO CONTROL IT TO WHERE THEY END UP BEING A SURVEILLANCE STATE OR TARGET PEOPLE FOR WHATEVER THEIR BIASNESS IS.

BUT I WANT THEM TO HAVE THE ABILITY TO, UH, YOU KNOW, ESPECIALLY TACKLE SEX TRAFFICKING, FENTANYLS, UH, LEGAL CARTEL MEMBERS.

I JUST WANT THEM TO CAPTURE IT SO WE CAN BE A SAFE CITY.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, UH, CANDIDATE ELIAS E ELIAS.

YES.

UM, I DO NOT SUPPORT THE LICENSE PLATE READERS.

UM, IN A TIME WHEN, YOU KNOW, WHEN OUR GOVERNMENT, ESPECIALLY OUR STATE GOVERNMENT, IS TARGETING PEOPLE FOR, YOU KNOW, UH, COMING HERE AS REFUGEES, UH, SEEKING, UH, HEALTHCARE SEEKING ABORTIONS, UH, AND JUST, YOU KNOW, TARGETING PEOPLE THAT ARE TRANSGENDER PEOPLE THAT, YOU KNOW, UH, UH, THAT YOU KNOW, THAT THEY FEEL THAT ARE NOT, YOU KNOW, THAT THEY'RE, THEY'RE GOING TO TARGET.

UM, I THINK THAT DATA IS SOMETHING THAT THEY COULD, THAT THEY WOULD USE THAT, UH, THEY WOULD USE TO, UH, DO THE SAME THING TO TARGET PEOPLE, TARGET WOMEN THAT ARE GOING ACROSS STATE LINES TO, UH, SEEK AN ABORTION, UH, TARGET, UH, PARENTS THAT ARE, UM, YOU KNOW, HELPING THEIR, THEIR CHILDREN WHO I, YOU KNOW, DON'T IDENTIFY AS, UM, YOU KNOW, THE SEX TRANSCRIBE TO THEM OR TARGETING MIGRANTS THAT ARE, UH, COMING THROUGH OUR STATE, YOU KNOW? AND SO THAT'S THE REASON WHY I DON'T SUPPORT LICENSE PLATE READERS.

THANK YOU.

ON OUR THIRD QUESTION, AND WE'LL START WITH CANDIDATE VELASQUEZ IN THIS FIRST GROUP, AND WE'RE GONNA TALK A LITTLE BIT

[00:30:01]

ABOUT HUMAN TRAFFICKING IN AUSTIN, TEXAS.

UM, THE STATE OF TEXAS HAS THE 10TH HIGHEST RATE OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING IN THE COUNTRY, ACCORDING TO THE CITY OF AUSTIN'S HUMAN TRAFFICKING AND VICE UNIT.

IF ELECTED, WHAT WILL YOU DO TO ADDRESS THE ISSUE OF HUMAN AND SEX TRAFFICKING? UM, MAKE IT EASIER TO REPORT ONE OF THE ISSUES THAT WE HAVE, ESPECIALLY WHEN IT, WHEN IT COMES TO, UM, A LOT OF, A LOT OF THE HUMAN TRAFFICKING REVOLVES AROUND, UM, IMMIGRANT COMMUNITIES.

AND ONE OF THE ISSUES THAT WE HAVE IS VERY DIFFICULT FOR FOLKS TO WANT TO REPORT AND FEEL COMFORTABLE REPORTING THESE ISSUES.

UM, WE NEED TO MAKE IT AS SAFE AND AS ACCESSIBLE AS POSSIBLE TO BE ABLE TO REPORT THAT THOSE ISSUES, BUT ALSO, UM, HAVE THE, UH, SUPPORT AND COMMUNITY GROUPS THAT ARE ABLE TO HELP ABLE TO HELP US AND THE POLICE DEAL WITH THE ISSUE.

THANK YOU.

CANDIDATE SILVA.

UM, WELL, THE, I THINK THE FIRST STEP IS SIMPLY BELIEVING WOMEN WHEN THEY ARE MAKING THESE REPORTS, AND WHETHER IT'S COMING UP TO US AS LEADERS IN THE COMMUNITY, THEY'RE GOING TO, THEIR NEIGHBORS ARE GOING TO THEIR PARENTS.

THEY HAVE, THERE ARE SO MANY HURDLES THAT, UM, WOMEN HAVE TO FACE WHEN THEY ARE REPORTING ANY KIND OF SEXUAL ABUSE.

UM, SO BELIEVING WOMEN IS JUST THE, THE START.

AND, UH, ABSOLUTELY I WOULD ALWAYS DO THAT ON COUNCIL.

UM, ADDITIONALLY, IT'S IMPORTANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE, UH, WORK WITH DIFFERENT COMMUNITY GROUPS AND SCHOOLS TO ENSURE PEOPLE KNOW THAT WHAT THE SIGNS ARE OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING IN KIDS AND, AND PEOPLE OF ALL AGES AND GENDER ABILITIES, UM, THAT THEY CAN SEE THE SIGNS, THEY KNOW WHERE TO GO, THEY KNOW WHO TO TALK TO, AND THAT THEY HAVE ALLIES AND RESOURCES IN EXISTING GROUPS IN AUSTIN.

THANK YOU.

CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ.

YES, IT'S A PROMPT MEMBER OF THE AUSTIN TRAVIS COUNTY HATES CRIME TASK FORCE, AUSTIN, UH, DEFORMATION LEAGUE.

WE WORK ON THAT ISSUE AND WE, IT, IT BRINGS, UH, ALL LAW ENFORCEMENTS THROUGHOUT THE CENTRAL TEXAS, THE DISTRICT, UH, ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, THE DA, THE FBI.

SO THESE SORT OF, THE RESOURCES THAT WE ALL RELY ON WHEN IT COMES TO, UH, WORKING AND, AND, AND ELIMINATING THE HUMAN TRAFFICKING.

AND WHEN THE REPORTS DO COME IN FROM HUMAN TRAFFICKING VICTIMS, THAT THEY BE PROTECTED AND BE PROVIDED WITH ASSURANCE AND QUALITY, THAT, ONE, THEY'RE NOT GONNA BE IMPORTED.

AND TWO, THAT IF THERE ARE WITNESSES TO A CRIME, THAT THEY CAN RECEIVE A VISA AND STAY HERE UNTIL THE, THE, UNTIL THE ISSUE IS RESOLVED.

SO THOSE ARE THE TYPE OF, UH, OF EDUCATION INFORMATION THAT WE NEED TO PROVIDE, UH, TO THE COMMUNITY SO THAT IT CAN FEEL SAFE TO REPORT THESE ACTIVITIES THAT ARE GOING ON IN THE COMMUNITY THAT AFFECT THE MOST VULNERABLE PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY.

SO THAT IS ONE THING THAT, UH, I AS A COUNCIL MEMBER WILL LOOK TO, UH, BE WORKING REAL HARD TO IDENTIFY AND PROTECT THOSE PEOPLE THAT REPORT THESE CRIMES.

THANK YOU.

CANDIDATE NER.

IT'S THE SAME, THE TEXAS WERE RANKED VERY RANKED 10TH, UH, IN HUMAN TRAFFICKING IN THE COUNTRY.

HOW WILL YOU WORK WITH THE VARIOUS BRANCHES OF THE CITY TO ADDRESS THE ISSUES OF ABUSE, VIOLENCE, AND HOMELESSNESS THAT MAY LEAD PEOPLE TO BECOME VICTIMS OF THIS CRIME? WELL, FIRST THING I NEED TO DO IS THAT, UM, RIGHT NOW THE JOSE GARZA, HE'S, UH, ATTACKING ALL THESE POLICE OFFICERS FOR DOING THEIR JOB.

12 OF THEM GOT INDICTED JUST DOING THEIR JOB.

SO THE POLICE DON'T WANNA JOIN THE FORCE ANYMORE BECAUSE THEY'RE AFRAID TO DO THEIR JOB.

SO THEY'RE LEAVING OUTSIDE OF AUSTIN SOMEWHERE ELSE.

AND ALSO THE CITY ONLY AUTHORIZED TO HAVE THE POLICE LEVEL OF 2008.

SO HOW CAN WE TRA, UH, YOU KNOW, HANDLE SEX TRAFFICKING WITHOUT THE POLICE BEING THERE? SO WE NEED TO DEFINITELY FUND ALL THESE ORGANIZATIONS FIRST.

THAT'S THE FIRST THING THAT WE DO FUND THESE ORGANIZATIONS.

SO WE HAVE, AND HELP ALL THESE POLICE OFFICERS TO FEEL COMFORTABLE TO BE A POLICE OFFICER.

ONCE YOU DO THAT, WE CAN REALLY TACKLE, UH, HUMAN TRAFFICKING BECAUSE I'M SO TIRED OF ALL THESE PEOPLE BEGGING FOR MONEY OUTSIDE WITH ALL THESE CHILDREN THERE, PRETEND LIKE THEY'RE PREGNANT.

SO I, I NEED TO REALLY TACKLE THAT, TACKLE THAT WE GOTTA FUND THE POLICE.

THANK YOU, CANALIS.

YES.

UM, WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT WHAT MAKES, YOU KNOW, THOSE COMMUNITIES VULNERABLE AND IS USUALLY, YOU KNOW, POVERTY, LACK OF BASIC RESOURCES, BASIC NEEDS.

SO WE NEED TO TACKLE THOSE PROBLEMS, WHETHER, YOU KNOW, WE NEED TO START WITH HOUSING, WE NEED TO START WITH, UM, MEETING PEOPLE'S HEALTH, UH, HEALTHCARE NEEDS, AND, YOU KNOW, OTHER BASIC NEEDS.

WHEN WE DISREGARD ANY OF THAT, THEN IT MAKES THOSE COMMUNITIES VULNERABLE.

AND IF YOU SEE THE COMMUNITIES THAT ARE MORE, UH, TARGETED FOR SEX TRAFFICKING OR ANY OF THAT, IT'S, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE THAT

[00:35:01]

ARE HOMELESS OR HAVE BEEN HOMELESS, UH, IMMIGRANT COMMUNITIES AND, UH, PEOPLE THAT ARE GOING THROUGH THE FOSTER SYSTEM.

AND SO IF WE DON'T ADDRESS THOSE, AGAIN, THOSE ISSUES OF MEETING PEOPLE'S BASIC NEEDS, THEN OF COURSE WE'RE GOING TO HAVE THIS PROBLEM.

AND SO AS A COUNCIL MEMBER, I THINK THAT THAT'S WHERE I WOULD, THAT'S WHERE I WOULD FOCUS ON THIS.

THANK YOU CANDIDATE WELDON.

THANK YOU.

UM, YES.

SO I HAD THE, UH, PRIVILEGE OF GOING ON A RIDE ALONG WITH, UH, SERGEANT DREW ANGUS WITH THE TRAVIS COUNTY CONSTABLE'S OFFICE.

AND, UH, SERGEANT MCUS GOES INTO THE ENCAMPMENTS AND, UH, BUILDS RELATIONSHIPS WITH THOSE WHO ARE HOMELESS.

AND ON OUR RIDE ALONG, HE WAS DOING A FOLLOW UP WITH A LADY WHO WAS BEING TRAFFICKED.

AND IT WAS, UH, IT WAS A FOLLOW UP BECAUSE IT WAS A VERY SENSITIVE TO GET HER OUT SAFELY SO THAT THOSE THAT SHE WAS BEING TRAFFICKED WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO FOLLOW HER OUT.

HE WAS ABLE TO GET HER INTO A HOTEL ROOM AND THEN GET, UM, THE, UH, OTHER ONES FOUNDATION, UH, PARTNERED IN TO GET HER OUT, UM, OF THAT SITUATION.

AND SHE WAS ACTUALLY GOING TO BE, UM, YOU KNOW, UM, THERE, THERE WAS A PROCESS THAT SHE WOULD GO TO, BUT THEY WERE SENDING HER BACK TO FLORIDA WHERE SHE WOULD GET INTO A SAFE PLACE INTO A SAFE HOME.

SO AS FAR AS, I ALSO GOT TO DO IT RIGHT ALONG WITH THE AUSTIN POLICE DEPARTMENT, AND I THINK IT'S VERY IN CRITICAL THAT WE NOTIFY ALL OF OUR, UH, FIRST LINE RESPONDERS WHO, UH, DEAL DIRECTLY WITH THE PUBLIC, EVEN FIRE AND EMS, WHO MAY HAVE TO DEAL WITH THIS TO MAKE SURE THAT THEY ARE TRAINED AND AWARE OF THE, OF THE ISSUE.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

SORRY.

UM, MOST OF YOU ADDRESSED AFFORDABILITY IN YOUR OPENING STATEMENTS, SO WE'RE GONNA ASK A COUPLE QUESTIONS ABOUT THAT.

UM, CANDIDATES SILVA WE'LL START WITH YOU WITH THIS, UH, GROUP OF QUESTIONS.

UM, THE CITY'S STRATEGIC HOUSING BLUEPRINT CALLS FOR 60,000 AFFORDABLE HOUSING UNITS TO BE BUILT ACROSS THE CITY BY 2028, INCLUDING MORE THAN 6,200 UNITS HERE IN DISTRICT THREE.

ONLY 16% OF THIS HOUSING HAS BEEN BUILT AND 1200 UNITS ARE CURRENTLY UNDER CONSTRUCTION.

PLEASE TELL US WHAT, IF ANYTHING, YOU WILL CHANGE TO ENSURE THAT YOUR DISTRICT CAN MEET THIS GOAL.

UH, THE PERMITTING PROCESS, UH, IS INCREDIBLY CUMBERSOME AND EXPENSIVE, UH, AND CAN BE MADE MUCH MORE EFFICIENT SO THAT FOLKS WHO ARE CONSTRUCTING THESE UNITS CAN DO SO IN A TIMELY FASHION AND DO IT WELL.

UM, ADDITIONALLY, WE CAN, UM, MAKE SURE THAT, UH, FOLKS WHO ARE INTENTIONAL IN CREATING THESE, UM, HOUSING UNITS, UM, CAN WORK WITH THE DIFFERENT ZONING CODES, UM, TO MAKE SURE THAT, THAT THEY HAVE THE HEIGHT THAT THEY NEED, UM, IF THEY'RE DOING VERTICAL MIXED USE, THAT, UM, THEY HAVE THE, THE BENEFITS TO BE ABLE TO DO THAT AND MAKE IT, UM, COST EFFECTIVE.

UM, BUT PERMITS IS JUST KIND OF THE NUMBER ONE THING THAT I HEAR TIME AND TIME AGAIN WITH FOLKS WHO ARE TRYING TO CREATE DEEPLY AFFORDABLE HOUSING, THAT IT'S TOO EXPENSIVE AND IT TAKES TOO LONG.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ, UH, YES, I WOULD ADDRESS IT BY CREATING A FAST TRACK, ONE STOP SHOP FOR ALL THESE PERMITS, FOR ALL THESE BUILDINGS TO BE, UH, PUT ON, YOU KNOW, GO UNDER CONSTRUCTION AND BE ABLE TO BE BUILT SO THAT, UH, WE WILL MEET THAT GOAL.

AND ALSO EXCEEDED, I'M ALSO A STRONG PROPONENT OF BUILDING, UH, AFFORDABLE HOUSING FOR THOSE OF 30% MFI.

THESE ARE THE FAMILIES, THESE ARE THE, THE PEOPLE THAT ARE BORDERLINE AND IF WE DON'T PROVIDE ASSISTANCE, UH, FOR THEM FOR HOUSING, THEY BECOME VERY STRONG, VULNERABLE, HOMELESS, UH, FAMILIES.

SO, UH, I THINK THAT THAT'S WHAT, UH, WE NEED TO DO IN ORDER TO BE ABLE TO ADDRESS THE, UH, THAT PARTICULAR ISSUE.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

CANDIDATE ALASKAS.

UM, YEAH, WE NEED, SO WE NEED TO DEAL WITH ON THE, WITH THE PERMITTING OFFICE, THE PERMITTING BACKLOG AND, AND STAFF UP THAT OFFICE.

ALSO, WE NEED TO EXPEDITE SITE PLAN APPROVAL.

UH, FOR ANYBODY THAT'S BUILDING DEEPLY AFFORDABLE UNITS, WE NEED TO REDUCTION IN FEES.

UM, WE NEED TO LIFT IMPERVIOUS COVER ALONG MAJOR THOROUGH FAIRS.

UM, BUT WE ALSO NEED TO WORK ON A RIGHT TO REMAIN AND REST RENTAL ASSISTANCE.

SO WE AREN'T CONTINUING TO PRICE PEOPLE OUT OF AUSTIN, OTHERWISE, UM, NO MATTER HOW MUCH AFFORDABLE AFFORDABILITY WE, WE BUILD, WE'RE, WE'RE GONNA CONTINUE PRICING PEOPLE OUT.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

UM, CANDIDATE EOS, THE CITY COUNCIL HAS ASKED FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING BONDS IN THE FOLLOWING AMOUNTS, 55 MILLION IN 2006, 65 MILLION IN 20 13, 200 50 MILLION IN 2018.

VOTERS ARE NOW ASKED TO APPROVE AN ADDITIONAL 350 MILLION THIS NOVEMBER.

SUPPORTERS APPLAUD THE UNITS BUILT SO FAR AND LAMENT IT'S NOT ENOUGH.

WHILE OPPONENTS OF THIS UPCOMING BOND ELECTION SAY THAT MORE DEBTS, BURDEN HOMEOWNERS AND WANT THE CITY OF AUSTIN TO

[00:40:01]

DECREASE REAL ESTATE DEVELOPMENT FEES AND STREAMLINE COSTS OF THE PERMITTING PROCESS, UM, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO BOTH GROUPS? SO I WOULD SAY THAT WE NEED TO LOOK AT WHAT IS AFFORDABILITY AND, UH, LOOK AT, ESPECIALLY AT DISTRICT THREE, THE FACT THAT, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE A BIG PART OF DISTRICT THREE WHERE, YOU KNOW, YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT HOW THE FAMILIES LIVE, WHAT THE FAMILY'S, UH, INCOME IS TO REALLY TACKLE THAT, THAT CRISIS OF AFFORDABILITY.

SO, FOR EXAMPLE, IF YOU'RE BUILDING SOMETHING THAT, THAT WE'RE FUNDING WITH OUR, WITH OUR BOND MONEY, BUT IT'S NOT AFFORDABLE TO THOSE FAMILIES, IT'S NOT GOING TO BENEFIT THE COMMUNITY THERE.

SO I DEFINITELY, YOU KNOW, THINK THAT WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT THE AFFORDABLE UNITS, THE AFFORDABLE HOMES THAT WE ARE BUILDING, ARE BENEFITING THE COMMUNITY MEMBERS THAT LIVE IN THAT COMMUNITY.

IN, IN EAST AUSTIN, THERE'S A LOT OF FAMILIES THAT ARE STILL MAKING LESS THAN $40,000 A YEAR AND, BUT WE'RE BUILDING HOMES THAT, YOU KNOW, FOR PEOPLE THAT MAKE $60,000 A YEAR.

SO THAT LEADS TO DISPLACEMENT THAT, YOU KNOW, THAT LEADS TO FAMILIES LEAVING OUR CITY.

SO WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE USE THAT MONEY TO REALLY TACKLE THE DISPLACEMENT AND THE AFFORDABILITY ISSUE.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

CANDIDATE WELDED.

SO, ELLEN, SORRY.

SO, A GRAHAM IS KNOWN FOR SAYING THAT HOUSING WON'T STOP HOMELESSNESS, BUT COMMUNITY WILL.

I ALSO DO BELIEVE THAT HOUSING WILL NOT SOLVE THE AFFORDABILITY CRISIS.

YOU KNOW, AS I MENTIONED, YOU KNOW, I DO MAKE, UM, I'M, I DO MAKE IT UNDER ABOUT $20,000 A YEAR.

I THINK LAST YEAR I MADE A LITTLE BIT MORE, AND THAT'S TAXABLE INCOME.

UM, OUR CITY SPENDS SO MUCH MONEY ON WASTEFUL INITIATIVES AND, UM, AND, YOU KNOW, PROGRAMS SUCH AS THE EQUITY PROGRAMS, AND BY THE WAY, THEY DID PASS THEMSELVES A 40% PAY INCREASE, AND THERE'S JUST A NUMBER OF OTHER, UM, INITIATIVES THAT THEY WASTE MONEY ON.

AND IF WE WERE TO GO THROUGH THE CITY BUDGET AND THE CITY DEPARTMENTS AND FIND OUT HOW WE CAN POSSIBLY CUT CERTAIN PROGRAMS AND CUT CERTAIN DEPARTMENTS, WE WOULD BE ABLE TO FIND THAT $300 MILLION VERY, VERY EASILY.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

CANDIDATE BUSHER.

SO CITY JUST WANTS TO THROW MONEY, THROW MONEY, THROW MONEY, HOPEFULLY IT'LL BE FIXED.

I MEAN, WHERE ARE THEY GONNA GET THE MONEY FROM? RAISE TAXES FOR EVERYBODY ELSE, JUST LIKE THEY'VE BEEN DOING.

SO FIRST THING WE NEED TO DO IS, RIGHT NOW, I JUST TALKED TO HOME BUILDERS ASSOCIATION.

CITI DECIDED TO RAISE THE PERMITTING, NOW THEY HAVE TO PAY $41,000 PER HOME OF PERMANENT FEES TO BUILD HOMES.

ALSO $6,000 JUST TO PARK THEIR CAR PER HOME.

THAT'S THE REASON WHY THE HOME PRICES GOING UP.

SO I WANNA CUT LOT OF THESE RED TAPES DOWN.

ALSO, I WANNA MAKE IT, I WANNA HAVE MORE MONEY IN PEOPLE'S POCKETS SO THEY CAN ACTUALLY AFFORD TO LIVE, UH, THERE, YOU KNOW, PAY THE ELECTRIC BILL, EVERYTHING ELSE LIKE THAT.

I ALSO WANNA SUPPORT TINY HOMES.

I THINK THAT CAN DO A LOT OF GOOD THINGS IN THE CITY.

SO, UM, YOU KNOW, DEFINITELY, YOU KNOW, CUT LOT OF THESE TAXES OUT.

I WANT, UH, ESPECIALLY THESE PROPERTY TAXES SO PEOPLE HAVE MORE MONEY IN THEIR POCKETS, THAT WAY THEY CAN ACTUALLY LIVE AF UM, COMFORTABLY.

LIKE THEY USED TO.

DEFINITELY WANT TO CUT LOT OF THESE RED TAPES DOWN THAT THE CURRENT, YOU KNOW, A PREVIOUS CITY COUNCIL, YOU KNOW, APPROVED.

SO THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

THANK YOU.

WE DO HAVE TIME FOR MAYBE ONE AND A HALF MORE QUESTIONS.

WE REALLY HAVE ABOUT 25.

WE WOULD LIKE TO ASK, AND I, SOME OF THE AUDIENCE WOULD LIKE TO HEAR SOME OF THOSE ANSWERS, BUT LET'S, WE'RE GONNA TALK A LITTLE BIT NOW ABOUT JUST CITY PLANNING.

OKAY.

SOME OF YOU MENTIONED NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS, DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS YOU WORK WITH IN THIS DISTRICT, BUT I WANT YOU TO THINK OF ALL THE DISTRICTS THAT WE HAVE AND THOSE UP IN NORTHWEST AUSTIN, THOSE IN FAR SOUTHWEST AUSTIN, THOSE IN FAR NORTH AUSTIN, AND THERE ARE 80 NEIGHBORHOOD.

AND THIS IS GONNA GO FIRST OFF, UH, CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ, YOU'LL GET TO ANSWER THIS ONE FIRST.

UH, THERE ARE 80 NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS ADVOCATING FOR THEIR RESIDENTS INTEREST IN AUSTIN, ACCORDING TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD IS COUNCIL.

IF ELECTED, HOW WILL YOU BALANCE ALL THESE VOICES ACROSS THE CITY WITH PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS? UH, THANK YOU.

UH, ONE IS THAT, UH, AS A FORMER MEMBER OF THE AUSTIN NEIGHBORHOODS COUNCIL, AND, AND AS I MENTIONED MY MY 40 YEARS EXPERIENCE OF WORKING WITH NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS IN EAST AUSTIN, UH, UH, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE'VE DONE IS THAT, FOR EXAMPLE, I'M THE CHAIR OF THE HOLLY NEIGHBORHOOD PLAN WHEN IT WAS ADOPTED IN 19, UH, 19, I MEAN 2020 IN 2001.

AND WE WENT THROUGH A, A PROCESS WHERE WE PLANNED OUT AND, AND, AND GOT A VIEW OF WHAT THE QUALITY OF NEIGHBORHOODS WANT DEVELOPED IN THEIR COMMUNITY.

ALL NEIGHBORHOODS ARE VERY DIVERSE AND VERY UNIQUE.

THEY ALL HAVE THEIR OWN, UH, PRO, YOU KNOW, PRESTIGE PROPERTY OR EVENT OR, OR, YOU KNOW, ELEMENT OF THEIR NEIGHBORHOOD.

ONE OF THEM, LIKE FOR EXAMPLE, IN THE HOLLY NEIGHBORHOOD WHERE I LIVE, IS EVERYBODY WALKS IN THE MORNING WITH THEIR DOGS AND THE PETS AND THROUGH THE BIKE INFRASTRUCTURE.

SO

[00:45:01]

BRINGING ALL THESE, UH, DIFFERENT NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS, REQUESTS FOR ASSISTANCE IS ONE THAT I HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH FOR THE LAST 40 YEARS AS A NEIGHBORHOOD PERSON.

THANK YOU, CANDIDATE VELAZQUEZ, UH, COMMUNICATION AND BRINGING PEOPLE TO BRINGING MORE PEOPLE TO THE TABLE, MORE TRANSPARENCY AROUND SOME OF THESE DEVELOPMENTS THAT ARE HAPPENING, ESPECIALLY IN EAST AUSTIN.

UM, BUT, UH, BUILDING BROAD ENOUGH COALITIONS, ESPECIALLY, UM, AROUND THE PROJECTS IN D THREE, BECAUSE WHAT ENDS UP HAPPENING A LOT OF THE TIME IS THAT FOLKS DON'T KNOW EXACTLY WHAT IS HAPPENING.

SO THERE'S JUST A LACK OF TRANSPARENCY, A LACK OF CLARITY ON THE PROJECTS THAT ARE BEING BUILT.

SO IF, IF WE'RE TALKING D THREE SPECIFIC, IT REALLY IS WORKING WITH THE DIFFERENT NEIGHBORHOOD GROUPS TO ENSURE THAT THEY ARE AT THE TABLE AND UNDERSTAND WHAT THE, UH, WHAT PROJECT IS BEING PROPOSED.

THANK YOU CANDIDATE SILVA.

UM, I'VE SEEN A REALLY GREAT TREND RECENTLY OF, UM, AND THIS IS JUST A, A FEW PEOPLE THAT I KNOW PERSONALLY WHO HAVE, UH, ARE DEVELOPERS WHO ACTUALLY GO TO NEIGHBORHOOD MEETINGS AND PROPOSE THEY'RE PROJECT THAT THEY'RE WANTING TO DO TO GET FEEDBACK SO THAT THERE IS THAT COMMUNICATION.

UM, WE'VE ALSO SEEN SITUATIONS WHERE THERE'S GOING TO BE A REDEVELOPMENT AND THE TENANTS DEMANDED, UM, A STIPEND OR SOME KIND OF COMPENSATION FOR BEING DISPLACED AND THAT WAS ABLE TO BE DONE.

SO I THINK WE NEED TO BRING THE NEIGHBORHOOD GROUPS TOGETHER WITH THE DEVELOPERS AND AT TENANTS COUNCIL, MAKING SURE THAT ORGANIZED TENANTS ARE HAVING A VOICE IN THIS SITUATION AS WELL, TO MEET THE NEEDS THAT EXIST CURRENTLY.

AND THAT WILL EXIST IN THE FUTURE OF AUSTIN BECAUSE AT THE RATE THAT WE'RE DOING IT, WE JUST AREN'T GOING TO BE ABLE TO MEET THE NEEDS, AND THAT'S GOING TO FURTHER WORSEN, DISPLACEMENT, GENTRIFICATION, UH, AND MAKE IT OVERALL MORE EXPENSIVE TO LIVE IN.

THANK YOU.

SO WE'RE GONNA MOVE CANDIDATE WELDON.

YOU'LL GET TO ANSWER THIS ONE FIRST AND WITH CODE NEXT.

AND THIS IS ALL, AGAIN, I WANT YOU TO THINK ABOUT CITY PLANNING WIDE.

GO FROM DISTRICT EIGHT OVER THERE, ALL THE WAY TO DISTRICT ONE AND THINK ABOUT IT.

DISTRICTWIDE WITH CODE NEXT OFF THE TABLE, AND NO NEW LAND USE PLAN.

IN EFFECT, SHOULD ZONING BE UNIQUE TO EACH DISTRICT OR APPLICABLE THROUGHOUT THE CITY LIMITS? WHY OR WHY NOT? OH, WE DEFINITELY NEED TO REWRITE OUR LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE.

HOWEVER, WE DO NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYBODY HAS A VOICE.

AND IT, THE REASON THAT THE, UH, CODE NEXT FAILED WAS BECAUSE OF A LOT OF FAILURES OF COMMUNICATION.

SO YES, MAKING SURE THAT EVERYONE IS AT THE TABLE WHEN WE'RE RE REWRITING THAT DEVELOPMENT CODE.

THERE IS GONNA BE SOME DIFFERENT, UM, ASPECTS LIKE, YOU KNOW, TALKING ABOUT DIFFERENT NEIGHBORHOOD GROUPS.

I KNOW WE GOT HYDE PARK, WHICH IS A VERY HISTORICAL GROUP, AND WE SHOULD NOT FORCE THEM TO CHANGE SOMETHING IF THAT'S THE, IF THAT'S WHAT THE NEIGHBORHOOD GROUP WANTS TO BE ABLE TO DO, BUT TO ENSURE THAT WE ARE BRINGING ALL VOICES TO THE TABLE.

THANK YOU CANDIDATE WISHER.

SO A LOT OF THE ISSUES THESE COMMUNITIES HAVE IS THAT THEY, THEIR VOICES DON'T GET TO HEAR.

THEY GO TO THESE CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS, THEY GET ONE MAYOR TO SPEAK.

I, I DON'T LIKE THAT.

I WANT, I WANT THESE PEOPLE THAT LIVE IN THESE COMMUNITIES WHO ACTUALLY CARE, HAVE THE TIME TO COME, HAVE A CONVERSATION.

IF THROUGH VIDEO CHAT OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT, COME AND HAVE A CONVERSATION, THEN I ALSO WANNA SUPPORT, UH, DEFINITELY YOU KNOW, THE LOCAL NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS BECAUSE I THINK, YOU KNOW, THEY HAVE A LOT OF CONCERNS.

AND I WANNA, I WANNA GET ROUND TABLE, SEE WHAT THE SOLUTIONS, THEY WANNA BRING IT UP, SEE WHAT IS THE MOST APPLICABLE.

AND THROUGH A DEMOCRACY PROCESS, I WANT TO HELP IMPLEMENT IT.

SO EVERYONE WOULD, MOST OF PEOPLE WOULD FEEL COMFORTABLE.

ALL RIGHT.

CANDIDATE, ALIAS.

YES.

SO I BELIEVE WHEN WE'RE, WHEN WE'RE TALKING ABOUT HOUSING, WE AND THE LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE, WE REALLY HAVE TO FOCUS ON WHAT OUR GOALS ARE, UH, WHAT OUR STRATEGY IS.

AND I THINK THAT THAT'S, AGAIN, THAT'S SOMETHING THAT NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS, NEIGHBORHOOD GROUPS, DIFFERENT PEOPLE, UM, REACT TO IS THE LACK OF COMMUNICATION, THE LACK OF STRATEGY.

UH, SO WHEN, UH, LIKE WHEN WE'RE DEVELOPING SOMETHING, LIKE IF OUR GOAL IS, FOR EXAMPLE, WHAT WE ALL TALKED ABOUT HERE, AFFORDABILITY, UH, THEN WE NEED TO TACKLE THAT, AS YOU KNOW, AS THAT, UH, WHAT CAN WE DO? WE, UH, A LOT OF TIMES JUST UPSELLING SOMETHING.

IT'S NOT GOING TO BRING AFFORDABILITY, IT'S JUST GOING TO ALLOW A DEVELOPER TO BUILD MORE AND MAKE MORE MONEY OFF OF THAT, YOU KNOW, SO WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE'RE BUILDING ON PUBLIC LAND TO DECREASE CAUSES.

WE NEED TO STREAMLINE, UH, SORRY TO DECREASE COSTS, AND WE NEED TO STREAMLINE, YOU KNOW, THOSE, UH, COMMUNITY GROUPS THAT ARE BUILDING TRULY AFFORDABLE HOUSING.

AND I THINK THAT WE NEED TO HAVE THAT CONVERSATION ABOUT AFFORDABILITY, YOU KNOW, WHEN WE'RE TALKING ABOUT HOUSING.

SO

[00:50:01]

YOU'RE ALL WONDERING HOW WE'RE GONNA HAVE A HALF A QUESTION.

I COULD JUST, YOU KNOW, I SAID WE'RE GONNA DO A QUESTION AND A HALF.

YOU'RE NOT GONNA GET A MINUTE TO ANSWER THIS.

YOU'RE GONNA ONLY GET TWO WORDS.

OKAY, TWO, WE'RE GONNA START AT THIS END OF THE TABLE.

WE OPENED AND WE DID THAT.

SO WE'RE GONNA START, UH, WITH CANDIDATE WISHNER.

DESCRIBE YOURSELF IN TWO WORDS.

DRIVEN, JUST ONE WORD, , ONE WORD'S GREAT CANDIDATE, WELDON, I WOULD SAY BLESSED AND PERSISTENT CANDIDATE, ALIAS, TEACHER AND STUDENT CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ.

TRUSTWORTHY, TRUSTWORTHY AND COMMUNITY ENGAGED CANDIDATE SILVA, SERVICE ORIENTED CANDIDATE VELAZQUEZ, UH, COMPASSIONATE SERVANT.

SEE, YOU DIDN'T NEED A MINUTE TO TELL US, UH, HOW WONDERFUL YOU GUYS ARE.

WE'RE VERY EXCITED TO HAVE BEEN A PART OF THIS CANDIDATE FORUM AND THIS IS THE TIME THAT YOU WILL HAVE TO GIVE US YOUR ONE MINUTE CLOSING.

UH, YOU'VE TOLD US A LOT ABOUT YOU, UM, AND YOU TOLD US IN YOUR TWO MINUTE INTRO, A LOT OF REALLY GOOD INFORMATION.

NOW WRAP UP WHY THE VOTERS SHOULD VOTE FOR YOU IN ONE MINUTE.

AND WE WILL BE STARTING, UH, WITH, WE'RE GONNA START THIS, WE'RE GONNA GO TO THE SECOND GROUP FIRST.

Y'ALL HAVE HAD IT FIRST.

WE'RE GONNA GO TO THE SECOND GROUP FIRST, AND WE'RE ACTUALLY GONNA BE STARTING WITH CANDIDATE WISHNER.

REMEMBER TO VISIT MY WEBSITE, WWW.WOOUNIVERSAL.COM, WWE UNIVERSAL.COM.

I CAN DEFINITELY USE DONATION SO I CAN REALLY, UH, REPRESENT MY WORD.

REMEMBER, I'M HERE TO EXPOSE THE CORRUPTION BECAUSE JOSE GARZA IS GEORGE SO'S PUPPET, HONESTLY, DESTROYING THE CITY.

YOU COULD EASILY FOLLOW HIS MONEY TRAIL.

YOU COULD SEE WHO THEY ACTUALLY FUNDING A LOT OF THESE CANDIDATE.

AND EVERY TIME THIS MAN IS TOUCHED, THE CITY ARE GETTING DESTROYED.

I'M HERE TO EXPOSE THE CORRUPTION, MAKE AUSTIN SAFE AGAIN.

I WANT THE SMALL BUSINESS TO RISE AGAIN AND, UM, I WANT ALL THE PROPERTY TAXES DONE AND AUDIT EVERY SINGLE AUSTIN CITY DEPARTMENT TO SHOW WHERE EVERYONE'S MONEY GOES TO A DATABASE SO EVERYONE OF Y'ALL CAN ACTUALLY SEE WHAT IS GOING ON IN AUSTIN.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU CANDIDATE ALIS.

I AM JOSE NOE ALIAS, AND I WANNA REPRESENT YOU THE COMMUNITY IN CITY HALL.

WE HAVE A DEMOCRACY GAP IN CITY HALL.

UH, THE VOICE OF THE COMMUNITY IS NOT HEARD AND THE INFLUENCE OF SPECIAL INTEREST HAS ACCELERATED, ESPECIALLY THESE LAST EIGHT YEARS.

UH, AS I WALK DISTRICT THREE AND I'VE KNOCKED ON MORE THAN 6,000 DOORS AND HAD HUNDREDS OF CONVERSATIONS, I HEAR THE SAME STORIES OF NEGLECT OF DISTRICT THREE ARE OUTGOING.

COUNCIL MEMBER HAS NOT BEEN RESPONSIVE TO THE NEEDS OF DISTRICT THREE.

I HEAR IT WHEN I HEAR STORIES ABOUT FLOODING, ABOUT THE WINTER STORM, ABOUT, YOU KNOW, TRAFFIC, UH, INFRASTRUCTURE.

AND THAT IS NOT A WAY TO REPRESENT, UH, YOUR DISTRICT.

SO BY WALKING THE DISTRICT, KNOCKING ON DOORS AND HAVING THESE CONVERSATIONS, I AM SHOWING THAT YOU KNOW, THAT I WANNA REPRESENT THE ENTIRE DISTRICT OF, UH, DISTRICT THREE, ALL THE COMMUNITIES.

AND I WANNA BRING A COMMUNITY'S VOICE TO CITY HALL.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, CANDIDATE WELDON.

SO WHEN I HEARD ABOUT THE 40% PAY RAISE, I WAS BLOWN AWAY.

I HAD NO IDEA ORIGINALLY HOW MUCH THIS, HOW MUCH, UH, CITY COUNCIL PERSON GOT PAID UNTIL ABOUT A WEEK BEFORE.

AND THEN THEY ANNOUNCED THAT 40% PAY RAISE AND I WAS BLOWN AWAY.

SO IMMEDIATELY I SAID, UM, YOU KNOW, WHEN I EXPRESSED MY CONCERNS, BUT RIGHT AFTER THEY PASSED IT, I SAID THAT I WOULD DONATE IT AND I WOULD CREATE A FUND.

SO THAT'S ABOUT $30,000 A YEAR.

THAT'S MORE THAN I MAKE NOW.

AND SO YEAH, I WOULD DONATE IT TO A FUND AND TO BE ABLE TO DO MATCHING FUNDS WITH THAT.

UM, YOU KNOW, WE GOTTA, I'M NOT DOING THIS FOR THE MONEY, I'M DOING THIS FOR THE ACCOUNTABILITY AND TRANSPARENCY THAT WE NEED TO RESTORE, UM, THE TRUST, UM, OF, YOU KNOW, OF, OF HOW THE SEA IS MANAGING.

ITS OUR TAXPAYER DOLLARS AND THE SERVICES WE'RE WASTING A LOT OF TAXPAYER DOLLARS ON ISSUES AND INITIATIVES THAT ARE OF NO VALUE EXCEPT TO A VERY, VERY SMALL PORTION OF THE PUBLIC.

THANK YOU CANDIDATE VELASQUEZ.

WE'LL START WITH YOU IN THIS GROUP.

SO DISTRICT THREE ENCOMPASSES A NUMBER OF HISTORICAL NEIGHBORHOODS AND ONE OF THE, UM, ISSUES THAT I HAVE WORKED ON FOR YEARS IS THERE IS A DEEP DIVIDE IN OUR CITY, AND THAT'S BETWEEN OLD AUSTIN AND NEW AUSTIN.

A LOT OF THE TIMES WHEN WE AREN'T GETTING SOMETHING DONE, IT'S BECAUSE ONE SIDE IS, IS BATTLING WITH THE OTHER.

I BELIEVE IN THE, UM, I BELIEVE IN THE STORY OF MY CITY.

I BELIEVE THE, IN THE PEOPLE OF MY CITY, AND I BELIEVE IN THE FOUNDATION OF MY CITY.

BUT I BELIEVE THAT ONLY TOGETHER ARE WE GONNA BE ABLE TO GET ANYTHING DONE AND OFFER MORE DIRECTION AND PURPOSE TO THE

[00:55:01]

FUTURE OF OUR CITY.

I'M S JOSE VELAZQUEZ AND I'M THE CANDIDATE TO GET THAT DONE.

THANK YOU.

CANDIDATE SILVA.

I LOVE AUSTIN WITH ALL MY HEART, AND I COULD TALK FOR AGES ABOUT ALL THE GOOD THINGS IN THE CITY.

UM, BUT THAT'S PROBABLY NOT WHY MOST OF US ARE RUNNING.

THERE IS A 20 YEAR SHORTER LIFE EXPECTANCY IN EAST AUSTIN, THEN WEST AUSTIN.

HALF OF OUR DISTRICT IS CONSIDERED LOW INCOME, A THIRD ARE CONSIDERED VERY LOW INCOME, AND PEOPLE DON'T FEEL SEEN, HEARD, OR REPRESENTED BY THEIR LOCAL GOVERNMENT.

I WANNA CHANGE THAT.

I WANNA BRING MY PROFESSIONAL, MY ACADEMIC, AND MY LIVED EXPERIENCE TO HELP SHAPE THESE POLICIES.

BUT I ALSO WANNA BRING MY OWN PERSONAL POLICIES OF RADICAL TRANSPARENCY IN COMMUNICATION TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE FEEL SEEN AND HEARD BY THE REPRESENTATIVE.

AND WHEN ELECTED, I WILL BE THE FIRST WOMAN, FIRST LATINA, FIRST OPENLY QUEER PERSON AND FIRST MILLENNIAL TO REPRESENT THIS VASTLY DIVERSE DISTRICT.

MY NAME IS DANIELLA SILVA, AND I WOULD LOVE TO BE YOUR NEXT D THREE REPRESENTATIVE.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

CANDIDATE FERNANDEZ, I HAVE BEEN ENDORSED BY MOJE DE EAST AUSTIN, AUSTIN, TRAVIS COUNTY COMMISSIONER MARCO ZION, LAK, MEXICAN AMERICAN DEMOCRATS.

IF ELECTED, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I WILL DO IS I'LL OPEN TO SATELLITES TO BRING GOVERNMENT TO YOUR COMMUNITY.

ONE IN EAST AUSTIN, AUSTIN, AND ONE IN WEST AUSTIN, AUSTIN.

AND WHEN ELECTED, YOU NEED TO HAVE AN ELECTED, A PERSON THAT HAS RAPPORT AND OUTREACH, UH, CONNECTIONS WITH OTHER ELECTED OFFICIALS FROM THE, TO BRING IN FEDERAL FUNDS TO BRING IN STATE FUNDS.

FOR EXAMPLE, UH, UH, LLOYD DOG HAD RECENTLY RECOGNIZED ME FORMER COMMUNITY WORK.

IT WAS A PLEASURE TO VISIT WITH YOU AT THE EAST AUSTIN LION CLUB MEMORIAL DAY FLAG.

RAISING YOUR LEADERSHIP HAS MADE OUR EAST AUSTIN COMMUNITY STRONGER.

SO THIS IS THE TYPE OF, UH, RAPPORT THAT WE NEED TO HAVE IN ORDER TO BRING FEDERAL FUNDS WHO ALSO ADDRESS MANY CHALLENGES IN DISTRICT THREE.

AGAIN, MY MOM WAS A WORKER AND WAS A GOOD FRIEND OF LADY BIRD WHEN SHE, UH, PRESIDENT JOHNSON DECIDED NOT TO RUN FOR OFFICE ANYMORE TO CANDIDATES.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR BEING VERY SINCERE WITH US AND ANSWERING OUR QUESTIONS.

LET'S GIVE THE CANDIDATES A BIG ROUND OF APPLAUSE.

NOW, IN MY INTRO TONIGHT, I TOLD THE, THESE CANDIDATES THAT THEY HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO AFFECT CHANGE, BUT I WANNA TALK TO THE AUDIENCE FOR A MINUTE, AND I'M JUST GONNA TURN AROUND HERE AND FREAK THE CITY OUT ON WATERS HERE.

UM, I TOLD THE CANDIDATES YOU KNOW, THAT THEY COULD AFFECT THE CHANGE, BUT NO GUYS, IT'S YOU ALL IN THIS OFFICE.

AND THOSE OF YOU LISTENING TONIGHT, THE VOTERS OF DISTRICT THREE, YOU HOLD THE POWER OF OUR DEMOCRACY WITH YOUR VOTE.