Item 55 Notification & Joint Public Hearing

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Louisa Brinsmade
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:27 pm

Item 55 Notification & Joint Public Hearing

Post by Louisa Brinsmade »

On behalf of CM Pool:


Today, the Council is set to approve Item 55, setting a higher standard for notification and a joint public hearing with the Planning Commission for the Land Development Code Amendments coming this fall.

On that score, people know what I believe. My position in support of the Acuña decision never wavered, and I’m not diverting from that foundation now. I stand firmly with full, citywide notification and more public input so that our residents can engage Council in the debate about how to meet the challenges that we face.

Every resident deserves to be notified of changes that will affect them and their community. It is the City of Austin’s responsibility to activate and invite more public input opportunities in our response to this housing emergency.

Two of the LDC changes that are coming this fall include one part of the HOME resolution that I brought this summer, and that won the council’s overwhelming support. HOME stands for Home Options for Middle-income Empowerment and is now a City and Council initiative intended to respond to the emergency before us and empower homeowners with more options to house their parents, their adult kids, or earn passive income to pay the mortgage and taxes. It is also designed to create smaller single-family homes in every neighborhood that are more attainable to working families.

City staff outlined that the first code change they will bring from HOME for consideration this fall is a new use to allow homeowners three units on their properties, which is just one more than is currently allowed for most neighborhoods, and would apply to single-family districts. Staff will also bring the Tiny Homes initiative that is a complement to HOME, because adding a Tiny Home to your property is the easiest and most affordable way for most middle-income households to add more housing for parents, kids, or for income.

Under Item 55, City staff is directed to give citywide notification to every household on this potential change, and to schedule the joint public hearing with the Planning Commission so that everyone can provide input on whether and how this change should be implemented. This joint public hearing is in addition to the standard public hearings held when Planning Commission and Council separately deliberate.

I look forward to our vote on this item.

Chief of Staff
Office of Mayor Pro Tem Leslie Pool, District 7