AUSTIN (KXAN) – A majority of Austin’s voters rejected Prop. A, which would have increased funding for the Austin Police Department.
Latest figures released just before 11pm on Tuesday reported that nearly 69% of Austin voters voted against Prop. A, while about 31% voted for the initiative. This follows similar early poll results published at. 19.00, where two thirds of the voters who cast their vote before election day also voted against the proposal.
Travis County’s records reflect that more than 849,000 residents are registered voters, while just over 101,000 ballots had been cast during early voting. This corresponds to 11.92% turnout during early voting.
From Tuesday at By 11 p.m., more than 183,000 votes had been cast in total in Travis County, with a collective turnout of 21.56% so far. These results come from all 140 polling stations that report.
In a tweet Tuesday night, the Travis County Clerk’s Office reported that nearly 82,000 people voted on Election Day.
On Tuesday night, Austin Mayor Steve Adler told KXAN that the city’s “culture and values” were on the ballot in November. He agreed to expand the city’s efforts for public safety, but said there should be a more comprehensive solution.
“Our numbers are rising like cities across the country. We need to do better, but public safety is more than just police work,” Adler said.
At a Save Austin Now watch party Tuesday night, SAN co-founder Matt Mackowiak said the Political Action Committee will still continue its efforts to influence political initiatives in the city.
“I believe in my heart that we can do it. We did not do it tonight, but folks, I promise you we can,” he said. “And so it will start from here tonight where we talk to others austinitter. It will begin with us continuing to hold this mayor and this city council accountable for the decisions they make, for the consequences of the policies they put forward. ”
Next year, Mackowiak said the PAC will fight “harder” and “wiser” and begin preparations to run for political seats – starting with Austin City Councilman Greg Casar’s seat as he explores a potential congressional race.
He teased for a potential ballot at the May 2022 election, just as he was working on adapting candidates for next year’s city council and mayoral race.
“You haven’t seen anything yet,” he said. “… This has been about preparing for next year. In fact, tonight’s increase increases efforts for next year. “
See latest election results below:
If approved by the voters, proposal A will increase the police staff to a minimum of two officers per. 1,000 inhabitants. The proposal will also double the necessary training for officers, expand minority employment and mandate that at least 35% of officers’ guards be used on local police.
Estimates from the city’s CFO predict that the proposal will cost between $ 271.5 million and $ 598.8 million over the next five years, if approved. That equates to a cost between $ 54.3 million and $ 119.8 million a year.
The proposal was made by the political action committee Save Austin Now. The PAC collected more than 25,600 signatures in July and has criticized the city’s current response to Austin’s crime levels. Several organizations, including the Austin Police Association and the Texas Police Association, have issued support for Prop A.
“Austin has never been less secure than it is today, and the police personnel crisis continues to worsen,” SAN co-founders Mackowiak and Cleo Petricek said in July.
Critics of Prop A have argued that the measure will allocate funds away from other core services in the city, if approved, with specific concerns about public libraries, mental health services and other public safety budgets. No Way Prop. A, a coalition of more than 80 social groups, described the initiative as “tax irresponsible.” The coalition has received support from several unions, including the Austin Firefighters Association and the Austin EMS Association.
During City Hall on Election Day with KXAN, Austin Mayor Steve Adler said funding would inevitably come from the city’s public safety budget. Public safety – which includes police, fire and emergency medical services – makes up the majority of the city’s budget.
“Public safety is 70% of our budget. Some of it will have to come out of it,” Adler said.
Austin City Councilman Mackenzie Kelly also said during KXAN’s election day City Hall that any proposal that public safety funding would be affected by Prop A is “absurd.”
“I would say it would be the council’s will to decide if that was where they were going,” she said, “but it would be absurd for me if we were to actually cut additional public safety funds.”