Austin City Government 101 forums 2/8 and 2/22

WhyBotherKLRUBlog

Join KLRU and our community partners for Why Bother? Austin City Government 101 forums.
DATE: Saturdays, Feb. 8 and Feb. 22
TIME: 10 am (doors will open at 9:30 am)
LOCATION: KLRU’s Studio 6A (map)

Austin’s form of government just got a big overhaul, and it can be confusing knowing who does what inside City Hall. KLRU is teaming up with The Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life, The League of Women Voters of Austin Area and KUT 90.5, Austin’s NPR Station, to host two forums to answer your questions and to teach you how to make your voice heard at City Hall.

Why Bother? Austin City Government 101 is a general overview and education on the functions of Austin’s city government in order to increase civic engagement, with an emphasis on the challenges and opportunities the new 10-1 form of governance will bring.

The forums will take place both Saturdays, February 8 & 22 in KLRU’s historic Studio 6A on the University of Texas-Austin campus at the corner of Guadalupe and Dean Keeton. The two hour forums start at 10am. Doors will open at 9:30 a.m.

Joining us for the discussion on February 8 will be a number of city officials, including City Attorney Karen Kennard, City Auditor Ken Mory, Deputy CFO Ed Van Eenoo,  former General Manager of Austin Energy Roger Duncan, former Assistant City Manager Terrell Blodgett and Assistant Director of Planning and Development Garner Stoll.

On February 22, Nelson Linder, President of Austin’s NAACP chapter, Gonzalo Barrientos, Chair of the Charter Revision Committee, Susan Morrison, League of Women Voters, as well as a number of city board and commission members. Reporters from KUT 90.5 will moderate the discussions. Audience members will be able to participate in a Q&A portion with panelists on both days.

Why Bother? Austin City Government 101 is part of our Why Bother? initiative, an effort with the Annette Strauss Institute and KUT 90.5. It is aimed at increasing civic engagement in Austin through voter education. Watch the other programs in the Why Bother? series on klru.org

Online discussion on Austin after 10-1

civic summit austin after 10-1

Watch on KLRU or join our online community discussion starting at 9 pm May 16th. Take part in the online screening now

KLRU’s ongoing dialogue on civic engagement, Why Bother? takes an in-depth look at how the change to Austin City Council’s governing structure will impact voters. Experts and community members from across the city meet to discuss issues that are most important to them, to try to figure out how 10 separate districts will reconcile their differences once the new council is elected.

 

 

In the Studio: Civic Summit Austin After 10-1

Civic Summit Taping Announcement

Civic Summit: Why Bother? Austin After 10-1
Date: Tuesday, April 23
Time: taping begins promptly at 7:00pm (Doors at 6:30pm)
Location: KLRU’s Studio 6A (2504-B Whitis Austin, TX 78712 map)
RSVP: Attendance is free, but RSVP is required. RSVP Now

Why Bother? an ongoing dialogue on civic engagement, takes an in-depth look at how the change to Austin City Council’s governing structure will impact voters. Experts and community members from across the city meet to discuss issues that are most important to them, to try to figure out how 10 separate districts will reconcile their differences once the new council is elected.

Sponsored by the Strauss Institute for Civic Life, KLRU, and KUT, this event is part of Why Bother? Engaging Texans in Democracy Today, a news and public dialogue series intended to provoke a conversation among regular people about why Texas has one of the lowest rates of civic engagement in the world, and what we can do about it.

Why Bother?

 

 

In the Studio: Your State Legislature, Your Voice 1/29

Civic Summit Taping Announcement

Join KLRU for a Civic Summit taping on how best to voice your opinion to elected officials.

Date: Tuesday, January 29
Time:  taping begins promptly at 7:30pm (doors open at 7 pm)
Location: KLRU’s Studio 6A 2504-B Whitis
RSVP Now: Civic Summit: Your State Legislature, Your Voice

When was the last time you reached out to your elected lawmaker? Are you even sure how?

On January 29th, KLRU continues the civic engagement series “Why Bother? Engaging Texans in Democracy Today” with a Civic Summit taping in KLRU studio 6A. The conversation will revolve around the challenges and obstacles (for both the public and lawmakers) with putting an issue in front of the people that need to hear. Do we have a suitable system for public engagement? What could we do better?

We’ll hear from elected lawmakers along with folks involved in grassroots lobbying organizations about their experiences. Audience members are encouraged to tell their stories of success, or failures. Confirmed panelists include Senator Wendy Davis and State Representative Larry Gonzales. RSVP now to be part of the studio audience.

Why Bother? Engaging Texans in Democracy Today is a news and public dialogue series intended to provoke a conversation among regular people – the skeptics and the true believers – about why they participate and why they don’t. Developed jointly by the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life, KLRU, and KUT.

Why Bother: Engaging our Changing City

Tonight, join KLRU, KUT and the Annette Strauss Institute for a community conversation to explore the effects of changing demographics on civic participation in Central Texas.

Early voting

KUT News Reporter Joy Diaz will host the event. Juan Castillo, senior reporter for the Austin American-Statesman, will share recent demographic trends in Austin from the 2010 census. Chantel Bottoms, senior research analyst at Community Action Network, will present voter turnout data for Travis County. Participants will then join small roundtable discussions to explore how to expand community engagement as the city
continues to grow and change.

This community event is organized in partnership with Austin Community College’s Center for Public Policy and Political Studies.

When: 7-9 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 10
Where: Austin Community College’s Eastview campus, Multipurpose Hall (Room 8500), 3401 Webberville Road.

This event is free and open to the public. RSVP here.

Forum Explores Demographic Impact 12/10

What: Forum Explores Effects of Changing Demographics on Civic Participation “Why Bother? Engaging Our Changing City”
When: 7-9 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 10
Where: Austin Community College’s Eastview campus, Multipurpose Hall (Room
8500), 3401 Webberville Road.
RSVP: This event is free and open to the public. RSVP here

The Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life at The University of Texas at Austin College of Communication, KLRU-TV, Austin PBS, and KUT 90.5 FM are hosting a community conversation to explore the effects of changing demographics on civic participation in Central Texas. “Why Bother? Engaging Our Changing City” is the second event in a yearlong news and public dialogue series organized by the hosts.

“As Austin grows and thrives, our city is becoming more diverse, but this diversity isn’t reflected among citizens who vote,” said Regina Lawrence, director of the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life. “This forum will explore ways to get everyone engaged in our city’s future.”

KUT News Reporter Joy Diaz will host the event. Juan Castillo, senior reporter for the Austin American-Statesman, will share recent demographic trends in Austin from the 2010 census. Chantel Bottoms, senior research analyst at Community Action Network, will present voter turnout data for Travis County. Participants will then join small roundtable discussions to explore how to expand community engagement as the city continues to grow and change.

This community event is organized in partnership with Austin Community College’s Center for Public Policy and Political Studies.

Background: Sponsored by the Strauss Institute for Civic Life, KLRU and KUT 90.5 FM, the “Why Bother? Engaging Texans in Democracy Today” series aims to get people talking about why Texas has one of the lowest rates of civic participation in the country, and what can be done about it.

Future public dialogues next spring will address how citizens can make their voices heard in the Texas Legislature and how to involve Austin residents in city government
and planning. For more information about the series and the civic engagement crisis in Central Texas, visit whybothertexas.org.

About the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life
Created in 2000 to respond to growing political cynicism and disaffection in the United
States, the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life is named for Annette Greenfield
Strauss: former Dallas mayor, community leader and philanthropist. The Institute
envisions a democracy where all citizens are informed, vote and are actively involved in
improving their communities. Through nonpartisan research, education and outreach, the Institute seeks to understand and overcome obstacles to civic engagement. To learn more, visit us online at http://annettestrauss.org.

About The University of Texas at Austin College of Communication
One of the nation’s foremost institutions for the study of advertising and public relations, communication sciences and disorders, communication studies, journalism and radio-TV-film, The University of Texas at Austin College of Communication is preparing students to thrive in an era of media convergence. Serving more than 4,600 undergraduate and graduate students, the College is nationally recognized for its faculty members, research and student media. For more information about the College of Communication, visit http://communication.utexas.edu.

In The Studio: Civic Summit "Why Bother? Voices of a New Generation" 10/2

Young Texans Gather to Explore Causes and Solutions for Low Civic Engagement
When: 7-8 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 2
Where: KLRU’s Studio 6A, 2504-B Whitis Ave. (map)
RSVP: Please RSVP to be part of the studio audience/discussion. RSVP now

The Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life, KLRU and KUT News 90.5 are hosting an interactive dialogue among young Texans — those who are engaged and those who aren’t — about the causes of low civic participation in Central Texas and how to boost it. “Why Bother? Voices of a New Generation” will explore:

  • Why some young people are passionate community volunteers but disengaged voters,
  • Why others are opting out of a presidential election that offers radically different visions for the future of the country
  • What it will take to magnify the influence of the largest potential voting bloc in America in the political process.

Featured panelists include: Jeanne Goka, principal of the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders; Paulina Sosa, University of Texas student and ONE Campaign Austin leader; Ann Beeson, Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life; and other young leaders and community members.

This episode will be broadcast at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 4, on KLRU  and KUT 90.5, and again on KLRU at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 7. KUT News is producing a series of reports on the crisis of civic engagement, which will air leading up to and following the Oct. 2 forum. Listen to the stories at KUT.org

Sponsored by the Strauss Institute for Civic Life, KLRU and KUT, this event is part of “Why Bother? Engaging Texans in Democracy Today,” a news and public dialogue series intended to get people talking about why Texas has one of the lowest rates of civic engagement in the world, and what we can do about it.

Future public dialogues this fall and next spring will address the impact of changing demographics on civic participation in Central Texas, how to get your voice heard by the Texas Legislature and what it will take to get more citizens involved in Austin city government and planning. For more information about the series and the civic engagement crisis in Central Texas, visit whybothertexas.org.