The Grove, gun safety, immigrant legal funding top council agenda

The Grove at Shoal Creek parkland (KXAN Photo)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — On the last city council agenda of 2016, here’s a quick look at the items we’re eyeing.

The Grove PUD 

In an agreement between the Bull Creek Road Coalition (BCRC) and ARG Bull Creek, Ltd. developers announced last week that they agreed to scale back plans for office spaces in the controversial multi-use development in Austin after taking community feedback into consideration. Developers also now plan to include 20-acres of parkland in the development.

While the a third/final reading is on the agenda, there’s a chance the zoning case decision could get pushed back. Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo posted on the city council message board a potential recommendation to postpone the decision, given the amount of discussion that still needs to take place when it comes to the affordable housing component. Several community members have reached out to the mayor and council members, asking that they support the agreement and hold off on a final decision until the new District 10 council member, Alison Alter, is in office in January.

Emergency funding for immigrant legal services

On the heels of the presidential election outcome “prospective harshening of federal immigration policy may result in an increasingly urgent need for legal services within the immigrant community,” states the resolution. Local nonprofit providers of such services have witnessed a surge in demand recently.

Council Member Greg Casar’s office tells KXAN they’ve heard from various community organizations that many Austinites in need of the legal services are being turned away because they are currently unable to serve any more individuals. The resolution explains, “the availability of legal services for members of the immigrant community helps people receive asylum in the United States when they are facing persecution or torture in their home countries for reasons such as their race, religion, political opinion, gender, or sexual orientation.”

Gun safety brochures and free gun locks 

This resolution would direct the city manager to work with the Austin Police Department and community partners to distribute gun safety brochures to the public and schedule an event to give away free gun locks. The resolution points to a statistic that says more than two million children in the U.S. live in homes with unsecured guns and 1.7 million live in homes with guns that are unlocked and loaded.

Austin Oaks PUD

There will be a public hearing held no earlier than 6:30 Thursday night, before council members discuss the historically controversial Austin Oaks rezoning case in District 10.

Kylie McGivern will have LIVE updates on any developments out of City Hall tonight on KXAN TV.