Austin City Council preview for April 20

Austin City Council
Austin City Council (KXAN Photo)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Here’s a quick rundown of Austin City Council’s relatively lighter agenda on Thursday.

APD Mounted Patrol Unit facility lease renewal 
This item calls for a 32-month lease renewal for the Austin Police Department’s horse stable and arena facilities for the Mounted Patrol Unit. The facility is located in Manor and includes 16 stalls, an arena, two round pins, a turn-out pasture and a hay barn. The land for the new facility was purchased back in 2011 and voters approved a bond the following year to help fund the new facility at 11400 McAngus Rd. Construction bids are anticipated by the end of the year with the goal of finishing that construction by late 2019. The rent is $4,500 per month and the lease expires April 30.

Intersection cameras 
The $1.9 million contract with two extension options (total contract not to exceed $5.7 million) would provide for the purchase and installation of 100 single camera systems per year at intersections for new traffic signals. The contract would replace existing camera systems that are failing. According to the agenda item, the system will not be used to assist in issuing traffic citations. Instead, the system will automatically collect turning movement counts. The data provided allows for more frequent signal timing adjustments. If city council does not approve the contract, the transportation department will keep installing traditional video detection systems. The biggest difference is in the time it takes to install the systems. The current system requires a 2-day installation with “significant impact to traffic due to lane closures.” The new single camera system only has an installation time of about two hours.

Hernandez vs. City of Austin settlement 
This item calls on council to approve a settlement in the Pete Hernandez v. City of Austin lawsuit. This is a civil rights lawsuit involving the Austin Police Department. Back in 2012, police tackled the 52-year-old man in South Austin. Police wrongly restrained him for walking past an SUV reported stolen in a Walmart parking lot.

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