The only bond on the ballot that has gotten much attention is the $250 million affordable housing measure. But there’s also another $675 million worth of stuff that voters could approve for parks, transportation, flood infrastructure, cultural facilities, police/fire stations, and health care facilities.
Historically Austinites have been inclined to support bonds for these types of matters. It’s approving money for housing that has proved trickier.
While Keep Austin Affordable, a group run by former Casar aide John Lawler, has raised a ton of money from real estate groups to in support of the housing bond (Prop A), it’s another group, Austin Together, that is running a parallel campaign for Props A-G. Austin Together is run by Brandi Burton, a former Adler aide.
It hasn’t gotten nearly as much money as KAA, but going into the last week of the campaign it had raised about $188,000, most of which it dumped into TV commercials ($117k) and digital advertising.
The biggest donor was the Austin Board of Realtors, which provided $15,000, the same amount they gave to KAA.
The big funders included a number of companies: Stratus Properties ($10k), Catellus Development ($10k), Upland Software ($10k), Brandywine Realty ($7.5k), HDR Inc ($5k),Lockwood, Andrew & Newman ($5k), SXSW ($5k), Ascension ($2.5), One Gas Inc ($2k), Texas Disposal Systems ($1k), and the Driftwood Historical Conservancy ($1k).
The group also got some decent scratch from some rich individuals. At the top was $10k from Perry Lorenz, a local real estate guy and philanthropist. Keller Williams’ founder Gary Keller gave $2k. MLS mogul Anthony Precourt contributed $1.5k, another clear instance of him buying some goodwill from the liberal local elected officials he’ll want on his side as he faces a petition drive targeting his recently-approved soccer stadium at McKalla Place.
Correction: Earlier I wrote that Austin Together was focused on Props B-G. In fact, it is campaigning for Prop A as well.