breaking news

Police say Waffle House shooting victim was from Texas, had family in Austin area

Council removes Sheri Gallo’s political rival from Austin parks board


The Austin City Council approved Council Member Sheri Gallo’s wish to yank her main political challenger — and own appointee — from the Parks and Recreation Board, in a move described by one parks board member as “ward politics.”

The council acted Thursday on Gallo’s request to unseat Alison Alter, who had recently declared her intention to challenge Gallo for the District 10 seat in West Austin. The unanimous vote came with no discussion, as part of the council’s bulk approval of more than two dozen usually uncontroversial items.

“I asked Ms. Alter to resign from the Parks and Recreation Board because of her inherent conflict of interest due to her intention to run against me for City Council,” Gallo said in a statement. “It would be difficult for her to represent both me and the District 10 Office in good faith while actively campaigning against me.”

In the statement, Gallo said she pushed ahead with the change after Alter refused to step down. Alter was replaced by Susan Roth.

“Neither my commitment nor my ability to fulfill my responsibilities on the Parks and Recreation Board changed when I declared my candidacy for the District 10 Council seat,” Alter responded in a statement. “I reviewed the code and there was nothing that required me to step down.”

Board members serve terms that run concurrently with the City Council member who appointed them and serve at the pleasure of the entire council.

The move was assailed as political retaliation by another member of the parks board.

“No board member should be removed from their position purely as political retaliation,” Rick Cofer, a parks board member who represents District 9, told the American-Statesman. “Doing so sets the wrong precedent and betrays the promise of the new 10-1 City Council. We don’t need ward politics in Austin.”

In an email to council members, Cofer said there was no nonpolitical cause for her removal.

“This board member has not been accused of any wrongdoing, incompetence or corruption,” he wrote, urging the council to at least discuss the matter.

Gallo is one of five council members up for re-election Nov. 8. Another challenger, recent University of Texas graduate Nicholas Virden, has also joined the District 10 race.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

NEW INFO: Police say Waffle House shooting victim was from Texas, had family in Austin area
NEW INFO: Police say Waffle House shooting victim was from Texas, had family in Austin area

Metropolitan Nashville police have confirmed that 20-year-old Joe Perez Jr., one of four victims who were killed in a shooting at a Waffle House near Nashville on Sunday, was from Texas and had family in the Austin area. In a Facebook post on Sunday, Trisha Perez, who media reports have identified as Joe Perez’s mother, asked for prayers for...
Round Rock driver hit motorcyclist he knew, left scene, police say
Round Rock driver hit motorcyclist he knew, left scene, police say

A Round Rock driver is accused of hitting a motorcyclist he knew while driving on Interstate 35 in Georgetown and leaving the scene, according to an arrest affidavit. Logan Vance, 27, was charged with accident involving injury, a third-degree felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Police were notified at about 3 p.m. Thursday about a collision...
Austin 7-year-old becomes youngest girl to ascend Mount Kilimanjaro
Austin 7-year-old becomes youngest girl to ascend Mount Kilimanjaro

When 7-year-old Montannah Kenney told her mom she wanted to climb to the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro, her wish was to be on the pinnacle of the volcano pointing toward heaven and close to her dad, who died five years ago. Last month, Montannah, who lives in Austin, became the youngest girl ever to ascend the 19,341-foot mountain, the tallest in Africa...
TRAFFIC UPDATE: All I-35 lanes now closed after Round Rock crash
TRAFFIC UPDATE: All I-35 lanes now closed after Round Rock crash

Both directions of traffic on Interstate 35 in Round Rock are closed near Westinghouse Road after a multi-vehicle wreck involving a dump truck, Round Rock police said. The dump truck crashed around 2 p.m., and two motorcyclists crashed from the subsequent spill, police said.  No one was hospitalized after the crash, police said. 
She asked The Rock to the prom. His response amazed her
She asked The Rock to the prom. His response amazed her

An awesome high school senior invited Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson to her senior prom by posting a video of herself in an outfit paying homage to The Rock’s famously dorky 80s look and showcasing her superb collection of Rock gear. “Will you ‘Rock’ it at prom with me?” Katie Kelzenberg asked. Check it...
More Stories