BG Reads | News You Need to Know (June 11, 2019)



Here's What Austin's Major League Soccer Stadium Is Going To Look Like (KUT)

Precourt Sports Ventures, the owner of Austin's Major League Soccer team, has offered a better look at the Austin FC's $240-million stadium at McKalla Place. Development on the 24-acre site will begin in September and is expected to be completed ahead of the team's first season in 2021… (LINK TO STORY)

See also:

BG Episode 46: Austin FC Updates from Club President Andy Loughnane

CAMPO greenlights study of corridor that could connect South Austin to ABIA (Community Impact)

Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization board members provided the go ahead for a study that endeavors to establish a corridor linking South Austin to the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport at a June 10 meeting.

“[T]he Bergstrom Spur presents the opportunity to realize an east-west connection that could serve as an all ages and abilities urban trail in the short-term and, in the long-term, as a potential future route for high-capacity transit as outlined in Project Connect,” according to a brief prepared by CAMPO Regional Planning Manager Kelly Porter.

The board voted unanimously to authorize CAMPO’s executive director to execute an interlocal agreement with the city of Austin to develop the Bergstrom Spur Platinum Planning Study… (LINK TO STORY)

E-cigarette unicorn Juul starts its Austin expansion — and more moves may be coming soon (Austin Business Journal)

Vaping unicorn Juul Labs Inc. has leased 62,749 square feet of office space in Central Austin, the first step in what seems like a significant expansion for the San Francisco-based startup.

That’s all of the office space at 2010 S. Lamar Blvd., a mixed-use development near the intersection of South Lamar Boulevard and Hether Street, Juul spokesman Ted Kwong confirmed in an email.

The Austin office will be used for Juul’s commercial teams serving the Americas, Kwong said. Juul is the dominant e-cigarette seller in the United States and globally had the largest market share at 29 percent as of December 2017, according to an October 2018 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association… (LINK TO STORY)

City Council might repeal Lake Austin mansion tax exemption (Austin American-Statesman)

They’re calling it the “mistake on the lake.”

Hundreds of homes along the shores of Lake Austin have remained off city tax rolls for decades. But City Council members Greg Casar and Jimmy Flannigan are hoping to change that.

“When we found out about this earlier this year ... at first, it felt impossible,” Flannigan said during a news briefing at City Hall.

They unveiled their efforts Monday to repeal a 33-year-old ordinance that exempted hundreds of idyllic homes on Lake Austin from city property taxes. Those homes would have generated about $3 million in tax revenue in 2018, but have been left off the city’s tax rolls since the city annexed the shorelines of the Colorado River in the late 19th century… (LINK TO STORY)


The 2019 legislative session is over. Here are the big bills that passed — and the ones that failed. (Texas Tribune)

Texas’ top political leaders wrapped the 2019 session of the Texas Legislature on Memorial Day with an air of accomplishment. They passed two major pieces of legislation that they had been working toward for years — a finance boost and a bill aimed at slowing the growth of property taxes. But there were some key failures too, most notably a sales tax increase that would have allowed lawmakers to lower property taxes even more… (LINK TO STORY)

What Experts Are Saying About Trade, Tariffs And Texas (KUT)

A former U.S. ambassador to Mexico warned that the recent drama over tariffs on Mexican products may not be over. He's worried it may resume in three months.

President Donald Trump's threat to impose tariffs on Mexico was designed to pressure America’s top trading partner into taking action to prevent Central American immigrants from reaching the southern U.S. border.

The tariffs were scheduled to take effect on Monday, June 10. But on the previous Friday, Trump tweeted that Mexican officials “agreed to take strong measures to stem the tide of migration.”

Sighs of relief throughout North America greeted the news… (LINK TO STORY)


Trump Administration Taps Hardliner Cuccinelli For Top Immigration Job (KUT)

The Trump administration has named Ken Cuccinelli to serve as acting director of the agency in charge of legal immigration, raising concerns among immigrant rights advocates.

Cuccinelli has never worked at the agency that he's now tasked with leading. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, with more than 19,000 employees and contractors, is charged with adjudicating requests for citizenship, green cards and visas.

"Our nation has the most generous legal immigration system in the world and we must zealously safeguard its promise for those who lawfully come here," Cuccinelli said in a written statement. "I look forward to working with the men and women of USCIS to ensure our legal immigration system operates effectively and efficiently while deterring fraud and protecting the American people."… (LINK TO STORY)


Episode 49 - Downtown Talk with Kevin Burns, Founder and CEO, Urbanspace Real Estate + Interiors

On today’s episode we speak with Kevin Burns, founder and CEO of Urbanspace Real Estate + Interiors. Bingham Group CEO A.J. Bingham discusses Urbanspace’s evolution as well as thoughts on brand development, entrepreneurship, and hustle with Kevin.

Founded as real estate office in 2000, Urbanspace has evolved into a full-service firm specializing in residential real estate, project sales + marketing, and interior design + furniture.

The firm is linked to some of Austin’s most visible downtown projects, including the Seaholm Residences (where they closed all 274 units) and The Independent, the tallest residential tower west of the Mississippi, expected to close out in 2019.

Follow Urbanspace on Twitter at: @urbanspace


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The Bingham Group, LLC is an Austin-based full service lobbying firm representing and advising clients on municipal, legislative, and regulatory matters throughout Texas.


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