AUSTIN, Texas - If you’d like to weigh in on how Austin could or should improve public safety, the City of Austin is offering a couple of virtual forums to do just that.
The first is Saturday, January 23rd from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The next is Thursday, January 28th from 5:30 p.m to 7:30 p.m.
There will also be a conversation specifically for District 10 residents. That is happening on Saturday, January 30th at 10 a.m.
You must RSVP to take part in these forums. To do so, visit http://austintexas.gov/publicsafety/share-input.
In a roundtable discussion about public safety, Gov. Abbott called the defunding of the police reckless and essentially gave cities like Austin an ultimatum: restore the funding or pay a financial price.
"We cannot and will not let cities like Austin to defund police," said Abbott at the roundtable, saying he will make good on his crackdown promise. "This Session, Texas must pass laws that give cities a clear choice, either fulfill their duty to keep their residents safe, or lose access to all of their tax revenue."
That issue was one of several topics the governor discussed with representatives from law enforcement advocacy groups. The threat of a state takeover of the Austin Police Department was not on the meeting agenda, but when asked, the governor said he is now considering what’s described as safe zones.