Races grow crowded ahead of Nov. 6 Austin city elections
Ask Travis Duncan why he’s running for mayor of Austin, and he’ll tell you a tale. Of a city where electricity and food are free and “a network of cooperative projects” pays the bills. Of the city he believes this could be.
You probably haven’t heard of Duncan, a drummer and former Tesla worker, and that would be understandable. He’s a 28-yearold political newcomer planning to run “as close to a zero-dollar campaign as possible” against two well-established candidates with strong community support: Mayor Steve Adler and former Council Member Laura Morrison.
But he’s one more candidate entering the ring as the calendar flips a page closer to Election Day on Nov. 6. Five Austin City Council seats and the mayor’s seat are up for grabs, all with sitting incumbents expected to seek re-election.
No candidates have announced runs against Council Members Ann Kitchen of District 5 or Sabino “Pio” Renteria of District 3. The filing deadline for the election isn’t until August. Meanwhile, here’s a roundup of who’s running so far:
Recently announced challengers include Danielle Skidmore, a civil transportation engineer running on a mobility platform against Council Member Kathie Tovo in Central Aus- tin’s District 9.
Skidmore, who serves on the city’s LGBTQ Quality of Life Committee, has advocated on various efforts on the state level, including against the Legislature’s contentious bathroom bill proposal last year. In her run for City Council, her focus is on finding both short — and long-term transportation improvements, she said.
“The people need a voice that is relentlessly focused on making improvements to our mobility challenges,” she said. “I don’t think the council has done that well in general, and I don’t think the District 9 rep has done that well either.”
Skidmore, originally from Philadelphia, has lived in Austin 24 years. She supports CodeNext, the city’s rewrite of its land-use policies, noting that Austin needs to “find ways to grow as a city and make room for all.”
Tovo has gained a council reputation as a preservation supporter, with strong neighborhood support, and an opponent of business incentives. She was the only City Council member to make the transition from the old at-large body to its new 10-1 district-based system and has served one term in each.
Unsure whether that means she has reached her two-term limit,