AG Paxton sues to break up pro-CodeNEXT Austin Planning Commission

In case there were any lingering doubts over the reality that the anti-CodeNEXT coalition – a group that absolutely includes the ZNA and ANC – is arguing in favor of a fundamentally conservative / Republican cause, the attorney general just filed suit to break up the city’s Planning Commission, on grounds that I can safely describe as total horseshit.

Just for clarification purposes, the Chronicle published a story in May describing the fracas in all its ridiculousness. Here’s the key quote from it:

The City Charter forbids more than a third of the Planning com­mis­sioners to be “directly or indirectly connected to real estate and land development” although the phrase is undefined, and the city’s lawyers told Council even if it were clear, there’s currently no mechanism for enforcement. Over the objections of Alter and three colleagues (Ora Houston, Leslie Pool, and Kathie Tovo), a 6-4 majority adopted Ann Kitchen’s motion to direct city staff to provide some clarity and recommendations for action. Unsatisfied, the four dissenters posted another screed to the Council message board, insisting that “the community” had alerted Council to this simmering outrage – the greatest danger since a pool table appeared in River City – and commissioner heads should roll forthwith.

Just who is “the community”? The anti-CodeNEXT campaigners, of course – more precisely, a half-dozen folks aligned with “Community Not Commodity,” and determined to prevent any further progress on revising the land use code. Not content to win that argument on the merits – persuading Council to reject a new code, for example, or to postpone the work indefinitely – the CNCers are not only trying to de-commission some commissioners (architects, engineers, and an administrator for Habitat for Humanity), they attempted to persuade the district attorney or the county attorney to initiate criminal investigations of the volunteer commissioners.

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AURA statement on @kenpaxton suing Planning Commission does not mince words when it comes to Fred Lewis, the Austin attorney who brought the issue to AG’s office. "His Faustian bargain with Tea-Party demagogue Ken Paxton is a new low.” #ATXcouncil #CodeNext