AUSTIN — Organizers from Citizens for an Accountable Austin filed a petition with the Austin City Clerk Thursday morning calling for an independent third-party audit on how the City spends its money.
Before turning it in, Council Member Ellen Troxclair and former Council Member Don Zimmerman signed on.
Michael Searle, the organization's treasurer, took the lead on turning the petition into the clerk. He said other cities, counties and school districts across the country perform these types of audits and have found areas where they can save.
Troxclair has expressed interest in having this type of audit performed. Her staff told KVUE that Troxclair wanted to take a resolution to council, but could not get the required co-sponsor to add it to the agenda.
"The City of Austin is struggling with cost of living increases and tax increases and yet, we're struggling to keep up with our growth and making sure our pools can stay open and we have enough money to hire police officers to keep up with our growth," said Troxclair. "This audit can help us make sure we're spending money in the right places."
Supporters of an audit said studying how the City spends tax dollars and looking for ways to be more efficient makes sense.
"Whether you want government bigger or whether you want it smaller, you want it efficient. You want the money spent well and for the purposes it's intended. I think Austinites, such as myself, wonder why in booming times like this, we can't seem to afford basic services like parks, swimming pools and roads," said attorney Fred Lewis.
"So, I think the citizens at least want to know where the money is going. I want to see whether the priorities are right and give the people and the council an opportunity to have a discussion about where we might wish to spend our money differently."
KVUE has reached out to Mayor Steve Adler's office for a comment.