NEWS

Austin Chronicle

Celia Israel Responds to Kirk Watson’s Redlining Plan

“That’s why I was disappointed to see my friend and fellow candidate for mayor, Kirk Watson, fail to meet the moment as he released his plan for housing. “Potentially OK; potentially awful,” is how Jack Craver with Austin Politics Newsletter described it. While Mike Clark-Madison from this publication compared it to “the much-feared ‘ward politics’” in Chicago…The most troubling part of Kirk’s proposal is his plan to give each council district the right to veto changes they deem undesirable, from apartments to duplexes. Civil rights advocates worry this is a return to redlining, while forcing all new housing options onto the Eastside, kicking displacement and gentrification into overdrive.”

Austin Chronicle

Celia Israel Campaign Kicks Off “LGBTQ Austinites for Celia”

“Much of Israel’s campaign so far has focused on her “Home for All” plan to address the current housing crisis. Housing, or lack thereof, has been a pivotal point of discussion within queer circles, as many in the LGBTQIA community struggle to retain stable housing situations due to low income and discrimination. “Our community helped build the fabric of what makes Austin such a special place,” states committee member Dr. Victor Martinez via a press release. “City leaders have failed to address the growing housing affordability crisis, and LGBTQ Austinites are being forced out. Celia Israel has a real plan to address the problem and to keep Austin affordable for all our vital communities.”

KXAN

Austin mayoral candidate unveils 6-part housing affordability plan

Israel on Thursday unveiled her six-part plan to improve housing affordability within the city. It includes making it easier to build lower-priced duplexes and quadruplexes rather than single-family homes and building on more city-owned land. The candidate acknowledged her ideas would be tested by obstacles we’ve seen again and again, like zoning regulations.”

Austin Chronicle

Austin at Large: Housing and the Mayor’s Race

“Last week, Israel – likely to be the major contender most amenable to Austin's left – sought first-mover advantage as the mayoral aspirants debate solutions to the city's biggest problem. "The interests of a powerful few fostered a fundamental misunderstanding of the needs of our city, and have created a historic housing crisis"… What Israel proposes in "Home for All" is a mixture of best practices to achieve incremental increases in density that other cities, even ones like Dallas, have managed to translate into new housing that isn't all the way out on the cheapest edges of town”

The Advocate

How Out Texas Rep. Celia Israel Put Voting Rights First in 2021

“Celia Israel, a member of the Texas House of Representatives, stood for her principles this year even though it meant personal sacrifice. She was set to marry her partner of 26 years, Celinda Garza, on the House floor July 15, but she ended up leaving Texas for Washington, D.C., three days earlier with more than 50 other House Democrats so there would not be the number of representatives required to vote on a Republican-backed voter suppression bill.”

TIME

Texas Democrats Faced Criticism for Fleeing to D.C.—But These Lawmakers See Their Gamble as a Deeply Personal Battle for the Future of Their State

“The day before Thompson spoke so emphatically in Virginia, representative Celia Israel celebrated her 57th birthday, if it can be called a celebration so far from family and most friends. It was supposed to have been her wedding day, too. Another Texas Democrat, Israel—a Latina who represents a district that includes Austin— had planned to wed her partner of 26 years, Celinda Garza, in a ceremony on the Texas House of Representatives floor, then honeymoon in Big Bend National Park. Instead, she found herself here at the U.S. Capitol in a small room, all dark wood paneling and gilded light fixtures, enumerating just what was at stake in that power battle back home.”

The New York Times

Hasty Exits and Dashed Plans as State Democrats Leave Texas to Block Voting Bill

“WASHINGTON — For many Democrats in the Texas House, the decision to leave the state on Monday to temporarily block the passage of a restrictive voting law upended a lot of plans, but few more so than Representative Celia Israel, who postponed her wedding.
After learning a day earlier that 50 of her colleagues were rushing ahead with an 11th-hour trip to Washington to deny Republicans a quorum, which is required to conduct state business, Ms. Israel called off the ceremony in a matter of hours. “It wasn’t a fun day when I had to tell my partner, Sunday, as she’s getting measured by a seamstress for her wedding outfit, that we were about to break quorum,” she said.”

The Texas Tribune

State Rep. Celia Israel announces run for Austin mayor

Austin American-Statesman

Texas House Democrat Celia Israel announces run for Austin mayor

The Austin Chronicle

Election Ticker: Race for Austin's Next Mayor Heats Up

KVUE

State Rep. Celia Israel announces 2022 run for Austin mayor