Austin City Council Election 2002

The 2002 council election was the first in which incumbents used the City Charter provision approved by voters in 1994 (Proposition 2) to avoid being limited to two terms. That amendment allowed term-limited incumbents to get on the ballot by collecting sufficient signatures on petitions (five percent of qualified voters).

Council Members Jackie Goodman, Beverly Griffith, and Daryl Slusher all qualifed through petition drives. Goodman and Slusher won reelection without a runoff.

Incumbent Griffith, however, was runner-up to Betty Dunkerley, a former longtime finance director for the City of Austin. Griffith then withdrew from the runoff and Dunkerley was declared the winner.

Eight propositions also appeared on the 2002 council election ballot, among them:

Proposition 1, which would have amended the City Charter to create a public financing system for campaigns for city council candidates, was nixed by 78 percent percent of the voters.

Proposition 2, which would have repealed the campaign finance charter amendment adopted in November 1997, failed 49 percent to 51 percent.

Proposition 3 was the sixth attempt to gain voter approval for some form of electing council members from districts. Like many previous attempts, the plan offered would create eight geographic districts. But this time the measure added two council member slots to be elected at-large, along with the mayor at-large. Prop 3 failed 42 percent to 58 percent.