Austin’s First African American City Council Member Berl Handcox to be Honored with Naming Ceremony

Beryl Handcox, center with blue jacket poses with family and Austin City Council members Jimmy Flannigan (Place 6) and Ora Houston (Place 1).

A resolution to begin a naming process to name Water Treatment Plant 4 for Berl L. Handcox Sr. was recently presented at City Hall at the August, 3 2017 City of Austin  Council meeting. Mr. Handcox was the first African-American to be elected to Austin City Council under the Manager-Council form of government, serving from 1971 through 1975. Mr. Handcox and his family were all in attendance at the Council meeting.

Mr. Handcox has lived in his home for over 40 years and resides in District 6, the same district in which Water Treatment Plant 4 is located. Council Member Handcox was well known for initiating the Community Improvement Program to enhance deteriorating areas of East Austin and eventually all of Austin, as well as the “Handcox Paving Policy” which curbed, guttered, and paved roads throughout the entire city.

Council Member Handcox also spent considerable time passionately advocating for water and wastewater facilities to be cleaner, more environmentally sensitive, and more equitably distributed throughout the city throughout his tenure on Austin City Council.

The resolution was sponsored by District 6 Council Member Jimmy Flannigan and co-sponsor District 1 Council Member Ora Houston. It passed in a unanimous vote


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