The average Austin homeowner is paying 80 percent more to their city council than they did just 10 years ago—and now the city council is supporting an idea that will completely bankrupt many Austinites.

Austin City Council recently unanimously passed a resolution growing the city’s climate change programs and supporting the national Green New Deal.

The Green New Deal, a federal proposal by freshman New York congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, would upend the nation’s economy and energy production, and demand a mountain of taxpayer cash to spend on enormous government handout programs. Though the proposal—which merely consists of a vague list of broad environmental and social goals—is too devoid of specifics to be actual policy, one preliminary price estimate shows its cost could be tens of trillions; for every American household, that could mean paying an extra few hundred thousand dollars in taxes just over the next 10 years.

Austin City Council has jumped in to support Ocasio-Cortez’s idea.

“The Council recognizes we are already experiencing the adverse consequences of climate change, understands the urgency of creating a blueprint to prepare for and respond to the shocks and stressors of catastrophic climate events, and supports the general tenets of the Green New Deal,” their resolution read.

“Several other cities across the country support the Green New Deal for the same reasons we do,” said Council member Leslie Pool, “because it recognizes the value of connecting climate resilience with economic opportunity. That’s a win-win for everybody.”

Ask everyday Austinites, who are already being forced to leave the city because of soaring taxes, if adding a mind-boggling few hundred thousand dollars to their tax bill would be a win-win.

And a brief note on climate change: The Green New Deal wouldn’t even make any meaningful impact, according to a report by the Heritage Foundation.

“The reality is these policies do not actually provide any ‘climate insurance,’” the report reads. “No matter where one stands on the urgency to combat climate change, the Green New Deal policies would be ineffective in abating temperature increases and slowing the rise of sea levels. In fact, the U.S. could cut its carbon dioxide emissions by 100 percent and it would not make a difference in global warming.”

But even coming back “down to earth” from the Green New Deal, Austin City Council still wants to throw more of citizens’ cash into the wind of their own climate change programs, including hiring a “chief resilience officer” and pushing more Austinites toward electric cars—an idea even progressive Council member Natasha Harper-Madison took issue with.

“There are a lot of poor people in this city! And a $38,000 electric vehicle is not an option for them,” she said.

Harper-Madison also noted how the city council could instead be spending citizens’ money on important needs.

“If we’re going to have to be thinking about how to allocate funds in the most resourceful, long-term beneficial way possible, I can think of other things that are more important, frankly,” she said.

Yet city council, despite spending over $4,000 per Austinite (roughly double cities like Dallas), has long had trouble resisting the urge to waste citizens’ cash; they have previously spent $450,000 on two public toilets and $115,000 to clean one public toilet, literally given away millions to any citizen who emailed the city asking for cash, and overspent $140 million on a bad tunnel.

Despite flippantly throwing citizens’ money around, the city council now wants even more for their new climate change projects.

Austinites, who are already scrambling to feed city council’s ravenous appetite for their cash, will have to somehow find a way to pay them even more.

But, like Pool said, “that’s a win-win for everybody.”

Jacob Asmussen

Jacob Asmussen is a Senior Journalist for Texas Scorecard. He attended the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and in 2017 earned a double major in public relations and piano performance.