School closures and more Central Texas coronavirus news

New Braunfels ISD and Comal ISD will be closed through the rest of the 2019-2020 school year. (Courtesy Fotolia)
New Braunfels ISD and Comal ISD will be closed through the rest of the 2019-2020 school year. (Courtesy Fotolia)

New Braunfels ISD and Comal ISD will be closed through the rest of the 2019-2020 school year. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Read the latest updates from the past week of coverage in the Central Texas area.

Governor Abbott closes all Texas schools through the remainder of the semester

In a press conference April 17, Gov. Greg Abbott announced that all schools will remain closed through the end of the school year.

Georgetown ISD special education teachers face unique challenges with distance learning

In a job that already requires individualized attention and detail, Georgetown ISD special education teachers are doing their best to make accommodations for students as they continue to learn virtually.

On March 31, GISD announced schools would be closed through at least May 1, and all graded school work would begin April 6. But for students who learn differently, the change can be extra daunting for educators.

St. Edward’s University cuts six varsity athletic programs

The St. Edward’s University varsity men’s and women’s tennis, men’s and women’s golf, men’s soccer and co-ed cheer teams will be discontinued after the spring semester as the university deals with the financial challenges caused by the coronavirus, according to an April 15 media release.

Here’s a breakdown of 4 financial relief programs aimed to save small Texas businesses

The state’s Office of the Governor hosted a webinar on April 15 highlighting four loan services available through the Small Business Association for business owners who may be financially struggling as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Williamson County commissioners consider not adding new positions as budget season approaches

Williamson County commissioners Cynthia Long and Valerie Covey said the county will likely not add any new positions fiscal year 2020-21 as the county moves forward with budget discussions for during an April 14 meeting.

Travis County institutes hiring freeze amid considerations to mitigate budget impacts from coronavirus

The Travis County Commissioners Court voted April 14 to institute a hiring freeze for most jobs under the umbrella of Travis County government in an effort to mitigate the financial hit of the coronavirus—which is projected by county staff to be at least $25.7 million in the current fiscal year.

Travis County health officials: Face masks need to become part of culture to reopen society

Wearing cloth face coverings over the nose and mouth when performing most activities away from home has evolved from a recommendation into a legal obligation under new coronavirus mitigation orders issues by Austin-Travis County officials on April 13.

Escott: Central Texas officials to provide racial, ethnic breakdown of coronavirus hospitalizations, deaths by end of week

Austin and Travis County health officials are not sharing race or ethnicity information with the public when it comes to hospitalizations and deaths, but Austin-Travis County interim Health Authority Dr. Mark Escott said he expects those statistics to be available by the end of the week.

2,000 in-home test kits raise concerns in Hays County

Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra announced during a recent Commissioners Court meeting that 2,000 in-home test kits for COVID-19 would be available for county residents, but no in-home testing kits have been approved by the U.S Food and Drug Administration.

Kalahari on track for November opening in Round Rock despite coronavirus pandemic, contractors say

Kalahari Resorts & Conventions is on schedule for a November opening in Round Rock despite the coronavirus pandemic, according to general contractors Hensel Phelps.

Ali Linan, Jack Flagler, Adriana Rezal, Olivia Aldridge, Christopher Neely, Warren Brown, Evelin Garcia and Taylor Jackson Buchanan contributed to this report.


Gov. Greg Abbott at a press conference
Gov. Greg Abbott to allocate $171M from CARES Act to help renters at risk of eviction

Gov. Greg Abbott will allocate more than $171 million in renters assistance from the federal coronavirus relief package to eligible Texans.

(Courtesy New Braunfels Ghost Tours)
Scary good: New Braunfels Ghost Tours makes top 10 list and more Central Texas news

Read the latest Central Texas business and community news.

Aba, a Mediterranean restaurant based in Chicago, will open in Austin on Oct. 1. (Courtesy Aba)
Coming soon to Austin: Pavement opening second vintage store, Chicago-based Mediterranean spot comes to Music Lane and more

Two Hands, an Australian café, and Mediterranean spot Aba will both be opening in the Music Lane area along South Congress within the next few weeks.

Simon Madera, owner of Taco Flats, said business is down 40% across the board but that he has readjusted the business model to stay afloat in the pandemic long term. (Christopher Neely/Community Impact Newspaper)
After surviving six months, Austin's workers, small businesses are acknowledging pandemic's long-term reality

After months of day-to-day reassessments, many in the business community are now figuring out how to make it to the other end of the pandemic.

From left: Incumbent Greg Casar is facing off against Louis C. Herrin III and Ramesses Setepenre for the District 4 Austin City Council seat. (Courtesy ATXN)
In Austin City Council’s District 4, candidates discuss addressing homelessness and mental health

Two challengers will face incumbent Greg Casar for the Northeast Austin City Council seat.

Gov. Greg Abbott on July 27 issued an executive order extending the early voting period for the Nov. 3 election. (Screenshot of Sept. 17 press conference)
Lawsuit takes aim at start date for early voting as some Texas Republicans challenge Gov. Greg Abbott's order

A group of prominent Texas Republicans has embarked on a legal effort to undo the governor's executive order that extended the early voting period for the Nov. 3 election.

A photo of Elong Musk
After filing Travis County site plans, Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks to new gigafactory’s place in the company

Tesla has filed the intial site plans for a massive manufacturing plant in southeastern Travis County.

Straying from traditionals like cheese and pepperoni, Tony C's serves specialty pies such as eggplant, prosciutto and goat cheese, and the Truffle Shuffle. (Courtesy Tony C's Pizza & Beer Garden)
Restaurant Tony C's to open Sept. 24 in Round Rock and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from Central Texas.

(Graphic illustration by Rachal Russel/Community Impact Newspaper)
From New Braunfels to Cedar Park, Central Texas outdoor recreation shops scrambling to keep inventory

When combined with temporary state restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many local shop owners are speculating a perfect storm of low supply and high demand is the main reason for changes in an industry that has of late been turned on its head.

Austin ISD teachers have been able to teach virtually from their classrooms to start the school year. Some students will return to the classroom Oct. 5. (Courtesy Austin ISD)
Austin ISD teachers adjust to virtual learning as in-person demands approach

Austin ISD teachers and principals discuss the first few weeks of virtual learning.

Early voting runs from Oct. 13-30. Election Day is Nov. 3. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Find a polling location where you can vote early in Travis County

Voters can cast their ballots at any of the 37 early voting locations from Oct. 13-30.