Mayor delivers grim COVID-19 update for Buda

During his Jan. 19 update, Urbanovsky said he planned to update county officials on Buda’s situation Jan. 20. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
During his Jan. 19 update, Urbanovsky said he planned to update county officials on Buda’s situation Jan. 20. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

During his Jan. 19 update, Urbanovsky said he planned to update county officials on Buda’s situation Jan. 20. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

The situation with regard to COVID-19 in Buda appears for the most part to be accelerating, according to the latest report from Mayor Lee Urbanovsky.

“January has started off kind of rough, in reality,” Urbanovsky said during the Jan. 19 City Council meeting. “Since Jan. 1 ... we have averaged 158 new cases a day. That’s for [Hays] County. For the city of Buda, in that same time frame, has gone from roughly 250 to 550 ... active cases.”


Urbanovsky said fatalities have gone up from 136 to 162 in that time frame.

“Our hospitals are over the 15% threshold,” he said. “We got as high as 19%, I think that was last Sunday ... then we’ve been bouncing around the 16% range since then.”

Buda must follow the current state restrictions imposed through Hays County, which went into effect Jan. 11 and are mandated by the area’s breach of the 15% hospitalization figure.



Under those guidelines, businesses in Trauma Services Area O, which includes all of Hays County and several others, with opening capacities of 75% were required to reduce capacity to 50%, and elective surgeries were put on hold, effective immediately.

Bars not operating as restaurants were also forced to close.

During his Jan. 19 update, Urbanovsky said he planned to update county officials on Buda’s situation Jan. 20 and stated Hays County is still waiting for an influx of COVID-19 vaccines since being designated a state vaccine hub Jan. 16.

In Buda, the Austin Regional Clinic, the Baylor Scott & White facility and the H-E-B grocery store will all be potential carriers of the vaccine at some point, Urbanovsky said, adding it is just a matter of when.

“The ‘at some point’ is the scary question mark,” he said. “The county is pushing and pushing and trying to get answers of when the [vaccine] rollout is, when the big push is coming. But I don’t think anybody has that information as of this moment, anyway.”

Congruent with the mayor’s assertion that county officials do not yet have adequate vaccine information, on Jan. 20, Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra posted a Tweet that said simply, “FYI- no vaccines yet.”






Urbanovsky ended his report on a positive note, stating that Hays County has been averaging 1,100 COVID-19 tests per day since Jan. 1.

“That’s good,” he said. “People are utilizing the testing facilities.”

By Brian Rash
Brian has been a reporter and editor since 2012. He wrote about the music scene in Dallas-Fort Worth before becoming managing editor for the Graham Leader in Graham, Texas, in 2013. He relocated to Austin, Texas, in 2015 to work for Gatehouse Media's large design hub. He became the editor for the Lake Travis-Westlake publication of Community Impact in August 2018.


MOST RECENT

The program, which began this week in San Marcos, gives Amazon and Whole Foods employees and contractors direct access to COVID-19 vaccinations. (Courtesy Amazon)
Amazon begins rollout of statewide vaccination clinics for employees

The program, which began this week in San Marcos, gives Amazon and Whole Foods employees and contractors direct access to COVID-19 vaccinations.

Austin FC supporters celebrate the official announcement of the team in January 2019. (Amy Denney/Community Impact Newspaper)
How, where to watch historic first Austin FC match April 17

Check out this list of breweries, pubs and restaurants around Central Texas that are hosting watch parties for April 17's inaugural Austin FC game.

Z'Tejas' chorizo dumplings are served on the Arboretum location's porch. (Iain Oldman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Z'Tejas to open in Avery Ranch; butcher, deli to open in Dripping Springs and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Central Texas area.

The new operating rooms should be ready by the fall. (Courtesy Ascension Seton Hays)
Ascension Seton Hays in Kyle expanding with two new operating rooms

The Ascension Seton Hays hospital facility in Kyle has begun construction on two new operating rooms that will increase its capacity for complex surgeries.

Plank Seafood Provisions opened inside The Domain in late March. (Courtesy Richard Casteel)
Seafood spot opens in The Domain; All Star Liquor now serving Georgetown and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Central Texas area.

Federal funding is set aside for public schools to address effects of the pandemic. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Why Texas has not yet distributed $18 billion in federal funds intended for public schools

As budget decisions loom for school districts across Texas, state leaders are holding on to federal funds intended for public schools to use in addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas said power outages are not expected April 13, while requesting energy conservation. (Iain Oldman/Community Impact Newspaper)
UPDATE: ERCOT call for energy conservation ends April 13 without need for power outages

An ERCOT official said "tight" supply and demand conditions arose on the state's electric grid April 13 due to forecasting issues amid planned, seasonal maintenance outages by some power generators.

JAMS Music owner Ace Pepper restrings an acoustic guitar at his shop on Aquarena Springs Drive. (Brian Rash/Community Impact Newspaper)
JAMS Music in San Marcos to close by end of April

Owner Ace Pepper, who also plays in several local bands and works as a sound engineer, said the company that owns the building he leases is selling the property, and is not sure if he will continue his guitar shop at another location.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended health providers pause distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine April 13. (Olivia Aldridge/Community Impact Newspaper)
State, federal health authorities recommend pause of Johnson & Johnson vaccine after 6 rare, severe blood clots

Hub providers in Dallas, Harris and Travis counties have all announced they will follow the recommendations and pause distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Recipients of the COVID-19 vaccine wait after receiving their shot at the Delco Activity Center in Northeast Austin on March 13. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
National supply issues with Johnson & Johnson vaccine affect Austin-area shipments

After a manufacturing error ruined 15 million doses, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the supply will not increase until the plant in Baltimore is once again allowed to participate in production.

Courtesy Oldham Family Orthodontics
Oldham Family Orthodontics now open in Kyle

The practice provides comprehensive orthodontic treatment of braces and Invisalign to children and adults of all ages

A memorial for Officer Justin Putnam will be held April 18 at Five Mile Dam Park's soccer complex. (Courtesy city of San Marcos)
Memorial to be held for slain San Marcos officer

A memorial for Officer Justin Putnam will be held April 18 at Five Mile Dam Park's soccer complex.