TOWN HALL RECAP: City leaders update COVID-19 testing efforts, reopening plans

Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney and Frisco Fire Chief Mark Piland sat among other city leaders at a June 1 town hall meeting. (Courtesy city of Frisco)
Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney and Frisco Fire Chief Mark Piland sat among other city leaders at a June 1 town hall meeting. (Courtesy city of Frisco)

Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney and Frisco Fire Chief Mark Piland sat among other city leaders at a June 1 town hall meeting. (Courtesy city of Frisco)

The number of COVID-19 cases in Frisco could rise as a result of increased testing and changes in reporting from the state health department, according to city leaders.

Mayor Jeff Cheney, Frisco Fire Chief Mark Piland and other city leaders updated residents on COVID-19 and Frisco’s reopening plan at a June 1 town hall meeting.

Testing

In conjunction with Collin County, Piland said residents can register in advance for mobile testing at Toyota Stadium June 4 beginning at 10 a.m.

“It’s a PCR test, which is the nasal swab test,” Piland said.


This comes after Frisco Fire oversaw virus testing of residents and staff at local nursing homes as part of a statewide effort. As of June 1, Piland said 80% of nursing homes in Texas have been tested for COVID-19 and that the state predicts testing will be completed by the end of the week.

Piland said the department is waiting on additional guidance from Gov. Greg Abbott on more testing.

“We believe there could be an opportunity the governor might want assisted-living centers tested as well,” he said.

As the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 per day fluctuate, Cheney said finding positive tests is ultimately beneficial to the city.

“That’s the goal of this testing is so that we can find the positives in this community so we can give them the care they need and also quarantine [them] so they don’t transmit it,” he said.

Reports of positive COVID-19 cases could appear higher as a result of criteria changes by the state health department, Piland said. Initially, a positive polymerase chain reaction test, or PCR test, was the sole criterion for testing positive for the virus, he said.

“Now, you can have a combination of one or two symptoms, and you’re considered presumptive positive, which they actually now count as a positive person,” Piland said.

Reopening Frisco

Many residents called into the town hall meeting to get status updates on the reopening of city facilities and businesses.

As of May 31, youth camps, adult recreation leagues, youth sports and professional sports were permitted to reopen in Frisco at differing levels, said Ron Patterson, president of the Frisco Economic Development Corp., at the meeting.

While some of them have remained closed, Cheney said public pools in Frisco are allowed to be open.

“Some HOAs or other private entities may choose a policy to keep them closed, but they do have the authority to open them,” he said.

Parks & Recreation Director Shannon Coates said the Frisco Water Park is looking toward a July opening. The water park faced staffing issues during the pandemic, she said, but 40 lifeguards began training June 1, she said.

The governor will likely provide another reopening update for the state June 3, Cheney said.

“Expect the city and the state to substantially reopen here in the coming weeks,” he said.
By Elizabeth Ucles
Elizabeth is the reporter for Community Impact Newspaper's Frisco edition. She graduated from St. Edward's University with a degree in Writing and Rhetoric with a journalism concentration and a minor in Spanish in May 2019. Elizabeth covers public and higher education, development and transportation.


MOST RECENT

Money stock art
Comptroller: Texas June sales tax revenue totaled $2.7 billion, down 6.5% from a year ago

The Texas comptroller's office has released June sales tax revenue figures.

Bus
Denton County Transit Authority requires riders to wear masks

The Denton County Transit Authority stated its new requirement will be enforced on both its A-train and bus system until the pandemic is over.

The report comes as Texas, like states across the country, puzzles through decisions on what the upcoming academic year will look like for students and staff. (Courtesy Pixabay)
Texas Education Agency: 1 in 10 students have disengaged during the pandemic

More than 600,000 Texas public school students didn't complete assignments or respond to outreach during the coronavirus pandemic.

While there are many unknowns regarding public education operations next year, one thing is for certain: Students will be required to take the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR test. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Students to be required to take STAAR test in 2020-21 school year

While there are many unknowns regarding public education operations next year, one thing is for certain: Students will be required to take the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR test.

Five Frisco pastors explain how the community can come together to initiate change for the social injustices against the Black community. (Photos Courtesy Northbridge Church, Dono Pelham, Earnest B. Morgan, Jim Johnson, Hope Fellowship Church) (Cherry He/Community Impact Newspaper)
5 Frisco pastors speak on how churches, community can fight against racial injustice

A few local pastors are urging the community to come together and initiate change for the social injustices against the Black community—whether it is from inside or outside their churches.

Mother puts mask on boy
Denton County strongly recommends but will not require face masks

Countywide mask ordinances have taken center stage in North Texas' fight against coronavirus, but Denton County commissioners said they have no plans to join Dallas and Tarrant counties in requiring face masks.

Local municipalities are planning a variety of events to celebrate the Fourth of July that can be viewed virtually or from outside of residents' homes. (Courtesy Pexel)
How to celebrate July 4, face mask orders and more: Business, community news from DFW

Read the latest business and community news from Dallas-Fort Worth.

Frisco recently announced its government offices will be closed July 3 in observance of the Independence Day holiday. (William C. Wadsack/Community Impact Newspaper)
See which Frisco city offices, services are open for July 4 weekend

The city of Frisco’s government offices will be closed July 3 in observance of the Independence Day holiday.

Texans receiving unemployment benefits will have a little extra time before they have to prove they are actively looking for work to continue receiving state assistance. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Work search requirement paused for Texans on unemployment benefits

Texans receiving unemployment benefits will have a little extra time before they have to prove they are actively looking for work to continue receiving state assistance.

Following Gov. Greg Abbott’s decision to close Texas bars due to a rise in coronavirus cases, more than 30 bar owners filed a lawsuit June 29 challenging Abbott’s emergency order. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
More than 30 Texas bars sue over Gov. Greg Abbott's recent shutdown order

The lawsuit was filed in Travis County District Court by Jared Woodfill, a Houston attorney who has led previous legal efforts opposing Abbott’s other shutdown orders during the pandemic.

Local municipalities are planning a variety of events to celebrate the Fourth of July that can be viewed virtually or from outside of residents' homes. (Courtesy Pexel)
Here is how to celebrate Fourth of July in the Dallas-Fort Worth area

With increased concerns about the continuing coronavirus pandemic, many in-person Fourth of July celebrations have been sidelined this year.

All students, faculty, staff and visitors must wear a mask at all University of North Texas Frisco campuses, including the Hall Park campus in Frisco. (Courtesy UNT at Frisco)
UNT requires masks to be worn at all campuses

UNT President Neal Smatresk announced the mask requirement in a June 25 message.