ROUNDUP: Here are the coronavirus updates to know April 20-26 in Clear Lake, League City

Community Impact Newspaper staff will continue to provide coronavirus-related updates as more information becomes available. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Community Impact Newspaper staff will continue to provide coronavirus-related updates as more information becomes available. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Community Impact Newspaper staff will continue to provide coronavirus-related updates as more information becomes available. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

COVID-19, the infectious disease caused by the new coronavirus, is hitting the entire world, including the Bay Area. Here are the Clear Lake and League City updates you need to know.

This story will be frequently updated with outbreak-related news and links to other in-depth coverage.

5:15 p.m. April 21: The Galveston County Health District is opening a free drive-thru testing site at City Hall, 500 Walker St., League City, on April 23 and 24, according to a city news release.

2 p.m. April 21: Members of child care-focused nonprofits and advocacy groups emphasized the need for state investment in early education at a virtual roundtable discussion April 21 hosted by Houston-based nonprofit Children at Risk.

1:30 p.m. April 21: The day after the price for West Texas Intermediate crude oil took a historic plunge into negative digits April 20, it began to climb above zero, but industry experts said the effects of low demand could continue to be felt in the Greater Houston area for months.


7 a.m. April 21: League City is putting together a task force to revitalize the city, and Seabrook is funding local businesses looking for relief in the wake of the coronavirus.

8:30 p.m. April 20: Clear Creek ISD administrators addressed points of contention related to the district’s recently adopted spring 2020 pass-fail grading policy at a special meeting of the board of trustees April 20.

8:15 p.m. April 20: As Harris County’s “Stay Home, Work Safe” order remains in place for the fifth consecutive week, officials said the combination of encouraged isolation, coronavirus-related financial stressors and limited shelter space as a result of social distancing has created an ideal environment for escalated domestic violence.

6: 15 p.m. April 20: Former Shell Oil Co. President Marvin Odum will serve as Houston coronavirus recovery czar, tasked with forming a plan to safely re-open the city’s economy, Mayor Sylvester Turner announced April 20.

6 p.m. April 20: Like many other industries in the Greater Houston area, the Houston Airport System took a sharp hit in the month of March due to the coronavirus.

2 p.m. April 20: Texas State Rep. Armando Walle, D-Houston, was named coronavirus "recovery czar" by Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo in an April 20 press conference.

12:30 p.m. April 20: Just shy of two weeks after closing state parks and historical sites, Gov. Greg Abbott reopened most such locations April 20.

9 p.m. April 19: As the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread through the Greater Houston area, criminal justice activists and lawyers with the Harris County Public Defender's Office are calling on county officials to find a way to safely release juveniles from the Juvenile Detention Center on Congress Street in Houston, where two juveniles and nine staff members have tested positive.

7:45 p.m. April 17: Houston lost 8,200 jobs in March, with some industries rivaling losses felt during the 2008-09 recession, new data from the Texas Workforce Commission shows.

4 p.m. April 17: During the three weeks League City police had the authority to fine residents and business owners who violated the state's stay-at-home order, police responded to nearly 100 calls, records show.

3 p.m. April 17: Since March 14, the Texas Workforce Commission has helped more than 1.2 million Texas apply for unemployment benefits.

Noon April 17: Texas is the first state with set dates to lift certain COVID-19 restrictions as of April 17 when Gov. Greg Abbott announced three executive orders to restore more jobs while keeping Texans safe.

3 p.m. April 16: About $201M in coronavirus relief funds are heading to Greater Houston-area airports, including in the Bay Area.

2:45 p.m. April 16: While it is too early to tell how the coronavirus has affected League City’s sales tax revenue, the city’s second-largest revenue source, staff has put together loss projection scenarios that show the city could come up to $660,000 short of what was budgeted in September.

1:30 p.m. April 16: While it is too early to tell how the coronavirus COVID-19 has affected League City’s sales tax revenue, the city’s second-largest revenue source, staff has put together loss projection scenarios that show the city could come up to $660,000 short of what was budgeted in September.

1 p.m. April 16: Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo announced April 16 a partnership between the county and Walgreens that will allow for two new coronavirus testing sites to open at Walgreens locations in Houston and Pasadena on April 17.

7:45 p.m. April 15: As the number of positive coronavirus cases among both Harris County Jail inmates and employees continues to climb, U.S. District Judge Lee Rosenthal rejected a petition April 14 for the emergency release of up to 4,000 inmates.

10 p.m. April 14: The League City City Council has voted narrowly to end the city's disaster declaration, stripping police officers of the authority to fine residents for violations of stay-at-home orders.

7 p.m. April 14: The Galveston County Health District is expanding its free COVID-19 tessting to anyone, regardless of symptoms. Residents can get tested by appointment at 9850 Emmett F. Lowry Expressway, Texas City, by calling 409-978-4040.

6:30 p.m. April 14: A total of 12 League City employees have tested positive for the coronavirus COVID-19. A volunteer firefighter is in critical condition fighting the illness.

4 p.m. April 14: Following up on his March 31 projections that the Greater Houston area would see lose 150,000 jobs in 2020, just two weeks later, regional economist Patrick Jankowski said locals could see a loss of 250,000 jobs in March and April alone.

7:15 p.m. April 13: Texas households making less than $150,000 per year can expect a maximum of $3,400 to be deposited in their bank accounts by mid-April, Sen. John Cornyn said in a call with various North Texas chambers of commerce on April 13.

7 p.m. April 13: New guidelines allow for COVID-19 testing without symptoms, and more testing sites have become available.

2 p.m. April 13: As Texas is facing its highest rate of unemployment claims in recent history, a total of $50 million in loan funds is now available for small businesses across the state to provide economic relief and help keep workers employed throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

11:30 a.m. April 13: Harris County and Houston have released the number of coronavirus cases by zip code. Read a breakdown of Bay Area cases here.

April 11: League City Mayor Pat Hallisey has ordered all League City parks will be closed until further notice. This does not include parks within city limits operated by homeowners associations or Walter Hall Park, which is operated by Galveston County.

1 p.m. April 11: Harris County Public Health expects to see coronavirus peak in early May.

5:45 p.m. April 9: At virtual town halls for small business owners on April 8 and 9, Bay Area listeners heard from Houston-area elected representatives and a Galveston County public health official with updates on the trajectory and impact of the coronavirus.

5 p.m. April 9: According to police records, League City police officers have responded to more than 60 calls related to stay-at-home order violations over the last two weeks. No fines have been issued or arrests have been made.

3 p.m. April 8: On April 9, the Galveston County Health District will open in Texas City its first free COVID-19 drive-thru testing site for high-risk people who meet specific screening criteria.

6:30 p.m. April 7: In partnership with the Houston-Galveston Area Council, Harris County has launched a $10 million Small Business Economic Assistance Loan Program to help small businesses on the road to recovery.

6 p.m. April 7: Clear Creek ISD has moved to a pass-fail grading system for the remainder of the year.

9 a.m. April 7: Gov. Greg Abbott has announced state parks and historic sites should be temporarily closed, affecting several in the Houston area.

3:20 p.m. April 6: A total of 11 League City employees have tested positive for COVID-19.

1:30 p.m. April 6: Clear Lake Shores has not fined or arrested any residents for violating stay-at-home orders.

10:30 a.m. April 6: League City officials have revealed the number of city employees infected with the coronavirus has not climbed over 10.

April 5: The number of coronavirus cases in Houston, Harris County and Galveston County have continued to climb. As of April 5, there are 743 cases in Houston, 652 cases in Harris County and 240 cases in Galveston County.

4 p.m. April 3: A Harris County administrative judge has voided an order from County Judge Lina Hidalgo authorizing a review process for the release of some nonviolent inmates from the Harris County Jail shortly after the first few inmates were released April 3.

3 p.m. April 3: With low passenger travel during the coronavirus pandemic, Houston Airport System officials are anticipating a decline in passenger numbers at George Bush Intercontinental Airport and William P. Hobby Airport for the month of March.

5 p.m. April 2: League City police have not arrested or fined anyone for violating stay-at-home orders, but police have responded to 40 calls.

1 p.m. April 2: As the coronavirus pandemic continues and businesses lay off their employees, more Americans are filing claims for unemployment insurance.

1 p.m. April 1: As of March 31, about 90 cases of coronavirus are confirmed in Clear Lake and League City, not counting Houston numbers.

March 31: Clear Creek ISD has announced schools will remain closed through at least May 4.

4:30 p.m. March 31: Houston and Harris and Galveston counties have extended their stay-at-home orders through April 30.

3 p.m. March 31: Gov. Greg Abbott executes an executive order to minimize the spread of COVID-19 through April 30.

1 p.m. March 30: League City has revealed eight employees have tested positive for COVID-19.

March 29: The number of coronavirus cases have continued to climb exponentially. There are now 240 in Harris County, 286 in Houston and 70 in Galveston County.

5 p.m. March 25: There are a total of 27 cases in Galveston County and 119 in Harris County.

March 25: The number of cases in Galveston County is 22.

March 24: The number of cases in Galveston County has risen to 21.

8 p.m. March 24: In an effort to curb the rising number of cases of coronavirus cases in League City, the City Council on March 24 passed an ordinance that allows police to fine residents up to $2,000 for violating a stay-at-home order over at least the next three weeks.

10:30 a.m. March 24: Harris County has issued a stay-at-home order effective late March 24.

6 a.m. March 24: Local nonprofits have shared ways they are responding to the outbreak and helping vulnerable populations.

9 p.m. March 23: The Clear Creek ISD board has voted to postpone May elections to November. All Bay Area spring elections—for CCISD, Nassau Bay and Clear Lake Shores—have now been delayed.

8 p.m. March 23: Galveston County has issued a stay-at-home order effective late March 24.

6:30 p.m. March 23: Harris County has suspended runoff elections for the most recent election from May 26 to July 14.

4:30 p.m. March 23: The total number of COVID-19 cases in Galveston County has reached 18.

11:30 a.m. March 23: A total of 17 Galveston County residents have been confirmed to have COVID-19.

March 22: As of late March 22, the Galveston County Health District has reported a total of 12 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the county. The carries include eight women and four men. At least three are the victims of believed community spread.

2:00 p.m. March 20: Space Center Houston will be closed through at least April 12, according to a press release from the museum.

Originally, the center announced it would be closed March 15-27. That was extended a couple weeks in the interest of ensuring the safety of guests, employees and volunteers.

"We will not reopen until we can safely welcome back guests and our team," the release reads.

10 a.m. March 20: Clear Lake Shores City Council voted to postpone May elections until Nov. 3.

3:30 p.m. March 19: COVID-19 drive-thru test sites have begun to open around Houston.

12:30 p.m. March 19: Gov. Greg Abbott has mandated all restaurants and bars in the state stop offering dine-in services. Until now, many Galveston County eateries have remained open because Galveston County has not ordered restaurants to close, unlike Harris County.

11:30 a.m. March 19: League City Mayor Pat Hallisey signed a local disaster declaration the morning of March 19 that recommends bars close and local restaurants stop dine-in services, according a press release.

March 18: Galveston County Health District has confirmed two additional positive COVID-19 cases, bringing the total to four. No additional information about the residents was released.

9:30 p.m. March 18: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has issued a waiver to allow restaurants to deliver alcohol with food orders to help ease the financial hardship caused by the coronavirus.

9 p.m. March 18: San Jacinto College has announced that, starting March 23, all general education courses will be delivered online, technical courses will be done through a combination of online and face-to-face appointments, and college staff will work from home.

5:30 p.m. March 18: Nassau Bay has reported it is strongly considering postponing elections to November.

2:30 p.m. March 18: Clear Creek ISD and Clear Lake Shores have reacted to the news that May elections may be delayed to November.

Noon March 18: Gov. Greg Abbott has proclaimed that school districts and municipalities have the option to postpone local May elections until November. Community Impact Newspaper will report any Bay Area elections that are postponed.

Noon March 18: League City has shared information on what several local groups are doing to help the community during the outbreak.

League City has suspended all late payments for utility bills and disconnects for non-payment.

The Galveston County Food Bank and League City Rotary Club will be hosting a free, drive-thru, mobile food distribution on Friday at Hometown Heroes Park. It will start at 1 p.m. and last until 3 p.m. or the truck has been emptied. Each vehicle will received an assortment of food. Those who wish to volunteer can email leaguecityrotary5910@gmail.com.

Additionally, the food bank is preparing to serve the League City community with drop-off service to quarantined residents, should the need arise. Interested volunteers can call 409-945-4232.

Clear Creek and Dickinson ISDs are providing free weekday drive-thru meals for students. Families can go to Greene, League City, McWhirter, Stewart and Whitcomb elementary schools between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to receive a meal for each student 18 or younger in the vehicle.

Also, various nonprofits are helping in-need residents, including Interfaith Caring Ministries and Family Promise of Clear Creek. Family Promise is calling on the community to donate food, supplies and funding to local shelters because it is expected the nonprofit, which services poverty-stricken families, expects to see layoffs and other issues as a result of COVID-19.

11:45 a.m. March 18: The Helen Hall Library in League City will close 6 p.m. March 19 until further notice. Library programming is canceled as well. Ebooks can still be checked out online.

5 p.m. March 17: League City Police Chief Gary Ratliff has announced the League City Police Department will make temporary changes during the outbreak.

Residents who want to report something to the police should continue to contact the department as normal. An officer will contact the resident, and if there is no evidence to process, the report will be handled over the phone. Otherwise, the officer will respond, according to a LCPD press release.

Additionally, the department will not tolerate price gouging. The department will investigate reports of businesses increasing prices unreasonably, and any information will be reported to the Texas Attorney General's Office, the release reads.

"The objective is to keep League City Police Department employees healthy for as long as possible while ensuring continuity of essential services to the citizens we serve. We are dedicated to providing the highest level of service to our community and will get through this by working together," Ratliff said in the release.

3 p.m. March 17: Several Bay Area restaurants and businesses have adjusted hours and operations to accommodate customers during the outbreak. While Harris County has closed restaurants, Galveston County Judge Mark Henry has refused to do so, saying the action would be "illegal."

Noon March 17: Harris County and the city of Houston have extended their coronavirus disaster declarations by at least an additional week.

11:45 a.m. March 17: The Galveston County Health District has confirmed its second presumptive positive case of COVID-19. The case is not linked to travel, suggesting the first signs of community spread in the county.

March 16: Bay Area businesses, real estate agents, museums and others have shared details of the fallout from the outbreak.

7 p.m. March 16: Clear Creek ISD has decided to close all schools through April 10.

6:15 p.m. March 16: Officials have announced all Harris County and Houston restaurants and bars must close for at least 15 days starting March 17. These businesses will be able to offer takeout only.

6:15 p.m. March 13: Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said the city is working with the Texas Medical Center to expand testing capabilities and discouraged residents from raiding grocery stores.

1:45 p.m. March 13: Gov. Greg Abbott has announced a state of disaster for all Texas counties.

12:50 p.m. March 13: The Galveston County Health District stated it has its first presumptive positive case of COVID-19 in a Friendswood resident who is quarantined in Austin.

Noon March 13: The Harris County Public Library has closed facilities and transitioned to online services through April 1.

March 13: Clear Creek ISD, University of Houston-Clear Lake, San Jacinto College and College of the Mainland have announced in-person classes will be canceled through at least the rest of March.

10 a.m. March 13: The Harris County Toll Road Authority has announced collectors will no longer accept cash at toll booths in an effort to minimize spread of the coronavirus.

3:30 p.m. March 12: Harris County and other Houston-area officials have recommended gatherings of over 250 people to be canceled or postponed through the end of March.

3:45 p.m. March 11: Analysts predict the energy industry will go through difficulties due to the coronavirus.

2 p.m. March 11: Houston-area officials have canceled the Houston Rodeo.

7:15 p.m. March 6: A total of eight cases of COVID-19 have been identified in the Greater Houston area.

6:45 p.m. March 5: County officials have confirmed two residents with COVID-19 contracted the illness while traveling abroad.
By Jake Magee
Jake Magee has been a print journalist for several years, covering numerous beats including city government, education, business and more. Starting off at a daily newspaper in southern Wisconsin, Magee covered two small cities before being promoted to covering city government in the heart of newspaper's coverage area. He moved to Houston in mid-2018 to be the editor for and launch the Bay Area edition of Community Impact Newspaper.

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