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COVID-19 Latest: Disaster Relief Grant Program For Austin Musicians Reopens

Stasia Erickson busks on South Congress Avenue on May 22.
Michael Minasi
/
KUT
Stasia Erickson busks on South Congress Avenue on May 22.

This post has local news on the coronavirus pandemic from Monday, Aug. 10. If you have a news tip or question, email us at news@KUT.org.

Travis County has now had more than 300 COVID-19-related deaths

Austin Public Health reported 229 new cases of COVID-19 in Travis County on Monday, up from 122 reported on Sunday. The seven-day average of daily new cases is 201. Five more deaths were reported, bringing the county’s COVID-19 death total to 303.

There are now reportedly 271 people hospitalized with the virus in the five-county region (Travis, Williamson, Hays, Bastrop and Caldwell). Yesterday, there were 278. Despite that net decrease, APH reported 19 new COVID-19 hospital admissions in the region on Monday. The seven-day average of new admissions is now 32.9, down from 35.3.

Local officials worry about the coronavirus overwhelming hospitals, so they’re keeping an eye on that average and adjusting restrictions based on it and other factors, like ICU and ventilator capacities. While an average below 40 could push the region down to stage 3 of APH’s risk-based guidelines, officials have recommended the area remain in stage 4, the second-highest level, for now.

Austin Music Disaster Relief Fund reopens

A grant program aimed at helping musicians facing economic hardships because of the coronavirus pandemic opens back up Monday.

The $1.5 million Austin Music Disaster Relief Fund will provide $1,000 grants to Austin musicians in need. 

"We have revised eligibility to ensure that grant guidelines accommodate more of our local musicians,” Sylnovia Holt-Rabb, acting director for the City of Austin Economic Development Department, said in a press release. “The reopening of the Austin Music Disaster Relief Fund will ensure that these recovery dollars serve immediate needs like rent and groceries for those musicians struggling since the pandemic hit Austin.”

Applications open at 10 a.m. and will stay open until funding runs out, the city says. While in the past applicants had to upload financial statements, that is no longer required. They will need to live in an Austin City Council district and be able to show they are a professional Austin musician. 

More information can be found here.

Travis County sees 244 new cases over the weekend

Austin Public Health reported 244 new cases of COVID-19 in Travis County over the weekend — 122 on Saturday and on Sunday. Three more deaths were reported, bringing the county’s death total to 298. 

As of Sunday evening, there were 278 people hospitalized with the virus in the five-county region (Travis, Williamson, Hays, Bastrop and Caldwell). On Saturday, there were 275.

There were 71 new COVID-19 hospital admissions reported in the region over the weekend — 43 on Saturday and 28 on Sunday. The seven-day average of new hospital admissions is now 35.3.

Local officials worry about the coronavirus overwhelming hospitals, so they’re keeping an eye on that number and adjusting restrictions based on it. 

Even though that average is below 40, Austin Public Health said the area is staying in stage 4 of its risk-based guidelines, the second-highest level, for now. The health authority has said the area could move to stage 3, which would mean fewer restrictions, if the average went below 40. But that move also depends on other factors, like doubling time and ICU and ventilator capacity.

Manor ISD launches program for students whose parents serve on the COVID-19 frontline

The Manor Independent School District is launching a new program for students whose parents serve on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, including firefighters, police officers, medics and people who provide medical care in nursing homes.

The First Responder Family Services Option offers Manor ISD students a place to learn virtually during the day. "When their parents are out in the field and they need a safe and supportive place to go that's structured so that their parents don't have to worry about their instructional needs, we will be there to support them," said Dr. Creslond Fannin, the program's director. 

Fannin says teachers, nursing staff and a principal will be on-site at the chosen school district facility to ensure safety measures are being followed. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.

Families must register online by submitting their student's lunch ID number and showing proof of first responder status, like a letter from an employer or a picture of an employee badge. The Manor ISD school year starts with remote learning on Aug. 17.

COVID-19 Dashboards

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What's happening statewide? Check out special coverage from KERA for North Texas, Houston Public MediaTexas Public Radio in San Antonio and Marfa Public Radio.

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