This post has local news on the coronavirus pandemic from Thursday, Oct. 1. If you have a news tip or question, email us at news@KUT.org.
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Travis County sees 62 new cases and two more deaths
Austin Public Health reported 62 new cases of COVID-19 in Travis County on Thursday, down from 93 reported Wednesday. The seven-day average of daily new cases is 96. Two more deaths were reported, bringing the county’s death total to 429.
There are now 83 people reported to be hospitalized with the virus in the five-county region (Travis, Williamson, Hays, Bastrop and Caldwell), four more than yesterday. APH reported a total of 15 new COVID-19 hospital admissions in the region Thursday. The seven-day average of new admissions is 12, down from 13.
The area is in stage 3 of APH’s risk-based guidelines. At this level, people are encouraged to avoid gatherings of more than 10 people.
Barton Springs Pool expands hours
Barton Springs Pool will be expanding its hours starting Friday. The pool will have swim hours — with lifeguards — from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Tuesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
The pool is also open daily from 5 a.m. to 8 a.m. to “swim at your own risk.” Those hours were announced last week, along with reopenings at Deep Eddy, Big Stacy, Bartholomew and Springwoods pools.
Reservations aren’t required at the pools, but there are certain health protocols in place, like social distancing and wearing masks when not in the water.
Travis County extends ban against evictions, excludes commercial renters
Travis County extended its ban against many evictions through the start of 2021. In doing so, it adds to a growing number of local and national protections against evictions.
The new order bans landlords of many residential properties from issuing a "notice to vacate," which is the first step in the legal eviction process. That’s when a landlord posts a notice on a tenant’s door letting them know they intend to file an eviction in court.
The order protects tenants of residential buildings who pay no more than $2,475 a month in rent and have given their landlord a signed copy of a declaration from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as part of a national moratorium on evictions.
While the City of Austin’s latest eviction ban covers certain commercial businesses, including music venues and child care centers, the Travis County order does not.
Free masks and hand sanitizer will be distributed in Pflugerville today
Pflugerville will have a free personal protective equipment distribution at Northeast Metropolitan Park from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. The distribution will include hand sanitizer, masks and educational materials.
This event is a collaboration between Austin Public Health, CommUnityCare and Central Health. The organizations have been providing PPE to areas with high COVID-19 positivity rates in an effort to avoid a future surge in cases as cold and flu season approaches.
Hutto reopens City Hall and Council meetings to the public
The City of Hutto is reopening its City Hall and public library today amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Residents can attend council meetings at 25% capacity.
The public library will resume "grab n' go" services for 30-minute sessions. Face masks are required. Visitors who want to access the library's computers, printer or copier must make an appointment.
Meeting and study rooms remain closed. Officials still recommend people make utility payments online, by phone or by using the city's drop box.
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