We’ll be updating this story throughout the day Friday with the latest local news on the coronavirus pandemic. If you’d like to go through a roundup of COVID-19 news from Thursday, read it here. If you have a news tip or question, email us at news@KUT.org.
Update at 5:30 a.m. — Travis County opens most boat ramps at county parks
Travis County is opening additional parks and amenities on a limited basis starting Friday, including most boat ramps.
Boat ramps at the following parks are open for day use: Loop 360, Mansfield Dam Park, Arkansas Bend Park, Cypress Creek Park, Mary Quinlan Park, Pace Bend (Collier boat ramp only), Webberville Park and Little Webberville Park.
Other parks or park amenities open for day use include: Reimers Ranch Park, Richard Moya Park (trails only), Northeast Metro Park (trails only), Southeast Metro Park (trails and fishing), East Metro Park (trails and fishing), Allen Park (trails only), and Windmill Run Park (trails only).
Amenities in these parks like athletic fields, swimming pools, camping, park playscapes and water fountains are remaining closed.
The county recommends visitors wear face coverings and bring their own hand sanitizer. Groups larger than five are not allowed, except for families or people living in the same home.
These parks’ ability to stay open will depend on the county’s access to necessary personal protective equipment for staff and visitor compliance with rules, the county said. More information on the status of county parks can be found here.
Catch up on what happened yesterday
As Austin reopens, City Council asks staff to come up with protections for high-risk workers
Austin City Council members asked the city manager on Thursday to come up with rules or programs to protect workers at risk of becoming infected with the coronavirus, including people who are elderly or have underlying medical conditions.
Council members also asked the city manager to meet with community members to come up with policies to mitigate the disproportionate effects of the virus on people of color. Latinx individuals in Austin, for example, are more likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19.
Council members asked City Manager Spencer Cronk to come back with policy ideas by June 2.
Other local coronavirus news from Thursday:
The Austin Independent School District said it will keep providing meals to children this summer at 70 locations. CVS announved it will begin offering COVID-19 testing at 44 CVS Pharmacy drive-thru locations in Texas on Friday — including at five Austin locations and one Round Rock location. Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order ending air travel restrictions put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Capital Metro will resume charging for rides next month, though the agency will still provide free rides to people who have been approved with the Texas Workforce Commission for unemployment benefits. Texas Supreme Court Justice Debra Lehrmann and her husband, Greg, have tested positive for the coronavirus, she announced in a tweet.
What’s happening statewide? Check out special coverage from KERA for North Texas, Houston Public Media, Texas Public Radio in San Antonio and Marfa Public Radio.
If you find this reporting valuable, please consider making a donation to support it. Your gift pays for everything you find on KUT.org. Thanks for donating today.