LOCAL UPDATES: COVID-19 stats show improvement
From staff reports
The last day for the COVID-19 test and vaccine site at 1403 Blackjack St. in Lockhart was Saturday, and Caldwell County Judge Hoppy Haden said the occasion was met with a promising number that day.
“They had zero positive tests that day,” Haden said Monday at a meeting of the Caldwell County Commissioners Court, who added that he remained hopeful that trend would continue.
If you still need a free COVID test, self-collected shallow nasal PCR tests are still available at the Adams Gym at 419 Bois D’Arc St. in Lockhart from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. Walk-ups are welcome, but if you want an appointment, you can schedule it at curative.com.
The vaccine remains free and is distributed through doctor’s offices and at many pharmacies.
The vaccination ratio in Caldwell County has continued to improve. At press time Tuesday, 64.56 percent of people 12 and up in the county had received more than one dose, and 55.6 percent are considered fully vaccinated.
The statewide vaccination ratio of people receiving at least one dose is 72.58 percent, bolstered in part by urban counties like Travis, Bexar and Harris. Counties located along the Texas-Mexico border boast the highest vaccination rates in Texas, where multiple counties boast vaccination rates of 90-99.9 percent.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the Texas Department of State Health Services estimated the number of active cases in Caldwell County at 243.
Among students and employees in the Lockhart Independent School District, the situation has dramatically de-escalated. As of Tuesday afternoon, there were just eight active student cases in the district and one campus employee case. There are no known active cases at Lockhart Junior High School or Lockhart High School.
The district has required all who set foot on LISD campuses to wear masks to help fight the spread of COVID-19 since Sept. 4.
In Trauma Service Region O, which includes Lockhart, there are 749 available staffed hospital beds, 58 available staffed adult ICU beds and 10 available pediatric ICU beds. There are 435 available ventilators in the region.
There are a total of 3,816 staffed inpatient beds in the region.
Abbott cracks down on COVID-19 vaccine mandates
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Monday issued another executive order regarding COVID-19 vaccine mandates, banning any entity in Texas, including private businesses, from requiring vaccinations for employees or customers.
Abbott also called on the Legislature to pass a law with the same effect, promising to rescind the executive order once that happened. The Legislature is in this year’s third special legislative session, which ends Oct. 19.
“The COVID-19 vaccine is safe, effective, & our best defense against the virus, but should always remain voluntary & never forced,” he said in a tweet announcing his latest order.
Abbott previously gave private businesses the choice to mandate vaccines for workers.
The move follows a September mandate by President Joe Biden that requires all employers with more than 100 workers to mandate vaccines for workers or test weekly for the virus.
Biden also required all government workers and contractors to get vaccinated.
American Airlines and Southwest Airlines, which are headquartered in Texas, said they would defy Abbott and abide by the president’s mandate.
City-wide bulky cleanup scheduled for Lockhart
The City of Lockhart, in partnership with Central Texas Refuse, is helping you do some fall cleaning through its city-wide clean up at 7 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 16.
All loose materials must be in bags or in containers that cannot weigh more than 60 pounds. All trash must be out at the property line by 7 a.m. the day of the cleanup.
For the safety of the streets, crew, and residents, please don’t bring your bulky items out to your property line sooner than five days before the event.
In this event, bulky item pickup charges will not be applicable on certain eligible items, including:
Appliances such as washers, dryers, and stoves
Carpeting measuring less than 4-feet long
Scrap metal measuring less than 4-feet long
Treated wood (fence materials)
Tree limbs (must be bundled with rope or twine)
Limbs must not exceed 4-inches in diameter.
Limbs must not exceed 4-feet in length.
No palm tree or cacti limbs accepted.
Non-eligible items include:
Freon appliances such as refrigerators, freezers, and air conditioning units. If you need someone to pick up these appliances, call Appliance Collector (512) 650-0528.
Televisions and computers
Demolition/construction debris and metal fencing
Batteries, ammunition, or explosives
Concrete or rocks
Railroad tie lumber
Pianos, hot tubs, motorcycles, or items larger than a typical appliance.
BRUSH PICKUP: When discarding brush and other items, please make two separate piles: one for brush and another one for everything else. No trash or treated wood can be in the brush pile. Brush piles with bulk trash mixed in will be skipped and will be the resident’s responsibility to remove.
Brush piles must have 5 ft. of clearance on both sides and free from obstructions up to 15 ft. tall. Do not place brush piles within 5 ft. of mailboxes, poles, trees, parked cars, and the bulk trash pile. The brush pile may not exceed 4 ft. in length and 40 pounds in weight.
We also ask you not to put material out on the street, where it could pose a traffic hazard. Call Central Texas Refuse at (512)243-2833 for more information.