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Bars to reopen at half capacity

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    This graph, released on Tuesday, October 6, shows the daily number of COVID-19 cases over the last two months. Image courtesy of Bastrop County Office of Emergency Management
  • Article Image Alt Text
    As of Tuesday afternoon, 1,900 cases have been reported in Bastrop County. View the dashboard at www.co.bastrop.tx.us/page/em.coronavirus.

After consulting with local mayors and the local health authority, County Judge Paul Pape will be authorizing bars in Bastrop County to reopen at 50% capacity under state guidelines beginning October 14, according to a statement from Bastrop County released on Thursday.

On October 7, Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order allowing for the reopening of bars in certain counties under certain circumstances. Bars, or similar establishments that hold a permit from the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) and are not restaurants that have less than 51% of their gross receipts from the sale of alcohol, can now offer on-premises services at up to half of their capacity. This is only if the bar is not in an area of high hospitalizations due to COVID-19 and the county judge in that county files a form with TABC.

Patrons at bars may eat or drink only while seated, and the 50% occupancy limit applies only indoors. Bars may still use drive-through, pick-up or delivery options for food and drinks.

 

COVID-19 cases: 116 active, 1,754 recovered

As of Monday afternoon, Bastrop County has confirmed a total of 1,900 positive cases of COVID-19, according to the county’s dashboard.

So far, 1,754 people have recovered from the illness in Bastrop County, leaving 116 active cases.

At the same time last week, the county’s total number of cases was 1,865, with 1,723 recoveries and 112 active cases.

A total of 30 people in Bastrop County have died due to the illness.

According to the Bastrop County Office of Emergency Management’s weekly update last Tuesday, the county’s two community testing sites in Bastrop and Elgin performed 191 between September 29 and October 5. The positivity rate for tests conducted at these sites for that period is 7.36%. 

“Please ensure that we continue to do our part to keep these numbers down by wearing a mask, practicing social distancing and washing our hands often,” last week’s post said. “In addition, you may want to go ahead and get your flu shot this year even if you haven’t done so in previous years.”

For more information about receiving a test at one of these county testing sites, visit www.bastropcountycovid19.org or call 512-972-5560. For local questions about COVID-19, call the Bastrop County hotline at 512-303-4300.

For the latest update, posted each Tuesday, visit @BastropCountyOEM on Facebook.

According to the City of Austin’s COVID-19 dashboard, found at www.austintexas.gov/covid19, the portion of the 78621 zip code in Travis County has reported 208 cases.

The City of Austin dashboard also includes information about hospitalized patients in the five-county Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), in addition to the case numbers for Austin and Travis County. The MSA includes Bastrop, Caldwell, Hays, Travis and Williamson County.

As of Monday afternoon, the MSA has 86 inpatients in the region’s hospitals, with 30 patients in the intensive care units (ICU) and 20 ventilators in use.

Last week, 75 people were in the hospital as inpatients due to COVID-19, 27 patients were in the ICU and 14 ventilators were in use.

In May, the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) began gathering and reporting data from nursing homes about the number of confirmed and suspected cases of COVID-19 in residents and staff. As of Monday, data was available through the week ending on September 27 at data.cms.gov. 

Since August 2, the Elgin Nursing and Rehabilitation Center has reported no new confirmed COVID-19 cases or deaths among residents or staff members. A total of 36 residents and 17 staff members have been confirmed with COVID-19 over the 17 weeks of data reported so far, and six residents have died due to the virus.

In early September, Elgin ISD launched a school district dashboard of daily reported COVID-19 cases by campus, found online at www.elginisd.net/Page/6358. As of Monday afternoon, no cases have been reported so far in October. Three cases were reported in August, and three cases were reported in September, all among staff members. In both months, one case was at Elgin Elementary School and two cases were at Elgin High School, Phoenix High School or Early College High School.