Latest on the Coronavirus

Outbreak at City Hall: Mayor, judge among officials testing positive

RAYMONDVILLE — The area’s COVID-19 outbreak has hit City Hall, infecting some of the city’s top officials. On Wednesday afternoon, officials evacuated City Hall, which...

Hallow-streaming: With restrictions instated specific to holiday, alternative activities planned

Streets won’t be filled with young superheroes and princesses scavenging for candy this year, but the community’s Halloween spirit and the traditions of Día...

Willacy bans spectators from school activities

RAYMONDVILLE — Willacy County Judge Aurelio Guerra on Friday banned spectators from school activities as a result of an uptick in local COVID-19 cases,...

Trump says virus spike ‘gone’ in Texas while El Paso surges

By ACACIA CORONADO Report for America/Associated Press President Donald Trump downplayed the toll of the coronavirus during Thursday's final debate with Joe Biden, and specifically...

3 more COVID-19 deaths reported in Cameron County

Three more Cameron County residents have died from COVID-19 related causes, the county health department reported Thursday afternoon. This raises the total number of COVID-19...

Willacy County official warns of ‘uptick’ in state numbers

RAYMONDVILLE — After weeks of low COVID-19 case numbers here, state health officials found 16 Willacy County residents have tested positive for the coronavirus. The...

Texas reports most active COVID-19 cases since summer peak

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The second coronavirus wave in Texas continued with more active cases than at any time since the summertime peak, according...

Santa Claus won’t be coming to Macy’s this year

By JOSEPH PISANI AP Retail Writer NEW YORK (AP) — Macy's said Santa Claus won't be greeting kids at its flagship New York store this...

City partners with UT Health to bring lab to Brownsville

The Brownsville City Commission and mayor on Tuesday approved an item that awards a contract to the University of Texas School of Public Health (UTSPH)...

COVID-19 shuts down part of sheriff’s office

RAYMONDVILLE — A coronavirus outbreak has led officials to close part of the Willacy County Sheriff’s Department and the county tax office. At the Raymondville...

H-E-B partners get $500 bonuses

H-E-B partners have a little more money in their pockets, as the grocery store chain handed out $500 bonuses to its employees today, officials...

Cameron County reports 2 COVID-19 deaths

Two more Cameron County residents have died from COVID-19 related causes, the county health department reported Tuesday. This raises the total number of coronavirus-related deaths...

Travel restriction extended, Cuellar encouraged by DHS support

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is working with border community officials to identify criteria in an effort to ease restrictions on current travel...

Gladys Porter Zoo launches social media campaign with the help of YouTubers

With zoos all over the world struggling to make ends meet due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Gladys Porter Zoo launched a social media...

San Benito offers COVID-19 aid to hard-hit residents

SAN BENITO — The city is setting aside federal money to help residents strained during the coronavirus pandemic. As part of the Coronavirus Aid Relief...

Hidalgo, Cameron counties report six more COVID-19 deaths

Hidalgo County announced four additional COVID-19 related deaths and 164 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday morning. The county’s COVID-19 related death toll climbed to 1,899...

Health officials say Texans won’t have COVID-19 vaccine until July at the earliest

By Aria Jones, Texas Tribune If a COVID-19 vaccine is ready next month, Texas health officials predict it won’t be widely available to Texans until...

Hidalgo County reports 164 new COVID-19 cases; four more deaths

Hidalgo County announced four additional COVID-19 related deaths and 164 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday morning. The county’s COVID-19 related death toll climbed to 1,899,...

Texas is on the cusp of another COVID-19 surge; Is state better prepared?

By Shawn Mulcahy, Texas Tribune Cases of COVID-19 in parts of Texas surged to near catastrophic levels this summer as some hospitals were forced to...

McAllen unveils precautions for city’s first social event since COVID-19

McALLEN — Mayor Jim Darling danced his way to the podium on a stage at the McAllen Convention Center Monday morning, kicking up his...

Two COVID-19 deaths reported in Cameron Co.; Starr Co. postpones bar reopenings

Two COVID-19 deaths were confirmed in Cameron County on Monday, along with 109 new cases. The individuals who died include a man from Brownsville in...

Facing challenges, many winter visitors remain RGV-bound

Lise Ferland-St-Pierre planned on being in the Rio Grande Valley by November. She and her husband have traveled from their Eastern Townships home in Quebec...

El Paso sees largest number in hospitals due to COVID-19

EL PASO, Texas (AP) — The El Paso area has reported its highest number of hospitalizations due to the coronavirus since the pandemic began,...

UTRGV hosts distance-learning innovator

Nine months into the COVID-19 pandemic, the university professor, author and lecturer credited with inventing the term e-learning says distance learning’s worldwide embrace is...

University professor charts behavior during pandemic

Elena Quercioli’s life’s work lies at the intersection of economics and epidemiology in a field known, as a matter of fact, as “economic epidemiology.” As...

From farmwork to family life, Eustolia Villarreal a paragon of virtue

BY FRANCISCO GUAJARDO When Eustolia Villarreal died on July 14, 2020, her son Joe, who bore close witness to his mother’s life, reflected on the...

Innovator speaks on distance learning; Says education gap may be widening

Nine months into the COVID-19 pandemic, the university professor, author and lecturer credited with inventing the term e-learning says distance learning’s worldwide embrace is...

COVID-19 case activity varies at RGV schools; additional data still sought

Select students in Hidalgo County began returning to campus last month, a decision during the pandemic some fear is a gamble based on an...

Pandemic forcing people to stay home for the holidays

“Oh, there’s no place like home for the holidays …” Ever since Perry Como recorded those heartwarming lyrics in 1954, they have celebrated a time...

Cameron County reports 3 more virus deaths

Three more Cameron County residents have died from COVID-19 related causes, the county health department reported Friday night. This raises the total number of coronavirus-related...

HCISD picked for virus testing program

HARLINGEN — The Harlingen school district feels privileged to be part of a pilot program using COVID tests which offer up quick results. “Harlingen CISD...

Reopening Granted: Judge allows bars in Cameron County to open at 50 percent

During a press conference Friday morning, Cameron County Judge Eddie Trevino Jr. issued the sixth amended emergency management order which allows all bars and...

SPI extends beach operations emergency order

SOUTH PADRE ISLAND — In an effort to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, those headed to this coastal city’s beach are going...

Starr County to keep bars closed, suspends Halloween activities

Bars in Starr County are ordered to remain closed and Halloween activities are suspended as part of ongoing precautions to prevent the spread of...

Texas sends virus team to Amarillo, Lubbock as cases spike

AMARILLO, Texas (AP) — Gov. Greg Abbott said Friday he is deploying medical personnel and supplies to the Texas Panhandle and surrounding region as...

State removes 27 cases from Willacy’s virus count

RAYMONDVILLE — State health officials have scratched 27 cases of the coronavirus from Willacy County’s total case count after finding a glitch in the...

Judge: Bars in Cameron County may open at 50 percent capacity

Bars in Cameron County can open at 50 percent capacity, county Judge Eddie Trevino Jr. announced at this morning COVID-19 update press conference. All patrons...

CBP: Apprehensions decline by more than half

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials said they had a drop of more than 50% in apprehensions along the U.S.-Mexico border in fiscal year...

Masks still serve as effective tool against virus

HARLINGEN — With Halloween around the corner, many kids are thinking about masks. But masks have taken on a whole new role this year. Instead...

Leaders step up restrictions as El Paso sees another record-high for Covid-19 infections

By Julián Aguilar, Texas Tribune EL PASO — City and county leaders here announced Thursday that they will increase restrictions for restaurants and some businesses...

Hidalgo, Cameron counties report 13 COVID-19 deaths

The Hidalgo County Health and Human Services Department reported eight COVID-19 related deaths and 246 new cases on Thursday, county Judge Richard F. Cortez...

Local health authorities intervene with bus carrying possible COVID-19 passengers

McALLEN — Hidalgo County and McAllen health authorities made sure that an out-of-state bus carrying potential COVID-19 passengers was safely deboarded after a passenger...

State shuts down virus center amid low numbers

HARLINGEN — After two months of operation, the state is shutting down its second-largest COVID-19 recovery center at Casa de Amistad after few patients...

22 more die from virus in RGV

The Rio Grande Valley reported 22 additional deaths related to COVID-19 Wednesday evening, along with more than 200 new cases. Hidalgo County reported 174 new...

Trevino considering reopening bars in Cameron County

Cameron County Judge Eddie Trevino Jr. is meeting with health officials and others to determine whether bars and other establishments will be opening in...

Official Texas COVID-19 case count tops 800,000 amid a surge

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas health officials reported the number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 broke through the 800,000-case level...

Two Willacy residents COVID-19 positive

RAYMONDVILLE — State health officials have found two more Willacy County residents have tested positive for the coronavirus, pushing this rural area’s total case...

Books-N-Things reopens with COVID-19 precautions

HARLINGEN — Cathy Gomez, manager of Books-N-Things, explained to a customer as he walked inside the store that it was closed, but he could...

Valley reports 20 COVID-19 deaths as Hidalgo Co. opts to not reopen bars

Despite the green light from the state, Hidalgo County will not be re-opening bars just yet. The county announced Tuesday that Hidalgo County Judge Richard...

Baylor 32 active COVID-19 cases in wake of postponed game

WACO, Texas (AP) — Baylor had 32 active COVID-19 cases in its athletic department in the wake of having to postpone a football game...

159 now hospitalized with COVID-19 in Hidalgo County

Hidalgo County reported 12 additional COVID-19 related deaths and 143 new cases of the coronavirus Monday. “I want to continue to ask for your support...

Doctor: Trump tests negative on consecutive days

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's White House doctor says Trump has tested negative for COVID-19 on consecutive days using a newer rapid test from...

BEARING WITNESS: A life lost to COVID-19, Amado Garcia lived for God, family and community

BY FRANCISCO GUAJARDO Edinburg resident Amado Garcia died on Aug. 22, 2020, due to complications from COVID-19. He leaves behind the love of his life,...

Pharr kicks off produce season at bridge; 190K truck crossings in 2020

Araceli Benitez and Maria Morales sift through bell peppers coming from Coahuila, Mexico at the San Rey produce terminal in Pharr on April 2,...

2,262 new COVID-19 cases in Texas as state nears 800,000

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas on Sunday reported 2,262 new cases of the coronavirus as the state's total since the pandemic began nears 800,000. The...

2,262 new COVID-19 cases in Texas as state nears 800,000

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas on Sunday reported 2,262 new cases of the coronavirus as the state's total since the pandemic began nears 800,000. The...

Valley AIDS Council opens area’s first LGBTQ youth center

History greeted National Coming Out Day in the Rio Grande Valley as the Valley AIDS Council announced on Sunday the grand opening of Casa...

Weslaco to shut off delinquent water accounts Nov. 1

The city of Weslaco will begin to shut off service to residential and commercial customers who have not paid their water bills in several...

Time to increase access on international bridges

The Trump administration has been trying to convince state and local officials that the worst fears of the COVID-19 pandemic should be behind us...

MOSTHistory’s ‘Bearing Witness’ to chronicle Valley lives lost to COVID-19

When the Rio Grande Valley’s first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in March, no one could predict the precise impact it would have on...

McAllen police union talks contract negotiations, goals for next year

This year has been a hard bargain. The COVID-19 pandemic has seeped into all aspects of daily life as it spread throughout Hidalgo County, drastically...

BISD in-person start date extended; Full on-campus instruction begins Nov. 30

The Texas Education Agency has granted a second four-week waiver extending the start date for face-to-face instruction for all BISD students to Nov. 30,...

Health officials bracing for flu season; Warn COVID-19 mix could tax hospitals

HARLINGEN — When the pandemic broke out here, Rene Perez began charting jumps in ambulance calls as the coronavirus mixed with the flu season. Last...

Multi-inflammatory syndrome appearing in local children with COVID-19

Scientists are continuing to learn more about the effects of COVID-19 on an individual's health and a recent effect that health officials have come...

State now enrolling providers for COVID-19 vaccine

The state is now enrolling providers who want to help supply a COVID-19 vaccine in preparations for its potential availability. The Texas Department of State...

Hidalgo Co. bans trick-or-treating in amended emergency order

Hidalgo County Richard F. Cortez announced Friday the county was banning trick-or-treating this year in the face of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Cortez stated in...

Virus spread diminishing; Trick-or-treating still canceled this year

The number of new cases of COVID-19 in Cameron County has fallen to around 37 a day and hospitals aren’t nearly as full of...

Residents impacted by COVID have until Dec. 30 to claim rental, mortgage help

Tears flowed from Noemi Garcia’s face Tuesday night as she sat in her trailer home wondering where she and her four children would end...

Cameron County axes Halloween activities; contemplating some drive-thru events

Cameron County Judge Eddie Trevino Jr. today announced that Cameron County was not going to authorize any Halloween activities. This means no haunted houses or...

Virus numbers to jump; Old cases are from state ‘data dump’

Esmeraldo Guardo, administrator of Cameron County Public Health, warned at a press conference today that the county’s latest update on COVID-19 cases due out...

Cameron County reports 5 virus deaths

Five more Cameron County residents have died from COVID-19 related causes, the health department reported Thursday. The individuals included one person in his 50s, one...

Valley reports 24 COVID-19 deaths 

Hidalgo County Health and Human Services officials reported 19 additional deaths related to COVID-19 and 130 new positive cases of the virus, county Judge...

Families urged to continue COVID precautions as children return to school

With children throughout the Rio Grande Valley returning to in-person classroom instruction, local healthcare providers are urging the community to continue to utilize best...

COMMENTARY: Saluting the Lone Star’s thousands of invisible responders

By HARVEY HILDERBRAN, Special to the sTAR With the onset of the current pandemic, Texans of every ilk have joined forces in an attempt to...

8 more virus deaths in Cameron County

Cameron County health officials said eight more people have died from COVID-19 related causes in the past two days. On Tuesday, the health department reported...

San Benito schools prepare for on-site instruction

SAN BENITO — School district officials and leaders are continuing to make preparations for a return to on-site instruction. During San Benito CISD Board of...

Drive-by Blessings: EDS celebrates Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi

Even if it was a little different this year, the long tradition of blessing the animals among us to honor the Feast Day of...

Drop in hospitalizations leads to expanded capacity

HARLINGEN — A drop in Rio Grande Valley COVID-19 hospitalizations has led state officials to allow businesses such as retail stores and restaurants to...

Hidalgo County mulling reopening bars after state go-ahead; 251 new cases of COVID-19, 24 more deaths in RGV

Although Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order Wednesday opening bars and similar establishments at up to 50% capacity at the discretion of county...

Abbott says bars can reopen next week at 50% capacity if counties opt in

By Alex Samuels and Dan Rosenzweig-Ziff, Texas Tribune Gov. Greg Abbott announced Wednesday afternoon that county officials may begin working with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage...

Occupancy restrictions to be relaxed in RGV

The Rio Grande Valley is no longer considered a high-hospitalization area for COVID-19 in the state, according to a news release on Tuesday, and...

COVID-19 Challenges: New manager plans to guide convention center, hotel

HARLINGEN — Arturo Menendez is taking the city’s biggest hotel job while facing the challenges stemming from the coronavirus pandemic that’s stunted the industry. Late...

Abbott hints he may reopen Texas bars

By Dan Rosenzweig-Ziff and Juan Pablo Garnham, Texas Tribune Gov. Greg Abbott teased in a tweet Monday that he would soon allow “more openings” of...

Data shows safety orders slowed COVID-19 spread in Lower Valley

Data collected by the city of Brownsville and local hospitals paint a clear picture of how shelter in place, mask mandates, social distancing and...

Cortez: Trump downplaying virus subverts local efforts, Hidalgo County numbers still ‘unacceptable’

Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez indicated on Monday that President Donald Trump downplaying the severity of the coronavirus can undermine local efforts to...

 6 more COVID-19 deaths reported in Cameron County

Six more Cameron County residents have died from COVID-19 related causes, the county health department reported Monday afternoon. This raises the total number of COVID-19 related...

Trump tweets that he’s leaving hospital Monday

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump says he’s leaving the hospital Monday evening after a three-day stay to treat symptoms of COVID-19. The president tweeted: “I...

Trump declares ‘I get it,’ then briefly leaves hospital

By JILL COLVIN, STEVE PEOPLES and ZEKE MILLER Associated Press BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — Two days after being hospitalized with COVID-19, President Donald Trump declared,...

Students have mixed reactions to face-to-face learning

HARLINGEN — Yarely Aguilar is excited about returning to in-person school. “I like that I can talk to the teachers, ask them questions,” said Yarely,...

Harlingen schools now offering in-person instruction

HARLINGEN — It’s ready. They’ve been stuck at home for months, logging in to class amidst the distractions and isolation of their separate environs. Now Harlingen...

One-third of Raymondville students return to classrooms

RAYMONDVILLE — Nearly a third of the Raymondville school district’s students have returned to the classroom amid tight safeguards aimed at protecting them against...

Texas reports 3,346 new virus cases but 7,006 total increase

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas health officials on Saturday reported 3,346 newly reported coronavirus cases and 3,660 previous cases that had been unreported for...

Vaccine optimism: Fauci: Virus hits Hispanics harder

Dr. Joseph McCormick M.D., epidemiologist and founder of the UTHealth School of Public Health in Brownsville, predicts that more than one viable coronavirus vaccine...

Valley Republicans ‘heartbroken’ by president’s infection as Trump Jr. cancels McAllen luncheon

McALLEN — Although a McAllen luncheon slated to include Donald Trump Jr. on Friday was postponed following the positive COVID-19 tests of the president...

COVID-19 deaths climb by 92 in RGV, about 240 new cases confirmed

Throughout the Rio Grande Valley, the death toll from COVID-19 climbed by 92 on Friday and officials confirmed approximately 249 more cases of the disease. Hidalgo County reported 22 more COVID-19 related deaths and 208 new confirmed cases of the disease on Friday. Read the full story at themonitor.com

Los Fresnos begins return to on-campus learning

The Los Fresnos school district on Monday will begin the transition to face-to-face instruction for students whose parents choose on-campus learning and delayed start...

Trump being hospitalized after contracting COVID-19

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House says President Donald Trump will spend a “few days” at a military hospital on the advice of his physicians...

Concert Association cancels 2020-2021 season

HARLINGEN — As part of this nonprofit’s mission, performers from around the world are brought to the area every year to showcase their talent...

Donald Trump Jr. luncheon in McAllen postponed after president tests positive for COVID-19

A luncheon featuring Donald Trump Jr. slated to be held in McAllen on Friday has been postponed following the positive COVID-19 tests of President...

President Trump and first lady test positive for COVID-19

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump have tested positive for the coronavirus, the president tweeted early Friday. Trump’s positive test comes...

Starr County hospital reports no patients in COVID-19 unit

In what may be the strongest indicator that Starr County is experiencing a reprieve from the negative effects of COVID-19, the county's hospital currently...

UN: Pandemic has cost 34 million jobs in Latin America

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The U.N.'s International Labour Organization said Wednesday that at least 34 million jobs have been lost in Latin America due...

National/World News

Texas sees deadliest COVID-19 day so far with 58 deaths

DALLAS (AP) — Texas saw its deadliest COVID-19 day of the coronavirus pandemic so far, with state officials reporting 58 deaths during a time...

More virus testing in Texas prisons, Houston furloughs 3,000

By JUAN A. LOZANO and PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press HOUSTON (AP) — Texas will begin widespread coronavirus testing in state prisons where at least...

Analysis: Reopening just a little bit isn’t really a big boon for the economy

By Ross Ramsey, Texas Tribune Really opening Texas would require the governor and like-minded officials to actually put businesses in a situation where they could...

Houston officials use poop to track the spread of COVID-19

By JASPER SCHERER Houston Chronicle HOUSTON (AP) — City health officials and Rice University scientists have begun testing Houston wastewater samples for COVID-19, a process...

More than 1,000 new virus cases, 39 more deaths in Texas

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — At least 1,000 more people in Texas have tested positive for COVID-19 as the number of cases continues to climb...

Lawsuit: Texas rules for mail-in voting won’t work during pandemic

By Alexa Ura, Texas Tribune A coalition of voters and civil rights groups opened a new front Monday in the legal wars over mail-in voting...

Mental health hotline is helping Texans navigate the pandemic

By Elvia Limón, Texas Tribune Within the first month of its launch, the state’s new mental health support line received nearly 2,000 calls from Texans...

Texas coronavirus death toll reaches 1,000 as Panhandle hot spots surge

By Nicole Cobler Austin American-Statesman AUSTIN, Texas — The coronavirus death toll in Texas surpassed 1,000 for the first time Friday, a grim milestone, as...

VP Pence’s press secretary tests positive for coronavirus

By DARLENE SUPERVILLE and AAMER MADHANI Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Mike Pence's press secretary has the coronavirus, the White House said Friday,...

Trump praises Abbott as states roll back limits

By DARLENE SUPERVILLE, JILL COLVIN and PAUL WEBER Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump praised another Republican governor for rolling back state coronavirus...

Big 12 schools intend to open in fall, giving football hope

By CLIFF BRUNT and STEPHEN HAWKINS AP Sports Writers All 10 schools in the Big 12 Conference expect their campuses to be open in the...

Texas hair salons to reopen Friday, gyms to open May 18

By Patrick Svitek, Texas Tribune Gov. Greg Abbott will allow hair salons in Texas to reopen Friday — and gyms will be allowed to open...

Scientist: Trump officials ignored warnings on drug, virus

By RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, MICHAEL BALSAMO and COLLEEN LONG Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — A government scientist was ousted after the Trump administration ignored his dire...

Texas tops 2 million unemployment claims during outbreak

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas has passed the 2 million mark in unemployment claims filed since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, officials said...

NASA begs spectators for astronaut launch: Please stay home!

By MARCIA DUNN AP Aerospace Writer CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — NASA and SpaceX on Friday urged spectators to stay home for the first home...

As daily virus deaths spike, Texas reopens door for business

By PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas charged toward reopening Friday despite the grim milestone of the state's deadliest single day...

Consolidated flights leave planes full and passengers uneasy

By DAVID KOENIG AP Airlines Writer DALLAS (AP) — Many flights are nearly empty these days, but the high number of cancellations by airlines trying...

Texas A&M, Texas Tech to reopen campuses, resume football in the fall

By Carrington Tatum, Texas Tribune Students, and football, are expected to return to College Station and Lubbock this fall. Texas A&M intends to reopen its 11...

COVID-19 diagnoses, fatalities continue to climb in Texas

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The number of reported illnesses diagnosed as caused by the new coronavirus continued to climb Wednesday, as did the death...

Lawsuit: US citizens with immigrant spouses should get help

By ASTRID GALVAN The Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) — The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund has sued the federal government over its denial...

AP Exclusive: Texas AG helped donor fight virus lockout

By PAUL J. WEBER and JAKE BLEIBERG Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — When a small county in the Colorado mountains banished everyone but locals...

Texas Supreme Court extends moratorium on evictions until May 18

By Juan Pablo Garnham, Texas Tribune The Texas Supreme Court extended the moratorium on eviction procedures until May 18, offering a few more weeks of...

COVID-19 risk against a paycheck

By Clare Proctor, Texas Tribune Gov. Greg Abbott’s Monday announcement that retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters and malls will be allowed to reopen Friday means...

Southwest posts 1st quarterly loss in almost a decade

By DAVID KOENIG AP Airlines Writer DALLAS (AP) — Southwest Airlines posted its first quarterly loss in nearly a decade and said Tuesday that the...

Census says restart to field operations will be in phases

By MIKE SCHNEIDER Associated Press ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The U.S. Census Bureau's return to field operations for the 2020 national head count will take...

Texas to allow some into restaurants and retail on May 1

By JIM VERTUNO and PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott outlined Monday a slow reopening of one of...

COVID-19 deaths in Texas increase by 25, now stands at 648

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The number of deaths in Texas due to COVID-19, which is caused by the coronavirus, has risen by 25, the...

POLL: Most Texans think virus will be contained in the next few months

By Ross Ramsey, Texas Tribune Texas voters are concerned about the coronavirus and believe it presents a serious crisis, and they are deeply worried about...

What you need to know today about the virus outbreak

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump has signed a $484 billion bill that aids employers and hospitals under stress from the coronavirus pandemic. The...

Texas accuses US’ largest egg producer of price gouging

HOUSTON (AP) — Texas' attorney general has accused the nation's largest egg producer of price gouging during the coronavirus pandemic. A lawsuit filed Thursday by...

Galveston will reopen public beaches for workouts

The Galveston City Council voted Thursday to reopen its beaches for specific uses, the Houston Chronicle reports. Exercise, surfing, swimming and fishing will be...

Virus pushes US unemployment to highest since Depression

By DAVID CRARY, KATHY GANNON, and ANGELA CHARLTON Associated Press NEW YORK (AP) — Unemployment in the U.S. has swelled to levels last seen during...

Governor defends testing levels as Texas begins reopening

By PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Republican Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday renewed his defense of coronavirus monitoring in Texas, which...

Governor defends testing levels as Texas begins reopening

By PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Republican Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday renewed his defense of coronavirus monitoring in Texas, which...

Doctors: Execution drugs could help COVID-19 patients

By JUAN A. LOZANO Associated Press HOUSTON (AP) — Secrecy surrounding executions could hinder efforts by a group of medical professionals who are asking the...

Oil price goes negative as demand collapses; stocks dip

NEW YORK — Oil prices plunged below zero on Monday as demand for energy collapses amid the coronavirus pandemic and traders don’t want to...

College seniors face job worries, family stress amid virus

Sent home from college because of the coronavirus outbreak, Carter Oselett is back in his childhood bedroom, paying rent on an empty apartment near...

Texas governor begins easing restrictions to reopen economy

By PAUL J. WEBER and JIM VERTUNO Associated Press AUSTIN (AP) — Republican Gov. Greg Abbott on Friday began a slow reopening of Texas with...

Abbott issues order closing classrooms for the rest of the school year

Governor Greg Abbott announced today that he is ordering school classrooms to be closed for the remaining of the 2019-2020 school year. It applies to...

`LIBERATE!’: Trump goads states to lift virus restrictions

WASHINGTON (AP) — One day after laying out a roadmap for gradually reviving economic activity, President Donald Trump urged his supporters to “LIBERATE” three...

Texas universities are getting millions in federal money to offset coronavirus losses

By Raga Justin, Texas Tribune Texas universities and colleges are steeling themselves against the financial impact from a list of losses related to the new...

Facebook to warn users who ‘liked’ coronavirus hoaxes

NEW YORK (AP) — Have you liked or commented on a Facebook post about the COVID-19 pandemic? Facebook is about to begin letting you know...

Record 22 million have sought US jobless aid since virus

WASHINGTON — The wave of layoffs that has engulfed the U.S. economy since the coronavirus struck forced 5.2 million more people to seek unemployment benefits last...

Texas coronavirus deaths pass 300

DALLAS (AP) — The coronavirus death toll passed 300 in Texas Tuesday, as the state's juvenile prisons announced they will temporarily stop accepting young...

Texas governor says economy won’t reopen all at once

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas businesses won't all reopen at the same time, Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday, even as President Donald Trump itches...

Court lifts part of order blocking Texas abortion ban

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A federal appeals court on Friday partially rescinded a lower-court order that had largely blocked the enforcement of an abortion...

Texas COVID-19 cases top 10,000, deaths go past 200

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The volume of patients in Texas with the illness caused by the novel coronavirus topped 10,000 cases Thursday, with the...

Astros’ Alex Bregman launches $1M campaign to feed Houstonians

Houston Astros third baseman Alex Bregman has launched FEEDHOU, a $1M fundraising campaign to help feed Houston-area residents impacted by COVID-19. Proceeds from the...

First state prison inmate dies of COVID-19, lockdown expands

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A 72-year-old is first Texas state inmate reported to be a possible COVID-19 fatality during the new coronavirus pandemic. Meanwhile, a lawsuit...

Hopeful birdsong, foreboding sirens: A pandemic in sound

NEW YORK — Hopeful birdsong and foreboding sirens. Chiming church bells and bleating ferry horns. The coronavirus crisis has drastically transformed the world in sound....

More than 60 infected at Texas nursing home

By PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Coronavirus outbreaks at two Texas nursing homes have infected more than 140 residents, and Gov....

Laredo orders residents to cover mouth, nose amid virus

LAREDO, Texas (AP) — Residents in one Texas city are being required to wear something that covers their nose and mouth when they're out...

28 students positive for coronavirus after spring break trip

AUSTIN (AP) — More than two dozen University of Texas students have tested positive for the coronavirus after taking a spring break trip to...

Texas closes school through May, extends social restrictions

By PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Republican Gov. Greg Abbott said Tuesday that Texas' schools will stay closed through at least...

Texas tightens rules on neighboring Louisiana over virus

By PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas is ratcheting up restrictions on neighboring Louisiana, one of the growing hot spots for...

Abbott blocks release of inmates who can’t pay bail

By Jolie McCullough and Emma Platoff, Texas Tribune As the new coronavirus continues to spread in Texas’ two biggest county jails, Gov. Greg Abbott has...

3.3 million seek US jobless aid, nearly 5 times earlier high

WASHINGTON — Nearly 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week — nearly five times the previous record set in 1982 — amid...

More big Texas cities order residents to stay home

By JIM VERTUNO Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Several more major Texas cities issued orders telling their residents to stay in their homes on...

Trump says he hopes US will be reopened by Easter amid virus

WASHINGTON (AP) — With lives and the economy hanging in the balance, President Donald Trump said Tuesday he is hoping the country will be...

Hunt for medical gear to fight virus becomes all-consuming

PARIS — The hunt for masks, ventilators and other medical supplies consumed the U.S. and Europe on Monday, as new coronavirus infections soared and...

Gov. Abbott resists calls for statewide shelter-in-place; moves to expand hospital capacity

Gov. Greg Abbott took multiple measures Sunday designed to expand hospital staffing and capacity in Texas, but declined to issue a statewide shelter-in-place order...

Trump moves on invoking powers to spur virus supplies

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has invoked the Defense Production Act to get needed medical supplies on the front lines of the coronavirus outbreak,...

Houston pleads for more tests, gear as cars pack hospital

By JOHN L. MONE and PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press HOUSTON (AP) — Cars lined up for more than a mile outside a Houston hospital...

Cornyn draws rebuke for blaming coronavirus on China

By Alex Samuels, Texas Tribune U.S. Sen. John Cornyn drew criticism Wednesday for comments he made about the new coronavirus. On a conference call with reporters,...

Texas governor orders schools closed and bans dine-in eating

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott ordered schools closed statewide Thursday until at least until April 3 and a ban on dine-in...

US Census Bureau suspends field operations on virus concerns

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A week after starting its 2020 count, the U.S. Census Bureau on Wednesday suspended field operations for two weeks out...

Trump invokes act to marshal private sector against virus

WASHINGTON — Managing dual health and economic crises, President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that he will invoke emergency powers that allow the government to...

Trump mulls sending all who cross border illegally to Mexico

By ELLIOT SPAGAT and COLLEEN LONG Associated Press SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Trump administration is considering a plan to turn back all people who...

CDC recommends canceling gatherings of 50 or more

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending that gatherings of 50 people or more in US be canceled or postponed over the next eight weeks because of the coronavirus pandemic. The dramatic recommendation Sunday night came Americans struggled to come to terms with how to change their daily habits. Read the full story at themonitor.com

Gov. Abbott waives STAAR testing requirement

AUSTIN — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Monday shelved the state’s requirement for high-stakes standardized testing, with hundreds of school districts having already canceled...

US officials: Foreign disinformation stoking virus fears

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration is alleging that a foreign disinformation campaign is underway aimed at spreading fear in the country amid the coronavirus pandemic,...

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he will close his country’s border to non-citizens amid pandemic

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he will close the border to anyone not a citizen or a permanent resident amid the coronavirus pandemic. Trudeau...

US tells older people to stay home, all ages to avoid crowds

WASHINGTON — The White House on Monday urged all older Americans to stay home and everyone to avoid crowds and eating out at restaurants...

Universal moves new releases to on-demand, AMC limits crowds

NEW YORK — The coronavirus pandemic has cracked Hollywood’s traditional theatrical window. With theaters increasingly shuttering nationwide, Universal Pictures on Monday said it will...

Austin joins big Texas cities in limiting bars, restaurants

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Austin joined other major Texas cities Tuesday in closing bars and restaurant dining rooms to curb the spread of the...

Texas reports 1st coronavirus death as bars, clubs close

By JIM VERTUNO and PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A man who tested positive for COVID-19 has died, becoming Texas' first...

Important Lists

Current Reopening Guidelines

As the state, counties and cities begin to attempt to reopen, we’ll post their provided guidelines here. If a document for your city is not...

How to apply for an SBA small business loan

Application process - Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center...

List of canceled City of Harlingen events

The City of Harlingen has canceled the following events: Harlingen Public Library Poetry Night March 17-canceled Kniffty Knitters March 18 & 25 canceled Lego Day March 18- canceled DIY...

Area schools announce closures through April

School districts throughout the Rio Grande Valley are extending their spring break closures to April as calls to avoid gatherings of 50 or more people intensify. Each district will continue to remain in communication with parents, students and staff to plan how they will continue past April. Read the full story at themonitor.com

List of local businesses that have changed hours, closures

The following businesses are changing their hours, closing or making other adjustments because of the coronavirus. This list will be updated as needed. Chick-fil-A Temporary Closure...