Latest on the Coronavirus

Connectivity Concern: Housing Authority students getting Internet access

HARLINGEN — There’s a lot more she’d like to do with that $97. Jasmine Rojo, a resident at LeMoyne Gardens Affordable Housing Community, pays that...

Texas universities cutting jobs, bracing for financial hit

By Raga Justin, Texas Tribune On the first day of her vacation in late June, Melanie Bentley lost her job as an administrative assistant, one...

Jehovah’s Witnesses opt for 2020 virtual convention

HARLINGEN — Last year, hundreds of Jehovah’s Witnesses gathered in La Feria to attend their annual convention. This year, followers will do so from...

Cameron Co. reports nine deaths

Cameron County reported nine deaths related to COVID-19, in addition to 300 new positive COVID-19 cases Saturday, county officials reported in a news release,...

Donna doctors, city partner to provide 5,000 free COVID-19 tests

Four clinics have partnered with the city of Donna to provide 5,000 COVID-19 tests for free to Donna residents as part of an ongoing...

Spas, hair salons continue services amid pandemic

HARLINGEN – After almost two months of being closed, two local salons continue to provide services. Beautifi Spa and Salon and Desiree’s Spa and Massage...

Educators getting kids ready for remote learning

HARLINGEN - The Harlingen school district will hold orientation later this month to prepare parents and students for online learning. When classes begin Sept. 8,...

SPI extends beach operations orders

SOUTH PADRE ISLAND — Those headed to the beach are going to need to continue following these rules for the rest of the summer. During...

Still, region reports 42 more COVID-19 deaths

Hidalgo County health officials announced 25 more COVID-19-related deaths Friday, and Cameron County reported another 17. Another 431 Hidalgo County residents also tested positive for...

Still, Cameron County ‘not out of woods,’ officials warn

BROWNSVILLE — During a Cameron County press conference on Friday, Cameron County Health Authority Dr. James Castillo provided insight in the region’s fight against...

CBP: 10 have died from COVID

As COVID-19 continues to ravage the country, the acting commissioner for U.S. Customs and Border Protection said 10 CBP officers had died since March...

‘Cautious optimism’ in virus fight; Still, county ‘not out of woods,’ officials warn

During a Cameron County press conference on Friday in Brownsville, Cameron County Health Authority Dr. James Castillo provided insight in the region’s fight against...

Starr Co. reports 73 new virus cases

Starr County health officials announced 73 new COVID-19 cases Friday, bringing the total number of cases reported there to 2,478.  No new virus-related deaths were...

Texas to allow limited visitation in nursing homes with no active virus cases

By Sarah R. Champagne and Emma Platoff, Texas Tribune For the first time in nearly five months, visitors will be allowed in Texas nursing homes...

Governor urges flu shots as Texas reports 300 new deaths

By PAUL J. WEBER Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas health officials warned Thursday that the approaching flu season threatens to further strain hospitals...

EDITORIAL: The good side: Amid pandemic’s bad effects exist environmental benefits

The COVID-19 pandemic is hardly a godsend; it has wreaked havoc in the lives of millions — perhaps billions — of people worldwide. Hundreds...

Daughter: Parents who died due to COVID-19 robbed of chance to say goodbye

“They had more years in them, they had more years and they robbed us. Those people who don’t social distance, they robbed us of...

New anti-COVID-19 program training workers to sanitize

HARLINGEN — You may not have heard of the local education nonprofit, or know the Texas A&M engineers or the Hollywood actor involved, but...

Valley reports 39 more COVID-19 deaths 

The Rio Grande Valley reported another 39 COVID-19 deaths Thursday.  Twenty-two more people died in Hidalgo County, increasing the death toll there to 765, according...

UT-Austin to offer virus testing free to student; plan to test 5K people weekly

By Reese Oxner, Texas Tribune Need to stay updated on coronavirus news in Texas? Our evening roundup will help you stay on top of the...

Official: 19 dead due to virus at Texas nursing home

MISSOURI CITY, Texas (AP) — Nineteen people at a Texas nursing home have died due to the coronavirus and 24 employees have been infected,...

UTRGV fall financial relief deadline approaching

Some students at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley will be eligible to receive grant money to help them with expenses this fall,...

Officials clear ‘snag’ to patient transfers; Casa de Amistad ‘temporary COVID-19 field hospital’

HARLINGEN — Officials are clearing up a “snag” holding back hospitals from transferring recovered COVID-19 patients to the state’s second-largest recovery center set up...

Hidalgo Co. judge extends shelter order as Valley counts 1,086 new COVID cases

As an effort to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the region, Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez extended the shelter-at-home order he issued...

Hidalgo Co. receives $225K grant for first responders

The Moody Foundation awarded Hidalgo County $250,000 to provide personal protective equipment for first responders and front-line workers, county officials announced Monday. The grant was...

Wendy’s new breakfast menu increases sales 

Wendy’s customers are liking the company's new breakfast offerings. Unlike other fastfood restaurants that have suffered trying to sell breakfast, Wendy's same-store sales have fully...

Private schools in Texas limit enrollment to reopen classrooms

By Stacy Fernández, Texas Tribune While debate about how to safely reopen public schools in Texas raged through the summer, Kim Olstrup was preparing to...

Rio Grande Valley virus death toll tops 1,000

The Rio Grande Valley has surpassed a grim milestone after exceeding 1,000 deaths due to COVID-19 on Tuesday evening. The Valley’s virus death toll is now at 1,073. This comes after Hidalgo County suffered 45 additional COVID-19 related deaths Tuesday, raising the toll there to 727. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

State reports almost 9,200 new coronavirus cases, 245 deaths

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas health officials reported almost 9,200 confirmed new coronavius cases Tuesday as a convention center in the hard-hit Rio Grande...

Murder suspect who cited COVID-19 gets lower bond

An Edinburg teen who argued his bond was excessive and also that it should be lowered because of the presence of the novel coronavirus...

Local contact tracing efforts broad in scope

EDINBURG — You may not have heard of contact tracing before COVID-19, but the long-practiced method of finding individuals who have highly infectious diseases...

Church members distribute produce to residents

HARLINGEN – In less than an hour, 240 boxes of food and 48 gallons of milk were handed out. St. Paul's Lutheran Church, located at...

Cameron County hospitals sending patients to Casa de Amistad

HARLINGEN — Hospitals Tuesday afternoon were preparing to begin transferring recovered COVID-19 patients to Casa de Amistad, which Texas officials have transformed into one...

Free COVID-19 testing for uninsured resumes at Starr County site

Starr County is resuming free COVID-19 tests for individuals without insurance at its drive-thru testing site. Starr County Judge Eloy Vera announced Friday that free...

Willacy virus case count surpasses 600

RAYMONDVILLE — Five months after health officials identified Willacy County’s first case of the coronavirus, the rural county’s total case count has climbed over...

City reports first employee death associated with the coronavirus

The City of Brownsville reported its first employee death, a 68-year-old man, associated with COVID-19 on Monday. To protect the family's privacy, the city will...

Texas medical board warns physicians who claim COVID-19 cure

HOUSTON (AP) — The Texas board that licenses doctors has warned physicians that it could take action against anyone who falsely advertises a cure...

City reports first employee death associated with the coronavirus

The City of Brownsville reported its first employee death, a 68-year-old man, associated with COVID-19 on Monday. To protect the family's privacy, the city will...

37 more deaths attributed to COVID-19 in Valley

Thirty-seven more dead, and 1,760 additional cases of COVID-19. This is the Rio Grande Valley’s activity as it relates to the novel coronavirus, and...

Lawmakers reconsider approach to virus after Texas Rep.’s diagnosis

By Paul Cobler The Dallas Morning News WASHINGTON - Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill are rethinking the way they operate following Texas...

Pandemic Care: Medical facilities stepping up to help hospitals

HARLINGEN — The skyrocketing rate of COVID-19 cases has flooded local hospitals to capacity, putting intense stress on rooms and medical professionals. The extreme need...

8 Willacy residents test positive

RAYMONDVILLE — State health officials have found two girls among eight Willacy County residents who have tested positive for the coronavirus, driving this rural...

Lopez, Segovia units account for about 20.6% of active COVID-19 cases in TDCJ

Hidalgo County’s Texas Department of Criminal Justice prisons lead the state in the total number of active COVID-19 cases, state jail records show. The Lopez...

Young adults in South Texas still make up majority of COVID-19 cases

Of the COVID-19 cases throughout most of Public Health Region 11, the majority of them continue to be among the younger population. Collected data shows...

Houston to enforce masks with fines; Texas deaths top 7,000

HOUSTON (AP) — Houston's mayor on Monday instructed police to begin issuing $250 fines for flouting statewide mask orders in hopes that August will...

Willacy officials: game rooms complying with COVID-19 orders

SEBASTIAN — For years, residents have worried the area’s eight-liner game rooms were breaking the law, bringing organized crime into this farming community some...

UTRGV to provide $1,000 cash grants to eligible students  

By Melissa Vasquez, UTRGV Staff To provide UTRGV students with even more financial support this coming semester, the university has revamped its Fall Relief Package to give all...

In per-capita COVID deaths, Texas ranks No. 28

HARLINGEN — As the grim reaping of COVID-19 continues across the globe, the death toll from the coronavirus here in the United States shows...

Island refuge weathers twin storms of COVID-19, Hanna

SOUTH PADRE ISLAND — If one takes a cue from the egrets, pelicans and alligators, little appears amiss on the breezy shores of the...

Artist paints, donates part to Feeding America

Bartosz Beda, an artist who has exhibited at the Brownsville Museum of Fine Art, created a project where he creates one painting every day...

Plasma still in high demand for Valley coronavirus patients

Plasma collected from recovered COVID-19 patients is in great need in the Rio Grande Valley, where cases continue to rise. The treatment, using the liquid...

McAllen clinic one of 89 in US to begin COVID-19 vaccine trial

McALLEN — Inside an office just behind Valley Medical Art Clinic, a construction crew worked to add final touches to a workspace where clinicians,...

Valley still breaking records in virus case activity

Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez reported 12 deaths related to COVID-19 and 347 additional cases in a news release Sunday, as the county’s...

New Guidelines San Benito police implement COVID-19 measures

SAN BENITO — In-person contact protocols have changed since COVID-19, especially for law enforcement. According to a press release by the San Benito Police Department,...

HHS sends supplies for McAllen convention center hospital

McALLEN — The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services sent a cache of medical supplies to the McAllen Convention Center earlier this week...

At 1,106, Cameron Co. COVID-19 cases skyrocket to new single-day record

Cameron County Judge Eddie Trevino Jr. reported 10 COVID-19 related deaths and 1,106 new positive cases in a news release Saturday. The jump in cases...

Schools prepare to start year remotely; Parents have options for their children

Teachers, parents, students and school officials got a better idea late last week of how Texas will approach opening schools safely as coronavirus infections...

Uncertainty remains for East Valley 6A football programs

LYFORD — The University Interscholastic League granted Class 6A and 5A athletic programs something very valuable when it pushed back the fall calendar one...

East Valley 4A football coaches deal with UIL decisions

LYFORD — The University Interscholastic League decided not to delay the football calendar for Classes 1A through 4A on July 21, and 4A coaches...

Handmade helpers: Brownsville residents receive free hand cleanser

More than 20,000 hand cleanser bottles by Tito’s Handmade Vodka were given away for free Saturday morning at the Brownsville Sports Park as hundreds...

RGV COVID-19 cases soar to 30,500

The Rio Grande Valley has now surpassed 30,000 COVID-19 cases, according to data released by officials from the four counties Friday. A total of 30,500...

Rio Grande Valley becomes Texas site for COVID-19 recovery centers

HARLINGEN — The Rio Grande Valley is Texas’ only region in which state officials are setting up COVID-19 recovery centers in such facilities as...

Amid COVID-19, boutique offers unique items

HARLINGEN — Featured in a leopard pattern, military green or even a floral design, a new portable door opener is making it easier to...

Doctor: COVID causing strokes in younger population

HARLINGEN – The stroke incidents keep increasing, but the hospital visits keep falling. Since the COVID pandemic struck several months ago, hospitals have seen fewer...

Catching up: County working through virus numbers backlog

On its face, the numbers are alarming: 2,328 new confirmed COVID-19 cases and 29 additional deaths in Cameron County between July 27 and July...

Teachers group raps state guidelines on opening schools

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The state’s top teachers group criticized state guidelines for starting the school year Friday, saying they would unfairly punish districts...

5 more BPUB employees test positive for COVID-19

BPUB says five additional employees tested positive for COVID-19. Their test results all came back positive this week and that all of the employees...

Abbott: Local health officials can shut schools only in limited circumstances

By Aliyya Swaby, Texas Tribune In a statement Friday, Gov. Greg Abbott said local health authorities can shut down schools if there’s evidence of an...

Santa Maria, Santa Rosa football teams adjust schedules

LYFORD — The Santa Maria and Santa Rosa football teams will be playing significantly reduced schedules this season due to decisions made by the...

Prayer vigil held for hospital patients and front line workers

Medical staff at Valley Regional Medical Center gathered outside the hospital’s entrances on a recent evening for a mobile church service and prayer vigil...

State to move mobile COVID-19 testing center to San Benito

SAN BENITO — State health officials are ready to give residents here a chance to test for the coronavirus. Next week, a state mobile testing...

Exxon lost $1B in second quarter as oil use dries up

By CATHY BUSSEWITZ AP Business Writer NEW YORK (AP) — Exxon lost $1.1 billion in the second quarter, its economic pain deepening as the pandemic...

Bass Pro permanently closes café, bowling alley

HARLINGEN — Grabbing a bite to eat and a beer are all in the past at Bass Pro Shops Harlingen following the permanent closing...

State adjusts surging total COVID-19 deaths slightly lower

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — State health officials have lowered their surging total COVID-19 death count slightly, saying an automation error in a switch in...

Salvation Army rushes to serve 5,000 meals as outages add to food insecurity

McALLEN — Lt. Adolph Aguirre, commanding officer for the Salvation Army in McAllen and Hidalgo County, never seemed to catch his breath Thursday as...

Sergio Muñoz Sr., former state rep ill with COVID-19, dies at 68

Former state Rep. Sergio Muñoz Sr. has died after recently becoming ill with COVID-19, the Hidalgo County Democratic Party announced via social media Thursday...

Hidalgo Co. reports 40 COVID-19 deaths

Hidalgo County confirmed 40 additional deaths linked to COVID-19 on Thursday, raising the death toll here to 616.  “Each day we continue to lose more...

6 Willacy residents test positive

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

DHS’ public charge rule blocked nationwide amid pandemic

U.S. District Judge George Daniels blocked the Trump administration’s attempt to implement a “public charge” rule that opponents say would impact Latino and immigrant...

Free hand sanitizer giveaway set for Saturday

Tito’s Handmade Vodka will be providing free hand sanitizers to the public Saturday at the Brownsville Sports Park. The company said 20,000 bottles of 375...

Donna schools to install a dozen Wi-Fi towers across city

The Donna school district will launch a multi-million dollar effort to install a dozen Wi-Fi towers across the city in hopes of providing internet...

VA to accept COVID-19 patients from Starr County hospital

Starr County has received a life-line through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs which has agreed to accept COVID-19 patients who require advanced levels...

Virus patients are sicker; Chronic conditions exacting a heavy price in RGV

Reporting on a Tuesday teleconference with the Brownsville City Commission and Brownsville hospital CEO’s Leslie Bingham and Art Garza, City Commissioner Dr. Rose M.Z....

UT students asked to self-quarantine before classes begin

Students planning to attend the University of Texas at Austin this fall are asked to self-quarantine for 14 days prior to their arrival at...

53 new COVID-19 deaths recorded in Valley

Hidalgo County confirmed 45 additional deaths due to COVID-19, along with 287 new cases of the disease on Wednesday in a county news release. This...

State turning facilities in COVID-19 recovery centers

HARLINGEN — State officials are converting Casa de Amistad and the McAllen Convention Center into COVID-19 recovery centers as part of a plan to...

Texas AG says schools trump health officials on class start

By JIM VERTUNO, The Associated Press AUSTIN — Local health officials in Texas do not have the authority to close schools to prevent spread of the...

TSC to hold first virtual graduation

Texas Southmost College will hold its first virtual commencement ceremony celebrating graduates of the 2020 Spring Semester at 6:30 p.m. on Friday. Originally scheduled for...

Baylor students must test negative for virus before returning to campus

By Raga Justin, Texas Tribune Need to stay updated on coronavirus news in Texas? Our evening roundup will help you stay on top of the...

Lack of oxygen concentrators delays discharge of virus patients

EDINBURG — Hospitals are having difficulty discharging COVID-19 patients due to a shortage in oxygen concentrators, preventing hospitals from freeing up beds for incoming...

Texas GOP lawmaker tests positive for virus, cancels Trump trip

By ALAN FRAM Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, tested positive Wednesday for the coronavirus, forcing him to abruptly cancel his plan...

Texas AG says schools trump health officials on class start

By JIM VERTUNO Associated Press AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Local health officials in Texas do not have the authority to close schools to prevent spread...

Coronavirus cases in Texas nursing homes more than doubled in July

By Sarah R. Champagne, Texas Tribune COVID-19 infections have exploded in Texas nursing homes this month, with 8,291 confirmed cases through Monday — four times...

COVID-19 testing continues in Valley

County testing for COVID-19 operated by the Texas Military Department continued on Monday morning at the Los Indios Community Building, serving residents of western...

3 new Willacy COVID-19 cases reported

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

McAllen Convention Center to serve as COVID-19 care facility, governor says

Gov. Greg Abbott pledged more state support for recovery efforts in the Rio Grande Valley related to Hurricane Hanna and in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic after touring the area and meeting with local leaders in the Mid-Valley on Tuesday. Abbott said he viewed hurricane damage in the Valley in the air and on the ground, commenting on agricultural damage, property damage and ongoing power outages. He said he issued a waiver on certain regulations related to commercial trucking in the state meant to address those power outages Tuesday afternoon. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

AEP crews work to restore power; Valley outages keep 30,000 in dark

HARLINGEN — Linemen Tuesday continued to work to restore power to thousands of homes across the Rio Grande Valley after Hurricane Hanna’s winds tore...

Record 64 virus deaths in Hidalgo County

Hidalgo County broke another grim record Tuesday. The county reported a single-day record of 64 deaths due to complications related to COVID-19, bringing the total...

BISD readies for new school year; Classes will start with distance learning

Parents, students, teachers and staff in the Brownsville Independent School District know this much about the 2020-2021 school year: It will begin on Aug....

Farmers to Families: Thousands line up for free boxed chicken

Residents started lining up about 5:30 a.m. Tuesday to receive boxes of fully-cooked, frozen chicken. In all the BISD food services department distributed more...

McDonald’s: No face masks, no burger & fries

NEW YORK (AP) - If you're walking into a McDonald’s to pick up your Big Mac, make sure you're wearing your face masks. Beginning Saturday, Aug....

Task force supports local hospital through storm, COVID-19

McALLEN — For the past week, a medical task force of dozens of personnel from across the nation have been added to McAllen Medical Center’s...

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...