Week of July 13-19, 2020

Governor: Hospitals must expand capacity as COVID-19 cases escalate
AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott has again suspended elective surgeries in hospitals in 104 counties located within 11 of the state’s 22 trauma service areas.
Each of the trauma service areas has a regional advisory council and a trauma system plan to respond to health crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

Week of July 6-12, 2020

Governor’s order mandates wearing of face masks in public
AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on July 2 issued an executive order to slow the spread of the deadly coronavirus while keeping Texas as open as possible for business.
With few exceptions, the order requires all Texans to wear a face covering over the nose and mouth in public spaces in counties with 20 or more positive COVID-19 cases. 

Week of June 22-28, 2020

Governor, education commissioner say schools will open in fall
AUSTIN — While COVID-19 testing, contact tracing, case counts, hospitalizations and deaths increased last week, more and more Texans ventured out of their homes with the deadly coronavirus showing no sign of abatement.

First Amendment Protections for Journalists Covering Protests

The killing of George Floyd and the ensuing civil unrest have placed journalists at the center of large-scale protests and demonstrations across the United States, including in major metropolitan centers throughout Texas.  In the course of covering these protests, many journalists have found themselves in harm’s way, and members of the press corps have been assaulted, detained, or arrested in the line of duty.

BMEU full-service mailers have transitioned to participate in Seamless Parallel

On May 8, the U.S. Postal Service published a final notice in the Federal Register notifying the mailing community that required mailers that enter full-service mailings at a Business Mail Entry Unit (BMEU) to participate in Seamless Parallel by June 1. In addition, the Postal Service provides advance notice of its intent: To require all mailers with an authorized Detached Mail Unit to enroll in the Seamless Acceptance Program by May 1, 2021; and to verify all BMEU-entered full-service mailings using only automated sampling and verification processes beginning July 1, 2021.

Adapting to the new normal a challenge, but one we have faced before

Everyone is talking about “the new normal” Texas and our nation face in the wake of COVID-19. 
We’re watching friends and fellow business owners grapple with issues such as whether or not they should follow CDC guidelines and wear masks to serve their customers or if that will offend their customers, whether they should reopen their businesses and more. 
These issues are of great urgency and are keeping many business owners up at night. Meanwhile, as newspaper owners, publishers, editors and journalists, we face our own set of challenges in adapting to the new normal. 

Week of June 8-14, 2020

Storm preparations begin while state continues to battle COVID-19
AUSTIN — As Tropical Storm Cristobal moved north in the Gulf of Mexico from the Yucatan Peninsula toward Louisiana, the weather system’s potential impact on East Texas grew and Gov. Greg Abbott on June 5 addressed the situation in a news conference.