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Coronavirus updates in Central Texas: Williamson, Bastrop counties announce new COVID-19 deaths, Austin stay-at-home orders extended

Here are the latest COVID-19 updates, closures and postponements in Central Texas for Friday, May 29.

AUSTIN, Texas — Editor's note: This blog is no longer active. For the latest updates, check out our new live blog here.

KVUE is keeping you updated with the latest coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, news in the Austin area.

Scroll down for the top headlines and latest updates in KVUE's May 29 live blog.

COVID-19 numbers:

  • Texas: More than 59,700 cases have been reported in the state, and more than 1,600 people in Texas have died, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services. The department estimates more than 38,900 people have recovered from the virus.
  • Central Texas counties: 
    • Travis County: More than 3,100 cases have been reported and at least 93 people have died. At least 1,134 people have recovered from the virus.
    • Williamson County: More than 580 cases have been reported and at least 23 people have died. More than 340 people have recovered from the virus.
    • Hays County: There have been at least 329 cases reported in the county and at least four people have died. Around 181 people have recovered from the virus.

As of May 29, new daily deaths across Texas are trending downward with 25 today (1,626 total), and daily cases are still trending upward, bouncing back after the Memorial Day weekend lull. There were just over 1,200 new cases, bringing the total over 61,000. The positivity rate average bounced up slightly to 4.9%, and hospitalizations topped 1,700 statewide. 

Top headlines:


3:52 p.m. - The Austin Independent School District is urging eligible families to apply for the district's Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program. The program offers eligible families up to $285 per child to be used to purchase food.

Families must meet at least one of the following criteria to be eligible for the program:

  • Children who are certified for free or reduced-price school meals during the 2019-20 Texas school year.

  • Children who attend a school that offers free meals to all students through the Community Eligibility Provision program.

  • Children who received SNAP food benefits for March 2020.

Information about eligibility and how to apply can be found here.

2:00 p.m. - Austin Mayor Steve Adler announced the extension of the city's "Stay Home, Work Safe" order until June 15.

RELATED: Austin mayor extends city's stay home orders until June 15

1:36 p.m. - Bastrop County has announced the county's third COVID-19 death. There have been a total of 200 reported cases in the county with 85 reported recoveries.

12:15 p.m. - In March, Amazon announced it was hiring more than 14,000 people in Texas for temporary positions during the coronavirus pandemic. Amazon said in a press release that the company will be providing the opportunity for a portion of those employees to stay with the company and move into a permanent, full-time role beginning in June. Amazon said 125,000 of the 175,000 seasonal employees hired across North America will be offered permanent roles. Amazon did not clarify how many Texas seasonal employees will receive the offer.

12 p.m. - Williamson County announced its 24th coronavirus-related death, a man in his 60s. Here's a breakdown of cases in Williamson County.

11:30 a.m. - Austin officials announced some city services are reopening June 1:

  • Animal adoptions can start June 1 with only two family members
  • Library curbside service will be available June 8 at 10 locations
  • Code services are opening in phases in June
  • City employees are still encouraged to work from home

You can watch the full press conference on KVUE's YouTube channel:

11:30 a.m. - Capital Meto, in partnership with organizations such as H-E-B and the Central Texas Food Bank, has delivered more than 300,000 meals to vulnerable people.

10:15 a.m. - In addition to drive-up and in-clinic COVID-19 tests, the Austin Regional Clinic is now offering antibody testing at ARC clinics. The tests cost about $50 and need an ARC physician's order for a blood draw.

9:49 a.m. - At 11 a.m. the Austin city manager is scheduled to hold a press conference to discuss the phased approach to reopening city offices as early as June 1. He's set to give updates regarding the Parks and Recreation Department, Austin Public Library, Animal Services and Code Department.

9:30 a.m. - Texas DPS driver's license offices are reopening across Texas Friday, in addition to zoos and waterparks.

WATCH: Texas State 3D printing COVID-19 test swabs