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Coronavirus updates in Central Texas: Travis County surpasses 1,000th case

Here are the latest COVID-19 updates, closures and postponements in Central Texas for Thursday, April 16.

AUSTIN, Texas — Editor's note: This live blog is no longer updating. To get the latest coronavirus updates in Central Texas, check out KVUE's April 17 live blog.

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 April 16 live blog.

Top Headlines:


7:10 p.m. - Manor ISD announces it will be suspending all meals, academic packet and technology distribution beginning Friday after the district was informed that two more Manor ISD food service employees have tested positive for COVID 19.

These employees most recently distributed curbside meals at Manor New Tech High School on April 9.

RELATED: Manor ISD suspending all meals, academic distribution after 2 more employees diagnosed with COVID-19

6:45 p.m. - The Texas Workforce Commission has launched a childcare resources website for essential workers, in partnership with the Office of Gov. Greg Abbott, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and the Texas Education Agency.

The website, FrontlineChildCare.Texas.Gov, will help essential workers locate childcare during the COVID-19 pandemic.

6:20 p.m. - Travis County surpasses its 1,000th case of COVID-19, with 1,029 cases now confirmed. Eighteen deaths have been reported, as well as 201 recoveries.

5:30 p.m. – Austin compounding pharmacies Lamar Plaza Drug Store and sister store Dripping Springs Pharmacy have donated supplies to Austin-area first responders, including nearly 200 bottles of hand sanitizer to the Austin Police Department and Lake Travis Fire Department. Dripping Springs Pharmacy donated N95 masks to Hays County EMS.

4:45 p.m. – Williamson County said its "Mask Brigade" has made between 2,000 and 3,000 cloth face masks since its inception more than a week ago. The group is making two types of masks – the COVID Ranger Mask, worn over N95 masks by medical professionals and first responders, and the Safety Mask, worn by nursing home residents and essential county workers interacting with the public.

Volunteers making masks include churchgoers, high school teachers and Sun City residents.

Anyone interested in joining the Williamson County Mask Brigade can visit www.wilco.org/howcanIhelp.

4:30 p.m. – Hays County health officials reported eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the county, bringing the total number of active cases to 68. So far, there have been 117 total confirmed cases and 48 people have recovered.

3:10 p.m. – Beginning on Friday, Austin Transportation said it will close a portion of Riverside Drive from Lee Barton Drive to South First Street to traffic, allowing extra space for cycling and walking. Last week, a southbound lane of Pleasant Valley Road crossing Lady Bird Lake was converted to allow more space for pedestrians and cyclists to maintain at least 6 feet of distance.

"With the current stay-at-home order, automobile trips are down, allowing Austin Transportation to convert some select roadways temporarily into safe walking and cycling spaces that allow for better physical distancing," said Austin Transportation Director Robert Spillar.

Credit: City of Austin

2:20 p.m. - Dell Medical School and Ascension Seton have received funding from Bank of America to support low-income families in Central Texas during the pandemic.

The Bank of America Charitable Foundation is providing $250,000 toward their efforts to address nutritional needs and other challenges faced by the community.

Half of the funds will go to Dell Med's initiative to help 8,000 Central Texas residents who are particularly susceptible to the dangers of the coronavirus to get fresh, healthy food. The other half will support Ascension Seton’s clinical response across 11 counties. The funds will also aid healthcare workers as they maintain their own well-being while caring for others.

12 p.m. - Williamson County coronavirus cases grow by 12, bringing total to 140. Recoveries now at 78.

RELATED: LIST: Confirmed Central Texas coronavirus cases by county

11:15 a.m. - Pflugerville ISD announces that the Texas Department of Agriculture approved its request to begin providing weekend meal service.

Starting Friday, families can pick up meals for that day, as well as two extra breakfast and lunch meals per child.

The 10 delivery sites include:

  • Pflugerville High School (in front of the gym)
  • Dessau Middle School
  • Kelly Lane Middle School
  • Park Crest Middle School
  • Westview Middle School
  • Copperfield Elementary 
  • Northwest Elementary  
  • Pflugerville Elementary 
  • Wieland Elementary 
  • Windermere Elementary

Meals will be served from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. each Friday. Children must be 18 years or younger. Parents can pick up meals with or without kids present, but identification for children not present must be provided. Parents or guardians can only pick up meals for their own children.

The following forms of identification are accepted:

  • Official letter/email from school listing children enrolled
  • Individual student report cards
  • Attendance record from parent portal of school website
  • Birth certificate for children 
  • Student ID cards

Also starting Friday, all IDEA Public Schools campuses in Texas will be providing bundled meals for the weekend, including breakfast and lunch. Meals will be given from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Meals will be provided to all children 18 and under, not just IDEA students. If the child is not in the car, the child's identification must be provided.

10:10 a.m. - Walgreens is hiring for more than 250 part-time and temporary jobs in the Austin area. This includes customer service associates, pharmacy technicians and shift leads. Job seekers can apply online.

9 a.m. - H-E-B delivers 75,000 fresh, chef-inspired meals to hospitals across Texas. H-E-B will deliver meals for four weeks to doctors, nurses and other health care workers directly engaged with COVID-19 patients.

On Thursday morning, 300 meals were provided to Baylor Scott & White Medical Center on University Boulevard.

8 a.m. - An emergency grant program for small businesses in Pflugerville has been set up. The "Pflugerville Pfund" grants up to $5,000 for businesses that have been significantly impacted by the pandemic. You can learn more online at the Pflugerville Chamber of Commerce's website.

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