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Although the wearing of face coverings is encouraged in the Governor’s most recent order, and is recommended by the CDC to help stop the spread of this disease, it is not required and no jurisdiction can impose a civil or criminal penalty for failure to wear a face covering.
In addition, the Order stipulates that it supersedes any conflicting order issued by local officials in response to the COVID-19 disaster, so the City Council cannot pass any local statute that is more restrictive. The City cannot enforce the wearing of face coverings, but can only encourage it, per the Governor’s Order.
The Mayor has issued two health advisories during this pandemic in order to promote behavior protecting all members of the community. In addition to recommending limited contact with the public, limited contact with public surfaces, and taking care of one’s health, the latest advisory issued on April 21 "strongly recommends that all individuals within San Marcos wear a face mask or homemade cloth face covering at all times when in public."
The link to the full advisory can be found here: https://www.sanmarcostx.gov/DocumentCenter/View/18141/Public-Health-Advisory-2-Signed-April-21.
The San Marcos Public Library has canceled all programs, classes and events. All items currently checked out have been given a due date of June 1, 2020, so no fines will accrue.
Services the Library will provide:
1. Phone Service & Email: Beginning Wednesday, March 18, Library staff will answer emails and provide telephone reference from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays. During these hours, patrons may request information including census and workforce assistance. Library staff will fill out resumes and job applications and email items to the patron. If email is not an option, the library will snail mail or arrange curbside pickup of the items. During this time, all printed items will be provided at no charge to the customer. Please call 512.393.8200 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
2. Front Porch Pickup: This service will begin on Monday, March 23 and will be available from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Patrons must place materials on hold online at http://www.hank.ci.san-marcos.tx.us:8080/#section=home or via telephone 512.393.8200 or email@example.com prior to arrival and wait until they receive notification (via phone or email) that the items are available. When people arrive, they will call the library and we will verify identify, record on the curbside form, check out materials, and place on the table on the front porch.
3. People wanting to return items will need to walk them up to the outside book drops. Items returned through the book drop will be handled by staff wearing gloves and placed on a cart and wheeled to the learning center. Items will be quarantined by date then checked in and reshelved after 72 hours.
Best practices and helpful information is currently available on the City of San Marcos website at www.sanmarcostx.gov/covid19info and on the CDC website www.cdc.gov. This is a dedicated call center established by the Austin Public Health Department to answer non-life threatening questions for residents of Hays, Travis, Williamson, and Bastrop Counties.
Police officers have no legal requirement to request documentation from any individual about why they are traveling.
The City of San Marcos has canceled most community and public events, including Boards and Commission meetings, except for City Council Meetings, Planning and Zoning Commission meetings, and Historic Preservation Committee meetings. Future agendas for these meetings will be evaluated to determine if the meeting can be canceled. The public is able to watch the live stream of the meetings at www.sanmarcostx.gov/videos or on the Government channel on Grande channel 16 and Spectrum channel 10.
Many health care providers are equipped to administer the test.
However, there are a couple of critical things that people need to know.
1. First, the CDC and DSHS are not recommending that asymptomatic people seek testing.
2. Second, if a person believes they are infected, they should first call their health care provider for further guidance on seeking testing. If the person meets the criteria for testing, the provider will provide guidance on where to get tested and an order for the test.
There is currently not a public option for this, so members of the community are asked to utilize their social networks and help one another out in times of need. Good examples are churches, neighborhood groups, family and friends.
Under the current "Stay at Home, Stay Safe" order, daycare providers are allowed to remain open, but are limited to 10 children per room.
We should not need public space like this for mass testing. If we get to a point where widespread community transmission is occurring, we will evaluate all testing and treatment options as recommended by the CDC in cooperation with our local health care professionals and facilities. Regarding day care, members of the community are asked to utilize their social networks and help one another out in times of need.
We remain very hopeful that widespread community transmission of the disease will not affect our area. If that does happen, the City will collaborate with our local hospitals to provide the most effective processes for testing, quarantine, and treatment. Central Texas Medical Center is currently making arrangements for a temporary external structure for this purpose.
The answer to the question is not yet completely clear. Governor Abbott and the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) have asked health insurers and health maintenance organizations operating in Texas to waive costs associated with the testing and telemedicine visits for the diagnosis of coronavirus (COVID-19). Additionally, TDI is requesting that insurers report their actions related to consumer cost-sharing and access to services so that the department can ensure consumers are aware of their available benefits. Complete information may be found at https://gov.texas.gov/news/post/governor-abbott-tdi-ask-health-insurance-providers-to-waive-costs-associated-with-coronavirus
• For Private Lab Testing - Cost depends on the lab.
• Can someone with no health insurance get tested for COVID-19? Yes, people with no health insurance have the option of getting tested at a public health lab or at a private lab.
You should call your health care provider or the local health department if you are experiencing fever above 100.4 along with cough, chest congestion, or shortness of breath. You will be asked a series of questions to determine whether you meet certain testing criteria before you can be tested.
Testing criteria includes having fever, cough, shortness of breath PLUS:
- having had close contact with a confirmed case,
- having traveled to a location with ongoing transmission of COVID-19,
- having risk factors for getting very sick from COVID-19, or
- being hospitalized with COVID-19 symptoms even if you do not have any risk factors.
No travel restrictions have been implemented at the airport. However, the travel restrictions in place nationwide do apply to people traveling to and from our airport. We will provide ongoing updates.
Evictions are civil matters between landlord and tenant and are presided over by our local Justices of the Peace.
General information for tenants, including info on Justice of the Peace Courts placing all evictions on hold until after May 8th and how to work out accommodations with your landlord can be found here: http://www.sanmarcostx.gov/701/Neighborhood-Enhancement.
Lease-tenant resources: http://sanmarcostx.gov/2954/Documents-and-Resources.
On Tuesday, April 7, the San Marcos City Council passed an ordinance requiring a landlord to provide a Notice of Proposed Eviction prior to issuing an actual Notice to Vacate. The San Marcos ordinance gives tenants a 90-day period to cure any delinquency as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Read more about the ordinance here.
The best resource is still the CDC’s site and the several pages they have created specifically to answer questions for various segments of our communities about the COVID-19 situation: www.cdc.gov. We also have helpful info on the city’s website at www.sanmarcostx.gov/covid19info and at www.HaysInformed.com.
The WSRCA team is committed to meeting the needs of job seekers and employers in our nine-county region as a result of COVID-19, and want to ensure that the health and safety of our customers and staff are taken into consideration in these difficult times. Although the career centers currently remain open, there are several options you may choose to receive services: in person at our locations, by visiting our website at www.workforcesolutionsrca.com, logging in to www.workintexas.com, or via phone at 512.244.2207, or toll free at 1.866.518.0576.
San Marcos Area Chamber of Commerce is Seeking your Feedback. Please take a few minutes to complete this brief survey to help us better understand how COVID-19 is impacting you: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/XTDRC65