The Woodlands Township - COVID19 Updates: Monday, June 22, 2020
THE WOODLANDS, TX -- Board Stresses Importance of CDC Guidelines of Social Distancing and Facial Coverings
With a rapid increase in COVID-19 cases, Township Board of Directors continues to strongly recommend CDC Guidelines for social distancing and facial coverings while out in public, especially when you will be around other people. Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities. Everyone should continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing. “Fighting this pandemic requires that we all work together – citizens and our businesses,” Chairman Gordy Bunch said. “We have a responsibility to take care of ourselves and a responsibility to take care of those around us.”
Watch a video about wearing face coverings in The Woodlands.
Montgomery County COVID-19 Case Count
Montgomery County Public Health District, in conjunction with Montgomery County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, confirms the number of ACTIVE cases of COVID-19 has increased to 619 today. That number includes 15 hospitalizations of Montgomery County residents. 994 people have fully recovered. The number of total positive cases has increased 92 since Friday to 1,647.
Montgomery County continues to see a rapid increase of COVID-19 cases. To reduce the spread, it is imperative for residents to abide by CDC guidelines. If you do not feel well, stay home. The CDC recommends the following measures when you are in a public place:
Stay at least six feet from others at all times.
Wear a cloth face covering to help protect yourself and others.
Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
Bring hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol to use if soap and water are not available.
For more information on how to protect yourself and others, go to the CDC Prevent Getting Sick webpage.
The MCHD/MCPHD COVID-19 Call Center is open for residents needing COVID-19 testing through the voucher program, or for general questions, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Please call 936-523-5040 for more information.
You can view the list of case-by-case updates on the MCPHD website here: https://mcphd-tx.org/coronavirus-covid-19/confirmed-cases/. You can refer to the dashboard here: https://coronavirus-response-moco.hub.arcgis.com/.
Harris County COVID-19 Case Count
Harris County Public Health (HCPH) publishes their daily case count, combined with the City of Houston’s daily case count, here: https://tinyurl.com/tzymvk5. Cases by zip code in Harris County can be found by clicking on areas of the map.
The Village of Creekside Park is located in two zip codes: 77375 and 77389, and these also include Magnolia, Augusta Pines/Auburn Lakes/West Rayford Road in northwest Harris County. Today, Harris County is reporting zip code 77375 has 137 confirmed positive cases with 51 active cases, and 77389 has 116 confirmed positive cases with 45 active cases.
Harris County Mask Order and MaskUpHouston
Harris County Judge Hidalgo, joined by Houston Mayor Turner and Bob Harvey of the Greater Houston Partnership, announced on Friday a Harris County Order requiring businesses to have and implement a plan that, at a minimum, requires all individuals (employees or customers) 10 years or older to wear a face covering over the mouth and nose. There will be certain exceptions like while driving, eating or underlying health conditions. A business is subject to a $1,000 fine per violation. The judge and mayor referred to the new policy as, 'no shoes, no shirt, no mask -- no service.'
The order begins today, June 22, 2020, with fine enforcement starting five days after the order goes into effect. The judge stressed that the county is looking to educate first and is seeking additional guidance from the state on how the fines may be enforced. As of now, the order will only be in effect for about eight days as it is tied to the county’s disaster proclamation. The judge will be seeking an extension of the county’s disaster proclamation and mask order from the Harris County Commissioners Court. Read the full release.
New today, Judge Hidalgo announced the Harris County COVID 19 Relief Fund to help the most vulnerable during this crisis. Apply tomorrow and Wednesday; online or by phone at Readyharris.org or 832-848-0214. The online application process opens at 6 a.m. and closes Wednesday at 10 p.m. Phone applications are available between 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. the following day. Applications should take around 5-10 minutes. Funds will be rewarded fairly. This is not a first-come, first-serve process; once all have applied it will be put into a randomized drawing, and awardees selected randomly. By Friday June 26, all applicants will receive an email if they were selected or not, and those that were selected will undergo a verification process to make sure they qualify. Greater Houston Community Foundation is administering this program.
Judge Hidalgo also encouraged people to go get tested. It is free, and all over the county.
Harris County Public Health (HCPH) COVID-19 Testing
Get tested, it’s free! To sign up for testing, visit hcphtx.org or ReadyHarris.org or you can call 832-927-7575. View flyer for more information. Once tested, results from HCPH testing sites can take up to 5 days to process. As you wait for your results, stay home and self-isolate, especially if you are sick, practice social distancing (6 ft/2 m) and wear a face-covering. View flyer for more information on the next steps after you have been tested.
Mobile Testing for COVID-19 in Conroe
Kroger will be sponsoring a free testing site at The Montgomery County Fair Grounds, located at 9333 Airport Road in Conroe, TX 77303, June 22 to June 24, 2020, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Kroger asks that registration be completed online to expedite the testing process at www.krogerhealth.com/covidtesting, but if you are unable to register online, Kroger will be able to register you on site.
Governor Gregg Abbott held a press conference today, June 22, 2020, updating the state on the spread of COVID-19. The state has seen a significant growth in the daily positive cases of COVID-19 along with an increase in hospitalizations. The Governor’s message was that Texas continues to have the ability to reduce the spread of the virus while keeping Texas open. He reminded Texans that COVID has not gone away but reiterated that Texas 'doesn’t have to choose between jobs and health. We can have both.' The Governor stressed that shutting down Texas again is a last resort.
The Governor cited that the daily hospitalizations’ average has increased from 1,600 a day in late May to approximately 3,200 a day in June. The positive infection rate has increased from 4.5 percent in late May to 9 percent as of today.
The Governor stressed the following in Texas’s efforts to slow the spread of the virus:
All Texans should follow safe protocols: (1) stay at home when you can, (2) frequently wash hands, (3) maintain social distancing if you must go out and (4) wear a mask when possible.
The appropriate authorities are enforcing restrictions. For example, TABC has been enforcing occupancy and service guidelines for bars. Certain counties have restricted river recreation activities. Some jurisdictions are mandating businesses require masks for their employees and customers.
The state is prepared to provide surge testing in potential hot spots.
The state continues to work with hospitals to be sure that hospitals have the ability to provide healthcare services to any COVID patient.
The Governor continues to stress that there is abundant hospital capacity to address the current increase in cases.
In addition, the Governor was asked about mandating masks. His response addressed the differing spread rates and needs across the state being indicative of the need for local governments to decide. As a personal account, he indicated he is wearing a mask and encouraging the use of masks more often. In May, the science was less certain on the benefit of using face coverings and the spread of the virus was on a downward trajectory. Today, additional data has indicated the effectiveness of face coverings and the virus is on an upward trajectory. He continued to stress the need to wear a face covering throughout the press conference.
Around the Township
Blood Donations Needed Now
Donate June 15-30, 2020, and pick up a T-shirt as a thank you for helping us save lives.
Visit giveblood.org to schedule your appointment.
The Blood Center is now requiring that donors wear a mask or face covering when at a blood drive. In the case that you do not have one, staff will offer you one.
All successful blood donors will receive a FREE COVID-19 ANTIBODY TEST. (This test is authorized by the FDA only for detecting the presence of antibodies against SARS-Co V-2, and is not intended for diagnosis of COVID-19.)
Riva Row Boat House Adds Pedal Kayaks to Rental Options
The Woodlands Township is now offering single and tandem (or double) pedal kayaks as new and exciting rental options at Riva Row Boat House. Other rentals at Riva Row include standard/paddle-powered single and tandem (or double) kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, swan pedal boats and water bikes. For more information visit the Riva Row Boat House webpage.
Enjoy a Summer Getaway Right Here in The Woodlands
Looking for summer vacation plans due to COVID-19? Stay right here in The Woodlands! Many hotels are offering Summer Staycation and Mid-Week specials when the crowds are smaller. Visit The Woodlands’ new website features special offers for restaurants, hotels in The Woodlands and more. View hotel specials and other offers here.
Visit The Woodlands Launches New Destination Website
Visit The Woodlands is proud to announce the launch of its new, fully redesigned destination website, visitthewoodlands.com. The new website offers the most accurate and up-to-date content for leisure travelers with access to curated trip ideas, upcoming events, special offers, visitors guide and more. The site also features a section designed for meeting planners that includes details on meeting venues in The Woodlands, CVB services, online RFP submission and the official Meeting Planners Guide. View the website here.
Township Summer Programs Now Available
The Woodlands Township is pleased to re-open a number of summer programs for the community to enjoy. Given the unprecedented situation surrounding COVID-19, summer programs have been adjusted to better serve the community in a safer manner. To learn more about summer camps, swimming lessons, adult programs, sports leagues and more, please see the Summer 2020 Action Guide online at www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/actionguide. Registration for summer programs is available now!
Re-Opening of The Woodlands
For a list of open and closed facilities in The Woodlands Township, please visit https://www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/1495/Re-opening-of-The-Woodlands.
During the past few months of the COVID-19 pandemic, residents have shared examples of inspiration seen throughout the community. Some are chalk drawings, banners, signs of thanks, painted rocks and more. These can be viewed on The Woodlands Township website. If you’ve found something inspirational, please share by sending your photo to TownshipTogether@thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov.
Sawdust Park and Ride Facility Resumes Partial Service
The Woodlands Township has begun partial service for The Woodlands Express from the Sawdust Park and Ride location. Reduced service from the Research Forest Park and Ride will continue. Sterling Ridge Park and Ride location will remain temporarily closed.
Future announcements will be made if additional schedule adjustments are implemented.
Please visit our Twitter page at https://twitter.com/TownshipTransit for the latest service updates. For schedules, route maps and ticketing information visit www.woodlandstransit.com or call 281-210-3800 and ask for the Transportation Department.
Ready to be out and about? Check out the great outdoor options that The Woodlands has for you and enjoy an evening out.
Open Hotels in The Woodlands
Many of The Woodlands hotel properties are open and ready to welcome you to their location. The Courtyard The Woodlands will be re-opening their doors on June 15, 2020. Be sure to stay up to date by viewing Visit The Woodlands.
Best Western Plus | Candlewood Suites | Drury Inn The Woodlands | Embassy Suites | Fairfield Inn and Suites | Hilton Garden Inn | Hyatt Place | Residence Inn Lakefront Drive | Residence Inn Market Street | The Woodlands Resort
Numerous resources are available in the community for support. These vary from food banks to financial assistance and much more. Please visit the link below to find more information about resources in the community related to COVID-19: http://thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/1491/Community-Resources
Free Mental and Emotional Help is Available Now
The COVID-19 Crisis Counseling Program is designed to aid individuals living through the COVID-19 crisis in understanding their reactions, reviewing their options, and connecting with agencies and organizations to assist in improving their situations. Crisis counselors will be able to provide active listening while offering reassurance and practical assistance through psycho-education and emotional support. They will also teach behavioral techniques for coping with stress, anxiety, depression, etc. that may arise during this time. The program is offered FREE of charge to anyone in the community. All age groups are welcome. Get more information on this program now.
Township’s Coronavirus Page
The Woodlands Township’s COVID-19 page can be found at www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/covid19. This page features Montgomery and Harris county Hubs, community resources and news from the Federal Government and the CDC. It also includes the latest news from The Township, partner agencies, important links, FAQs, live Twitter feeds and more.
The Woodlands Township to hold Regular Board of Directors Meeting Electronically
The Woodlands Township Board of Directors will hold a Regular Board Meeting via videoconference, Wednesday, June 24, 2020, at 6 p.m. The meeting can be viewed online at http://www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/778/Meeting-Videos.
Please stay connected to The Woodlands Township through our many communications channels. Learn more and sign up at www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/stayinformed.