Good morning! Here is what's on Good Day Lubbock this morning 5-9 a.m. on FOX34.
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Mostly sunny, morning showers diminish
Morning showers and thundershowers will be diminishing through the morning. Cloudy morning, then becoming mostly sunny for the afternoon. High near 95 and a light southerly wind 8-15 mph. A slight chance for showers and storms Tuesday and maybe into Wednesday, still not great chances but any rain is welcomed. High temperatures continue in the lower to mid 90s.
Statewide mask mandates have sparked pushback as some argue wearing one is not worth the side effects
In a reversal of earlier recommendations during the first phases of the pandemic, experts now believe it is our best bet to beat the coronavirus. But mask mandates have led to complaints ranging from "maskne" (acne appearing under the mask) - to breathing issues. Doctors say there is no medical condition that would exempt someone from wearing a mask in public short term.
Texas has reached grim milestones, reporting more than 10,000 COVID-19 cases in a day for the fifth day in a row yesterday
The City of Lubbock added to that number is confirming 37 new cases yesterday. The total number of confirmed cases in our area is more than 4,400. More than 2,100 cases are listed as active. The city did not confirm any new recoveries yesterday. 65 people have died from the virus in our area. The total number of tests administered in the city is now more than 58,000. Positives are at about 9.3% percent. These testing numbers include people from other counties who were tested here. The number of available hospital beds increased over the weekend. It's now at just fewer than 500. 111 people are in the hospital for COVID-19. Of those, 48 are in the ICU.
Top republicans in congress are expected to meet today with President Trump on the next COVID-19 aid package
The administration is stiffening its opposition to more testing money and interjecting other priorities, and that could complicate quick passage. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is prepared to roll out the $1 trillion dollar package in a matter of days. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has already passed a sweeping $3 trillion measure from democrats. Another topic at hand, the extra $600 in unemployment benefits, some 30 million Americans have been receiving is set to expire at the end of the month. Republicans are hesitant to extend it.
The State of Texas will allocate $200 million dollars for the TEA to provide for online learning
It's intended to purchase "E" Learning devices and home internet solutions. The agency will buy them and send the "hot spots" and routers where they're needed, based on recommendations from local teachers. This will go on top of the $400 million dollars the state set aside to cover expenses related to COVID-19.
The state has extended the "transition period" for districts to let students back on campuses
Districts can now limit in-person classes for the first month of the year. That would mean most, if not all students would learn from home. After that, the district can apply for a waiver to stay remote for another month. That would carry well into October. Education Commissioner Mike Morath says this provides much needed flexibility throughout Texas. There are exceptions for students without internet access or a computer. The district would still have to provide in-person classes for those students every day.
TAPPS, the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools, has delayed the fall sports season
Specifically, football has been put off for five weeks. That's the largest private school sports league, similar to the UIL. Strength and conditioning drills can begin September 8th. The season is set to start September 28th. Chris Softley, Lubbock Christian's head football coach, says the new schedule will provide for games necessary to ensure tie-breaker positions. Softley says, while they will be following every protocol, he wants to make sure his kids' mental health is taken care of as well. Softley said they'll have more clarity once the UIL provides an update. That is expected Monday.
Buckner Family pathways specializes in assisting single-parent families
The program offers resources, to encourage self-sufficiency. Resources include affordable housing, child care, counseling and mentorship. The program director says services also help families during their transition to become even more independent. Buckner also has a foster care and adoption program. For more information on how Buckner can help support you or to get involved. We'll have a link in the FOX34 news app.
A new emergency hot-line will soon help people with emotional emergencies
The digits 988 will be the new official number for the national suicide prevention lifeline. Currently, those needing suicide intervention must call the lifeline's 10-digit number, but, the FCC decided to change it to three digits to make dialing for help easier. Phone companies can now start initiating plans to swap out the old number with an official deadline to complete the change set for July 16 2022. FCC officials believe this shorter number will help save more lives, adding, an option to allow people to text 988 may also be in the works down the line.
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