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You can view the notice here, or visit our Public Notices page.
Proposed zoning change on a 15.2-acre property on Blackjack St., presentations on the Downtown Revitalization Project and Water/Wastewater Rate Study, a contractor selected for city street improvements, new EMS equipment, public hearing dates for the proposed City budget, and partial credit for COVID-19 Relief Loan recipients were considered in last night’s City Council meeting.
Water and Wastewater Rate Study: City Council directed Raftelis Financial Consultants to provide more information on water usage tiers and water meter size, in relation to its Water and Wastewater Rate Study and forecast through 2026.
Proposed Budget: City Council set the dates for the FY 2021-2022 Budget public hearings. The first public hearing will be held August 17, 6:30 p.m. The second hearing will be September 7, also at 6:30 p.m.
Blackjack St. Zoning Change: Council approved the proposed zoning change for 1501 and 1503 Blackjack St. from Agricultural Open to Commercial Heavy Business District. The 15.171-acre property will be the location of a large civil construction company with an office and equipment yard. The applicants noted 40 new jobs would be created with this business relocation from Austin.
Street Improvements Project: Council awarded Lone Star Paving of Austin the contract to resurface the following streets this year, along with repaving the Municipal Court’s parking lot:
Downtown Revitalization Project: Council gave TRC Engineers, Inc. the green light to move forward with conceptual design alternatives focusing on the nine-block area around the Caldwell County Courthouse. Proposed upgrades involve utility, drainage, street, hardscape, pedestrian access, and landscaping in the downtown area. TRC will host two public forums to gather feedback from the community and property owners. This evaluation will also study traffic alternatives on North Main St. between San Antonio St. and Walnut St.
Lockhart COVID-19 Economic Recovery Fund Status: Council members granted partial relief for 18 COVID-19 loan recipients. Each will receive $2,500 credit towards their loan. The remaining balance of the City’s COVID-19 Economic Recovery Fund will be placed on reserve.
EMS Fleet Replacement: Council approved the Lockhart Fire Chief’s request to replace a cab and chassis in the ambulance fleet. Both the City and Caldwell County are chipping in for the upgrades, each paying for half of the bill. Upon Council approval, the equipment will be delivered in approximately six months.
COVID-19 Update: The Mayor talked about how there no current updates regarding city authority on changing local COVID-19 protocols, but that people are strongly urged to get vaccinated. He also mentioned checking with the Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management on where people can get inoculated and tested for COVID in Lockhart. These locations are listed on the Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management’s website.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new masking recommendations citing new information on the Delta variant. The new guidelines recommend fully vaccinated individuals to wear masks in public indoor settings, especially in areas of substantial and high transmission, because new data suggests that vaccinated people can pass on the virus.
However, the medical community maintains the vaccines are still the best way to prevent getting severely sick from COVID-19. Even with the more contagious Delta variant, most patients who die from COVID, or are hospitalized with severe symptoms are unvaccinated.
In May, Governor Abbott issued an executive order prohibiting local government entities from imposing mask mandates, that means the City of Lockhart is not allowed to require citizens to wear masks anywhere, including city property. The governor’s order also states that the City cannot require municipal workers to wear masks or be vaccinated unless they fall under a stated exception. Businesses, however, may decide to put their own mask requirements in place. Despite imposed limitations, the City of Lockhart is encouraging you to help stop the coronavirus in its tracks.
“Vaccines are readily available in Lockhart. No matter where you go, whether it be a pharmacy, grocery store, or your doctor’s office, there will be a dose ready for you,” said Lockhart Mayor Lew White. “Be responsible and do your part to stop the spread.”
To secure a vaccine, head to the Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management’s page.
(Image courtesy of the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention)
The 5-siren outdoor warning system is used to alert Lockhart residents of impending severe weather and/or chemical emergencies. Activation criteria for the City of Lockhart includes;
Do you have unused, and/or expired medications you’re looking to get rid of at home?
DON’T FLUSH THEM DOWN THE TOILET!
Take them to one of the Lockhart Fire Department’s fire stations instead. Look for the “TakeAway” medication disposal box (see photo) and do the following:
TakeAway box locations: Lockhart Fire Station No. 1 (201 W Market St.), and Lockhart Fire Station No. 2 (1911 Borchert Dr.)
Since needles and syringes are NOT ACCEPTED in this program, you can still dispose of them properly by:
Proposed new ordinances addressing unattended donation boxes and public camping, a new quarantine leave policy for Lockhart first responders, a loan repayment extension agreement for Visionary Fiber Technologies, a memorandum of understanding with GBRA, the U.S. economic development grant application, COVID-19 economic recovery fund status and community updates were discussed in last night’s City Council meeting.
Economic Development Performance Agreement with Visionary Fiber Technologies: Council approved a short-term extension of a repayment deadline for Visionary Fiber Technologies.
Lockhart COVID-19 Economic Recovery Fund Status: Council members discussed the status of the City’s COVID-19 Economic Recovery Fund. One option included crediting $2,500 to businesses that received a loan from the City and retain the remainder on reserve. No decision was made. Council plans to take action at the next meeting, August 3rd.
“Use of Public Areas” Ordinance: Council members approved the “Use of Public Areas” ordinance. The City Attorney drafted the ordinance to clarify and consolidate existing regulations which are applicable and effective in reducing or preventing the effects of homelessness.
Quarantine Leave Policy for Fire, Police, and EMS: City Council passed an ordinance implementing the requirements of H.B. 2073 to establish a paid quarantine leave policy when police officers, firefighters, and EMT’s are ordered to quarantine due to exposures to communicable disease while on duty.
Memorandum of Understanding with GBRA: City Council approved a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) involving the Carrizo Groundwater Supply Project, which passes through the City of Lockhart. The MOU contemplates a short-term study to evaluate GBRA’s efforts to bring additional treated water to the Texas 130 Corridor.
U.S. Economic Development Administration Grant Application: City Council gave the LEDC the green light to continue with its U.S. Economic Development Administration’s grant application. The $2-million grant will help facilitate engineering and construction of a 2.5-mile wastewater line for the Lockhart Industrial Park III, located on SH-130 and SH-142. The new line would serve the future needs of the west and northwest portions of Lockhart.
“Donation Boxes” Ordinance: City Council approved an ordinance that requires organizations and/or people to register donation boxes with the City. Organizations have placed donation boxes in the City to receive clothing, household items, and similar goods for charitable purposes that potentially become unsightly due to over-filling, lack of maintenance, rummaging, items placed outside the boxes, broken glass, and other concerns. The Ordinance will require all such organizations and persons to register each box with the City, imposes construction and placement standards for such boxes, and details the procedure and requirements for registration.
COVID-19 cases are on the rise again throughout Central Texas, including Lockhart. The Texas Department of State Health Services’ data shows hospitalization rates steadily increasing in the area over five percent since the 4th of July weekend. Health experts are concerned that, with the recent detection of the more infectious Delta variant in surrounding communities, those who are unvaccinated are even more at risk; which could overwhelm the healthcare system. As of this week, less than 50-percent of Caldwell County residents aged 12 and over have received at least one dose of the vaccine.
“Unfortunately, our immunization rates are lagging behind others in Central Texas,” Lockhart Mayor Lew White said. “I urge you to get vaccinated, especially now that vaccines are readily available in the community. All you need to do is walk in or set up an appointment.”
Though there have been reports of “breakthrough” cases—fully vaccinated people who test positive for COVID-19 —researchers say, these cases are extremely rare. Studies suggest that currently authorized vaccines—Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson--work against circulating variants. Lockhart’s City Health Officer, Dr. Charles Laurence, is adamant that vaccines are still the best way to protect oneself from getting infected with the virus.
“The unvaccinated population is primarily responsible for driving the pandemic at present,” Dr. Laurence said. “Meaning, those who are not vaccinated or not fully vaccinated are at risk for getting the disease and/or spreading it.”
Dr. Laurence added, contrary to what is posted on the Internet and social media about vaccines being harmful, there’s science behind the vaccines. He stressed that, if you are immunized, you are safe.
“Do the right thing. Go, get vaccinated,” Dr. Laurence urged. “Protect yourself and, more importantly, protect your family.”
Doses are available in Lockhart, here are some ways you can secure a vaccine:
Temperatures are heating up again after the recent rain. That means mosquitoes are OUT. Here are ways you can keep these insects at bay, so you can get back to enjoying the outdoors:
**For more resources, here's mosquito information from the Texas Department of State Health Services, and the CDC.
(Image courtesy: The Center for Disease Control and Prevention)
IF YOU SEE STANDING WATER IN STREETS OR IN DITCHES, PLEASE CALL CITY OF LOCKHART PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT AT (512) 398-6452. AREAS WILL BE TREATED TO KILL MOSQUITO LARVAE.
Starting August 16, trash and recycling carts will need to be placed at the curb by 7 a.m. on collection days. You may also have up to seven bags, in addition to your cart, ready for pick up. Also, make sure your items are placed within five feet of the roadway without obstructing traffic flow for both vehicles and pedestrians.
On that same date, glass will no longer be accepted for recycling. This applies to both curbside and drop offs at the Lockhart Recycling Center. Instead, here are some ways you can dispose of glass safely:
Lockhart has been receiving a lot of rain, increasing the need to mow lawns more often. However, the rain also contributes to improperly disposed grass clippings ending up where they are not supposed to, like the street and storm drains.
Here are some reasons why grass clippings are safety hazards:
Also, blowing or dumping grass clippings, leaves, or any form of yard waste into the street is prohibited under Lockhart City Code.
Here’s what you can do instead:
For any questions, call our Water/Wastewater Department at (512)398-3615.
The medical community is reporting an increase of COVID-19 patients in hospitals since the 4th of July weekend. That same trend is reflected in Texas DSHS’ COVID-19 dashboard, where the hospitalization rate for Trauma Service Area O—which includes Lockhart—has gone back up to 2.2 percent at the end of the week.
According to the CDC, the Delta variant is now the dominant strain of the virus in the U.S. accounting for half of all COVID-19 cases nationwide. Health experts, including Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, say studies continue to show that vaccines are still effective against the virus.
“If you look at the number of deaths, about 99.2% of them are unvaccinated,” said Dr. Fauci. “It's really sad and tragic that most all of these are avoidable and preventable.”
In Caldwell County, just a little over 49 percent of residents aged 12 and over have received at least one dose. Even though there is no mass vaccination site in Lockhart, COVID-19 vaccines are still available in local pharmacies and medical providers.
“The vaccine gives us the chance to return to people, places, and activities we love,” Lockhart Mayor, Lew White, said. “Let’s get our lives back. Don’t throw away your shot!”
Here are some ways you can locate a vaccine:
A proposed zoning change for an outdoor food court and a new housing development, a license extension for a downtown parklet, new hours for the farmers market, proposed financial support for the Hill Country Cook-off, and a pending homeless ordinance were discussed in last night’s City Council meeting.
Zoning Change Requests:
New Lockhart Farmers Market Hours: City Council took the first step in amending the Lockhart Farmers Market’s hours in its Interlocal Cooperation Agreement with Caldwell County. If County Commissioners follow suit, the Farmers Markets’ new hours will be from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., instead of closing up shop at 1:00 p.m.
Parklet Extension: Council voted to continue Little Trouble’s parklet license agreement for three months without an option for an extension.
“Use of Public Areas” Ordinance: The City Attorney drafted an ordinance that clarifies and consolidates existing regulations which are applicable and effective in reducing or preventing the effects of homelessness. However, due to technical difficulties, the presentation of the ordinance was tabled. It will be taken up at the next City Council meeting, July 20.
HOT Application for Hill Country Cook-off Association: City Council granted the Hill Country Cook-Off Association’s application for up to $4,000 in Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) funding. Event organizers said the money will be used for advertisements and promotional programs in Texas and surrounding states, hoping to attract more participants and attendees. They expect up to 3,000 people to attend this year’s event. The Hill Country Cook-Off will be held at Lockhart City Park, October 15-16, 2021.
The City of Lockhart’s new dog park at City Park has completed construction and is now open to the public. It is located north of the City Park Pond, next to the skate park. The new space is divided to cater to both large dogs and small dogs, along with a playscape that will allow your pets to exercise. The dog park is part of the City’s Parks, Recreation, and Open Spaces Master Plan, adopted in 2018.
6 a.m. - 11 p.m.
Thank you for following the rules!
Celebrating the 4th of July often involves fun activities, including spending time with friends and family at barbecues, and, of course, fireworks. However, what you may consider fun could be stressful to your pets.
Here are some ways you can keep your pets safe, according to the Humane Society and the ASPCA:
(Photo Courtesy: iStock)
Thursday, July 1, the Lockhart Water Department will shut the water off on Neches Street, between Rosewood and E. Live Oak Streets, for needed repairs to the water system. Water is expected to be off from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. If everything goes as planned, the water will be turned back on sooner.
(Photo Courtesy: The Water Council)
Please plan accordingly. We apologize for any inconvenience. If you have any questions, call the Water/Wastewater Department at (512) 398-3615.
Celebrating the 4th of July is not the same without fireworks. However, it’s illegal to set off fireworks within 5,000 feet of Lockhart city limits. So, it’s best to leave it to the pro's by attending a permitted fireworks show, like Saturday’s Independence Day Fireworks Extravaganza:
Here are some safety tips on how you can enjoy these shows from the CDC and U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission:
Think Independence Day celebrations end once the fireworks are done? We think not!
Sunday, July 4th, City Pool admission is FREE for Free Swim Day. Here are the details:
Free Swim Day
Sunday, July 4th, 2021
10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Lockhart City Pool (located on City Park Rd. and Scheh St.)
Have you been thinking about adding a furry, four-legged family member into your home? Here’s your chance.
The Lockhart Animal Shelter is waiving pet adoption fees starting this week. The shelter is now over capacity with more than 50 dogs and 60 cats in house. That number is expected to grow as we approach the 4th of July holiday.
For more information, contact the shelter at (512) 376-3336.
Mon - Fri: 8 a.m.-4:30pm
Sat & Sun: 8 a.m.-3:30pm
(Photos Courtesy: Lockhart Animal Shelter)
Lockhart City Pool has been reopened Wednesday, June 23rd, after staying closed last year due to COVID-19. To ensure everyone's safety, please pay attention to pool rules and lifeguards on-site.
Tuesday - Sunday: 12 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Child under 1 yr : FREE
**Now accepting reservations: Call the Public Works Department (512) 398-6452 for more.
If not, and you're a Lockhart electric customer, save this number: (512) 398-6117. By calling this number, you will be connected to our Electric Service Department where you can report the power outage. It is available any time, including nights, and weekends.
If you are a Bluebonnet Electric Co-Op customer, call 800-949-4414 to report an outage.
Yes, you can go solar in Lockhart. But, before you start purchasing and installing solar panels, you’ll need to do a few things:
When the above requirements have been met and approved, the permits are issued. The Customer Service Department takes a total of three readings each billing cycle:
These readings are itemized in the customer’s utility bill.
(Image courtesy: iStock)
Here’s a look at the City of Lockhart’s Distributed Generation Ordinance: ARTICLE III. - WATER, SEWER, ELECTRIC EXTENSIONS | Code of Ordinances | Lockhart, TX | Municode Library (Sec. 58-191 under “Additional Requirements” item B)
If you are a Bluebonnet Electric Co-Op customer, click here.
Since May, the Texas Department of State Health Services stopped allocating COVID-19 vaccines to providers every week. However, that doesn’t mean there are no doses available in our community. The Texas DSHS still fills vaccine orders from local providers. If you, or someone you know, still needs to get vaccinated, here are ways you can locate a vaccine:
This week, the Texas DSHS reported that 11 million Texans are now fully vaccinated. The hospitalization rate in our Trauma Service Area (TSA), which includes Austin, closes out the week at 1.94 percent.
Starting Friday, the 25th, the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA) will start converting the disinfectant used in the Luling Water Treatment Plant—which supplies Lockhart—from chloramine to free chlorine. The annual temporary disinfectant conversion, which is required by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), takes 30 days. Then, the disinfectant will be switched back to chloramine. The GBRA says the process burns off excess ammonia build-up and oxidizes bio-film build-up that might be forming in distribution systems.
(Image courtesy of the Water Quality and Health Council)
During the conversion, you may notice a change in taste or appearance of your tap water. The water is constantly tested and remains SAFE TO DRINK.
For questions, call the Water/Wastewater Department at (512)398-3615.
A proposed zoning change for a nearly 59-acre property along West San Antonio St/SH-142, an examination of state and local regulations addressing homelessness, budget proposals, and a review of COVID-19 protocols in Lockhart topped last night’s City Council meeting.
Zoning Change: City Council approved the zoning change request on a nearly 59-acre property located in the 1800-2000 blocks of West San Antonio Street/SH-142. The decision allows the developer to build single family homes, apartment housing and commercial businesses along the street. It will also include an extension of Windsor Boulevard.
Rules and Regulations on Homelessness: City Council directed Staff to draft an ordinance that consolidates city and state regulations concerning homelessness. Just hours before the City Council meeting, Governor Abbott signed HB 1925, which forbids local governments from prohibiting or discouraging enforcement of the public camping ban.
COVID-19 in Lockhart: Council wants to continue giving the public and board/commission members the option to attend meetings virtually. Council members also asked Staff to post information on which local providers have doses of the COVID-19 vaccine available. The Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management stopped vaccinations at Adams Gym Sunday, the 13th, because of very low turnout and the availability of other options.
Caldwell County Appraisal District Budget: Council approved the Caldwell County Appraisal District’s proposed FY 2022 budget.
GBRA Budget: Council also approved the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority’s (GBRA) proposed Water and Wastewater Treatment Budgets for FY 2022.
In the meantime, the Splash Pad will be OPEN. We apologize and understand the inconvenience. The City of Lockhart wants to ensure the community’s safety as we anticipate a fun and busy summer season.
Your thermometer may say temperatures are in the 90s in Lockhart, but if you factor in the humidity, it feels much warmer. In fact, the U.S. National Weather Service anticipates today’s heat index to reach 102 to 108 degrees that the agency issued a special weather message for excessive heat stress. Here are ways you can protect yourself from the heat:
Also, the City of Lockhart’s Summer Fan Program is ongoing.
You are eligible to receive a fan, if you're:
If you’re in need of a fan, give us a call at (512) 398-3461 or stop by Lockhart City Hall, 308 W. San Antonio St, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Did you know this button was your admission ticket to the Chisholm Trail Roundup back in the 80s?
In celebration of Lockhart’s heritage, on top of its place on the historic Chisholm Trail , check out the Dr. Eugene Clark Library’s FIRST EVER “Lockhart Remembered” exhibition!
Aside from the library’s expansive collection of historical items, the community pitched in, too! Plus, it doesn’t hurt to also experience Texas’ OLDEST and STILL OPERATING LIBRARY, to boot ??
LOCKHART REMEMBERED EXHIBIT:
Thursday, June 10, 4-7 p.m.
Friday, June 11, 4-6 p.m.
Saturday, June 12-3 p.m.
It is starting to feel like summer! With high temperatures and humidity, it may start becoming uncomfortable for some Lockhart residents.
If you are:
You are eligible to receive a free fan through the city's 2021 Summer Fan Program while supplies last.
If you would like a fan, come by or call Lockhart City Hall at (512) 398-3461.
Lockhart City Hall
308 W. San Antonio St.
Lockhart, TX 78644
OPEN: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday-Friday
In preparation for tomorrow's Cowboy Breakfast, Main Street between San Antonio and Market Streets will be shut down today, June 8th, starting at 5 p.m.
If you're driving around the courthouse area, be aware of barricades and increased foot traffic. This part of Main Street will be reopened tomorrow at noon.
Activation criteria for the City of Lockhart includes;
Several Lockhart utility customers have received calls claiming that service will be terminated if they did not make payment arrangements directly with the caller. THE CITY OF LOCKHART DOES NOT REQUEST PAYMENT OVER THE PHONE. When our utilities staff contacts you, they never ask for your account number or any other personal information that you have already provided the city.
If you have received a similar call and are worried you are being scammed, call our Utilities and Billing Department at (512) 376-2475 to confirm.
Information on 130 Environmental Park landfill drop-off services has been compiled into one dedicated location. Click here to visit the new page. The drop-off service is only available to Lockhart residential solid waste customers.
A proposed zoning change for tiny homes, Summerside subdivision expansion, a new natural gas provider, and a property tax reduction request for a historic home were topics of interest at last night’s City Council meeting.
Zoning Change for Towable Tiny Homes: Lockhart City Council rejected a zoning change request for a 5-acre property on 921 Silent Valley Road that would have accommodated an RV park for towable tiny homes.
Summerside Subdivision Expansion: Council members approved a zoning change request for approximately 100 acres. That expands the Summerside subdivision into the adjacent property to the north, which will include four commercial lots and single-family residential development.
TxDOT Transportation Alternatives Grant: City Council voted to proceed with a grant application to TxDOT which will help fund sidewalk improvements on East San Antonio street (SH-142), north of the courthouse square. The $1.8 million grant will provide improved pedestrian and vehicular traffic safety and realign the travel lanes. The timing of this grant opportunity coincides with plans for construction of other street, drainage, and utility improvements downtown.
West Texas Gas: Council granted West Texas Gas a franchise to provide natural gas to the city’s new industrial park on SH-130 and other unserved areas.
Historic House tax abatement: City Council determined that the owners of a registered Historic Landmark on 515 S. Main Street are eligible for City property tax abatement. One of the owners expressed to Council how expensive it can be to preserve a historic home, and, with Council approval, the tax reduction would help them pay for exterior home improvements.
According to the National Weather Service, hurricane season in Texas begins June 1st. Though Lockhart is not located along the Texas coast, our community could still see severe storms, heavy rain, high winds, and flash flooding.
Before that happens, here are some ways to prepare:
When severe weather is in the forecast, you are also advised to keep an eye on local weather reports. Also, sign up for WarnCentralTexas.org to receive emergency alerts and weather notifications in real time.
For more hurricane resources, click here.
Solid Waste and Recycling Collection Agreement: City Council voted to extend Central Texas Refuse’s (CTR) contract by five years, effective today, June 1, 2021.
Under the revised 5-year contract, residential customers may drop off waste at the Environmental Park 130 landfill, up to six cubic yards per visit, at no cost and no limit to number of times. Two annual city-wide clean ups will also continue.
Accounts may vary based on number of collections per week, size of receptacles, and number of receptacles. Annual rate adjustments will be tied to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). Customer rates will be considered and adjusted during the budget adoption process for FY 2021-2022.
In observance of Memorial Day, city offices will be closed Monday, May 31st. This includes the Lockhart Recycling Center, 110 N. Brazos St. Emergency services will still be available.
Our offices will be back open Tuesday, June 1st, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. We'll see you then!
This week, Governor Abbott, along with the Texas Military Department and the Texas Department of Emergency Management, announced that Texans may now schedule vaccine clinics for groups of five or more. Previously, the program was limited to groups of at least ten people.
"The eligibility expansion for the State Mobile Vaccine Program will allow more Texans to get vaccinated against COVID-19," said Governor Abbott. "Vaccines are the most effective defense against this virus, and I urge groups of Texans who wish to get vaccinated as a business, family unit, friend group, or more to call 844-90-TEXAS to schedule a mobile vaccine clinic.”
“By working together to get more shots in arms, we will continue to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in communities across the state," Abbott added.
To schedule a mobile vaccine clinic for family, friends, employees, and volunteers, call 844-90-TEXAS (83927) and select Option 3. If you’re homebound, choose Option 1 to request a state mobile vaccination team to visit your home. The call center is OPEN Monday-Saturday from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
Starting Monday, May 24, you may sign up for the Dr. Eugene Clark Library’s Summer Reading Challenge through the library’s Beanstack site. This year’s theme is “Tails and Tales” and the six-week program is open to children of all ages and adults split up in four categories:
KICK OFF PARTY is Friday, June 4, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. at the library, which will be giving out FREE SNOW CONES, along with your summer reading kit containing program information, themed activity book, poster, and crafts.
The Summer Reading Challenge runs from June 7 to July 18, 2021.
The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs’ Texas Rent Relief Program can help pay for rent and/or utilities as far back as March 13, 2020—which means you can request assistance for up to 11 months of past due bills.
To qualify, households must be at or below 80% of the area median income. Per federal guidelines, applications for households at or below 50% the area median income will be prioritized along with families who have one or more members currently unemployed. Landlords are also encouraged to apply on behalf of tenants, who must co-sign the application.
To apply or if you have any questions, call 1-833-9TX-RENT (1-833-989-7368) or log on to TexasRentRelief.com.
A portion of Market Street, south of the Caldwell County Courthouse, has been blocked off ahead of tonight's first Courthouse Nights music series. It will be reopened at 10 p.m. Friday, May 21.
If you're driving in the area, pay attention to road signs and pedestrians.
Do you know JACK? You are about to.
J.A.C.K., rather the new Justified Automated Collections Kiosks, have been installed at Lockhart City Hall and Municipal Court.
They are designed to be another convenient tool for you to have the ability to pay your utility bill 24/7 without having to stand in line. Aside from utilities, you can also use these kiosks to pay for traffic tickets and fines. They accept cash, credit card, and personal checks. No additional fee will be added if you choose to pay with your credit card.
TUNE IN to our social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Nextdoor, and Instagram for a short video on how to use the new kiosks.
City Council opened the meeting with a recognition of the Lockhart High School baseball and softball teams, then dove into a packed agenda addressing nonprofit funding, the CAMPO transportation study, the American Rescue Plan Act spending guide, a first look on the Wayfinding Plan, and an update on the City’s masking policy.
City Council congratulates Lockhart High School’s Baseball and Softball teams: City Council awarded the Lion Baseball team and Lady Lion Softball team with certificates of recognition. The Lady Lions won the bi-district playoffs. The Lion Baseball team brought Lockhart back into the playoffs after a 30-year drought.
Wayfinding Plan: The chairman of the Wayfinding Committee proposed the addition of entryway signage along major Lockhart roadways. The committee is working to finalize the designs to present to Council on a later date.
CAMPO’s Western Caldwell County Transportation Study: Representatives of the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, or CAMPO, updated council on the Western Caldwell County Transportation Study. The group has been gathering public input on east-west connections between major highways, including SH-130, SH-142, SH-21 and I-35. Four routes are currently under consideration. City Council took no action on this item at this time. The deadline for public comment is June 1.
City of Lockhart funds for Nonprofits: Council asked for detailed information about the number of clients served from Lockhart and whether there is duplication of resources. Representatives of seven local and area nonprofits went before Council to make their case in requesting financial support from the City. The nonprofits were:
American Rescue Plan Act Spending Guidelines: The City of Lockhart has been allocated $3.08M from the American Rescue Plan Act. According to criteria, Lockhart is considered a smaller city and will receive its disbursement from the State rather than directly from the U.S. Treasury. That money will come in two cycles over 14 months or more. The first cycle consists of 50-percent of the allocation, with the second cycle providing the rest of the funding no earlier than 12 months after the first portion is received. City Council asked if this money can be used to help improve broadband access. It is to be determined, for the money must be used for eligible purposes as stated in the Treasury’s guidelines.
COVID-19 Masking Requirements: Pursuant to Governor Abbott’s new Executive Order, City Council voted to rescind local mask orders, emphasizing that fully vaccinated people may keep masks off in outdoor and most indoor settings, unless businesses choose to keep their masking policies in place. Prior to the meeting, the governor issued an executive order prohibiting local government entities—including cities, counties, school districts, and public health authorities—from requiring masks. Last week, the CDC announced fully vaccinated people no longer need masks in most indoor settings, unless required by federal, state, and local governments, along with respective businesses.
Central Texas Refuse solid waste collection contract: City Council moved to have City Staff continue negotiations with Central Texas Refuse. This item will be taken up in a Special Council Meeting next Tuesday, the 25th, at 7: 30 p.m.
Tuesday, March 18, Lockhart City Council voted to rescind Mayor Lew White’s previous local disaster declaration requiring masks in public—in compliance to Governor Abbott’s latest Executive Order, GA-36. The governor’s order states that local government entities, including cities, counties, school districts, and public health authorities, may not impose masking requirements.
“It’s been a long haul,” Mayor White said. “But I’m proud of the community for all it has done to help.”
Masking requirements in Lockhart city facilities have also been lifted, including City Hall, the Dr. Eugene Clark Library, Municipal Court, Lockhart Police, and Fire Departments. That means, City employees and visitors are no longer required to wear face coverings in these buildings. However, city employees are still permitted to wear a face covering if they prefer.
“Masks may no longer be required, but we still urge you to observe the CDC’s guidance,” the mayor added. “If you’re not fully vaccinated, keep masking up.”
Per the CDC, someone is considered fully vaccinated if it has been two weeks since they received their last Moderna, Pfizer, or Johnson & Johnson dose. The agency’s new guidelines recognize that fully vaccinated individuals no longer need to mask up outdoors and in most indoor settings, unless required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, including local business and workplace guidance.
Even after the vote, Lockhart City Council stressed the importance of supporting businesses that choose to keep masking in place. Businesses are exempt from Governor Abbott’s order, along with state supported living centers, government-owned and operated hospitals, state, and local correctional facilities.
To date, hospitalization rates have been on a steady decline in Trauma Service Area O, which includes Lockhart and Austin, at 2.41 percent.
Starting this week, per the Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management, adolescents 12 years old and older can be vaccinated at Adams Gym. A parent or guardian is required to be present if the patient is under 18. Both Pfizer and Moderna vaccines will be available. NO APPOINTMENTS REQUIRED but recommended.
Here’s this week’s vaccine clinic schedule:
419 Bois D’Arc St.
Thursday – Friday (May 20-21) - 12:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Saturday (May 22) – 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Sunday (May 23)– 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
You may sign up using these QR codes to save your spot:
Project will increase reliability, safety of lines through Lockhart
About LCRA and LCRA TSC
The Lower Colorado River Authority serves customers and communities throughout Texas by managing the lower Colorado River; generating and transmitting electric power; providing a clean, reliable water supply; and offering outdoor adventures at more than 40 parks along the Colorado River from the Texas Hill Country to the Gulf Coast. LCRA and its employees are committed to fulfilling our mission to enhance the quality of life of the Texans we serve through water stewardship, energy and community service. LCRA was created by the Texas Legislature in 1934 and receives no state appropriations.
In 2002, LCRA created LCRA Transmission Services Corporation as a nonprofit corporation for transmission operations. LCRA TSC has invested more than $3.6 billion in transmission projects to meet the growing demand for electricity, improve reliability, connect new generating capacity, address congestion problems that affect the competitive market and help move renewable energy to the market. For more information, visit lcra.org.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday, May 13, that fully vaccinated individuals no longer need to mask up or social distance indoors and outdoors, including crowds. You’re considered fully vaccinated if it has been two weeks since you’ve received the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or a dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
“We have all longed for this moment when we can get back to some sense of normalcy,” said CDC director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, at a White House briefing.
If you’ve been fully vaccinated, here’s what you can start to do, according to the CDC:
If you have not been vaccinated, or received your second dose, or you HAVE received your second dose but it’s been less than two weeks, the CDC advises you continue to mask up and keep your distance.
“The science is also very clear about unvaccinated people. You remain at risk of mild or severe illness, of death, or spreading the disease to others,” Dr. Walensky added. “You should still mask, and you should get vaccinated right away."
Summer is slowly creeping in with warmer temperatures, the humidity, and some unwanted visitors: mosquitoes. Here are some things you can do to keep these insects at bay, so you can continue enjoying the outdoors:
IF YOU SEE STANDING WATER IN STREETS OR IN DITCHES, PLEASE CALL CITY OF LOCKHART PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT AT (512) 398-6452. AREAS WILL BE TREATED TO KILL MOSQUITO LARVAE.
COVID-19 cases continue to decrease in Caldwell County, but the pandemic is far from over. As of Monday, May 10, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services’ latest data, there are 111 active cases in the county; down seven cases from the day before. Community leaders, including Lockhart’s Mayor Lew White, credit increased vaccine availability.
“COVID vaccines are readily available in Caldwell County either by appointment with local providers or walk up at Adams Gym,” said Mayor White. “Vaccinating as many people as possible will help us reach herd immunity.”
However, Caldwell County is still falling behind. The Texas DSHS’ most recent vaccine numbers show that 41-percent of the county has received at least one dose, that’s 10-percent less than the state average at 51-percent.
“It is our best path to beating this virus and returning to normalcy,” the Mayor urged.
The Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management, in partnership with Curative, has been holding vaccination clinics at Adams Gym since Monday, May 3rd. Despite the availability of both Moderna vaccine doses, the county’s emergency manager expressed concern over the smaller turnout. Instead of vaccinating up to 300 people per day, the clinic only saw an average of 12 people per day.
As the community gradually opens, Mayor White emphasized how critical it is for people not to miss their shot.
“If you haven't gotten the vaccine, strongly consider doing so for your safety and that of your family and community,” White stressed. “We are almost there, so let's finish strong to the finish line.”
Adams Gym, 419 Bois D'Arc, turns into a COVID-19 vaccination clinic for people in need of a shot.
Moderna Vaccines are still available at Adams Gym (419 Bois D’Arc) this week, May 10-14, APPOINTMENTS NOT REQUIRED:
Mon-Wed (May 10-12): 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Thurs-Sun (May 13-16): 12 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Also, check with your medical provider for vaccine availability. Last week, the Texas DSHS announced that weekly vaccine allocations will stop due to a decrease in demand and will only fill orders placed by vaccine providers.
Adolescents aged 12 years old and up are now eligible to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The agency made the announcement Monday, as it amended the emergency use authorization issued in December.
“The FDA’s expansion of the emergency use authorization for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to include adolescents 12 through 15 years of age is a significant step in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock, M.D. “Today’s action allows for a younger population to be protected from COVID-19, bringing us closer to returning to a sense of normalcy and to ending the pandemic.”
The FDA’s announcement comes days after the Texas Department of State Health Services encouraged pediatric providers to enroll in the COVID-19 vaccine program.
“Vaccinating adolescents will bring us closer to ending the pandemic and getting back to normal,” said DSHS Commissioner John Hellerstedt, MD.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 1.5 million adolescents between the age of 11 and 17 got sick with the coronavirus from March 1, 2020 through April 30, 2021. Experts at the CDC said children and adolescents generally have milder COVID-19 symptoms than adults.
“Parents and guardians can rest assured that the agency undertook a rigorous and thorough review of all available data, as we have with all of our COVID-19 vaccine emergency use authorizations,” the FDA’s Commissioner Woodcock added.
The City takes the first step in the redistricting process, a monthly music series begins at the Square, street improvements, and a landmark renovation took center stage in Tuesday night's City Council meeting.
Redistricting Process: To review the results of the 2020 U.S. Census, City Council engaged Bickerstaff, Heath, Delgado & Acosta, LLP of Austin to provide legal services for all aspects associated with the redistricting process. The Lockhart City Charter requires the City to review and redraw voting district boundaries after completion of the Census every ten years. Per Section 3.15 of the City Charter, the boundaries must be consistent with the requirements for equality and equal population in each district:
“In doing so, the council shall retain, as far as practicable, the present district boundaries while remaining consistent with requirements for equality and equal population among each of the districts.”
Bickerstaff, Heath, Delgado & Acosta, LLP assisted the City with redistricting in 2010.
Monthly Music Series at the Square: Lockhart will soon have its own version of “Blues on the Green,” called “Courthouse Nights.” City Council approved Rach & Rhodes Presents’ request for City support to start the free monthly musical event. “Courthouse Nights”’ lineup features bands performing diverse musical genres. Organizers requested “in-kind support” through additional trash receptacles around the courthouse, barricades, and electrical services. “Courthouse Nights” opens May 21st, 7 p.m.- 10 p.m., and will be held every third Friday until October.
Fire Station No. 1 Interior Renovations: Architectural firm, Studio Steinbomer Architects and Interiors presented City Council with recommendations on Fire Station No. 1’s interior renovations. The primary purpose of the Fire Station No.1 Condition report is to document the portions of the existing building, which may need functional updating and with more attention directed to important, life-safety issues for occupants and the better protection of the building. These improvements are intended to not alter the historic aspects of the building. City Council agreed to consider these recommendations and evaluate funding sources during the FY 2021-2022 Budget process.
Street Improvement Plan Update: In the City’s continuous efforts to improve city streets, City Council voted to amend the Capital Street Improvement Plan for FY 2020-2021. In 2019, Council approved a three-year plan to enhance several streets by allocating an additional $400,000 to use for those projects. Consequently, City staff identified that unused funds will be available this year and, with the City Council’s approval, ensured those funds will be used in this year’s street improvement projects.
On the first week of May, the U.S. Small Business Administration encourages communities to highlight local entrepreneurs and small business owners. As you may know, most of Lockhart’s businesses are considered small and every dollar you spend, not only helps local businesses stay open, but also keeps our community running.
For every $100 you spend in a Lockhart business, the City of Lockhart collects $1.50 in sales tax revenue:
"Small town businesses are the backbone of towns like ours," said Mayor Lew White, "These businesses, not only provide valued sales tax revenue to the community, but more importantly give us constant reminders of the independent thriving community that Lockhart stands for."
We appreciate our partners at the Lockhart Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Caldwell County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the LEDC, who remain committed to growing a flourishing economy that supports businesses in the city.
"You can't say it any better than SHOP LOCKHART!" Mayor White exclaimed.
LOCKHART, Tx—Months may have passed since Winter Storm Uri swept through Texas, but many Texans, including Lockhart residents, continue to feel its impact while in recovery. To help ease financial stress, the Caldwell County Appraisal District, along with the City of Lockhart, encourage property owners affected to apply for temporary property tax relief.
“The City is looking for all ways possible to help our citizens that had damage or loss during the winter storm,” said Mayor Lew White. “Please read the details of the possible property tax relief program to see if you qualify.”
According to state law, property owners in counties named in the governor’s disaster declaration may apply for a temporary property tax exemption. Qualified property includes homes, apartments, commercial, and industrial buildings with at least 15-percent damage to receive a tax exemption of a portion of its appraised value as shown in the table below:
Texas law also states the county’s appraisal district staff will assess the damage, which will help determine how much aid a property owner will receive.
"Caldwell County property owners will spend the next few months rebuilding their homes and businesses,” said Caldwell County Chief Appraiser, Shanna Ramzinski. “This temporary exemption can offer some property tax relief during this difficult time.”
The deadline to apply is 105th day of the Governor’s issuance of the disaster declaration, which is May 28, 2021. Click here for the application.
If you have not been vaccinated against COVID-19, here is your chance. Starting Monday, May 3, a FREE vaccination clinic will be held at Adams Gym (419 Bois D’Arc St), 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday thru Friday.
That week, first and second doses of the Moderna vaccine will be available. Appointments are RECOMMENDED, but walk-ups are also welcome. Scan the QR code below to sign up:
As temperatures continue to warm up, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention released a new set of guidelines for summer camps. Upon opening for in-person activities, the CDC stressed the importance of masking up, social distancing, and, if eligible, being vaccinated. The CDC’s new recommendations include:
The CDC emphasized that these new guidelines are not meant to replace any state, or local safety laws camps are required to follow.
In an advisory released Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that people who are considered fully vaccinated do not need to wear masks outdoors. You are considered fully vaccinated if it has been at least two weeks since you have been inoculated with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, or your second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.
Even with this new development, the CDC still recommends fully vaccinated people to avoid or wear a mask for large gatherings, including sports stadiums and concerts. The agency still urges mask wearing in indoor spaces and gatherings.
In March, the CDC allowed fully vaccinated people to gather indoors without masks with others who also have been vaccinated, and those who are unvaccinated but are members of the same household. According to the CDC’s latest data, nearly 30-percent of the U.S. are considered fully vaccinated.
The Central Texas Vaccine Collaborative, which includes Caldwell County, announced that the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) will host another mass vaccination event this weekend, May 1 and 2.
Appointments are REQUIRED. Click here to sign up.
Over the weekend, the Texas Department of State Health Services announced vaccine providers may now continue administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after a thorough safety review from the CDC’s advisory committee. That committee determined the benefits outweigh the risks.
“The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is an important tool in our fight against COVID-19, and the scientific review over the last 11 days has affirmed its safety and effectiveness,” said Dr. John Hellerstedt, DSHS commissioner. “We know some Texans prefer the simplicity of a single-dose vaccine, and the ease of storing and handling this vaccine gives providers more flexibility. Resuming the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will prevent hospitalizations and save lives in Texas.”
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was paused April 13 after six patients developed blood clots, known as thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome, or TTS. These cases triggered a safety review that led to the discovery of an additional nine instances of blood clots connected to the vaccine. That brought cases up to 15, out of seven million people who have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
On top of allowing the administration of the vaccine, the DSHS also shared information on how to treat TTS. Vaccine providers were also instructed to share this fact sheet with recipients.
While TTS is extremely rare, you should seek medical attention if you experience any of these symptoms within three weeks of receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine:
Starting Monday, April 26, a portion of Maple St. in front of the Cpl. Jason K. Lafleur Park will be shut down to make way for more construction, as part of the Maple Street Expansion project. The park and corresponding sidewalks will remain open, but access to the parking lot will be limited. The project is expected to take a few months before completed.
Please exercise caution and pay attention to road signs when in the area.
Starting tomorrow, you no longer need to have an appointment in order to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at the Circuit of the Americas (COTA). Leaders with the Central Texas Counties Vaccine Collaborative, which includes Caldwell County, say anyone over the age of 16 will qualify to get their free first dose of the Pfizer vaccine. Anyone 16 or 17 years old will need their parent or guardian with them in the vehicle upon arrival at COTA.
Hours of No-Appointment Operation at Circuit of The Americas
9201 Circuit of the Americas Blvd, Austin, TX 78617
Friday – April 23, 2021 – 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Saturday – April 24, 2021 – 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Sunday – April 25, 2021 – 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
(Image courtesy: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Hurricane season is almost upon us, are you prepared? After much of Texas went through a historic winter weather event in February, Texans are encouraged to have emergency supplies on-hand in case of another natural disaster. This weekend, April 24-26, the state is helping you save money to purchase emergency items you may need.
"As hurricane season approaches, I encourage Texans across the state to prepare today for a safer tomorrow," said Texas Governor Greg Abbott. "Our Emergency Supplies Sales Tax Holiday helps ensure that Texans can purchase necessary emergency preparedness supplies to protect themselves and their families in the event of future disasters."
Note: Several over-the-counter self-care items, such as antibacterial hand sanitizer, soap, spray and wipes, are always exempt from sales tax if they are labeled with a “Drug Facts” panel in accordance with federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations.
Property tax relief, a new external city financial auditor and a last-minute cancellation of a zoning change proposal topped last night’s City Council meeting.
Temporary Disaster Property Tax Relief:
A representative from the Caldwell County Appraisal District made a presentation to City Council showing how property owners can apply for temporary property tax relief due to damage from Winter Storm Uri. Because Caldwell County is included in Governor Abbott’s disaster declaration, properties that have at least 15-percent damage from the storm may receive a temporary exemption of a portion of its appraised value.
Qualified property includes:
The deadline to apply is May 28, 2021.
New City Financial Auditor:
City Council appointed BrooksWatson & Co., PLLC from Houston to be the City’s new external financial auditor in the next three years, with the option to extend another two years. That term begins fiscal year ending September 2021. Lockhart’s City Charter requires the City to rotate an external financial auditor every five years. The City’s previous auditor, Harrison, Waldrop, and Uherek, fulfilled its five-year term recently.
Zoning Change Proposal:
The zoning change applicant withdrew his request to change 11.011 acres at 1820 S. Colorado Street from a Commercial Heavy Business District and Agricultural—Open Space, to Commercial Heavy Business District and Residential Heavy Business District.
It may have been over a year since COVID-19 disrupted Texans’ way of life, but the effects of the pandemic remain apparent to people who lost their jobs and are struggling to pay the bills. Here is a reminder that help is available.
The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs’ Texas Rent Relief Program can help pay for rent and/or utilities as far back as March 13, 2020—which means you can request assistance for up to 11 months of past due bills.
To apply or if you have any questions, call 1-833-9TX-RENT (1-833-989-7368) or log on to TexasRentRelief.com.
Caldwell county residents, along with fellow Texans in 126 counties, may continue applying for FEMA Individual Assistance until May 20th.
"Thank you to FEMA for granting this registration period extension for Individual Assistance to counties severely impacted by the winter storm," said Governor Abbott. "I encourage Texans in the qualifying counties to apply for this assistance to help repair any lasting damages from the storm."
If you are uninsured or underinsured and your house or business had significant damage from February’s winter storm, you are qualified to apply for Individual Assistance.
If you are insured and you had damage from the winter storm event, you can still get help. Contact your insurance provider to see what damages will be covered then seek government support. Visit the Texas Department of Insurance for additional tips when filing a claim.
The Texas Department of State Health Services instructed COVID-19 vaccine providers to stop administering the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine in accordance with the CDC and U.S. FDA’s recommendation. Both federal entities reported that six people developed blood clots six to thirteen days after receiving the vaccine.
Though federal and state health officials stated that blood clots are extremely rare as a side effect, they will continue examining the Johnson & Johnson vaccines to ensure safety.
So far, 500,000 Johnson & Johnson vaccines have been administered in Texas. No blood clot cases have been reported in-state.
Just in time for summer, the City of Lockhart and Lockhart Independent School District (LISD) launched a joint summer recreation program called “Lockhart Summer Teen Center.” The program is free and aims to fill the need for positive recreational activities for local youth aged 13-18 over the summer.
Beginning June 7, participants will be able to meet from 12 - 5 p.m. on weekdays at LISD facilities, including Adams Gym, PRIDE High School’s cafeteria, and the field behind the M.L. Cisneros Education Support Center. There, they will have options to play indoor soccer, basketball, horseshoes, cornhole, board games, and other activities. Free lunches will also be provided.
The City and LISD have a history of collaboration and partnership, as members of the Northern Caldwell County Coalition (NCCC) along with Caldwell County, communicating and meeting regularly to discuss local needs and opportunities.
Mayor Lew White and Lockhart City Council members gave final approval to the program at the April 6th council meeting. With that vote, the City agrees to contribute 50-percent of the program’s cost, which will help cover personnel, supplies, and utility expenses.
“The City of Lockhart and LISD are proud to announce a new partnership for our city's youth,” said Mayor White. “The City sees this as the beginning of a parks and recreation program to build on for the future.”
The Mayor added that summer programs, like the Lockhart Summer Teen Center, provide a much-needed safe haven for teenagers through educational support, physical activity, and socialization; while also giving working families peace of mind.
“The district is so grateful for the City’s partnership in launching this much-needed program for our teens,” said Superintendent Mark Estrada. “In Lockhart ISD, we believe in whole-child education, which means every student should be challenged, healthy, engaged, safe, and supported.”
“The development of this program, through this partnership, provides equitable access to recreational activities that directly support healthy adolescent development,” Superintendent Estrada added.
“Lockhart ISD Community Education is excited to partner with the City of Lockhart to provide a fun, safe recreation opportunity for the teens in our community this summer,” shared LISD Director of Community Education Karla Tate. “We hope many teens will take advantage of this free, fun program!”
Stay tuned for more information about the program and how to apply through the City’s and LISD’s websites and social media channels. The program continues through August 1.
A full City Council agenda led to approval of the creation of a new Parks and Recreation Department, a joint summer recreation program with Lockhart ISD, and a third-party evaluation of the Lockhart Animal Shelter.
But the biggest take away from Tuesday’s council meeting is how the City plans to pay for the additional unbudgeted $3.5M power expenses due to Winter Storm Uri.
City Council decided to alleviate the burden of the winter weather's cost impact from its customers. In doing so, the following direction was given to staff to help manage costs:
After further discussion, these items were also approved:
Animal Shelter Evaluation: Council awarded Animal Control & Care Academy a contract to conduct an independent assessment of the Lockhart Animal Services Division and Shelter. The City ensured that hiring a third party to assess the shelter is not uncommon and is a necessary means to find ways to improve operations. The ACCA report is expected to be available early summer.
City of Lockhart and Lockhart ISD joint summer recreation program: The City of Lockhart and Lockhart ISD recognized the need for a summer recreation program for local youth, aged 13-18 years old. The City and LISD partnered up and created the “Lockhart Summer Teen Center.” The free program includes activities like indoor soccer, basketball, cornhole, horseshoes, and board games. Free lunch will also be provided. The City will contribute 50-percent of the cost, which will help pay for personnel, supplies, and utilities.
“I was very pleased with the school district’s reaction to this request,” Mayor Lew White said. “They were enthusiastic and eager to get going.”
The Mayor added that summer programs, like the Lockhart Summer Teen Center, provide a much-needed safe haven for teenagers through educational support, physical activity, and socialization, while also giving working families peace of mind.
The Lockhart Summer Teen Center officially kicks off June 7.
New Parks and Recreation Department: City Council voted unanimously to create the new Parks and Recreation Department and commence the search for a new Parks director. The City determined the new Parks director will report to the City Manager, instead of the Public Works director. The new department will focus on developing a strong recreation program, well maintained, and aesthetically pleasing park and recreation facilities as outlined in the citizen-based 2018 Parks, Recreation and Open Space Master Plan.
Other agenda items approved by council, include:
The City of Lockhart is looking to fill six lifeguard positions. If you're interested, you must be a certified lifeguard and also certified in CPR/First Aid Training. Lifeguards must perform swimming pool lifeguard duties, pool maintenance/operational activities and assist with concession stand operations. Pay range from $9.25 – $13.25 per hour.
**Call (512) 398-3461 to discuss opportunities to obtain certifications.
(Photo courtesy Shutterstock)
The city is also looking to hire a pool manager who is also a certified lifeguard and received CPR/First Aid Training. This position will perform and supervise employees in pool maintenance and operational activities, operate and manage concession stand, and assist with hiring other Lifeguards. Salary range from $13.75- $19.75 per hour.
You may pick up an application at City Hall, 308 W. San Antonio St., Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. These positions will remain open until filled.
In observance of the Good Friday Holiday, City offices will be closed Friday, April 2, 2021.
Trash pick up stays on normal schedule.
We'll see you Monday!
It's that time of the year again! Bluebonnets are in full bloom and it's hard to resist taking photos with these beauties, especially for springtime Easter photos.
But please exercise caution before you strike a pose. Here are some safety tips from the Texas Department of Public Safety:
Also, watch out for snakes. We are in Texas, after all.
Spring cleaning continues in Lockhart with the Household Hazardous Waste collection event at City Park.
JOIN US Saturday, April 10, 2021, from 9 a.m. to noon at the park’s Main/Central Pavilion RAIN OR SHINE.
Please bring a utility bill or other proof of residence and stay in your vehicle once you arrive to the event.
We will take:
We will NOT take:
To keep everyone safe, please take these SAFETY PRECAUTIONS:
This event is FREE. Call (512) 398-3461 for more information.
A Special 'Thank you' to our Sponsors: Capital Area Council of Governments, TCEQ, Central Texas Refuse, Keep Lockhart Beautiful, Plum Creek Watershed Partnership
Right as the state opened up COVID vaccine eligibility to Texans 16-years old and older, the Texas Health and Human Services launched a new website where you can sign up for a vaccine. You can access the new Texas Public Health Vaccine Scheduler here or call (833) 832-7067, if you do not have Internet.
The Texas Division of Emergency Management’s Chief, Nim Kidd, announced that 2-million vaccine doses are on the way to the state the week of March 29-April 2; 700 of those doses are allocated to Lockhart providers:
Aske Solutions, LLC
4001 N. U.S. Hwy 183, Lockhart, TX
BJP Healthcare, LLC
1724 S. Colorado St., Lockhart, TX
HEB Pharmacy #445
403 S. Colorado St., Lockhart, TX
Lockhart Family Medicine
1009 W. San Antonio St., Lockhart, TX
**Data provided by the Texas Department of State Health Services
Though vaccine eligibility has been expanded to most Texas adults, the Texas Department of State Health Services stressed that Texans 80 years and older remain FIRST PRIORITY whether they have an appointment or not.
As part of Governor Abbott’s “Save our Seniors” Initiative, the Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management added a tab in the county’s vaccine pre-registration page reserved for people who are homebound. That means, people who are unable to transport themselves to a vaccine appointment due to limited mobility that requires the use of a walker or wheelchair, they are bedridden, they do not have family in town, or have a specific ailment.
So far, a little over 70 county residents have been vaccinated at home. If you meet the criteria, sign up here to make an appointment or call: (512)359-4637. Only the individuals themselves, or a family member, may sign up for this service. Upon registration, expect a phone call and/or e-mail from the county to verify eligibility.
Due to limited doses and personnel available for this program, the county’s emergency management team will make the final determination on who is eligible and when appointments will be scheduled.
Starting Monday, March 29, all adults in Texas will be eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19. According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the state expects more vaccine supplies to come in next week.
“We are closing in on 10 million doses administered in Texas,” said Imelda Garcia, Texas DSHS chair of Expert Vaccine Allocation. “We want to keep up the momentum as the vaccine supply increases.”
(Image courtesy: The Associated Press)
Even with the expanded eligibility, the state health department still advises vaccine providers to prioritize people 80 years old and up, along with those who are at high risk of getting sick with the coronavirus.
This new development also prompts the DSHS to launch a website next week where you can register for a shot. The Texas Public Health Vaccine Scheduler will identify upcoming vaccine clinics hosted by DSHS or any participating local health department. You will also be notified when new clinics and appointments become available. The DSHS Vaccine Information page will continue to be a resource for additional providers.
If online registration poses a challenge, the state health department will also provide a toll-free number next week to help assist with appointments.
The City of Lockhart will keep you informed once the state’s website goes live and the toll-free number is provided. Right now, if you have not already, you can still pre-register for a vaccine with Caldwell County through this website, or call (512) 359-4637. You can also dial 2-1-1 to find a vaccine clinic nearest you.
As temperatures warm up, people are enjoying the weather by spending more time outdoors. No matter how you travel to your destination, the Governors’ Highway Safety Association, and the Texas Department of Transportation, along with the City of Lockhart, urge you to be mindful of both drivers and pedestrians.
In its most recent report, the GHSA saw a 20-percent increase in pedestrian deaths nationwide for the first six months of 2020. Seven states, including Texas, accounted for over half of those deaths. A trend the group found concerning, especially with fewer drivers out on the roads due to COVID-19.
TxDOT has also seen an increase in pedestrian fatalities. While data from last year has not been finalized, between 2015 and 2019, the state agency reported 3,150 pedestrian deaths. A very small fraction of that number is in Lockhart, but you are still encouraged to exercise caution while traveling.
In response to these numbers, Lockhart Police steps up traffic enforcement. Officers are out on patrol focusing on issues that cause collisions, like distracted driving and DWIs, to help reduce these incidents within city limits.