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Fully-Local • Non-Partisan • Public-Service Journalism
 

Stories by Ashley Lopez, KUT

Local health officials lift Covid-19 restrictions as infections hit record low

Lee esta historia en español. Health officials in Austin and Travis County announced Wednesday that they are lifting “all Covid-19 emergency rules and orders, effective immediately.” Masking is now optional in most city facilities, except for the airport, clinical settings…

It's official: Texas’ new voting law led to higher rejection rates for mail-in ballots in Central Texas

County election officials in the Austin area are reporting a higher than usual rejection rate for mail-in ballots during the March 1 primary election. This was the first election since Texas’ new voting law went into effect. The law, known…

Election officials say Texas' new ID rules for voting by mail could cause more ballots to get rejected

Lee esta historia en español. More people’s mail-in ballots could be rejected in the March primary because of Texas’ new ID matching requirement, local election officials say. The requirement is part of Texas’ new voting law, Senate Bill 1. A provision…

Researchers at Dell Med are studying psychedelics as treatment for severe depression, anxiety and PTSD

The Dell Medical School at UT Austin is launching a research center focused on studying the therapeutic effects of psychedelics, which are drugs that affect an individual’s state of consciousness, including psilocybin, MDMA, ibogaine and ayahuasca. Researchers say the center’s…

Featured Collection: Austin Energy 2022 rate case

Austin Energy ramps up outreach for proposed rate changes

Austin Energy has entered the public hearing phase of its base rate review process, following its proposal to raise service costs. The monthslong dialogue with stakeholders and city staff, slated for resolution by City Council in November, has surfaced predictable…

Here's what's in Texas Republicans' new voting law

Editor’s Note: Senate Bill 1, Texas’ restrictive new voting bill, was the law of the Lone Star State for barely an hour when civil rights groups launched a slew of lawsuits aimed at striking down the law. A federal lawsuit…

EMS Association president says medics are 'exhausted' and 'hopeless' as Covid cases surge

Emergency medical services in Austin are facing a huge crunch as Covid-19 cases surge. Selena Xie, the president of the Austin EMS Association, said EMS workers are significantly understaffed at a time when their call volume is skyrocketing. “Medics are just…

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Austin congressman wants to give local governments the ability to expand Medicaid

Democratic U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett of Austin is introducing legislation that would allow local governments in Texas to expand Medicaid to more of their low-income residents. During this year’s legislative session, Texas lawmakers again refused to expand the program statewide.…

Both of Austin's Covid-19 vaccine 'hub' providers are struggling to fill appointments

UT’s Dell Medical School (along with UT Health) and Austin Public Health are reporting issues getting people signed up to be vaccinated against Covid-19. Both organizations were designated by the state as “hub” providers. The state created the hub model…

Austin Police Department Budget, 2012-2022

During the 2020-21 budget process, City Council cut $31.5 million from APD’s budget, citing the protests and “community outcry against the disproportionate impact of police violence on Black Americans, Latinx Americans and other non-white ethnic communities,” according to the approved…

Here's what you should know as more people in Austin get vaccinated against Covid-19

As vaccinations ramp up a year into the coronavirus pandemic, there finally seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel. But we’re not in the clear yet. Morning Edition host Jennifer Stayton talked with KUT’s health care…

Austin Public Health to start opening Covid-19 vaccine appointments every Monday evening

Starting yesterday, Austin Public Health will be releasing appointments every Monday evening for first doses of the Covid-19 vaccine. Prior to this, officials were opening appointments on Tuesdays and Thursdays, somewhat sporadically. The specific days and the number of these appointments…

Central Texas counties vaccinate 3,000 people in test run for mega site at Circuit of the Americas

Lee esta historia en español. More than 3,000 people were vaccinated against Covid-19 this past weekend at Circuit of the Americas. Officials from Travis, Hays, Bastrop and Caldwell counties are working to open a drive-thru mass vaccination site there that…

Texas won't be getting its Covid-19 vaccine shipments until weather conditions improve, state officials say

Snowstorms across the state are expected to affect Texas’ effort to vaccinate people this week. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “has put vaccine shipments on hold” due to dangerous conditions created by the storm, the Texas Department of…

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