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Public Health and Safety Update

A number of orders and rules are in place to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in our community. Below is a general overview of the current restrictions and recommendations. Please visit the City of Austin’s website for the most comprehensive and up-to-date COVID-19 information.

General Guidelines:

  • Practice frequent hand washing
  • Stay home if you are sick and avoid being around anyone who is sick
  • Maintain social distancing of 6 feet at all times
  • Wear a mask and don’t touch your face

Current City of Austin/Travis County Orders

The City of Austin and Travis County “Stay Home, Mask, and Otherwise Be Safe” Orders are in effect through April 21, 2021.

These orders direct Austin-Travis County residents to continue to practice social distancing, hygiene, and face-covering behaviors. In addition to hygiene guidelines, the orders state that social gatherings up to 10 people should be avoided or minimized, and socializing in groups of 10+ individuals outside of the same household are prohibited.

The Austin-Travis County Health Authority extended the Health Authority Rules through April 15, 2021.

Both the Austin and Travis County Orders and the Health Authority Rules can be found on the Austin-Travis County COVID-19 Orders and Rules webpage.

State of Texas

Governor Greg Abbott issued Executive Order GA-34—which took effect on March 10, 2021—to provide that, in all counties not in an area with high hospitalizations:

1. there are no COVID-19-related operating limits for business or other establishment; and

2. individuals are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings over the nose and mouth wherever it is not feasible to maintain six feet of social distancing from another person not in the same household, but no person may be required by any jurisdiction to wear or to mandate the wearing of a face covering.

For current information on the Governor’s orders and regulations, visit the Texas Coronavirus Resources and Response Page.

COVID-19 Risk-Based Guidelines

Austin-Travis County is currently in Stage 3, the third-highest level, in Austin Public Health’s risk-based Guidelines.

Stage 3: Includes the recommendations for Stage 2 and also urges individuals to avoid all gatherings with social groups greater than 10. High-risk individuals should also avoid non-essential travel. Businesses are recommended to operate up to 50-75% capacity.

Image credit: KVUE

Click here to review a chart of risk-based guideline thresholds and recommendations.

COVID-19 Testing and Vaccine Information

All adults are now eligible for COVID-19 vaccination. Click here for the latest information from the Austin-Travis County Health Department and to pre-register for vaccination.

Find a vaccine provider near you.

Austin Public Health has launched a COVID-19 vaccine pre-registration system to help vulnerable individuals access the vaccine. You can pre-register here.

COVID-19 Testing

Austin Public Health Testing

Austin Public Health operates several COVID-19 testing sites throughout Austin. Options include drive-thru sites, in-home testing, and neighbor testing locations. Click here to learn more.

Downtown Testing Locations

  • UT Health
    • UT Health Austin offers drive-thru testing by appointment only. Call 1-833-UT-CARES to schedule an appointment.
  • Tarrytown Pharmacy has set up a downtown testing site in the parking lot at 3rd and Colorado.
    • Rapid testing available by appointment
    • Click here for more information.

Testing is available at private sites around Austin, including through hospitals, at pharmacies, or at urgent care centers. View the COVID-19 Austin-area Test Locations Map here.

Review the City of Austin’s recap of 2020 Covid-19 Economic Resources and distribution.

Travis County Relief Efforts:

The Health and Human Services Department is providing relief to Travis County residents struggling to pay rent because of the coronavirus pandemic, as well as low-income residents experiencing housing instability. Applications for aid opened on April 19, 2021, and will remain open until Sept. 1 or until funds run out. Click here to learn more about the application process and to apply for assistance.

Resources for Businesses, Employers and Job Seekers

Paycheck Protection Program

  • The U.S. Small Business Administration Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) initiative has reopened for certain new and existing borrowers. Click here to access resources for new and existing applicants.
  • Eligible businesses may apply for a Second Draw PPP loan.The SBA is currently accepting applications for Second Draw PPP Loans. At least $25 billion is being set aside for Second Draw PPP Loans to eligible borrowers, those with a maximum of 10 employees or seeking loans of $250,000 or less.
  • Visit the NFIB website for webinars and the latest updates focused on helping small businesses navigate and recover from the pandemic.

Workforce Solutions Capital Area Re: WorkNow Program

RE:WorkNOW is a rapid training effort within the Austin Metro Area Community Workforce Plan, designed to assist the City of Austin and Travis County’s approximately 50,000 jobless residents connect to no-cost, rapid, and safe training. These programs will be provided by Austin Community College District, Local 286 Plumbers & Pipefitters Union, Skillpoint Alliance, Digital Creative Institute, and Tech Talent South.

Face Mask Guidelines

All individuals over the age of ten must wear some form of covering over their nose and mouth. Parents and guardians of children under ten shall be responsible for appropriately masking children when outside their residence. Wearing a face covering should not be used as a substitute for social distancing and frequent hand washing.

Downtown Ambassadors

Our Downtown Ambassadors are hard at work to keep downtown clean and safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. Along with increased cleaning efforts, they are setting up handwashing stations, practicing social distancing, and sharing information on good hygiene practices.

Contact the ambassadors at (512) 937-7422 for safety escorts, graffiti removal, and more. Click here for a full list of their services.

If you have additional information that would be helpful to the downtown community, please email us at

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