On Monday 5/18, Governor Greg Abbott announced an Executive Order regarding the Phase II of the State of Texas’ ongoing plan to safely and strategically open Texas while minimizing the spread of COVID-19.

  • Restaurants may increase their occupancy to 50% and additional services and activities that remained closed under Phase I may open with restricted occupancy levels and minimum standard health protocols laid out by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS)
  • Public schools in Texas have the option to provide in-person summer school so long as they follow social distancing practices and health protocols laid out by DSHS. These classes may begin as soon as June 1st
  • The following services and activities may open under Phase II:
    • Youth Clubs (May 18)
    • Massage and Personal-Care Centers (May 18)
    • Child Care Centers (May 18)
    • Restaurants may expand their occupancy to 50% beginning May 22
    • Businesses located in office buildings may also open but must limit their occupancy to the greater of 10 employees or 25% of their workforce.
    • Aquariums and Natural Caverns (May 22)
    • Bars (May 22)
      • including wine tasting rooms, craft breweries, and similar businesses may open at 25% occupancy but like restaurants, these occupancy limits do not apply to outdoor areas that maintain safe distancing among parties
    • Bowling Alleys, Bingo Halls, Simulcast Racing, and Skating Rinks (May 22)
    • Rodeo and Equestrian Events (May 22)
    • Zoos (May 29)
    • Certain professional sports without in-person spectators (May 31)
    • Youth Sports (May 31)
    • Overnight Youth Camps (May 31)
    • Day Youth Camps (May 31)
This week, City Council convened virtually for the first time.
  • Public Session was held yesterday with residents calling in to give comments.
    • New guidelines are in place for speakers to participate remotely
  • Agenda Session was held this morning.  Here were some of the notable items:
    • Item #6 – QIAGEN, INC for approval of spending authority for Emergency Purchase of Microbiology Equipment Testing Stations related to COVID-19 Pandemic for the Houston Health Department – $106,495.30 – General Fund
      • The Director of the Houston Health Department and the Chief Procurement Officer recommend that City Council approve spending authority in an amount not to exceed $106,495.30 for microbiology equipment testing stations, and that authorization be given to issue a purchase order to Qiagen, Inc. for the Houston Health Department (HHD).
      • The Strategic Procurement Division issued an emergency purchase order to Qiagen, LLC on March 09, 2020 related to the COVID-19 Pandemic. HHD’s immediate response to address the emergency was to expand laboratory microbiology equipment testing stations for the 2019-nCoV, the causative agent of COVID-19 citywide. The public health emergency caused by this novel virus required Qiagen, Inc.’s proprietary equipment and they were selected for its quality of services and immediate response time to deliver and address the emergency health and safety situation.
    • Item #12 – RESOLUTION of City Council amending Resolution No. 2020-19 to adopt a Modified Budget Schedule for the City Budgets for Fiscal Year 2021 (July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021)
      • This modified schedule is made necessary by Council action taken on May 13, 2020, which changed the public hearing date for the Fiscal year 2021 City Budget from May 27, 2020 to June 3, 2020.
    • Item #19 – ORDINANCE approving and authorizing first amendment to contract between City of Houston and Houston’s CAPITAL INVESTING IN DEVELOPMENT AND EMPLOYMENT OF ADULTS, INC, extending the term of the contract and providing additional Community Development Block Grant (“CDBG”) Funds for the continued administration, implementation, oversight and delivery of a Workforce Development Program – 1 Year – $200,000.00 – Grant Fund
      • Capital IDEA lifts low-income working families out of poverty by enabling participants to pursue associate degrees in higher-paying and in-demand professional fields/careers that lead to life-long independence. Currently, Capital IDEA has 238 participants enrolled, participating in various stages of the program as follows: 6 are in developmental instruction in basic math, English, and writing; 42 are in prerequisite courses for college; 51 are enrolled in required core classes for their major; and 139 students have graduated. Of the 139 graduates, 14 are currently preparing to take the State Board of examination, 75 are seeking employment, and 50 have obtained living wage employment within the past two years and are actively being tracked. The agency anticipates 36 graduates in the class of 2020.
    • Item #22 – *PULLED* – ORDINANCE allocating $1,000,000.00 in TIRZ Affordable Housing Funds to provide Down Payment and Closing Costs Assistance to income eligible first-time homebuyers through the Homebuyer Assistance Program (HAP)
      • HAP provides financial assistance to income-eligible first-time homebuyers to purchase a home within incorporated areas of the city of Houston. In order to allow the applicants to close on their homes within contract deadlines, HAP works with participating lenders to deliver up to $30,000.00 per applicant for down payment and closing costs to purchase the home.
      • The goal of the program is to increase homeownership opportunities for low- and moderate- income applicants, within the incorporated areas of Houston. HAP is also designed to expand the supply of quality, safe, affordable housing within Houston, and to continue to improve homeownership affordability by facilitating the movement of individuals into new or existing homes.
      • Funding for this item is included in the FY2020 Adopted Budget. Therefore, no fiscal note is required as stated in the Financial Policies.
Pop-Off Session: Council Member Thomas
This year, Eid al-Fitr, the last day of Ramadan, will fall on Saturday, May 23rd. As families traditionally gather for a meal at sundown to mark this occasion, we wish all of our Muslim residents a safe, joyful day, and a night of great food.  Festivities may not go through as planned, due to social distancing, but virtual events are being held to celebrate this day of peace.
The City of Houston has hosted a virtual job fair and is actively hiring.  Please visit the Human Resources Department website or follow their Twitter feed for job postings.



Please be advised that construction on this roadside rehabilitation has begun in the Carver Crest subdivision. For more information, please refer to this presentation and view the public meeting below.
Please be advised that construction on this CIP project began on April 14, 2020 and is anticipated to be completed in March 2022.  For more information, refer to this FAQ.

A virtual public meeting was held by Public Works on Tuesday, April 21st.  Please click on the video below to view the meeting.  The answers to the Q&A section can be found here.