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THE BIG PICTURE
(City of Buda Weekly Newsletter)
Week of June 1, 2020
In this Issue:
  • Message From City Manager and Police Chief
  • Union Pacific Temporary Railroad Crossing Closure - June 11
  • Open Texas - Phase 3
  • Buda Sportsplex New LED Lights - Reservations Being Accepted for Sports Fields Starting June 8
  • Pet Registration Information
  • Still Budaful Stimulus 2.0 - Deadline to Apply is June 10
  • New Pay By Phone Automated System Launching June 9
  • Buda Counts: Latest Self-Response Rates
  • City of Buda E-Billing
  • COVID-19 Hays County Resources
  • COVID-19 Hotline
  • COVID-19 Dashboard
  • COVID-19 Updates on City of Buda Website
  • City of Buda Water Smart Portal
  • City of Buda Job Opportunities
  • Upcoming Meetings
A Message From City Manager Kenneth Williams and Police Chief Bo Kidd On George Floyd Death

๐๐จ๐ฅ๐ข๐œ๐ž ๐‚๐ก๐ข๐ž๐Ÿ ๐๐จ ๐Š๐ข๐๐

To say I was upset when I saw the video that captured the death of George Floyd is an understatement. His death was unnecessary, preventable, and not least to say, criminal. I am revulsed by the senseless acts of the involved Minneapolis police officers.

Because of this action, many citizens of our country have expressed their constitutional right to peacefully protest this action. Unfortunately, others have taken advantage of the occasion to participate in additional criminal activity that further discredits the life of Mr. Floyd and create discord with law enforcement departments across the country.

We share the same outrage and disgust at what happened to Mr. Floyd; however, we must find ways to come together and create change that matters, because George Floydโ€™s life matters. Let his death not be in vain but be a catalyst for reform which creates equality and uniformity. My department stands with those who peacefully protest the inexcusable and mindless acts that led to the death of George Floyd. We also know that this incident tarnishes the profession that we chose. As officers, we take an oath to preserve the dignity and rights of all individuals. Regrettably, George Floyd did not receive that liberty, but I pray the carnage and wreckage from the incidents which have followed will not overshadow his untimely and unfortunate death.

I think it is clear that many people do not trust the police and that is an issue that we are going to have to work on and work through for a long time, but this can be accomplished together without the distraction of looting, vandalism, and destruction. Officers do have a duty to protect citizens and property alike and it is our charge to do so.

I felt compelled to write this statement. To let you, the citizens, know that the Buda Police Department will respect all, trustfully protect and serve this community and we will always strive to do what is right or admit when we have failed and aim to do better. This department takes pride in calling Buda its home, committed to you and your safety, and for always standing up for what is right.

๐‚๐ข๐ญ๐ฒ ๐Œ๐š๐ง๐š๐ ๐ž๐ซ ๐Š๐ž๐ง๐ง๐ž๐ญ๐ก ๐–๐ข๐ฅ๐ฅ๐ข๐š๐ฆ๐ฌ

As City Manager, any action that puts the members of the City of Buda Police Department and City of Buda citizens in harms way is of deep concern to me. This has never been more evident as in the irresponsible actions of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin and other Minneapolis officers. They have harmed the reputation of all law enforcement officers, putting them along with the entire country in danger with inconsiderate, selfish, and reckless behavior.

The senseless and insensitive killing of George Floyd has indeed been one of the more blatant criminal acts ever committed by one who is charged with protecting the life and safety of the populaces of our nation. Mr. Floyd did nothing to deserve a death sentence and should have gotten proper due process in his interaction with the law. Unfortunately, such occurrences have become all too common in the lives of Black Americans during their interactions with law enforcement. Such tragic events have served to erase the level of trust between the two groups that desperately needs healing if our country is to ever reach its full potential.

In expression of displeasure for the actions of the Minneapolis officers many citizens of the United States have enacted their constitutional right to peacefully protest or engage in civil disobedience. However, like there are bad cops there are chameleons disguised as protesters who have taken advantage of the situation to partake in the criminal activity of looting and larceny. This criminal commotion too is wrong and shall not be tolerated and indeed enforced by law.

We are fortunate in Buda to have officers of high moral standards, Chief Bo Kidd exemplifies respect for all citizens, leads a department that trustfully protects the community and strives to do that which is right. Our officers have always displayed professionalism, respected all members of the community, and exercised extreme care, when warranted, in the use of force in all situations. In my accountability role as city manager of Buda I have learned to expect the routine deliverance of high standards by the department.

I value each officer of our department and revel in their positive interactions with all members of our community. The Mayor, City Council, Chief Kidd, and I are remorseful and sympathize with the family of George Floyd for this tragedy. We are doing our part in Buda to make it right.

We must use this event to make permanent positive changes in worldview, culture, and laws/policies of the country to ensure constructive interactions for people of color and law enforcement. We can do better. We must do better.

We look forward to continued positive interactions with all the community, including Black Americans with the Buda Police Department. As always in ending such statements I would like to say, God Bless the city of Buda, state of Texas and the United States of America.

๏ปฟThere is a reason we live in one of the top 50 cities in America. Everyone should be so lucky.
The Union Pacific Railroad Crossing at Main Street and Garison Road will be temporarily closed on Thursday, June 11 from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

As part of routine maintenance, Union Pacific will inspect and replace railroad ties and rails during this time. The work plays a major role in derailment prevention and helps ensure the safety of train crews and the community.

Union Pacific encourages drivers to pay attention to roadway and detour signs. Below is a detour map. Traffic will be rerouted through Sequoyah. Railroad Street and Cedar Street will remain open. 
Governor Greg Abbott has announced additional openings and revisions as part of Phase 3 of his Open Texas plan. Below we have included a list of the latest openings that includes amusement parks, fine arts performance halls, outdoor events, and more. For a detailed look at these openings and other revisions to the Open Texas plan please visit Governor Abbottโ€™s Website at  https://open.texas.gov/ .

  • Amusement parks contained in counties with less than 1,000 cumulative positive cases of COVID-19 may operate up to 50% of the normal operating limits as determined by the amusement park operator. Effective June 19, 2020, all amusement parks may operate at up to 50% of the normal operating limits as determined by the amusement park operator.
  • Effective June 10, 2020, fine arts performance halls may operate in Texas. Fine arts performance halls may operate indoors up to 50% of the total listed occupancy; there is no occupancy limit on fine arts performance halls operating outdoors, however, 6 feet distancing between groups is needed and groups cannot exceed 10 persons. The performance hallโ€™s employees and contractors are not counted towards the 50% occupancy limitation.
  • Effective June 3, 2020, on-set/on-location media production may operate provided they can ensure at least 6 feet social distancing while working and comply with other safety recommendations. Because of the proximity between individuals and the collaborative nature of media production, stringent compliance with these protocols is strongly recommended.
  • Outdoor events, such as July 4 celebrations and other large outdoor gatherings with estimated attendance of 500 or more, are permissible to hold in Texas. The county judge or the mayor, as appropriate, in coordination with the local public health authority, may decide if a particular event should be modified or the occupancy further limited based on the facts and circumstances of the event and COVID-19 in the particular jurisdiction.
  • Effective June 10, 2020, video game facilities may operate up to 50% of their total listed occupancy. Video game facilities must ensure at least 6 feet social distancing between operating machines.
  • Valet parking is allowed, but employees must follow health protocols. This includes being trained on appropriate cleaning and disinfection, hand hygiene, and respiratory etiquette.

Here's another breakdown below.


๐‰๐ฎ๐ง๐ž ๐Ÿ‘

  • All businesses currently operating at 25% capacity can expand their occupancy to 50% with certain exceptions
  • Bars and similar businesses may increase their capacity to 50% as long as customers are seated
  • Amusement parks and carnivals in counties with less than 1,000 confirmed positive cases may open at 50% capacity
  • Restaurants may expand their maximum table size from 6 to 10 people

๐‰๐ฎ๐ง๐ž ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ

  • Restaurants can expand their occupancy levels to 75%
  • Counties with 10 or fewer active COVID-19 cases can expand their occupancy limits to 75%, with exceptions

๐‰๐ฎ๐ง๐ž ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ—

  • Amusement parks and carnivals in counties with more than 1,000 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 can open at 50% capacity

State-of-the-art LED light fixtures have been installed in the soccer and softball fields at Buda Sportsplex.

The city council expressed their interests in improving sports lighting in Buda Sportsplex at last yearโ€™s Sportsplex Workshop and it has finally come to fruition. The sum of both lighting projects cost almost $1 million, provided by the Buda Economic Development Corporation Board along with budgeted Hotel Occupancy Tax funds.

The chosen supplier was Musco Lighting, a nationally known leader in sports field lighting. Musco installed 10 70-foot grounded poles for the soccer fields and 16 poles for the softball fields, all featuring LED light. LED lighting specifically was desired due to its utilization of less electricity, reduced glare impact for the surrounding community, and low maintenance. Having LED lighting also places Buda in a good position towards receiving International Dark-Sky Association certification.

The installations come with a 25-year warranty and a remote access control system to the lights for scheduling purposes. A 24/7 call center is also available for scheduling support.

The improvements open a new field of options for the community. With the lights added, playing time may be extended into evening hours and field usage will increase for open play, year-round leagues, and tournaments. The cost is $15 per field, per hour for residents of Buda and $30 per field, per hour for non-residents. Light fees are $15 per hour, per field.

Field rentals will begin on Monday, June 8 for practices . Starting June 15 fields will be open for games and competitions. For more information about Buda Sportsplex or field rentals please reach out to Recreation Program Coordinator Shelby Fletcher at sfletcher@ci.buda.tx.us, by phone at 512-523-1081, or you can submit rental requests online at  https://www.ci.buda.tx.us/154/Renting-a-Buda-Park.

About Buda Sportsplex: Buda Sportsplex is a 52-acre park that offers a pavilion, four soccer fields, four softball fields, and a concession stand all available for rent. Amenities include a playground, hike and bike trail, bicycle racks, restrooms, water fountains, and electricity. Buda Sportsplex is located at 310 Buda Sportsplex Dr, Buda, TX 78610. 
Pet Registration Information
Buda Animal Control
Due to COVID-19, Buda Animal Control is taking some extra precautions to make it easier and safer for you to register your pet. If you need to have a microchip implanted you MUST first schedule an appointment then complete the required forms and submit all required documentation at least two days before your scheduled appointment. Once you arrive please remain in your vehicle and call 512-523-1034 and let us know that you are out front. The microchip and registration is free through September 30 and registration will be for the lifetime of the pet. You will need to keep vaccinations up to date.


Per City Ordinance, all animals over the age of four (4) months must be implanted with a microchip and registered with the City of Buda.
Still Budaful Stimulus 2.0
The City of Buda's Small Business Task Force has launched "Still Budaful Stimulus 2.0" . City Council approved Stimulus 2.0 at its June 2 meeting. In April, the Buda City Council authorized the Still Budaful Stimulus Program to assist businesses negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, the program has provided much-needed relief to over 70 businesses in Buda. With the lingering financial impacts of the pandemic on the business community, the City of Budaโ€™s Small Business Task Force decided to launch Still Budaful Stimulus 2.0.

The Buda Economic Development Corporation (Buda EDC) has added an additional $250,000 in funds to provide relief to Buda businesses in need. Still Budaful Stimulus 2.0 is an expansion of the original program and will assist businesses who were not eligible in the first round of the stimulus plan (more details will be available June 3). Online applications are being accepted at www.stillbudaful.org until 5 p.m. on June 10. Please get your applications in during that time frame.

โ€œThe EDC is proud to support Buda businesses with the Still Budaful Stimulus 2.0. Every business in our community is important and we are doing all we can to help as many businesses as possible,โ€ said Jennifer Storm, Buda EDC Board of Directors President. โ€œReinvesting in Buda businesses creates opportunity for our community to weather the storm. The businesses that make up the fabric of Buda help create the community we love. Simply focusing on recruiting business to Buda is not enough; supporting them through the good times and bad is critically important.โ€
   
Under the first round of the stimulus program almost $840,000 was poured back into the Buda community! This includes funding from the Buda Economic Development Corporation, the City of Budaโ€™s General Fund, and Hotel Occupancy Tax Funds.

โ€œWe have been honored to facilitate this process,โ€ said Lysa Gonzalez, City of Buda Tourism Director. โ€œBudaโ€™s businesses are the backbone of the community. The additional funding from the Buda EDC will ensure that we reach even more business owners in Buda and provide them with the help they need during this challenging time.โ€                

About the Small Business Task Force:
The Task Force consists of: Buda City Council Member Evan Ture; City Manager of the City of Buda Kenneth Williams; Assistant City Manager for the City of Buda Lauren Middleton-Pratt; Finance Director for the City of Buda June Ellis; Director of Tourism for the City of Buda Lysa Gonzalez; Main Street Program Manager for the City of Buda Maggie Gillespie; Buda EDC Board President Jennifer Storm; Buda EDC Executive Director Traci Anderson; Buda Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director J.R. Gonzales; and City Attorney for the City of Buda George Hyde. Unlike the other members of the Task Force, Mr. Hyde reviews applications for legal compliance only.
New Pay By Phone Automated System
Launching June 9, 2020
Starting June 9, we are rolling out a new way for customers to pay bills by phone. You will be able to call 1-866-279-0787 and pay through an automated system over the phone.

  • Save postage by paying your bill by phone.
  • Access your updated account instantly.
  • Hear real-time balances, payment amounts, and due dates
  • Enter your information securely through an automated system
Buda Public Library Grab & Go Service
Starts Monday, June 1
On Monday, June 1 the Buda Public Library will open for limited Grab & Go service. It is strongly recommended that visitors wear face coverings and observe social distancing recommendations.

Buda Public Library Hours Limited Grab & Go Service

Monday - Thursday
11 AM - 5 PM

Friday & Saturday
1 PM - 5 PM

Please continue to use our convenient curbside service and phone services whenever possible.

Curbside pickup of reserved items is available:

Monday & Thursday
10 AM - 12 PM and 3 PM - 5 PM

Please observe the following restrictions when visiting the library:

  • Follow CDC recommendations to keep yourself and others safe
  • Stay home if you are sick or have any symptoms of becoming sick.
  • Stay at least 6 feet from people that you do not share a household with.
  • We strongly recommend that you wear a face covering while in the library.
  • Library capacity will be limited to 30 patrons at a time.
  • Children may not be left unattended in the library at any time.
  • Please keep your visits brief.
  • The outdoor book drop is open for returns. Returns will not be accepted inside. All returned materials will be held in quarantine for 72+ hours. No fines will accrued until after June 16.
  • Computers are available by appointment only. Patrons will be limited to one hour sessions and computers are to be used for specific, necessary tasks rather than for general entertainment. Patrons will need to have a library card to access computers. In order to maintain social distancing, patrons will need to be able to use the computer without staff assistance.
  • All programs and storytimes will be offered virtually. Summer reading logs and supplies are available for curbside pickup.
  • Work tables, study rooms and meeting spaces are not available at this time.
Buda Counts: Latest Census Self-Response Rates
Keep it up Buda! The City's census self-response rate is still currently higher than the state's rate, but let's get that percentage higher. If you haven't filled out the census yet, it's easy. The  #2020Census  can help our community for the next 10 years. Respond online today at  2020CENSUS.GOV .  

Here are the response rates for Hays County cities as of June 4.

Buda 69.8%
San Marcos 41.6%
Dripping Springs 59.1%
Uhland 51.9%
Hays 69.9%
Village of Bear Creek 74.5%
Kyle 62.3%
Woodcreek 58.1%
Mountain City 86.3%
Wimberley 53.2%
Niederwald 50.2%

City of Buda E-Billing
The City of Buda is giving you the option to go paperless with e-billing. You can sign up online at https://www.municipalonlinepayments.com/budatx Check out the video above for instructions on how to sign up!
Hays County has provided a list of resources for residents who have lost their jobs or need food, mental health support, or other assistance due to the COVID-19 pandemic .

Hays County has a COVID-19 hotline. The number is 512-393-5525 and it is operational Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM .
(The information coming from Hays County will continue to change. Please follow Hays County at www.haysinformed.com )

An online dashboard created by City of San Marcos provides the public with a current count and other statistics related to COVID-19 cases in Hays County in near real-time.

The data on the dashboard shows a snapshot of COVID-19 related information for the County, as well as the number of active and recovered cases per City.
 
For example, the public can see the current number of confirmed cases as of that day. The data includes the cases considered active or in recovery, along with the number of tests administered. The data is also available in map format.
 
County residents may visit

You can also find the dashboard on the City of Buda's website at www.ci.buda.tx.us/coronavirusinformation .
As a reminder, you can visit the City's website at www.ci.buda.tx.us/coronavirusinformation for the latest on COVID-19. This page includes the Governor's Order, Hays County Order, and Mayor George Haehn order. We have also embedded the COVID-19 Dashboard from Hays County with the latest number of cases.
City of Buda WaterSmart Customer Portal Open
Minor water leaks account for more than 1 trillion gallons of wasted water each year . Sign up for leak alerts.
๏ปฟ
City of Buda
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Sincerely,

City of Buda