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Ten new positive COVID-19 cases are reported by Hemphill County Hospital

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In the last week, Hemphill County Hospital officials have reported seven new coronavirus cases in Hemphill County residents, and three new cases involving out-of-county residents. Of those seven local positive cases, three are students at Canadian ISD, and one is a staff member—doubling the number of COVID cases on local campuses reported in the first two weeks of school.
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Eleven new positive COVID-19 cases are reported in Hemphill Co. this week

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In the last week, Hemphill County Hospital District officials have reported 11 new coronavirus tests of county residents. Two factors have affected the sudden spike: the spread of COVID-19 cases in residents and staff at the Edward Abraham Nursing Home, since the first two cases were reported there three weeks ago; and the start of classes at Canadian ISD, which began last Wednesday.
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HCH board proposes ‘no new tax,’ reviews $19.7 million budget

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In their meeting Wednesday, Sept. 1, the Hemphill County Hospital Board unanimously approved the tax rate proposal of 0.613007, the effective tax rate for fiscal year 2021. The ETR represents an I&S rate of 0.086088 and an M&O rate of 0.526919. HCH Administrator Christy Francis explained to the board that the ETR will raise $6,025,060 for the M&O, $216,000 less that in 2019. “This year, not only did the tax base go down, some things came off, and we had some refunds—which jacked up the ETR.”
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Hospital reports COVID-positives at Nursing Home

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Following two consecutive weeks of testing, the Edward Abraham Nursing Home is now reporting 10 positive cases of COVID-19—which includes six residents and four staff members.

Fifty-five tests conducted at the nursing home on staff and residents were negative. Between last week’s report and this week’s, the overall positive case count in Hemphill County rose from 48 to 54, and in other counties, from 29 to 31. The Hemphill County residents are on home isolation.

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School board debate over extracurricular policy to exclude at-home students ends in failed vote

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Following school board debate over extracurricular participation for at-home students, vote to exclude fails Two days before the official start of the 2020-21 school year, the Canadian ISD board of trustees was still deadlocked in the debate over whether or not those students who opt for virtual learning at home should be allowed to participate in extracurricular activities. The board had debated the issue at length already in its last meeting on Aug.
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Over half of Hemphill County residents have failed to respond to 2020 census

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Last week, the U.S. Census Bureau began following up with households nationwide that have not yet responded to the 2020 census. Based on the current Hemphill County self-response rate, the Census Bureau estimates it will need to visit about 1,230 homes in Hemphill County to collect responses in person.
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State Capital Highlights

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Students across Texas returned to campuses last week as schools and universities scrambled to put into place new lesson plans that best accommodate a pandemic. For many school districts, this meant greatly expanding the technological resources of their students to support a mix of in-person and online education. For example, Goose Creek Consolidated Independent School District east of Houston announced plans to buy 16,000 iPads for almost $3.1 million. The Texas Education Agency’s statewide initiative, Operation Connectivity, will pay half the cost. Gov. Greg Abbott also announced the TEA had obtained more than 1 million personal devices and internet WiFi hotspots as part of the initiative. The effort is financed by a previously announced $200 million allocation of Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act funding to the TEA and matched by school districts. It will ensure that students attending a Texas public school will have both a device and connection to the internet throughout the school year and beyond, Abbott said. In other tech-related news last week, Apple became the first U.S. company to be valued at $2 trillion.