Texas

Updated at 5:16 p.m. ET

Texas is moving forward with further reopening plans Monday but will delay the execution of those plans in the state's northern panhandle in light of its relatively high rate of confirmed coronavirus cases near Amarillo. Amarillo alone had more than 700 new cases on Friday.

In the endless boom and bust cycle of the oil business, there has never been anything like 2020. The oil patch is reeling from historically low prices. Futures for West Texas Intermediate crude closed at $25 a barrel on Friday, down from more than $60 a barrel at the beginning of the year.

On a normal day in Andrews County, you can look in any direction and see the bobbing horse heads of pump jacks stretching to the horizon, sucking up oil from deep in the Earth. But these are anything but normal days.

In Texas, a proposal to cut the amount of crude that oil companies are allowed to pump from the ground appears dead. The regulator who proposed it — Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton — says commissioners "still are not ready to act" on the plan, which would have cut production 20% to try and stabilize prices amid a historic oil glut. Regulators had been expected to vote on the plan Tuesday.

With public life paralyzed by the coronavirus shutdown, a sad announcement came last week from a beloved cafe and music venue in Austin, Texas. Threadgill's, the Depression-era beer joint where Janis Joplin got her start — and later a place that fed Austin's appetite for good food and good music — is closing for good.

Updated at 10:46 a.m. ET

Tornadoes swept through parts of Oklahoma, Texas and Louisiana early Wednesday evening, leaving at least six people dead and injuring more than two dozen others in their paths of destruction. The tornadoes were among a series of severe storms that bulldozed a route west to east across the South on Wednesday.

Updated at 3:50 p.m. ET

In a win for abortion rights advocates, a federal appeals court says medication abortions can proceed in Texas.

Governors across the country are banning elective surgery as a means of halting the spread of the coronavirus. But in a handful of states that ban is being extended to include a ban on all abortions.

So far the courts have intervened to keep most clinics open. The outlier is Texas, where the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit this week upheld the governor's abortion ban.

A federal three-judge appeals panel says a ban on abortions in Texas can remain in effect during the coronavirus pandemic.

The state's Republican governor and attorney general have said abortion should be treated as an elective procedure and suspended in an effort to preserve medical supplies for health care providers. Clinics in Texas have shut their doors, and patients seeking abortions have been turned away in recent days.

Neilly Buckalew is a traveling doctor who fills in at hospitals when there's need. So in the midst of this pandemic, she feels particularly vulnerable to contracting the coronavirus — not just in hospitals but in hotels and on her travels.

Around 70 people in their 20s are under investigation in Austin, Texas, for possible infection with the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 after they chartered a plane for a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, last month. At least 28 of the passengers from that flight have tested positive for the coronavirus, with dozens more tests pending.

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