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Hays County issues disaster declaration due to extreme winter weather

Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra today issued a Local Disaster Declaration related to the severe winter weather conditions in the county. The declaration is in effect immediately for a period of seven (7) days or until winter weather conditions no longer exist.

“In collaboration with emergency management services in the community, we determined that weather-related conditions pose a significant threat to Hays County citizens and their property,” Becerra said. “Out of an abundance amount of caution, we will take measures to ensure the highest level of response and safety. Thanks to the outpouring of support by our staff and community, we stand vigilant during this time.”

On Friday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration in all 254 counties in response to severe winter weather that is impacting the state. Under Chapter 418, Subchapter E, of the Texas Health and Safety Code, the County declaration provides authority for local agencies to coordinate under local emergency management plans.  Those plans and the local disaster declaration make the coordination of those local resources an official action of the local governmental entities (county, cities, ESDs, etc.).

According to the Hays County Office of the General Counsel, the declaration will help Hays County qualify those resources for reimbursement if federal or state relief dollars are allocated for this particular event.

Governor Abbott and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas are urging Texans to conserve power in their homes and businesses as much as possible during the extreme weather. With a higher drain on the system coupled with higher-than-normal generation outages due to frozen wind turbines and limited natural gas supplies, conservation is critical to maintaining a stable electrical grid. See these tips for reducing electricity:

  • Set thermostats to 68 degrees
  • Close shades and blinds to reduce the amount of heat lost through windows
  • Turn off and unplug non-essential lights and appliances
  • Avoid using large appliances such as washers and ovens

In addition to the declaration, Becerra cancelled Tuesday’s Commissioners Court meeting due to the potential for hazardous road conditions in the morning, when the National Weather Service predicts single-digit temperatures and possible snow.

Stay up-to-date with important emergency information at and the Hays County official Facebook page.

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Hays County