100% Austin news, info, and entertainment, straight to your inbox at 6 a.m. every morning.
In five minutes, you're fully informed and ready to start another great day in our city.
Due to the severe, record-breaking winter weather Texas is and will continue experiencing over the next week, Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration across all 254 counties, expanding state resource deployment on Friday.
The declaration orders the Texas State Operations Center to expand operations to 24-hours per day until the end of next week, assisting local officials and severe weather response efforts.
"Texas should heed the guidance of their local leaders and stay alert to changing weather conditions in their area," Abbott said in a press release. "These resources will help us respond to this severe winter weather and keep our communities safe. The State of Texas remains in close contact with officials on the ground and will provide any additional resources and support that are needed."
The Texas Division of Emergency Management has deployed the following resources to response operations:
- Winter weather roadway preparation equipment, road condition monitoring and response crews by the Texas Department of Transportation
- Courtesy patrols to assist stranded motorists along major corridors by the Texas Highway Patrol and the Texas Department of Public Safety
- Four-wheel drive vehicles with personnel to assist stranded motorists along major travel corridors by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
- Motor graders to assist with snow/ice clearance and saw crews to remove fallen trees by the Texas A&M Forest Service
- Search and rescue teams by the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service and the Texas Task Force 1
- Power outage monitoring and reporting by the Public Utility Commission of Texas
- Response crews to address livestock concerns by the Texas Animal Health Commission
- Winter freeze: Icy roads, power outages and school closures - austonia ›
- Arctic Austin: how to protect your home in freezing weather - austonia ›
- 26-car pileup reported as winter weather leads to icy roads - austonia ›
- Ice-related car incidents abound during winter freeze - austonia ›
- Winter blast causes cancellations at Austin Airport - austonia ›
- 3 reasons Texas and Austin don't have enough power - austonia ›
- Texas gov. orders natural gas suppliers not to export supply - austonia ›
- Last wintry mix of the storm expected today - austonia ›
- Texas power crisis lessens amid weather emergency - austonia ›
- Weekend weather: Sunny skies are here to stay - austonia ›
- Abbott says vaccine restrictions could be lifted by March - austonia ›
- Gov. Abbott: All businesses can open at 100%, masks no longer required - austonia ›
Matthew McConaughey is reportedly weighing a run for Texas governor in 2022.
The Austin resident and Oscar winner has been "quietly making calls to influential people in Texas political circles, including a deep-pocketed moderate Republican and energy CEO" as he decides whether to run, according to Politico.
McConaughey said a gubernatorial run is "a true consideration" while on a March episode of Houston's "The Balanced Voice" podcast.
Although most political strategists doubt McConaughey's commitment and viability as a candidate, some are still intrigued by the possibility.
"I find it improbable, but it's not out of the question," Karl Rove, a top Republican strategist with a long history in Austin, told the political news site. He added that the big question is whether McConaughey would run as a Republican, a Democrat or an independent.
Brendan Steinhauser, an Austin-based GOP strategist, told Politico he's surprised McConaughey isn't being taken more seriously. "Celebrity in this country counts for a lot," he said. "It's not like some C-list actor no one likes. He has an appeal."
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott plans to run for a third term and remains popular among Republican voters, 77% of whom approve of his performance as of April, according to the Texas Politics Project.
Some strategists believe an independent McConaughey run would benefit Abbott. But a recent poll from The Dallas Morning News and the University of Texas at Tyler found that McConaughey would beat Abbott, 45% to 33%, with 22% opting for someone else.
Mimi Swartz, an executive editor at Texas Monthly, mulled a McConaughey run in a recent opinion essay from the New York Times. "Texas may not be ready for a philosopher king as a candidate, much less governor," she wrote. "May the best man win, man."
- Matthew McConaughey featured on the cover of People Magazine ... ›
- Minister of Culture Matthew McConaughey talks preserving Austin ... ›
- McConaughey to showcase Texas talent in winter storm benefit ... ›
- Texans vote McConaughey in latest governor poll - austonia ›
Some JuiceLand production facility workers and storefront employees are organizing to demand wage increases, better working conditions (including air conditioning in the warehouse) and pay transparency, among other asks. They are also calling on staff to strike and customers to boycott the Austin-based company until their demands are met.
JuiceLand responded on Saturday. "We are listening," the company wrote on their Instagram story. "JuiceLand crew now makes guaranteed $15 an hour or more companywide."
JuiceLand, which was founded in 2001 by Matt Shook and now has 35 locations in Austin, Houston and Dallas, acknowledged the rising cost of living across Texas and the added stress of the pandemic in an email to employees on Saturday, part of which @juicelandworkersrights shared on social media. "There's no denying that times are tough and financial security means more now than ever," the company wrote.
Organized JuiceLand workers rejected this proposal, according to a recent post on the @juicelandworkersrights Instagram account, and reiterated their demands.
"Cost of living in Austin is rising exponentially and will only continue to get worse with the tech boom," the post read. "$15 is barely a sustainable living."