Texas Gov. Greg Abbott vowed to resolve outstanding power outages on the fourth day of a statewide energy crisis that has since spawned a related water crisis and threatens to create a natural gas crisis.
"We will not stop until normalcy is restored to your lives," Abbot said during a press conference on Thursday afternoon.
Earlier in the day, officials at the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which maintains about 90% of the state's grid, said they were no longer mandating power outages and had instructed local utilities to begin restoring power to impacted customers. Around 325,000 customers across the state are still facing outages, which Abbott said were likely due to local, weather-related problems that will require on-site repairs rather than outage mandates from ERCOT.
Austin Energy crews are in the process of restoring power and have made significant progress since Wednesday afternoon, when around 27% of its customers were impacted. As of 4:02 p.m. Thursday, about two-thirds of those have had their power restored.
Although the power crisis is improving, an increasing number of Texans are now facing a water crisis. Major cities including Austin, Houston, San Antonio and Fort Worth, among others, have issued boil water notices. Tens of thousands of Austin residents don't have access to water at all, Austin Water Director Greg Meszaros said Wednesday, and service restoration will be "a multi-day process."
Abbott said he is working on executive orders and waivers to address the twin crises, as well as meeting with organizations that may be able to help provide clean water to impacted residents.
Austin officials said Thursday that they have ordered bottled water from out of state, given the demand from other Texas municipalities, but it will take time for it to be delivered and distributed to those in need. In the meantime, Meszaros recommended the residents without water (or without the power to boil it) reach out to friends and neighbors who may be able to share.
- Abbott issues disaster declaration preparing for severe weather ... ›
- 3 reasons Texas and Austin don't have enough power - austonia ›
- Texas gov. orders natural gas suppliers not to export supply - austonia ›
- Some services resume, many stay closed due to winter conditions - austonia ›
The 40-hour workweek has reigned since around the time of the Great Depression. But a new schedule gaining steam could lead some companies to throw out the practice of having employees clock in five days a week.
Promising results are coming out halfway into a six-month trial of four-day workweeks in the U.K. with 35 out of 41 companies responding to a recent survey saying they were “likely” or “very likely” to continue the reduced week after the pilot ends.
The trial, which began in June, is run by nonprofit 4 Day Week Global, think tank Autonomy, the 4 Day Week UK campaign and researchers at Cambridge University, Boston College and Oxford University. It involves 3,300 workers across 72 companies who are trying out one paid day off per week between Monday and Friday.
During the four-day week, 34% of companies reported that productivity “improved slightly” and 15% say it “improved significantly.”
With the survey indicating that a four-day workweek could have some perks for companies and employees alike, will Austin join in on the trend?
On job searching tools like LinkedIn and Indeed, some jobs based in Central Texas are boasting a four-day work week. And Coltech Global, a recruiting firm based in London with a growing presence in Austin, began the four-day work week about a year ago.
Jessica Sutcliffe, a staffing consultant at Coltech, joined the company to help grow the U.S. market. She says due to the time difference between the U.S. team and the UK one, the company implemented a four-day week.
"I’ve found it very beneficial as it allows time to rest and complete life admin, whilst also enjoying life, travel and be able to come back to work rested/fulfilled outside of work, which ultimately helps focus inside of those core work hours," Sutcliffe said via email.
In an Instagram post, Coltech said that not only are employees feeling the benefits of being more refreshed in the mornings, having reduced illness and a less stressed atmosphere, but it’s also improving their carbon footprint since there’s less time spent traveling to the office and using energy.
Niki Jorgensen, director of service operations at human resources service provider Insperity, noted similar factors driving companies to make the change to a reduced work week.
“The most significant benefit for a company to adopt the four-day workweek is the improvement of employee morale,” Jorgensen told Austonia via email. “Over the past two years, numerous studies have shown employees think a four-day workweek reduces stress and burnout. With reduced stress and burnout comes improved employee engagement.”
And while Austin is already drawing in plenty of workers who are in their early careers, a four-day week may help companies stand out to that bracket’s top talent even more.
“Companies can leverage this to make their company more appealing, especially to younger generations who strongly consider factors outside of compensation when choosing employment,” Jorgensen said.
She went on to offer a few tips for making a smooth transition to a four-day week like setting expectations and staggering coverage so that it’s still possible to see clients five days a week. Also, employers should be flexible. She says some employees may not be able to get 40 hours of work done in a shorter week due to responsibilities like childcare, so employers should consider how they can still accomplish their duties.
Before ditching the 40-hour workweek though, it can help to take a temperature check to see if an extra day off is the right fit for the workplace.
“Do not implement a flexible schedule such as the four-day workweek if business owners and managers cannot commit to the level of trust and flexibility needed to ensure the schedule’s success,” Jorgensen said.
- Downtown Austin looks like itself again as big tech returns to office ... ›
- 7 best Austin coffee to transition from work to play - austonia ›
- Cushy seating for both work and play - austonia ›
- The 10 best places to work in Austin since the pandemic began ... ›
- Tech jobs are in hot demand, both benefitting and hurting job ... ›
- Central Texas sees record job growth fueled by Samsung, Tesla ... ›
- Austin tops ranking of best places for tech jobs - austonia ›
- High rate of Austin workers could have jobs automated - austonia ›
- How a dip in tech job openings is connected to Austin's cooling ... ›
- Jobs - austonia ›
Camp Fimfo Waco, a brand new camping resort, is kicking off football and fall camping season in style! With top-notch amenities, premium accommodations, and 10 weekends of fall fun, there’s no better place to have a fall camping getaway, especially if you’re a Baylor football fan!
Fall promises to be a one-of-a-kind camping experience. From Sept. 16 to Nov. 24, weekends will be packed with fall-themed activities, including special Halloween weekends in October. Campers can enjoy activities like fall crafts, campground trick-or-treating, costume contests, site decorating, outdoor movie nights, and more!
Packages and Ways to Stay
Camp Fimfo Waco
Located just 5 miles from McLane Stadium, Camp Fimfo Waco is the perfect place to stay during home game weekends. Skip the stuffy hotel room and embrace the great outdoors before cheering on the Baylor Bears! Campers can purchase a Baylor Tailgating Package that includes a pre-game meal from Executive Chef Sean Kelley and transportation to and from the game! Chef Kelley will also be cooking up delicious, elevated tailgating meals near the stadium so make sure to check out The Plaid Plate food truck before the game.
Stay in style and comfort, no matter your camping preference! At Camp Fimfo Waco, there are multiple ways to stay. Red Carpet RV sites come with a concrete pad and patio, full hook-ups, cable hook-up, a charcoal grill, fire ring and fire pit. Back-in or pull-thru options are available, as well as coveted spots tucked along the Bosque River!
Don’t have an RV? Not a problem, Camp Fimfo Waco has cabins too! Book a Riverview Firewheel Cabin if you’re looking for an air-conditioned oasis for the whole family. Complete with a kitchen and private bathroom, this cabin can fit up to 10 people. Elevate your stay by adding on a golf cart or snag a private cabana by the pool for guaranteed shade. With wifi available throughout the park, you can stay connected during your stay!
Amenities and Activities
Camp Fimfo Waco
Camp Fimfo Waco features lots of amenities to fill your days with fun, whether you’re a kid or kid at heart. After challenging your friends to a game of pickleball, basketball, or mini golf, go for a dip in the resort-style, heated pool - open daily through October! Stay on the weekends through October to enjoy the interactive splash playground. With plenty of ways to burn off energy, like the jumping pillow or playground, you can be sure to end the day with a peaceful night around the campfire!
Right now, you can get the fourth night FREE when you book three nights with the promo code BONUS! Check out the Offers page for full details and more promo codes!