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'We are ready': Governor says State is prepared for incoming winter storm

State leaders are ensuring the public they are more prepared for this week's winter snorm after snow covered Austin and the Texas Capitol last February. (Bob Daemmrich)

As Texans brace themselves for another winter storm almost a year after last year's historic deadly storm, state leaders gathered on Tuesday to assure the public with ways that they have prepared for the weather to come.


Central Texas is expected to see a wintry mix of freezing rain and sleet on Thursday morning with freezing temperatures expected to reach a low of 20 degrees. Gov. Greg Abbott said the state is utilizing every applicable state agency to ensure it is not a repeat of last year, which saw millions in the state go without power, water or gas.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT, has projected that even at the highest demand for energy, it will have an excess of 15,000 MW of power on Friday morning.

However, it is not guaranteed there will be no power outages. While some outages can occur from ice or fallen trees on power lines, those are unrelated to the power grid. Mass power outages are controlled by ERCOT to protect the state power grid. "We are ready for this storm, we'll be prepared for this," an ERCOT leader said.

The Texas Department of Transportation has been preparing roads statewide for snow, sleet, freezing rain, and icy conditions since Sunday. Officials urged residents to stay off roads and if required, to check live driving conditions at drivetexas.org.

"There's no one skilled enough to drive at highway speeds in icy conditions... stay off the roads please," a TxDOT representative said.

The city and state are reminding the public to remember the four Ps of cold weather.

  1. Check on vulnerable people
  2. Bring pets inside
  3. Cover plants
  4. Insulate outdoor pipes and faucets
For local emergency alerts, click here.

"We urge our fellow Texans to be safe over the coming days. Just know that this team will be working around the clock to make sure we are getting the information needed to share with you so that you will be best prepared... to protect your families, homes, and lives," Abbott said.

Popular

With deposition and trial looming, Elon Musk has offered $44B for Twitter, again
Shutterstock

Elon Musk has proposed once again to buy Twitter for $54.20 a share.

The news that Musk is offering to carry on with the $44 billion buyout was first reported by Bloomberg. Now, a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission shows Musk made the proposal in a letter to the tech giant on Monday.

The New York Stock Exchange temporarily halted trading in Twitter stock twice Tuesday, first because of a big price move and the second time for a news event, presumably the announcement of Musk's renewed offer.

While the per share offer price on this latest proposal remains the same as the original offer, it’s unclear if Musk has made other term changes or if Twitter would reject it. According to other reports, a deal could be reached this week.

The stock closed at $52.00/share Tuesday, indicating market uncertainty around the $54.20 offer.

After Musk informed Twitter of plans to terminate the original agreement in July, Twitter sued. A trial has been expected in Delaware Chancery Court on Oct. 17.

With the proposition of a buyout on the table again, it revives the question of whether Musk might move Twitter from San Francisco to Central Texas.

He’s done so with some of his other companies. Tesla’s headquarters in southeast Travis County had its grand opening earlier this year and tunneling business The Boring Company moved to Pflugerville. At least two other Musk companies, SpaceX and Neuralink, have a Central Texas presence without being headquartered here.

Technology journalist Nilay Patel this afternoon voiced concerns that owning Twitter and Tesla together could be problematic for Musk, as his Tesla manufacturing facilities in Germany and China are both in countries that have disputes with Twitter over content moderation and censorship.

Telsa shares fell after the Twitter news became public, before rallying to close up, at $249.44.

Austin rents nearly double in a year and are now in the top 5 nationwide
Dwellsy

While searching for a place to live, Austin renters will face monthly rates of nearly $3,000, a recent guide from rental marketplace Dwellsy shows.

The median rent in August this year was $2,930, a more than 86% increase since August 2021. That’s $820 more than the nationwide median asking rent in August and puts Austin just below the Bay Area, Boston and New York for large cities with the most expensive asking rent.

“Within this group, Austin, TX stands out for the highest increases in asking rent, which has nearly doubled since this time last year,” the study notes.

Outside of those large cities, however, others are seeing even higher rent spikes. Metro areas that ranked above Austin in one-year increases include those like Kansas City, MO with a 112% change in rent since last August and Tucson, AZ with a 124% change.

The data reflects large apartment communities, single-family homes and 2-6 unit buildings.