Marisa Charpentier | KUT

  Marisa Charpentier joined KUT as a digital producer in January 2020. After graduating from The University of Texas at Austin with degrees in journalism and Plan II Honors in 2018, she worked as a reporter for Community Impact Newspaper, covering the Central Texas communities of Cedar Park and Leander.


She is originally from St. Louis but grew up in Flower Mound, Texas.


Texas bars can reopen at 50% capacity starting next Wednesday if the county judge where they are located approves, Gov. Greg Abbott announced Wednesday.

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The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission passed rules Tuesday aimed at making it easier for bars to reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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As coronavirus hospitalizations and cases continue to rise in Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott is urging people to wear masks and follow other health protocols to slow the spread of the disease. 

“COVID-19 is now spreading at an unacceptable rate in Texas, and it must be corralled,” he said during a news conference Monday.

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When recent UT Austin graduate Kevin Robles woke up Thursday morning, he checked his phone, saw the breaking news notification and felt some of the fears he’s been holding the last few years dissipate. 

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Cuando Kevin Robles, recién graduado de la Universidad de Austin, se despertó el jueves por la mañana y revisó su teléfono, vio la notificación de noticias de última hora y sintió que algunos de los temores que ha tenido durante los últimos años se disiparon. 

Businesses in Texas previously operating at 25% capacity, such as bars and gyms, can now operate at 50% capacity, and restaurants will be able to offer dine-in service at 75% capacity starting June 12.

Gov. Greg Abbott said Tuesday that Texas won’t be asking U.S. military to come into the state in response to protests.

“We know that Texans can take care of Texans,” he said at a news conference in Dallas. “We have tremendous police forces in Dallas, in Fort Worth, in the surrounding suburbs, across the entire state.”

High school senior Rey Garza knows a lot about adapting to “new normals.” He was 9 when he lost vision in his right eye, and when he entered his freshman year, he started losing it in his left eye, too. 

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Salones de belleza, barberías, salones de uñas y de bronceado pueden reabrir a partir del viernes, anunció el gobernador Greg Abbott. Gimnasios, fabricantes no esenciales y negocios que trabajan en edificios de oficinas podrán reabrir el 18 de mayo, con ciertas restricciones.


Retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters and malls can reopen Friday provided they limit occupancy to no more than 25%, Gov. Greg Abbott said.

At a news conference Monday, Abbott said he was letting his stay-at-home order expire and allowing businesses to reopen in phases.  

Read this story in English. 

Las tiendas, restaurantes, cines y centros comerciales de Texas podrán reabrir a partir del viernes siempre y cuando limiten la ocupación a no más del 25%, dijo el lunes el gobernador Greg Abbott.

En una conferencia de prensa el lunes, Abbott dijo que aguardaba a que su orden de quedarse en casa expirara para permitir a los negocios reabrir en fases. 

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La ciudad de Austin ha promulgado una orden de quedarse en casa para frenar la propagación de COVID-19. Sin embargo, el hogar no es un espacio seguro para todos. 

Gov. Greg Abbott extended his disaster declaration for all Texas counties on Sunday in response to COVID-19.

He originally issued the declaration, which enables the state to secure resources to mitigate the spread of the disease, on March 13. 

Gov. Greg Abbott is touting examples of Texans helping Texans during the coronavirus pandemic.

At a news briefing Wednesday, he said Texas companies have stepped forward to increase production of personal protective equipment. He cited Prestige Ameritech in North Richland Hills, which is working with the Texas National Guard to create 2 million face masks per week. Another company, Reyes Automotive in San Antonio, is expected to start making 5,000 face shields a day for health care workers in Texas.

Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday he feels more confident now than ever in regard to Texas' ability to acquire personal protective equipment.

When Gov. Greg Abbott issued his executive order Tuesday restricting nonessential activities, he made sure to note religious services are considered essential.

But in a time when people aren’t supposed to gather, what can and can’t houses of worship do? The governor’s office and the Office of the Attorney General released some guidance Wednesday.

Gov. Greg Abbott issued an order Tuesday requiring Texans to limit personal interactions that could lead to the spread of COVID-19. The order states schools will remain closed until at least May 4.

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La agencia que maneja el sistema de beneficios por desempleo en Texas dice que la situación causada por la pandemia del COVID-19 es diferente de cualquier otra que haya tenido que manejar antes. 

People flying into Texas airports from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut will be subject to a mandatory self-quarantine for 14 days, or the duration of their stay in Texas, whichever is shorter.

The agency that handles Texas' unemployment benefits system says the situation unfolding because of the COVID-19 pandemic is unlike anything it has ever dealt with before.

Hospitals must submit daily reports on bed capacity and COVID-19 tests to the state health department, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Tuesday. The department will in turn submit reports to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced Sunday he is issuing orders to increase health care and hospital capacity as COVID-19 spreads throughout the state. He said he was not, however, going to issue a "shelter-in-place" order for Texas, as many other governors have done.

South by Southwest laid off a third of its full-time staff Monday, a SXSW spokesperson said. 

The company employs about 175 people. The layoffs come three days after the City of Austin canceled the festival due to concerns over COVID-19. 

We're following a number of federal, state and local races throughout Central Texas as results are tallied on Super Tuesday.

With Super Tuesday approaching, Bernie Sanders made the rounds in Texas this weekend, traveling to El Paso, San Antonio, Houston and Austin to rally support for his campaign to win the Democratic nomination for president. 

Eleven candidates vying for the Democratic nomination for a U.S. Senate seat in Texas faced off in Austin on Tuesday night. Guns, immigration, health care and marijuana dominated the debate.

President Donald Trump told the audience Sunday in a packed conference hall of farmers and ranchers that his administration’s policies keep them in mind.