TAYLOR, Texas – As residents and business owners across the United States struggle with the economic ramifications from the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Taylor has offered numerous resources to assist with the ongoing local economic recovery. These efforts include supporting the efforts of local groups who are helping local businesses financially, offering services for residents, and passing temporary legislation that will help businesses reopen safely.
The City of Taylor contributed $15,000 to the All In COVID-19 Taylor Small Business Support Fund, organized by the Taylor Chamber of Commerce and the Taylor Economic Development Corporation. It was created to help small businesses in Taylor with 25 or fewer employees with their rent, utilities, purchase of COVID-19 related cleaning supplies, and purchase of supplies to offer alternative business access like take-out containers for curbside delivery.
The City has provided numerous resources for residents who are struggling financially. When the Governor declared a Declaration of Disaster, City staff took immediate action to assist Taylor utility customers. The Utility Billing Department made special accommodations to remain open to accept payments, even though the rest of City Hall was closed to the public. City utility customers were assured that the City would not disconnect their water service for non-payment. The City also waived any late fees and worked with customers to catch up on utility bill delinquencies. In addition, the City waived any fees associated with making payments via credit card. Customers were able to pay their utility bills from the safety of their homes through the City’s online and automated phone systems without any additional fees.
Taylor City Council authorized numerous ordinances designed to help business owners as they face the challenges of reopening in the midst of a pandemic. On May 20, Taylor City Council voted to temporarily suspend portions of Ordinance No. 2018-09 to allow possession of an open container or consumption of an alcoholic beverage in the central business district of the City of Taylor. Suspending the ordinance allows businesses in the central business district the ability to achieve greater social distancing and to allow businesses to serve more customers than the indoor occupancy limits of a business’s building would allow. On May 28, City Council approved moving forward with streetscape and parking modifications to West Second Street between Main and Talbot streets. Adjustments include lane and parking changes to be completed by about mid-June, all of which will help restaurants and businesses in the downtown area to better accommodate social distancing requirements. Council is also considering an ordinance that will allow businesses to apply for temporary licenses to operate “parklets” in the City rights-of-way where they can create an outdoor area for patrons and the general public. That ordinance will be considered for vote on June 11. On that date City Council will also consider an ordinance
The City will continue to provide information about economic resources, as well as information about how residents can protect their health as the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve. The City will continue to closely monitor the situation with the Williamson County and WCCHD. Updates will be posted at taylortx.gov and on social media as they become available. For more information, please visit www.taylortx.gov