• Lubbock Showing Signs of Positivity on Road to Recovery

    More than two months into the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States and as we work towards recovering as a society, Lubbock appears to be leading the way in many respects. During this week’s Lubbock City Council work session, City Manager Jarrett Atkinson shared the following bits of good news:

    • The City of Lubbock will receive $14 million in CARES Act funding to offset some of the costs directly associated with the City’s COVID-19 relief efforts.
    • While March 2020 sales tax receipts were lower than what was projected in the City of Lubbock’s budget for this fiscal year, they still exceeded the sales tax receipts from March 2019.
    • Single-family residential permits remained near record highs and did not see a significant drop-off.
    • Airport passenger traffic at the Lubbock Airport was down by as much as 90 percent at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Currently, it is still down by about 75 percent from its typical traffic this time of year but is trending in the right direction.
    Lubbock’s overall COVID-19 outlook also appears to be trending in the right direction. Per the City of Lubbock’s data, testing has increased to more than 2,000 tests per week for the month of May. While testing is robust, the positive test rate remains low and that is keeping the active cases trending downward while recoveries trend up.

    When the City of Lubbock first began reporting recoveries as a data point in April, recoveries accounted for 12 percent of active cases. On May 5, recoveries first exceeded the number of active cases. On May 18, the number of recoveries doubled the number of active cases. And according to yesterday’s (May 27) data, recoveries are close to accounting for triple the number of active cases.

    Hospitalizations have trended downward to the point where Lubbock has been hovering around 10 hospitalized COVID-19 patients for the past week, and the hospitalization rate for active cases is only about 5 percent. These positive numbers are a testament to the efficiency of testing locally and the quality of care provided by our local hospital systems.

    Lubbock City Councilman Steve Massengale reported earlier this week that more than 800 area businesses are certified as “Lubbock Safe”, meaning they are taking the necessary steps to keep customers and employees safe during the re-opening process. The “Lubbock Safe” success can be credited to the leadership and partnership demonstrated by Mayor Dan Pope and the Lubbock Economic Recovery Task Force, which is comprised of various business owners and community leaders.

    While the pandemic certainly isn’t over, the Lubbock community should be applauded for the positive signs we have seen over the past month to put our community’s safety and economic well-being back on the right track. The Chamber will continue working with our elected officials and area businesses to make sure the business community is doing its part to keep Lubbock safe and on the road to recovery.

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