As everybody wants to get back to “normal”, there is going to be some awkwardness in finding out just what “normal” is anymore. Here are some details on how Governor Abbott will re-open Texas beginning this Friday, May 1, 2020, with Phase One. All retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters, and malls are permitted to reopen on Friday, but with some restrictions.
Governor Greg Abbott today announced the first phase of the State of Texas’ ongoing plan to safely and strategically open Texas while minimizing the spread of COVID-19. Under Phase I, certain services and activities are allowed to open with limited occupancy, and the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) is issuing minimum standard health protocols for all businesses and individuals to follow. The Governor also outlined special guidance for Texans over 65 and detailed a comprehensive mitigation plan for nursing homes in Texas.
The Governor also announced a statewide testing and tracing program developed by DSHS that will help public health officials quickly identify and test Texans who contract COVID-19 and mitigate further spread of the virus.
By way of Executive Order (GA-18), all retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters, and malls are permitted to reopen on Friday, May 1. These services must limit their capacity to 25% of their listed occupancy. Within shopping malls, the food-court dining areas, play areas, and interactive displays and settings must remain closed. The Governor’s Report to Open Texas can be found here: http://coronatxk.org/DocumentCenter/View/6892/OpenTexas-Report?fbclid=IwAR0wvqb-CBK0_K4izZT4_owGKrXvuyheKjFOXKTLVUYAJyQpIKcSSehITak
As a reminder, the following local restrictions are still in place:
- Bowie County Shelter-in-Place Order effective until 11:59 p.m. on April 30, 2020
- City of Texarkana, Texas Curfew in place until further notice beginning at 10:00 p.m. and lasting until 6:00 a.m.
- Cass County Stay-at-Home Order effective until 11:59 p.m. on April 30, 2020
- Various statewide restrictions issued by Governor Greg Abbott
latest local information and updates can all be found at www.coronatxk.org. The local hotline telephone number is (903) 255-5560.
- The Governor signed GA-18, GA-19, and GA-20 today. They can be accessed here: https://lrl.texas.gov/legeLeaders/governors/displayDocs.cfm?govdoctypeID=5&governorID=45&fbclid=IwAR3enPamOmTaq95HHq_8gQWi1qmJ0pKS09bEpQZDIwSerYigWd8u6r9-YUQ
- The Governor’s protocols for specific businesses and functions (specifically churches) can be accessed here: https://dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/opentexas.aspx
It is imperative that people still hold to CDC guidelines with social distancing and good hygiene. With care and patience, we should be able to get to phase two as soon as our local COVID-19 numbers are down.
The latest numbers from Bowie and Cass County in East Texas…