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Governor Abbott Lifts Mask Mandate, Opens Texas 100 Percent

View the Governor’s Executive Order here.

AUSTIN – Governor Greg Abbott today issued an Executive Order (GA-34) lifting the mask mandate in Texas and increasing capacity of all businesses and facilities in the state to 100 percent. The Governor made the announcement at Montelongo’s Mexican Restaurant in Lubbock in an address to the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce.

“With the medical advancements of vaccines and antibody therapeutic drugs, Texas now has the tools to protect Texans from the virus,” said Governor Abbott. “We must now do more to restore livelihoods and normalcy for Texans by opening Texas 100 percent. Make no mistake, COVID-19 has not disappeared, but it is clear from the recoveries, vaccinations, reduced hospitalizations, and safe practices that Texans are using that state mandates are no longer needed. Today’s announcement does not abandon safe practices that Texans have mastered over the past year. Instead, it is a reminder that each person has a role to play in their own personal safety and the safety of others. With this executive order, we are ensuring that all businesses and families in Texas have the freedom to determine their own destiny.”

During his remarks, the Governor discussed the incredible advancements that Texas has made that allow the state to open fully and lift the mask mandate—noting the rapid increase of vaccines. Nearly 5.7 million vaccine shots have been administered to Texans, and the state is now administering almost one million shots each week. By next Wednesday, about 7 million shots will have been administered in Texas and over half of seniors in Texas will have received a vaccine shot. By the end of March, every senior who wants a vaccine should be able to get one. The vaccine supply continues to increase so rapidly that more and more Texans will soon be eligible to receive a vaccine.

The Governor noted that Texas has a surplus of personal protective equipment and can perform over 100,000 COVID-19 tests a day. The state has invested in a variety of anti-body therapeutic drugs that have kept thousands of Texans out of hospitals. Texans have also adopted daily habits that reduce the risk of COVID-19 exposure and infection. More than 2.5 million Texans who were lab confirmed for COVID-19 have recovered since the beginning of the pandemic, and experts note the total number of Texans who have recovered from COVID-19 is likely 4-5 times that amount. The number of active COVID-19 cases is the lowest since November—meaning more Texans are recovering from COVID-19 than contracting it.

This executive order rescinds most of the Governor’s earlier executive orders related to COVID-19. Effective next Wednesday, all businesses of any type may open to 100% capacity. Additionally, this order ends the statewide mask mandate in Texas. Businesses may still limit capacity or implement additional safety protocols at their own discretion.

If COVID-19 hospitalizations in any of the 22 hospital regions in Texas get above 15% of the hospital bed capacity in that region for seven straight days, a County Judge in that region may use COVID-19 mitigation strategies. However, County Judges may not impose jail time for not following COVID-19 orders nor may any penalties be imposed for failing to wear a face mask. If restrictions are imposed at a County level, those restrictions may not include reducing capacity to less than 50% for any type of entity.

Governor Abbott Establishes Statewide Face Covering Requirement

Governor Greg Abbott today issued an Executive Order requiring all Texans to wear a face covering over the nose and mouth in public spaces in counties with 20 or more positive COVID-19 cases, with few exceptions.  The Governor also issued a proclamation giving mayors and county judges the ability to impose restrictions on some outdoor gatherings of over 10 people, and making it mandatory that, with certain exceptions, people cannot be in groups larger than ten and must maintain six feet of social distancing from others.

Additionally, the Governor released a new video message to coincide with his Executive Order, encouraging Texans to do their part to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and keep their communities safe.  The video can be viewed on YouTube.

 

Governor’s Executive Order issued June 26, 2020

Texas Governor Greg Abbott today issued Executive Order-GA 28 on June 26, 2020 limiting certain businesses and services in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19.  This decision comes as the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 and the number of hospitalizations have increased and the positivity rate in Texas increased above 10%, which the Governor previously stated would lead to further preventative action.  The order includes the following:

  • All bars and similar establishments that received more than 51% of their gross receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages are required to close at 12:00pm on June 26, 2020.  These businesses may remain open for delivery and take-out, including for alcoholic beverages, as authorized by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC).
  • Restaurants may remain open for dine-in service, but at a capacity not to exceed 50% of total listed indoor occupancy, beginning Monday, June 29, 2020.
  • Rafting and tubing businesses must close.
  • Outdoor gatherings of 100 or more people must be approved by local governments, with certain exceptions.

Read the complete Executive Order for additional guidelines.

Governor’s Executive Order GA-27 issued June 25, 2020

Governor Greg Abbott today issued an Executive Order to ensure hospital bed availability for COVID-19 patients as Texas faces an increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. The Governor’s order suspends elective surgeries at hospitals in Bexar, Dallas, Harris, and Travis counties. Under this order, the Governor directs all hospitals in these counties to postpone all surgeries and procedures that are not immediately, medically necessary to correct a serious medical condition or to preserve the life of a patient who without immediate performance of the surgery or procedure would be at risk for serious adverse medical consequences or death, as determined by the patient’s physician.

Through proclamation, the Governor can add or subtract from the list of counties included in the Executive Order to address surges in hospitalizations that may arise in other parts of the state.

“As Texas faces a rise in COVID-19 cases, we are focused on both slowing the spread of this virus and maintaining sufficient hospital capacity for COVID-19 patients,” said Governor Abbott. “These four counties have experienced significant increases in people being hospitalized due to COVID-19 and today’s action is a precautionary step to help ensure that the hospitals in these counties continue to have ample supply of available beds to treat COVID-19 patients. As we work to contain this virus, I urge all Texans to do their part to help contain the spread by washing their hands regularly, wearing a mask, and practicing social distancing.”

Governor’s Executive Order GA-26 issued June 3, 2020

Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued Executive Order-GA26 on June 3, 2020 setting additional guidelines for reopening Texas.  Certain restrictions and social distancing practices apply so please review the Open Texas Checklist for more specific information.

Beginning June 3rd:
All businesses may expand to 50% occupancy (certain exceptions/restrictions and social distancing practices apply)

Beginning June 12th:
Restaurants may expand to 75% capacity

Beginning June 19th:
All amusement parks may open at 50% capacity

July 4th celebrations and other large outdoor gatherings with estimated attendance of 500 or more are permissible in Texas

COURT UPDATE AMID COVID-19 PANDEMIC

COURT UPDATE AMID COVID-19 PANDEMIC

The Van Alstyne Municipal Court will NOT be holding in-person court appearances for the below scheduled court dates and for future scheduled court dates until further notice.  Court hearings will be virtual held via Zoom.  The virtual hearings via zoom will be preliminary hearings held by the Municipal Court Prosecutor, Rick Dunn.  If you were scheduled a court date prior to June 18, 2020 and did not received a phone call or letter with your new court date, please contact the court for your new scheduled court date.

June 18, 2020 at 3:00pm
July 2, 2020 at 3:00pm
July 16, 2020 at 3:00pm
August 2, 2020 at 3:00pm

In the State of Texas, court hearings are public and in order to comply with this, the hearings will be streamed live on YouTube.  No one should record the live stream.  If you are caught recording, you will be kicked out of the hearing.  Once the hearing is over, the video will be permanently deleted from YouTube and you will not be able to go back and search it or view it.  If you do not have the ability to access Zoom, please contact the court for alternate arrangements.  Please contact the court to provide your most current mailing address, phone number and email address.  This will ensure you are kept up-to-date about your virtual hearing date and will be able to receive more information about your virtual hearing, for example: Zoom Meeting website, Meeting ID and instructions.

FAILURE TO APPEAR for your hearing or FAILURE TO PAY OR MAKE ALTERNATIVE ARRANGEMENTS may result in the issuance of a warrant for your arrest, a charge of Failure to Appear (see Texas Penal Code 38.10) is punishable by a fine of up to $500.00 plus costs and fees, and additional warrant fees assessed to your original charges.