In what appears to be the beginning of a second wave of shutdowns in response to the Chinese coronavirus, Gov. Greg Abbott announced Friday morning an executive order that would reverse some progress made in the state’s phased reopening plan.
The changes? The closure of bars across the state, seating capacity in restaurants limited to 50 percent, the closure of tubing and rafting businesses, and requiring outdoor gatherings of more than 100 people to have the approval of local officials.
“As I said from the start, if the positivity rate rose above 10 percent, the State of Texas would take further action to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Abbott. “At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars.”
The announcement comes one day after Abbott announced a “temporary pause” on further phases of reopening.
Additionally, he issued an executive order yesterday that once again suspends elective surgeries at hospitals in Bexar, Dallas, Harris, and Travis counties.