Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed an executive order on Oct. 7 to allow bars and other similar licensed establishments through the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to reopen at 50 percent capacity beginning on Oct. 14.
In hospital regions with low COVID-19 hospitalizations, County Judges are able to opt their county into opening bars, provided they assist in enforcing health protocols. The Governor’s Executive Order also increases the occupancy levels for all business establishments other than bars to 75 percent.
“Even as more businesses have opened and students return to school, Texans have shown we can contain the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Abbott. “Thanks to Texans following the best health practices, our state is prepared for additional openings, including bars. Working with industry leaders and our team of medical experts, the State of Texas has now developed strategies to safely open bars under certain health protocols. To ensure bars open safely, these openings will be done in conjunction with county officials. County Judges will be able to opt their county into opening bars so long as they assist in enforcing the health protocols. Opening bars does not mean that COVID-19 is no longer a threat, and most Texans are still susceptible to the virus. As bars and similar businesses begin to open, we all must remain vigilant and show personal responsibility to protect ourselves and our loved ones.”
Liberty County is in a low COVID-19 hospitalization region, so Abbott’s order will not be challenged locally, according to a statement from Liberty County Judge Jay Knight.
“Per the Governor’s latest update to Executive Order GA-32, I hereby ‘opt-in’ and will allow our TABC-licensed establishments in Liberty County to resume operations per the Governor’s order with all recommendations of this order to be followed including the minimum standard health protocols,” Knight said.
To see a video of Abbott discussing the executive order, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=piQgxzJIuJQ&feature=youtu.be
To view the executive order, click here: https://gov.texas.gov/uploads/files/press/EO-GA-32_continued_response_to_COVID-19_IMAGE_10-07-2020.pdf