This afternoon, Governor Abbott signed an Executive Order “relating to the expanded reopening of services” as part of the Open Texas strategic plan. Here are a few noteworthy takeaways:

  • On Thursday, April 30, 2020, the Texas Stay At Home Order expires. The new Executive Order supersedes any other local order.
  • The re-opening will occur in various phases for certain businesses. In a press conference, Governor Abbott said he wants to take two weeks to collect additional data to make sure that reopening the economy doesn’t cause another outbreak. Therefore, there are stipulations in the order put in place to protect the vulnerable population and mitigate an additional outbreak.
  • Masks are highly recommended, but not required.
  • Anyone over the age of 65 is advised to continue to stay at home as much as possible.
  • Any business owner in violation of the order may be penalized up to a $1,000 fine and 90 days in jail. Business owners that violate the order also risk losing any applicable business license.
  • Phase 1: Starts May 1, 2020
    • Healthcare businesses may open with little restriction. Hospitals are required to maintain a certain number of beds for coronavirus patients.
    • Restaurants, movie theaters, malls, and all retail stores may open at a 25% occupancy capacity.
    • Gyms, hair salons, barber shops, and bars must remain closed during Phase 1.
  • Phase 2: Expected to start May 18, 2020 (actual start will depend on the death rate, hospitalization rate, hot spots, etc.)
    • Restaurants, movie theaters, malls, and all retail stores may open at a 50% occupancy capacity.
    • Gyms, hair salons, barber shops, and bars may open with certain guidelines.

Here is a link to the Executive Order and to the Governor’s Report to Open Texas.

Before joining FBFK, Tricia spent fifteen years as a business owner. Combining her experience of entrepreneurship and small business management with her passion of advocating and negotiating for the client, Tricia has a unique appreciation and insight into the challenges many business owners face.

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