In a press conference held this afternoon, Governor Abbott announced his Stay at Home order will be allowed to expire on April 30. He also announced two phases for reopening the Texas economy. The first phase starts May 1st and sets out new measures for how business can reopen, If there is no flare up for two weeks, phase two would begin May 18th. The first phase includes:
- All retail stores (movie theaters, restaurants, and malls) as well as libraries and museums can reopen at a 25% capacity. Any interactive exhibits must remain closed.
- Sole Proprietors can reopen.
- Churches and places of worship may expand their capacity.
- Outdoor sports with four or less people can resume.
- All healthcare professionals can reopen.
- People 65 or above, and immunocompromised people, should continue to stay home as much as possible.
- Counties with 5 or less cases have looser guidelines. They may reopen the same businesses as above at a 50% capacity. However, should there be an increase in cases they must be prepared to lower capacity limit or re-close.
Phase 2 would begin on May 18th barring any COVID-19 flare.
- Business capacity would increase to 50%.
- Abbott hopes to reopen hair salons, barbershops, gyms, and bars at this mid-May mark.
Today's COVID-19 Trends report is pulled from the numbers reported on April 26, 2020. There has been some overall flattening out, but Texas is still significantly behind in mass testing and continues to report new numbers daily. We did have two big spikes in cases and deaths in the last two days