Governor Greg Abbott Friday morning ordered all bars to be closed at noon today and restaurants are to go back to operating at 50 percent capacity instead of 75 percent.
The announcement was made as the numbers of covid 19 cases in the state are surging. Thursday afternoon he said he was pausing future phases of openings, but he did not change bars and restaurants. Hours later, his decision changed.
“At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars,” Abbott said in a news release. “The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to swiftly contain this virus and protect public health.”
The Friday order also closes river tours and bans outdoor gatherings of 100 or more, unless approved by local authorities.
On Thursday, the governor ordered four metropolitan counties, Harris, Dallas, Travis, and Bexar, to suspend elective surgeries and medical procedures.
Abbott is encouraging people to stay at home and wear a mask if going out, and to wash hands frequently.
-Margaret Toal, KOGT-