Governor Abbott announces Phase III to open Texas
Colorado County received confirmation of three positive coronavirus (COVID-19) cases and one recovery June 5.
One confirmed positive patient is a female age 30-40 years old and is a resident of Eagle Lake.
Two more confirmed positive patients are both males 30-40 years old and residents of Columbus.
All three are recovering at home and have not required hospitalization.
County Office of Emergency Management Coordinator Charles “Chuck” Rogers said two of the three cases have been determined to be family spread.
“This office has been contacted about information and instruction concerning family members. In both situations, out of town family visits with one member who was sick or running fever but continued the visit anyway. The part was having knowledge that a family had been tested but continued to travel and make their destinations.
In both scenarios we can see 2 examples of how COVID-19 and any other contagious virus can spread very easily. If you know that a family member or friend that you are going to visit is possibly showing signs and symptoms or discover that someone in the residence is feeling ill, you need to reconsider your trip and the need to stay. I know we have been restricted and “cooped up” and want to reconnect, but COVID-19 is still present,” Rogers said.
Currently, Colorado County’s case count is 25, with seven currently active and 18 recoveries. There have been no coronavirus-related hospitalizations or deaths reported for county residents.
No nursing home cases in county
At press time, the county also reported there were no confirmed positive coronavirus cases within county nursing home residents and staff members to date.
“While there are still some test results out, no positives have been reported as of this date,” Rogers said.
Phase III to reopen state
Governor Greg Abbott announced June 3 the third phase of the State of Texas’ plan to safely open the economy while containing the spread of COVID-19. Under Phase III, effective immediately, all businesses in Texas will be able to operate at up to 50 percent capacity, with very limited exceptions. Business that previously have been able to operate at 100 percent capacity may continue to do so, and most outdoor areas are not subject to capacity limits. All businesses and customers should continue to follow minimum standard health protocols laid out by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS).
As with previous phases, the Phase III plan is based on the advice and support of the four doctors on the Strike Force to Open Texas medical team. Via Executive Order, Phase III begins immediately. A breakdown of Phase III can be found below.
“The people of Texas continue to prove that we can safely and responsibly open our state for business while containing COVID-19 and keeping our state safe,” said Governor Abbott. “As anticipated, the new positive cases that we are seeing are largely the result of isolated hot spots in nursing homes, jails, and meat packing plants. Thanks to the effectiveness of our Surge Response Teams, we have the ability to contain those hot spots while opening up Texas for business. As we begin Phase III, I ask all Texans and Texas businesses to continue following the standard health protocols and to heed the guidance of our state and federal officials who continue to closely monitor COVID-19. If we remain vigilant, we will continue to mitigate the spread of this virus, protect public health, and get more Texans back to work and their daily activities.”
The State of Texas reports that between May 26 and June 2, over 45 percent of new cases came from jails or prisons, meat packing plants and nursing homes. There are currently 1,487 Texans hospitalized due to COVID-19. There are 20,679 active cases in the state and 45,858 Texans are estimated to have recovered.
Effective June 3:
All businesses currently operating at 25 percent capacity can expand their occupancy to 50 percent with certain exceptions.
Bars and similar establishments may increase their capacity to 50 percent as long as patrons are seated.
Amusement parks and carnivals in counties with less than 1,000 confirmed positive cases may open at 50 percent capacity.
Restaurants may expand their maximum table size from 6 to 10 persons.
Effective June 12:
Restaurants may expand their occupancy levels to 75 percent.
Counties with 10 or less active COVID-19 cases may expand their occupancy limits to 75 percent. Counties that fit this category but have not previously filed an attestation with DSHS will need to do so.
Effective June 19:
Amusement parks and carnivals in counties with more than 1,000 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 may open at 50 percent capacity.
Special provisions have been made for outdoor gatherings, such as Fourth of July celebrations, but it is imperative that local officials and public health officials collaborate on safe standards. These provisions are included in the Governor’s Executive Order and are also available on the Open Texas webpage.
All businesses should continue to follow the minimum standard health protocols from DSHS. For details and a full list of guidelines, openings, and relevant dates, visit http://open.texas.gov.
Reminders for those going out:
- Individuals are encouraged to wear appropriate face coverings.
- People should not be in groups greater than ten when possible.
- People over the age of 65 are encouraged to stay at home as much as possible.
- People are still asked to avoid nursing homes, state supported living centers, assisted living facilities, or long-term care facilities.