P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
Today is a big day.
Today, many businesses across Texas will take the first step toward safely re-opening. This initial phase includes retail stores, malls, restaurants and movie theaters. Operational capacity has been set at 25% to ensure customers and employees can continue to limit exposure to COVID -19.
As this pandemic grew, a devastating number of Texans lost their livelihoods and found themselves out of work. Our businesses struggled, but responded with incredible ingenuity to make delivery and to-go services possible. This has not been easy on individuals, families, or the Texas economy as a whole. Now it’s time to get our businesses up and running again.
I am grateful to every Texan who has practiced healthy habits, volunteered their time, contributed to our supply chain and served on the front lines of the pandemic.
Our work is not over, but thanks to our success in “flattening the curve," Texas is now able to begin returning to work with the strategic plan set in place by our business leaders, medical experts and government officials.
This plan, called The Governor’s Report to Open Texas, can be viewed at gov.texas.gov.
Businesses have the freedom to continue sticking to delivery and to-go services if they choose. The Governor's executive order allowing certain businesses to reopen at 25% capacity is not a requirement, but those stores that do reopen may require you to wear a mask, even though there is no statewide mandate. As Texas continues to flatten the curve, we hopefully will see operational capacity increase to 50% on May 18th. For hair salons, bars, gyms, and any other business that cannot reopen today, I have been assured your day is coming soon.
These decisions were made with the medical community’s advice to move forward in phases. The state continues to ramp up our testing capabilities and secure personal protective equipment for our front line workers. Social distancing, especially for vulnerable Texans and those in contact with them, is still advised.
Having operated a manufacturing company, I recognize the struggles our businesses are facing amid this pandemic -- and how strongly they want to help their employees and customers throughout this difficult time. Please join me in supporting our small businesses as they take this first step to reopen. Stay healthy!
Senator Jane Nelson