Spring, Texas – Speaking to reporters today in a press conference, Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced a multi-phase plan to reopen the state of Texas.

During the press conference, Gov. Abbott was asked by a reporter to comment on Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo’s order mandating the use of masks in public while in the county. Responding to the reporter, who cited a possible disconnect between the Governor’s order opening the state and Harris County’s order on masks, Abbott responded by saying:

“We strongly recommend that everyone wear a mask. However, it’s not a mandate, and we made it clear, no jurisdiction can impose any type of penalty or fine. Everyone should be encouraged, but by my executive order, it supersedes local orders with regard to any type of fine or penalty for anyone not wearing a mask.” – Gov. Greg Abbott

Gov. Abbott reported that Texas COVID-19 “has been on the decline for the past 17 days.”

Phase one of the Governor’s plan will allow all retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters, malls, libraries and museums in Texas to open on Friday, but the occupancy rate will be capped at 25 percent. All churches will be allowed to open and hold expanded services as well.

Phase two, which will begin around May 18, will open more businesses and allow those businesses who opened in phase one to expand operations. It will also allow the capacity limit to expand to 50 percent.

Spring Happenings will continue to update you on the latest COVID-19 news as it becomes available.