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Governor Greg Abbott announces Phase III of reopening Texas

Businesses, bars can expand capacity to 50%, restaurants to 75%

Gov. Greg Abbott on coronavirus response
Gov. Greg Abbott on coronavirus response

AUSTIN, Texas – Gov. Greg Abbott on Wednesday announced the third phase of reopening Texas’ 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% capacity, with very limited exceptions.

Business that previously have been able to operate at 100% 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.

Explained: Phase II of Abbott’s plan to reopen Texas; Rules for bars, bowling alleys

"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,” Abbott said. “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.”

Here’s how the breakdown of Phase III will occur.

Effective June 3:

All businesses currently operating at 25% capacity can expand their occupancy to 50% with certain exceptions.

Bars and similar establishments may increase their capacity to 50% as long as patrons are seated.

Amusement parks and carnivals in counties with less than 1,000 confirmed positive cases may open at 50% capacity.

Restaurants may expand their maximum table size from six to 10 persons.

Effective June 12:

Restaurants may expand their occupancy levels to 75%.

Counties with 10 or less active COVID-19 cases may expand their occupancy limits to 75%. 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% capacity.

Additional Openings:

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.

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.

State officials issued the following reminders for Texans for those going out:

  • Individuals are encouraged to wear appropriate face coverings.
  • People should not be in groups greater than 10 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.

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