Texas Governor Greg Abbott outlined phase one for Texas businesses to slowly re-open the economy while facing the public health pandemic of the coronavirus (COVID-19) .
State leaders expressed strong caution and emphasized for elderly Texans and individuals with pre-existing health conditions to continue to stay at home, wash hands, use face masks and avoid crowds.
Restaurants, retail stores, movie theaters, museums, libraries and malls may re-open for business effective May, 1. Social distancing restrictions are still in place and only 25 percent of the total occupancy may be allowed in the business at one time.
Gov. Abbott put looser restrictions for Texas Counties with less than five confirmed cases, allowing the the list of opened businesses to open to customers up to 50 percent occupancy. The 50 percent occupancy will possibly be phase two for counties with higher current COVID-19 cases, if data from testing supports the public health concern.
Church Services for worship will also open on May, 1 with same social distancing requirements of 25 percent occupancy.
"It has been a proven strategy that has worked for H.E.B and HomeDepot," said Abbott. "I recommend social distancing and wearing masks in public places."
Outdoor sports will be allowed with a maximum of four players at one time.
Normal medical services are allowed with few restrictions, and 15 percent of the hospital capacity must be reserved for COVID-19 patients, under the current order.
"Salons, bars, gyms and spas will start re-opening during phase two with restrictions hopefully mid-May," said Abbott.