Hays County Issues Correction, Update Regarding Latest Executive Order

This morning, Hays County released updated information regarding the County Judge’s Executive Order issued yesterday. 

The correction states:

There is no $1,000 penalty for businesses in Judge Becerra’s new Order. An earlier version of the Order included a $1,000 fine for non-compliance.” 

According to officials, after consideration, Judge Becerra decided not to include that, instead of giving the County’s already-struggling local businesses the direction and allowing them the opportunity to comply without subjecting them to the possibility of fines.

Compliance in that area could have been subject to interpretation, which was also a consideration.

The correction makes the Order consistent with Executive Order GA-26 issued by Governor Greg Abbott, no civil or criminal penalty will be imposed on individuals for failure to wear a face covering.

An updated release can be read below. 

Hays County Courthouse, San Marcos, TX – Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra today issued a new executive order that, among other provisions, requires face coverings be worn in public.

From the steps of the Historic Hays County Courthouse, Judge Becerra announced the new Order, which closely models what several other Central Texas counties are implementing.

“With our COVID-19 case counts increasing rapidly here in Hays County, including the 210 cases today alone,” he said, “it’s important that we get back to doing those simple things that can help protect the most vulnerable in our community.”

Effective Monday, June 22, Judge Becerra’s new Order will accomplish three things:

  1. Continue the local disaster declaration and public health emergency here in Hays County.
  2. Require all commercial entities in Hays to develop and implement a health and safety policy, and
  3. Require all people ten and older to wear a face-covering when in public, when unable to keep six feet away from other

This Order, which is detailed below, expires July 20, 2020.

Continuation of Executive Order

This Executive Order shall continue the local disaster declaration and public health emergency for Hays County for the period specified in Order and shall incorporate and adopt the most recent executive order GA-26 issued by Governor Greg Abbott on June 3, 2020, and any subsequent orders by the Governor relating to the expanded opening of Texas in response to the COVID-19 disaster.

Health & Safety Policies

From the date of this Executive Order, all commercial entities in Hays County providing goods or services directly to the public must develop and implement a health and safety policy (“Health and Safety Policy”).

The policy must require, at a minimum, that all employees or visitors to the commercial entity’s business premises or other facilities wear face coverings when in an area or performing an activity which will necessarily involve close contact or proximity to co-workers or the public where six feet of separation is not feasible.

The Health and Safety Policy required to be developed and implemented by this Executive Order may also include the implementation of other mitigating measures designed to control and reduce the transmission of COVID-19, such as temperature checks or health screenings.

Commercial entities must post the Health and Safety Policy required by this Executive Order in a conspicuous location sufficient to provide notice to employees and visitors of all health and safety requirements.

Wearing Face Coverings

All people ten years or older shall wear a face covering over their nose and mouth when in a public place within Hays County, where it is difficult to keep six feet away from other people or working in areas that involve close proximity with other coworkers.

The CDC advises face coverings for people two years or older. Face coverings may include homemade masks, scarfs, bandanas, or a handkerchief.

Hays County residents should continue to maintain physical distancing of at least six feet while outside their home.

Hays County employees are also required to wear face coverings under the same circumstances as the general public.

Face coverings do not need to be worn in the following circumstances:

  • When exercising outside or engaging in physical activity outside
  • While driving alone or with passengers who are part of the same household as the driver
  • When doing so poses a greater mental or physical health, safety, or security risk.
  • While pumping gas or operating outdoor equipment
  • While in a building or activity that requires security surveillance or screening, for example, banks
  • When consuming food or drink

Please note: Face coverings are not a replacement for social distancing, frequent handwashing, and self-isolation when sick.

All people should follow the Centers for Disease Control recommendations for how to wear and take off a mask.

Residents should employ the following habits while in public:

  • Washing hands before you leave home and when you return,
  • Staying at least six feet away from others,
  • Avoiding touching nose or face,
  • Not using disposable masks more than three times, and
  • Washing reusable cloth masks regularly to prevent the spread of the

Consistent with Executive Order GA-26 issued by Governor Greg Abbott, no civil or criminal penalty will be imposed on individuals for failure to wear a face covering.

Emergency Operations Director Alex Villalobos said during the conference that Hays County, in conjunction with the City of Kyle and the Central Texas Food Bank, has also helped local residents by providing 3,000 families with food through two mass distributions.

In addition, in conjunction with the Texas Division of Emergency Management and the Texas Army National Guard, the County has offered free COVID-19 testing for hundreds of local residents.

Judge Becerra reiterated that it’s important for residents and businesses to work together.

“I feel it is necessary to issue an order to slow the aggressive spread of this relentless virus,” he said. “This is not a fight we can give up on; the pandemic is far from over.”

The original release can be read here

COVID19_4th Order Hays Co6.18.20

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  1. Would you like to know how they’re trying to dupe you? The “spike” in “cases” is actually not a spike at all. ?????

    It is actually, ANTIBODY testing being counted as positive COVID tests. ?

    The ONLY thing this “spike” tells us is that these people likely “had” the virus, either with symptoms or asymptomatically, weeks or even months ago! ?

  2. NUMBERS SHNUMBERS, What about the cases that are NOT counted or reported due to lack of money to pay for testing because you lost your job and your health insurance too so you do what the responsible person should do and just stay at home, rest, and pray to God your next breath won’t be your last as you scroll over social media posts of people arguing about their rights to not wear a mask knowing they are the very ones that exposed you to this REAL VIRUS while you were in town applying for a job which you now have to turn down so that you can quarantine and keep others safe from your own deadly germs!?!?!!?
    My son just tested positive in hays county for the active virus he contracted from being an essential worker from the beginning, and every day up to now servicing people so they do not have to cook for themselves while they complain maskless about limited dine-in seating and limited menu options.

    Food for thought: someone reading your useless comment just lost a spouse, parent, child, friend and are looking for answers, facts and helpful information…..choose your words wisely and load your brain before you shoot your mouth.

  3. Ummm… Numbers are how we get out of this mess. When enough of us get the “disease” we can build up herd immunity. Then the “threat” is gone. So I suggest you accept the numbers and be prepared when you number is called.

  4. The healthiest may be lucky enough to develop herd immunity — but the high risk group Holeman callously ignores gets sick or dies when exposed. I question the wisdom of anyone whose opinion is based on Trump’s words of ignorance because they both willfully refuse to listen to warnings of medical experts.

    1. You so sure about that? Have you actually thought about those numbers? Have you thought about the actual fatality rate after adjusting for other comorbidities?

      COVID DOES NOT KILL. COVID only complicates conditions that are already present. We are fighting nature.

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