Governor Issues Executive Order to Reopen More Texas Businesses

Bradley PepperCovid-19

Yesterday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced a new executive order for the next phase reopening businesses in Texas.  Beginning May 8, hair salons, barber shops, nail salons and shops, and other establishments where licensed cosmetologists or barbers practice their trade, may open, but all such salons, shops, and establishments must ensure at least six feet of social distancing between operating work stations. Also starting May 8, swimming pools may open subject to certain limitations, including on their occupancy or operating levels.

Beginning May 18, office buildings may open with the greater of five or less individuals or 25% of the total office workforce. These individuals must maintain appropriate social distancing. Gyms, exercise facilities, and exercise classes may also open on May 18, but must operate at 25% occupancy. Non-essential manufacturing services may also open on May 18 but facilities must limit their occupancy to 25%.

In addition, effective immediately, wedding venues and services required to conduct weddings and receptions may open.  If these are indoor events, they must operate at a 25% occupancy level. 


The governor also announced the formation of Surge Response Teams. These teams are led by TDEM and HHSC and include representatives from the Texas Military Department, DSHS, the Texas Emergency Medical Task Force, and BCFS Health and Human Services. Surge Response Teams will serve nursing homes, prisons, packing pants, and other facilities that experience flare ups of COVID-19 by providing personal protective equipment, testing supplies, onsite staffing, and assessment assistance.

See here for checklists and instructions on how businesses should reopen. 

Read the new executive order here.

About the Author

Bradley Pepper

Government Affairs Director Greater Houston Builders Association (GHBA)