On Thursday, July 2, Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order requiring all Texans to wear a face covering over the nose and mouth in public spaces in counties with 20 or more positive COVID-19 cases, with a few situational exceptions.
The governor also issued a proclamation to limit gatherings, giving mayors and county judges the ability to impose restrictions on gatherings of 10 or more people. In some cases, people cannot be in groups larger than 10 and must maintain 6 feet of social distancing.
“If Texans commit to wearing face coverings in public spaces and follow the best health and safety practices, we can both slow the spread of COVID-19 and keep Texas open for business,” the governor said in a statement. “I urge all Texans to wear a face covering in public, not just for their own health, but for the health of their families, friends, and for all our fellow Texans.”
Following a verbal or written warning for a first-time violator of this face-covering requirement, a person’s second violation is punishable by a fine of up to $250. Each subsequent fine also will be of up to $250.
The order came minutes after the city of Marble Falls voted to extend the city’s disaster declaration but change the face covering order to “highly recommended” instead of “mandated.”