Mayor Turner selecting person to lead charge of reopening local economy

HOUSTON – Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said he is appointing a person Monday to lead the local coronavirus recovery efforts.

This person will take charge of rebounding the economic fallout of the coronavirus shutdown in Houston by authorizing the necessary committees and task forces and working in partnership with regional and state officials, business leaders, and nonprofit organizations, Turner said.

“We have given that person the total charge,” Turner said Saturday at a testing site at Delmar Stadium in northwest Houston. “(They) have the singular responsibility of helping to reenergize us, get us back on our feet, and establish that blueprint in order to move forward.”

Turner said he has also designed a task force, specifically to find solutions for vulnerable and at-risk populations.

On Friday, officials on the state and federal levels outlined the new steps for reopening the economy.

Turner said he agreed with several measures outlined by Gov. Greg Abbott, including the closure of all public and private schools, colleges, and universities. However, he said the city needed to expand its testing capacity and secure more healthcare supplies to resume normal activities safely.

“I want to reopen the economy, as well. I want to reopen it as quickly as possible. But what is important, in order to do that, that we have widespread testing. That is critically important,” Turner said.

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