Local businesses decide whether to require masks after statewide mandate lifted
Greg Abbott ordered the state’s mask mandate to be lifted on Wednesday and allowed any business to open at 100% capacity. “All the staff is required to wear masks and the customers are doing whatever they wish to do,” said Jim Hallers, managing partner of Citizens Grill near The Woodlands. At nearby Malibu Nails and Spa, front desk employee Maggie Becker said employees will wear masks and take other precautions. “We are not requiring guests to wear masks since the mandate has been lifted,” she said. “Of course, all of our team members are wearing masks as well but we’re still requiring customers to wear masks as they come in.”KPRC 2 asked whether that approach has caused any problems.
Health experts push back as more states lift COVID-19 restrictions
HOUSTON – Texas is only five days away from the end of the mask mandate. It was the first of 15 states to announce a rollback in COVID-19 restrictions. Greg Abbott announced he would lift the mask mandate starting March 10 and allow businesses to open at 100% capacity. However, while H-E-B will require all employees to wear masks, customers will simply be encouraged to do the same. The Texas Education Agency says the decision on whether students and staff should wear masks is up to each individual school district.
Bar owners optimistic business will return under Abbott’s new executive order
Last November, owner Pam Hillhouse was able to re-open her bar by filing for a food and beverage license. Hillhouse is among the struggling Texas business owners who are optimistic that their businesses will bounce back after Abbott rescinded the statewide mask order. The Bokeeters bar owner said she refused to switch over to a food and beverage license and kept operating as a bar. The Texas Bar and Nightclub Alliance said their members are thrilled by the governor’s newest order. The TBNA had filed several lawsuits in 2020 saying the governor’s executive order at the time was unconstitutional.
Popular Houston attractions announce whether or not guests will be required to wear masks
HOUSTON – Houston attractions wasted no time Wednesday announcing how they will handle Gov. Space HoustonSpace Center Houston is in compliance with directives of health officials and CDC guidelines. Space Center Houston, the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center, is located on government property. AdGuests without masks will not be allowed entry to Space Center Houston. AdMoody GardenMoody Garden said they would require employees to wear masks.
3 of Gov. Greg Abbott’s four coronavirus medical advisers say they weren’t directly consulted prior to lifting mask mandate
Greg Abbott announced at the Texas Capitol that he would soon take initial steps to allow businesses to reopen during the coronavirus pandemic. Three of the four said on Wednesday that Abbott did not directly consult with them prior to the drastic shift in policy. “Does the governor want folks to wear a mask and to take their own personal responsibility to do it? Abbott’s order makes Texas the largest state in the country without a mask mandate. #txlege — Texas State Senator Borris L. Miles (@BorrisLMiles) March 2, 2021Many hardliners in Abbott’s party, including Texas GOP Chairman Allen West, have for weeks called on Abbott to end coronavirus restrictions.
‘You’re subject to arrest for criminal trespass’: Acevedo issues message regarding private businesses, masks
HOUSTON – Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo released a sturdy message for those who do not comply with private businesses’ policies on wearing masks after Gov. In the video, Acevedo wanted to remind residents that private entities and private businesses have a legal right to require customers to wear a mask. He said if a person goes to a business that requires you to wear a mask, to please wear the mask or take your business elsewhere. Acevedo said for those who do not comply or leave the business are subjected to arrest for criminal trespass. Just remember that if you remain in the business after being asked to leave, you are subject to arrest for criminal trespass,” Acevedo said.
Community shows support for Houston restaurant after it was site of anti-mask protest
HOUSTON – A beloved Garden Oaks restaurant got an outpouring of support Monday after it was ambushed over the weekend by a group protesting the mask ordinance. Video posted to YouTube shows several people carrying Trump flags and American flags marching in front of the restaurant chanting “Boycott Miller’s”. We’ve never taken a political stance here, we sell hamburgers,” said owner Jessica Beer, who now runs her family’s 41-year-old restaurant business. Surveillance video from inside the restaurant shows two members of the group go inside without masks on. Gremillion told them they needed to have a mask on and if they didn’t have one the restaurant could provide one.
Woman streams self having teary ‘panic attack’ at H-E-B after she said she was refused at checkout for not wearing mask
CEDAR PARK, Texas – A Texas woman recorded herself having a “panic attack” at an H-E-B in Cedar Park, Texas near Austin after she claims employees refused to check out her groceries as she was not wearing a mask in violation of store policy. The undated video was posted on the “public freakout” subreddit after the woman went on Facebook Live about the incident. In the video, the woman said she complained to a store manager after she said she was harassed by customers about not wearing a mask. The woman also said she has anxiety and PTSD. Watch the full video below:
Do Texans have to wear masks while driving?
HOUSTON – Texans may need to wear a mask while driving in a car, depending on if they are alone or with others. Greg Abbott issued a statewide executive order mandating most Texans to wear masks or face coverings in public spaces, with few exceptions. The order went into effect on July 3 at noon. One of those exceptions include people who are driving alone or with passengers who are in the same household as the driver. Otherwise, people in Texas counties under the mandatory mask order should wear a mask when driving with others, not in the same household.
Montgomery County Sheriffs Office says they wont enforce the statewide mask order
HOUSTON Montgomery County Sheriffs Office said they will take no actions to enforce the Governors Executive Order, requiring most Texans to wear a face covering in public. The Montgomery County order prohibits law enforcement from detaining, arresting or confining to jail, as a means to enforce the order, which strips away the tools to enforce the compliance of the law. We are in a public health crisis and we will use this opportunity to educate our community while still respecting individual liberties, Montgomery County Sheriffs Office said in the release. Lets work together to ensure Montgomery County remains a safe place to live and work. We encourage all citizens to take reasonable precautions in their own life to mitigate possible exposure by following all Health Department guidelines.
Houston lawyer plans to sue Gov. Abbott regarding mask statewide order
The order will require most Texans to wear a face mask in public settings. Under the executive order that goes into effect Friday afternoon, anyone 10 years or older must wear a face-covering. Local residents shared mixed reactions regarding the latest order to combat the spread of COVID-19. A few months ago, Woodfill sued Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo following her mask order and is already working on the same against the governor. And he’s decided to use the big hand of government to force someone to wear a mask,” said Woodfill.
Missouri City and Dickinson join other cities as people are required to wear masks in businesses
On Sunday morning, Missouri City joined a list of other cities now requiring people to wear a mask while visiting local businesses. The mandatory mask order went into effect at midnight. In Pearland, the mayor issued a similar order requiring businesses to make mask-wearing mandatory or face a $1,000 fine. According to the order, face masks are to be worn in public. The new mask orders are parallel to orders in Harris and Fort Bend counties.
Business owners rally against Harris County mask order
HOUSTON – Around 60 people gathered to protest the Harris County mask order in downtown Houston on Saturday. The group held an event called, ‘Unmuzzled Freedom Rally.”Steven Hotze was a speaker at the rally. “This is not a pandemic,” Hotze said. “If you think that this [mask] takes away your freedom, wait until you try COVID-19,” Rea said. “You need to take precautions and you need to take your vitamins.”About 12 Houston police officers were present during the rally.
Ask 2: How do you report businesses that are violating the mask order in Harris County?
As part of our new Ask 2 series, the newsroom will answer your questions about all things Houston. Question: How do you report the businesses violating the mask order? Answer: A mandatory face mask order went into effect as of 12:01 a.m Monday, June 22 and will last through 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, June 30. Under the order, Harris County businesses that offer goods and services are required to ensure all its visitors and employees are wearing masks. If you find a business that you think is not in compliance with the mask order, Harris County officials say you can report them by calling (832) 839-6941Do you have a burning H-Town-related question?
Galveston city residents will be under a mask order effective midnight, officials announce
HOUSTON Galveston Mayor Jim Yarbrough announced a mask order for residents Monday that will go into effect just after midnight. Effective midnight, residents in the city of Galveston will be required to wear face coverings in all Galveston businesses that serve the public, officials announced Monday evening. The face coverings must cover the customers nose and mouth, officials wrote. City officials say the order came in response to the growing number of coronavirus cases in the city and county. The order will remain in effect until 11:59 p.m. on June 30 and may be extended if Galveston City Council votes to extend the order at a meeting Thursday.
Fort Bend County is asking for input from residents regarding face mask enforcement
FORT BEND COUNTY, Texas – As Harris County’s mask order goes into effect Monday, Fort Bend County is seeking resident input on whether a similar order should be implemented in their county. Fort Bend County Judge KP George said in a Facebook post-Sunday evening that he would like input from the public about mask-wearing and enforcement, and COVID-19 safety. “Folks, these are unprecedented times. “I want to give YOU the opportunity to have input in my decisions to protect our community.”Folks, these are unprecedented times. To access the Fort Bend County mask survey, click here.
Video: 2 Harris County fire marshal inspectors shut down tanning salon while violating ‘mask order’
CROSBY, Texas – Two Harris County Fire Marshal’s Office Inspectors who shut down a Crosby Tanning Salon will be disciplined for violating a Harris County Order and department policy when they visited the location. The inspectors ultimately did not cite Givans for violating any order, but rather shuttered the business based on a paperwork technicality. "HCFMO has been working with Island Tanz to help walk the business owner through the appropriate procedure in obtaining the appropriate permits. "Wed., 5/6 -- Owner emailed at 4:45 p.m., stating he received the approved changed of ownership from Harris County Engineering, and he submitted as built documentation. Business Owner requested a final inspection.
Here is everything you need to know about the new Harris County face covering order starting Monday
HOUSTON – Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo signed an order requiring people to wear some form of face-covering, which goes into effect Monday and remain in for 30 days. Hidalgo said the order will help keep people safe as officials work to reopen the county, but masks are not a replacement for social distancing. Here is what to know about the order:Who is required to wear a mask? Anyone 10 years or older should wear a face covering that covers his or her nose and mouth. Hidalgo said the order will make exceptions for people with health or mental health conditions who have difficulties wearing facial covers.
Mayor Turner says Houston won’t enforce $1,000 fine for residents not wearing a mask
Turner made his position clear regarding Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo's nose and mouth cover order. In an interview with KPRC 2 Investigates, Gamaldi called the order unconstitutional. So that means you have discretion, discretion, discretion," he said. "If Harris County did it, Fort Bend is going to do it, and it's the best thing to do," said Fort Bend resident Shandle Pearson. On Thursday afternoon, Fort Bend said it would not be issuing a mask covering order.