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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Hays County judge opts to reopen bars following governor executive order

In+this+file+photo%2C+Hays+County+Judge%26%23160%3BRuben+Becerra+issues+an+executive+order+requiring+all+Hays+County+residents+to+wear+face+coverings+when+in+public%2C+Thursday%2C+June+18%2C+2020%2C+outside+of+the+Hays+County+Historic+Courthouse.+On+Oct.+9%2C+Becerra%26%23160%3Bopted+to+allow+bars+to+reopen+at+50%25+capacity+Oct.+14%2C+following+an+executive+order+by+Gov.+Greg+Abbott+allowing+select+county+judges+to+do+so.%26%23160%3B

In this file photo, Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra issues an executive order requiring all Hays County residents to wear face coverings when in public, Thursday, June 18, 2020, outside of the Hays County Historic Courthouse. On Oct. 9, Becerra opted to allow bars to reopen at 50% capacity Oct. 14, following an executive order by Gov. Greg Abbott allowing select county judges to do so. 

Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra will allow bars to reopen Oct. 14, following an executive order by Gov. Greg Abbott granting select county judges the authority to do so.
Bars will be eligible to reopen at 50% capacity. According to a press release from the county, Becerra received recommendations from local health officials, which included asking bar owners to consider utilizing outdoor seating, remove 50% of tables, remove bar stools and place musical acts outside.
The press release states local officials want bar patrons, servers and bar owners to practice the necessary safety measures, such as social distancing and wearing masks. 
“Our health department team said they would support the reopening if bar owners and patrons are able to continue making safety a priority,” Becerra said in the press release.
Becerra’s decision comes after Abbott announced Oct. 7 that county judges in hospital regions where COVID-19 hospitalizations are less than 15% of hospital capacities could make the decision to reopen at half capacity. The order also states judges can raise the occupancy levels for all businesses other than bars to 75%.
On Oct. 9, the county reported 350 total hospitalizations, 11 current. Hays County is currently not on the Texas Department of Health Services list showing counties with high COVID-19 hospitalization rates. 
The University Star will update this story with more information as it becomes available.

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