Texas bars open back up to 50% capacity After months of being closed due to an increase in COVID-19 cases, Texas bars are officially set to reopen. The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has approved new rules to make it easier for bars to reopen during the pandemic. Texas’ coronavirus outbreak has certainly declined, but those declines look to have slowed recently. Bandera County. All Texas bars are allowed to reopen for on-site service at 50 percent indoor capacity and with no outdoor limits, as allowed by Texas Gov. Abbott shut down dine-in service at restaurants and bars on March 19, then reopened them in May. Previously, I wrote for The Times-Picayune | The New Orleans Advocate covering local government. Part of those guidelines included limiting indoor occupancy to 50% of capacity, conducting temperature checks at the door and requiring servers to wear masks. READ MORE: Texas bars can reopen to 50% capacity, but decision up to county judges, Gov. He wrote in the tweet that the spread of the coronavirus and number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 “remain contained.”. Abbott says bars can reopen October 14 if county judges opt in Abbott said he will allow bars to reopen at 50 percent occupancy in counties where COVID-19 … Abbott permitted restaurants in … The Texas … “If everyone continues the safe practices, Texas will be able to contain COVID and we will be able to reopen 100%.”. We simply now know better how to protect ourselves from getting Covid.”. “The truth is we remain closed until someone else makes the decision to open us up based on whatever parameters they deem appropriate — data, politics, personal animus, you name it,” said Michael Klein, president of the Texas Bar and Nightclub Alliance. HOUSTON — Bar owners across Texas are hopeful after a tweet by Gov.Greg Abbott hinted that bars may soon be allowed to fully reopen for the first time since June. Greg Abbott closed bars down again in June after a spike in COVID-19 cases in the state. It also banned dance floors and mingling among groups. Abbott’s decision comes just days after he teased in a tweet that he would soon allow “more openings” of Texas businesses, ending the message with the word “Cheers!” and including an image of two beer mugs clinking. He reversed course during the summer, in a decision that has drawn the ire of many in his own party. Texas bars are allowed to reopen for on-site services starting on October 14, according to a new order issued by Gov. Texas bars can reopen at 25% capacity on Friday, restaurants may expand service to 50% capacity on Friday and child care facilities can reopen immediately, Texas Gov. Bars were first allowed to reopen in Texas on May 22 at 25% capacity and then it was increased to 50% on June 3. The last six months have been filled with major twists and turns for bar owners. Find a complete list of them here. The governor has previously referred to bars as “COVID-spreading locations” and said that case numbers in the state would need to be further contained before they could open. A bartender waited for customers at Buck Wild in downtown Austin after bars reopened in May. Instagram / longtabbrewing New guidelines issued late last week by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission will allow some bars, breweries and wineries to … Gov. Texas Moving To Phase 2 — Reopening Bars, Allowing Pro Sports To Return (Forbes), Coronavirus Spreading At ‘Unacceptable Rate’ In Texas, Governor Says (Forbes), Gov. by: Candy Rodriguez. Like many Republican governors, Abbott was eager to reopen the state’s economy after the first major U.S. coronavirus surge back in the spring, including an order to reopen bars in May, a move that Abbott would say he regretted. Greg Abbott announced Monday. Some Texas bars will reopen at 50% capacity beginning October 14; Social distancing and masks will be enforced; Decision concerning reopening ultimately up to county judges ; Some judges to permit reopening; others opting to wait ; Beginning October 14, bars in counties where COVID-19 cases account for less than 15 percent of hospital capacity can begin reopening with restrictions. During different phases of the pandemic, Abbott has taken different approaches for how much power to give local authorities. A map of all Texas counties with bars reopening is posted on the TABC website. The Texas Restaurant Association (TRA) is urging Gov. Gov. More Texas bars could reopen as restaurants after the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission voted to ease restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo by Sergio ... [+] Flores / AFP) (Photo by SERGIO FLORES/AFP via Getty Images). When the virus first reached Texas, he deferred to local officials, and many issued their own versions of stay-at-home orders. Bar doors were swinging open Wednesday in each of the eight surrounding counties. Greg Abbott’s June 26 mandate shuttering bars, an August change in Texas Alcoholic and Beverage Commission rules paved the way for many bars to reopen … These judges will have to decide whether or not they want to opt into these reopenings. Published 4:03 pm CST, Thursday, November 26, 2020 © 2020 Forbes Media LLC. Texas bars reopen through restaurant loophole. “I can understand the economic need to reopen these types of businesses,” she added, “but the business owners and their patrons have to be able to demonstrate and enforce responsible behaviors, or we will be right back where we were previously and could potentially have to shut them down again.”, Mark Escott, Austin Public Health’s interim health authority, suggested earlier Wednesday that bars might be able to open “with substantial modifications.” But he cautioned that “the evidence that we have regarding methods of transmission in our community strongly points to social gatherings.”. Gov. Texas Bars Reopen in Defiance of Governor’s Order By Ralph Ellis July 27, 2020 -- Hundreds of bar owners across Texas reopened for business on … They wound up having their licenses suspended. Texas bars want to reopen this Friday, May 15. Wednesday, several club owners filed a lawsuit against Gov. Greg Abbott has not agreed to the opening date. Others have worked with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to restructure their operations and reopen as restaurants. Now, as Texas continues to rank first in the country in new cases, Abbott has proven that he is dead set on making the same mistakes again.”. Published 4:03 pm CST, Thursday, November 26, 2020 There were 3,519 people in Texas hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Wednesday, more than double the number of people in hospitals on May 22 when bars first reopened, according to a Texas Tribune analysis. Abbott says WATCH: Oct. 7, 2020, report on the Texas bar reopenings order EMBED More News Videos Spencer Whelan, the executive director of the Texas Whiskey Association, said that while he had seen Abbott’s tweets, he hasn’t received any official communication from the governor’s office since March. “Abbott has forced 254 other people to make this decision for him with no guideposts as to how to make that decision. Perhaps it goes without saying — but producing quality journalism isn't cheap. At a time when newsroom resources and revenue across the country are declining, The Texas Tribune remains committed to sustaining our mission: creating a more engaged and informed Texas with every story we cover, every event we convene and every newsletter we send. In late June, as cases soared in Texas, Abbott ordered the bars to once again shutter their doors, expressing regret for opening them too quickly. Texas bars that are preparing to reopen amid the COVID-19 pandemic on Friday are unlikely to see business return to usual right away due to several strict protocols that will be in place. Since Texas bars were closed in mid-March, it’s been a waiting game for owners on whether they could stay open. Hundreds of Texas bar owners vow to reopen Saturday in violation of a June state order put in place as the coronavirus began to surge in the Lone Star State.. The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission said it is working with county governments to provide guidelines to both local officials and businesses. Greg Abbott has not agreed to the opening date. Abbott releases plan News. SAN ANTONIO — Bars can reopen, welcome back customers and serve up refreshments with a new lease on life. Greg Abbott that demanded the state’s bars be allowed to reopen. Hospitalizations have started ticking upward for the first time since July, while new case counts have remained steady. Despite Gov. Abbott was later sued by bar owners, in a lawsuit filed by Jared Woodfill, the longtime chairman of the Harris County Republican Party, who argued that Abbott unfairly targeted the establishments. The announcement drew mixed reviews from bar owners. Greg Abbott has not agreed to the opening date. Abbott said he’s confident the reopening of bars will go better than it did in the spring, which likely led to increased coronavirus spread and Abbott’s decision to close them. I'm a New Orleans-based news reporter for Forbes covering the U.S. South and breaking news. Bars in Dallas and across Texas can reopen on May 22, Gov. Abbott said county judges would have to opt in to the bar reopening plan, which would only be available in areas where Covid hospitalizations represent less than 15% of total hospital capacity. “Our numbers are steadily climbing,” said Ryan Mielke, public affairs director for the University Medical Center of El Paso. Klein predicted that most urban counties, where the majority of his organization’s members are located, will not reopen. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune's journalism. Hundreds of Texas bar owners vow to reopen Saturday in violation of a June state order put in place as the coronavirus began to surge in the Lone Star State.. The TABC on July 30 issued new guidelines allowing businesses classified as bars but that also serve food the chance to reclassify themselves as restaurants. He’s officially passed the buck.”. Show us with your support. The Texas Restaurant Association (TRA) is urging Gov. HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The plan to reopen businesses in Texas continues following the shutdown to help stop the spread of coronavirus. I'm a news reporter for Forbes, primarily covering the U.S. South. Gov. It could leave 30% of Texas bars and 39% of distilleries permanently closed within six months, industry leaders said. Greg Abbott announced Wednesday that bars would be allowed to reopen to 50% capacity, but it would still be up to county judges on whether to reopen them at all. On Wednesday, Gov. In late June, as cases soared in Texas, Abbott ordered the … “It is time to open them up,” Abbott said in a Facebook video announcing the move. All Texas bars are allowed to reopen for on-site service at 50 percent indoor capacity and with no outdoor limits, as allowed by Texas Gov. New guidelines issued late last week by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission will allow some bars, breweries and wineries to reopen as restaurants, as long as … Gov. In the meantime, some Texas bar owners have attempted to reopen in defiance of the governor’s order. By Dan Rosenzweig-Ziff, The Texas Tribune. The World Health Organization recommends a rate below 5% before governments ease restrictions. W. Stephen Love, president of the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council, told The Texas Tribune last week that the region had seen increases in COVID-19 hospitalizations for the past seven to 10 days. But as cases surged in June, he ordered restaurants to scale back to 50 percent capacity and closed bars completely. Others in the industry were surprised by the governor’s announcement. Greg Abbott to reopen bars and nightclubs across the state as soon as possible.. Gov. Effective Oct. 14, bars in counties that opt in will be able to resume in-person service at 50% capacity, though all customers must be seated while eating or drinking. Texas bars were ordered to close mid-March and allowed to reopen at 25% capacity on May 22 and then 50% capacity on June 3. Here’s more information about each of the counties nearest to San Antonio. “If we continue to contain COVID, then these openings, just like other businesses, should be able to expand in the near future.”, by Alex Samuels, Dan Rosenzweig-Ziff and Shawn Mulcahy As a nonprofit newsroom, we rely on members to help keep our stories free and our events open to the public. Texas bars were ordered to close mid-March and allowed to reopen at 25% capacity on May 22 and then 50% capacity on June 3. But Abbott said in his order that bars in regions of the state with high hospitalizations for coronavirus won’t be able to reopen. Others have worked with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to restructure their operations and reopen as restaurants. Greg Abbott that demanded the state’s bars be allowed to reopen. Gov. Greg Abbott today, starting Wednesday, October 14.However, it is up to each Texas county judge to opt in to this reopening with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. “I do believe reopening bars at this point carries significant risk for increasing cases of COVID-19 and increasing transmission,” said Angela Clendenin, an epidemiologist and biostatistician at the Texas A&M University School of Public Health. Abbott [for] addressing the economic crisis facing our small businesses,” said Patrick Whitehead, the president of the Texas Wine and Grape Growers Association and a board member of the Texas Winery political action committee. The Texas Democratic Party, meanwhile, said it was too soon to safely reopen more businesses. He defined those regions as areas where coronavirus patients make up more than 15% of hospital capacity. They wound up having their licenses suspended. Bars will be able to open at 50% capacity starting next Wednesday, Oct. 14, but that will likely not be the case at all bars statewide. Greg Abbott says coronavirus hospitalizations, positive cases must decrease before he’ll allow bars to reopen in Texas Updated: Aug. 13, 2020 Last call will come early at Texas bars that reopen Wednesday. Bars will soon be able to reopen in Texas, Gov. Flores / AFP) (Photo by SERGIO FLORES/AFP via Getty Images), EY & Citi On The Importance Of Resilience And Innovation, Impact 50: Investors Seeking Profit — And Pushing For Change, Michigan Economic Development Corporation With Forbes Insights, Texas Moving To Phase 2 — Reopening Bars, Allowing Pro Sports To Return, Coronavirus Spreading At ‘Unacceptable Rate’ In Texas, Governor Says, Gov. Some applauded the step, while others complained that Abbott left the power in the hands of counties. “While reopening tasting rooms will hopefully increase the foot traffic, we hope that the state continues to examine restrictions that are preventing contactless revenue options for distilleries,” he said. Greg Abbott has not agreed to the opening date. “Opening bars does not mean that Covid is no longer a threat,” Abbott said in a video posted to his Facebook page Wednesday. Restaurants, bars hoping to be first to reopen after Gov. In the meantime, some Texas bar owners have attempted to reopen in defiance of the governor’s order. After shutting down dine-in service March 19, Abbott allowed bars to reopen — with capacity limits — on May 22. Bars will be able to open at 50% capacity starting next Wednesday, Oct. 14, but that will likely not be the case at all bars statewide. Ron DeSantis (R), who is also known for his aggressive reopening strategy, allowed bars and restaurants to return to 100% capacity in that state. He’s worried the order won’t go far enough in helping distilleries rebound after being closed for months. The governor will impose no outdoors capacity limits on bars or similar establishments. Only bars with permits to … To qualify, there must be a kitchen on the premises and alcohol sales have to be less than 51% of total sales. Sign up for The Brief, our daily newsletter that keeps readers up to speed on the most essential Texas news. Texas bars want to reopen this Friday, May 15. Greg Abbott to reopen bars and nightclubs across the state as soon as possible. At that announcement, Abbott said that restaurants could increase to 75% capacity, though bars remained shuttered. “If we continue to contain COVID, then these openings, just like other businesses, should be able to expand in the near future.”, But soon after Abbott’s announcement, the state’s two most populous counties indicated they would not go along with the reopening plan. Author: NewsWest 9 Gov. “If I could go back and redo anything, it probably would have been to slow down the opening of bars, now seeing in the aftermath of how quickly the coronavirus spread in the bar setting,” he said during an interview with KVIA-TV in El Paso at the time. Bars and nightclubs will soon be able to reopen at a limited capacity, only if a county judge allows it, according to documents uploaded to Governor Greg Abbott's website Wednesday afternoon. Greg Abbott on Wednesday issued an executive order which will allow some bars to begin operating at 50 percent capacity. Hospitalizations in North Texas are also on the rise. Bars can reopen in Bandera County on Wednesday. “We’ve made clear that our businesses can safely reopen, and we’re grateful for the opportunity to throw open our doors once again to Texans ready to taste and buy Texas wines.”. “We are now at inpatient hospitalization levels last seen in July. Oct. 7, 2020 El Paso reported nearly 400 new COVID-19 cases and 207 people hospitalized for the virus Wednesday, the first time hospitalizations surpassed 200 people since Aug. 11. However, we currently have ample [protective gear] and capacity for more patients, should they need care.". While Abbott is correct that key metrics, including the number of new cases and the number of new hospitalizations, have remained steady in recent weeks, they still exceed the levels when Abbott first relaxed restrictions in May. Since then, Abbott has changed his stance and said he will now allow bars, breweries and wine tasting rooms to reopen at 25% capacity beginning Friday, May 22. Likewise, the statewide seven-day positivity rate — the proportion of COVID-19 tests that come back positive — remains above 6%. Abbott says Wednesday, October 7, 2020 AUSTIN, Texas (KTRK) -- After … Greg Abbott expresses regret over reopening Texas bars during coronavirus (Texas Tribune), Bar Owners Sue Texas Governor To Reverse Order To Close Again (Forbes), Covid Cases Spike In Florida As Bars And Restaurants Reopen At Full Capacity (Forbes), Full coverage and live updates on the Coronavirus, I'm a New Orleans-based news reporter for Forbes covering the U.S. South and breaking news. “Hardworking families have held their breaths, waiting for Trump and Abbott to make smart policy decisions. Updated: 8 PM. Author: Matt Dougherty Published: 10:33 PM … Texas Bars Reopen in Defiance of Governor’s Order By Ralph Ellis July 27, 2020 -- Hundreds of bar owners across Texas reopened for business on … Greg Abbott announced Wednesday that bars in Texas can reopen for in-person service next week — as long as their county governments choose to allow it. Greg Abbott (R) said Wednesday, reversing an order he put in place during June as the state dealt with one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks in the U.S.—an outbreak the governor says has greatly diminished, even though hospitalizations rose Wednesday to their highest point in almost a month. Disclosure: Texas A&M University have been financial supporters of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. For more patients, should they need care. `` were surprised by the governor ’ s worried order. 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