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Coronavirus Resources for Retailers

Check out the TRA Coronavirus Member Update Dashboard. View the latest up-to-date information directly from each member company and TRA affiliate posting updates related to the Coronavirus pandemic.

See comments from: H-E-B, National Retail Federation (NRF), Walmart, Kroger, Lowe's Markets, Albertson's Markets, Target, Brookshire's, Brookshire Brothers, National Grocer's Association (NGA), Retail Leaders Association (RILA), Officer of the Governor Greg Abbott, The Hill, Food Marketing Institute (FMI), Center for Disease Control (CDC), Albertsons, Tom Thumb, Randall's, JCPenney, The Home Depot, Walgreens, Dollar General, Lowe's Home Improvement, Academy Sports & Outdoors, Macy's 

Additional Resources: 
Updates from the White House regarding COVID-19 Outbreak
Updates from the Office of the Texas Governor Greg Abbott on Coronavirus
Updates from National Retail Federation visit Coronavirus Resources for Retailers 
Updates from National Grocer's Association visit Coronavirus Resources for Grocery Industry
Updates from Food Marketing Institute visit Coronavirus State Resources Page
Updates from Retail Industry Leaders Association visit Coronavirus Resources for Retailers Page
Updates from Texas Local Government Websites, Declarations & Ordinances visit State & Local Resources 

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Governor Abbott Issues Executive Orders In Accordance With Federal Guidelines to Mitigate Spread of COVID-19 in Texas

AUSTIN - Governor Greg Abbott today announced a series of Executive Orders relating to COVID-19 preparedness and mitigation. The four orders serve to limit public gatherings and help reduce exposure for people across the state. These orders are in accordance with federal guidelines issued by the President and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and will aid in the state's efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19.  

Governor Abbott was joined for the announcement by Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Commissioner John Hellerstedt, MD, Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) Chief Nim Kidd, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, and Speaker Dennis Bonnen. 

Commissioner Hellerstedt also announced that he has declared a Public Health Disaster which will give state and local officials additional tools to respond to COVID-19. The Governor's Executive Orders, combined with the Public Health Disaster, provide Texas with enhanced tools and protocols to help state and local partners in their ongoing efforts to respond to, track the progress of, and limit the spread of COVID-19 in Texas.  

"The State of Texas is at a pivotal moment in our response to COVID-19, and it is imperative that we act now on preemptive measures to slow the spread of this virus," said Governor Abbott. "One of the most effective ways we can do this is by promoting more social distancing and ensuring Texans avoid large group settings such as bars, restaurants, gyms, and schools where the risk of spreading COVID-19 is high. We must also continue to protect our most vulnerable populations, which is why the State of Texas is barring all visitations at nursing homes and retirement or long-term care facilities except in the case of critical assistance. Today’s executive orders are precautionary measures that are in line with guidelines from the CDC and they will strengthen Texas’ ability to safeguard our communities and respond to COVID-19. As Texans, we must continue to work collaboratively to slow the spread of this virus and protect public health."

The following orders have been issued by Governor Abbott: 

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Governor Abbott Waives Certain State Trucking Regulations to Expedite Delivery of Resources Around Texas

On March 14, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott announced that he is waiving certain regulations related to commercial trucking in the state of Texas. The suspensions will expedite commercial vehicle delivery of more supplies in each truckload as Texas works to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) across the state.

These waivers were requested by and will be coordinated through the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), and are part of the actions Governor Abbott is taking under the State of Disaster he declared yesterday.

"As the State of Texas works to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus, we are taking precautionary measures to ensure that Texans have access to the goods and supplies they need," said Governor Abbott. "Suspending these state trucking regulations will improve our ability to deliver the necessary supplies throughout the state so that grocers and retailers are able to continually stock their shelves. I want to remind Texans that stockpiling resources is neither necessary nor productive. The State of Texas is prepared and will continue to take action to support our communities."

Three sets of statutes are suspended, subject to federal law and DMV safety limitations...

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Coronavirus Update  

On March 17,2020, President Trump and the White House Coronavirus Task Force issued new guidelines to help protect Americans during the global Coronavirus outbreak.

The new recommendations are simple to follow and could have a resounding impact on public health. More information can be found in the attached document and the President’s and Vice President’s remarks can be found here. 

Call to Action to the Tech Community on New Machine Readable COVID-19 Dataset (HERE)

  • Today, researchers and leaders from the Allen Institute for AI, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Georgetown University’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology, Microsoft, and the National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health released the COVID-19 Open Research Dataset of scholarly literature about COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, and the Coronavirus group.

 DOT Issues National Emergency Declaration for Commercial Vehicles Delivering Relief in Response to the Coronavirus Outbreak (HERE)

  • The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issued a national emergency declaration to provide hours-of-service regulatory relief to commercial vehicle drivers transporting emergency relief in response to the nationwide coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. This declaration is the first time FMCSA has issued nation-wide relief and follows President Trump issuing of a national emergency declaration in response to the virus.

 U.S. Exporters

  • EXIM recently announced relief measures for its U.S. exporters, especially U.S. small business exporters, as well as financial institutions related to the COVID-19 outbreak. Here is a link to EXIM’s press release and related fact sheet summarizing these relief measures.

 For the most up-to-date information, please see the CDC’s website: www.coronavirus.gov.

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Texas Retailers Association 2020 Advocacy Summit Picture Gallery 



TRA’s Advocacy Summit took place on March 6-8, 2020. Check out our picture gallery!

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FDA's New Tobacco 21 Resource Page 

"This is Our Watch” launched nationally in November 2017. A full toolkit of resources is available to retailers—including posters, stickers, age verification tools, and more—to help retailers better comply with federal tobacco regulations. Click here to check out the printable materials.

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USMCA Is done. Here's what's in it. 

Trump’s victory: Canada opens up its milk market to U.S. farmers. Trump tweeted often about how unfair he thought it was that Canada charged such high tariffs on U.S. dairy products. Canada has a complex milk and dairy system. To ensure Canadian dairy farmers don’t go bankrupt, the Canadian government restricts how much dairy can be produced in the country and how much foreign dairy can enter to keep milk prices high.

Under the USMCA, Canada is keeping most of its complex system in place, but U.S. farmers will be able to sell more “Class 7” dairy products to Canada, everything from milk powder to ice cream. The USMCA also allows more sales of U.S. eggs and turkeys to Canada.

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USDA Issues Final Regulation on ABAWD SNAP Recipients

Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a final rule that would make it more difficult for states to gain waivers for work requirements for able-bodied adults without dependents (ABAWD) who are beneficiaries of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Current SNAP statute limits adults to three months of benefits within a three-year period unless the individuals work or participate in work training for 20+ hours per week. States have had the ability to apply for waivers that would shield able-bodied adults without dependents from the time limit included in these federal work requirements. States can currently receive waivers for work requirements if their unemployment rates are at least 20 percent higher than the national rate. The final rule will retain states’ statutory flexibility to waive the time limit in high unemployment areas but will impose stricter standards for the waivers.

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Judge STOPS San Antonio Paid Sick Leave Ordinance From Going Into Effect

San Antonio City Council votes 9-2 for an ordinance mandating a paid sick leave during their meeting August 16, 2018. The law had been scheduled to go into effect Dec 1, but state District Judge Peter Sakai issued a ruling Friday, November 22, 2019 that stops it, at least temporarily. 

This is a controversial law that aims to require retailers to provide paid sick leave to an estimated 354,000 workers. 

The retail industry is among the best in providing benefits to its thousands of employees. In fact, many retailers have benefits that are more generous than those being mandated by blanket ordinances like the ones being passed in San Antonio, Austin, and Dallas. In this instance, one size definitely does not fit all. 

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The Toy Association Urges Families to Follow Important Tips for Safe Play

With the holiday shopping season just around the corner, it can be easy to get wrapped up in the frenzy of buying gifts and overlook safety. But before you start checking off your list, be sure to follow these toy shopping tips from PlaySafe.org, The Toy Association’s reliable resource for parents and caregivers. Click here for tips on how to buy safe toys this holiday season. Be sure to share with these tips with grandparents and gift-givers to help ensure safe play all year long. And it’s important to always supervise children at play. More toy safety tips can be found at www.PlaySafe.org.

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Federal Update

TARIFFS: Over the past few weeks, there have been some positive developments and rhetoric surrounding the trade war with China. First, a “Phase 1” mini trade deal was announced by the US and China, which would stall the trade war essentially as where we sit at the moment. Not a full ending of it, but essentially a truce to allow for progress to =be made on a larger deal. There is more information on the developments surrounding "Phase 1" here. Additionally, in the run up to having the "Phase 1” deal signed by Presidents Trump and Xi, there has been talk of actually rolling back some of the current tariffs.  Although this has not been confirmed by either country, neither country is pouring cold water on the idea either, so we are hopeful that any tariff rollbacks are included in the ultimate "Phase 1" deal that is signed soon.

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Nominations are now OPEN for: 

Large Retailer of the Year
Small Retailer of the Year
Education Champion of the Year
Grocer of the Year
Lifetime Achievement Award
State Legislative Champion
Congressional Legislative Champion

Click here to complete your nomination!


Last year's Winners: 

Macy's - Large Retailer of the Year
The Luggage Shop of Lubbock - Small Retailer of the Year
Altria - Education Champion of the Year
Kroger - Grocer of the Year
Ron Rehkopf - Lifetime Achievement Award
John Raney - State Legislative Champion
Will Hurd - Congressional Legislative Champion