TRA Statement on Governor Abbott's announcement today - Statewide COVID restrictions to end on March 10th

TRA Members:

This afternoon, Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced an Executive Order that effective March 10, 2021, ALL businesses across Texas will be allowed to be open at 100% for occupancy, as well as Ending the statewide face covering/ mask mandate. Click here to see the Executive Order.

The Governor’s new order also states that local governments cannot impose fines to individuals or businesses for not wearing face coverings/ masks. While stressing personal responsibility and continuing to be vigilant to slow the spread of COVID, the Governor stated that individuals and businesses were free to operate as appropriate with respect to individual or business specific restrictions.  Our understanding from the Governor’s office is that as a result of the Governor’s action today, retailers in Texas will not be in the position of enforcing or policing the wearing of face coverings, nor face fines or penalties for allowing unmasked customers to be in their stores. 

As a result of the Governor’s order, below you will find some frequently asked questions and answers for your reference:

Q:  Can a retail business continue to require employees to wear masks?
A:   Yes, any retail business, as a matter of employee policy, can require employees to wear masks while on Company time.

Q:  Can a retail business require customers who enter the business wear a mask?
A:  Yes, as a matter of policy, a retail business can require a customer to wear a mask (except might be a claim a mask interferes with a medical condition).  This is no different from the old “no shirt, no shoes, no service.

Q:  What happens if a customer refuses to wear a mask?
A:   No different than today.  Retailer can allow customer to shop.  Retailer can give customers options like, order online for curb side pickup or delivery.  Store Management can ask customer to leave.  If customer, does not leave, retailer could call the police to file trespass.  (This would be the extreme circumstance)

Q:  Does the no mask mandate apply State wide?
A:  Yes,  There is an exception to the occupancy rule depending on hospitalizations.

Q:  Are the occupancy limits rescinded?
A:  Yes, will the exception noted above.

Please contact [email protected] if you have any questions or concerns regarding today's announcement.
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