Texas Border Business
By Megan Menchaca
The Texas Tribune
State v. regional response: Gov. Greg Abbott took multiple measures Sunday designed to expand hospital staffing and capacity in Texas, but declined to issue a statewide shelter-in-place order — even as calls for such an action increased as the new coronavirus continued to spread across the state. He said that he wants to see the full impact of an executive order he issued Thursday, which urges all Texans to limit public gatherings to 10 people, prohibits eating in at restaurants and bars and temporarily closes schools, before calling for a statewide shelter-in-place. Abbott also announced the formation of a “strike force” to respond to the coronavirus and said that the Texas National Guard, which he activated several days ago, would be deployed this week to help hospitals deal with the outbreak. In the meantime, he welcomed local officials to take more restrictive action. Within two hours, Dallas County was the first local jurisdiction to do so by ordering all residents to stay at home if they were not doing certain essential activities. The “Stay Home Stay Safe” order, effective as of 11:59 p.m. on March 23, will continue through April 3. Dallas County’s order is intended to keep hospitals from exceeding their capacity of COVID-19 patients and to “minimize the catastrophic outcomes” seen in other countries.
Where and how to help. As schools close and thousands of people across the country are being laid off due to the new coronavirus pandemic, many Texans are finding themselves stuck at home with no income or access to food or medical supplies. In Texas, the economic damages are amplified as local businesses are shuttered, the service industry is halted, and the oil and gas industry is hammered. But as state and federal leaders continue to formulate their responses, what can you do in the meantime if you’re looking for assistance? And if you have the means to do so, what can you do to help others? Read The Texas Tribune’s Megan Menchaca’s full story here to find out more.