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Gov. Greg Abbott announces business reopenings and end of mask mandate

In true modern-day fashion, the governor of Texas has tweeted, “Texas is OPEN 100%. EVERYTHING.”
Published: Mar. 3, 2021 at 10:27 AM CST
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LAREDO, Tex. (KGNS) - In true modern-day fashion, the governor of Texas has tweeted, “Texas is OPEN 100%. EVERYTHING.”

He also ended the statewide mask mandate.

The governor announced today, “Too many Texans have been sidelined from employment opportunities and too many small business owners have struggled to pay their bills. This must end.”

It’s been a race and now Texas wants to set a new standard. Lawmakers claim they are are feeling more confidence facing the pandemic. A $1.9 trillion COVID rescue bill moves to the Senate this week after passing in the House.

Yet, many politicians remain divided.

“Now this isn’t a recipe to safely reopen America. To the degree it even addresses the pandemic it’s more like a plan to keep it shutdown,” said Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell.

Our Texas governor feels different. He wants the state to open at full capacity.

“Today I’m issuing a new executive order that rescinds most of the earlier executive orders. Effective next Wednesday all businesses of any type are allowed to open 100 percent,” Governor Greg Abbott said.

Texas is also lifting its mask mandate, making it the largest state to end an order intended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Local health officials say it’s a trend they want to see persist.

Richard Chamberlain, Laredo’s Health Director, added, “DHS providers are expecting to allocate 200,000 Johnson & Johnson to providers next week. Similar to Pfizer & Moderna, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is extremely effective at preventing severe disease, hospitalization rates, and death from COVID-19.”

Now is the time for Texas to be fully reopened, Abbott said, because Texas has the ability to administer over a 100,000 COVID-19 tests plus antibody treatments.

More than 3.5 million Texans have so far received at least one shot of the vaccine with 1.8 million fully vaccinated.

Fire Chief Guillermo Heard was cautiously optimistic. “We can’t declare victory yet, but we are on the right track.”

Still, the state estimates there are still around 13 million people who are currently eligible to get the shot.

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