Following the declaration of April 10 as a Denton County day of prayer, Eads updated the executive order and disaster declaration to extend precautionary social distancing mandates until the end of April, falling in line with Gov. Greg Abbott’s direction. Additionally, more than $500,000 will be given to Denton county by the Departments of State Health services to be used for COVID-19 county expenses.
“What that [Denton County’s stay-at-home mandate extension] is doing is really just matching what the governor’s [mandate says] – which actually supersedes ours – so the governor already extended this to April 30, which therefore extended it to Denton county as well as our other 254 counties,” Eads said. “So, the action today is just really being in compliance, essentially, it’s being in compliance with the orders that the governor has outlined for us.”
For citizens within Denton County, the extension means businesses deemed nonessential must continue to remain closed through April 30, and residents are expected to stay at home unless they are conducting essential business such as picking up medication, getting groceries, or traveling to their job at an essential business. The extension of the statewide stay-at-home has created additional ramifications for Texans, including an extended ban on abortion as a nonessential medical procedude approved by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Tuesday afternoon.
Despite the widespread uncertainty caused by COVID-19, Eads and Commissioner Ron Marchant reminded Denton County residents during the meeting of the need to participate in the Census amidst the virus’s implications.
“We encourage people to be aware of the Census – it does not have some of the questions that were very concerning to many people as far as immigration status, and so forth, and so that is not included,” Eads said. “So, if that’s a fear factor you have in opening up that envelope and filling it out, please know that that’s not included in those. Census results are actually secret by law for over 70 years, so there are safeguards in place on that.”
Eads also reiterated that golf is not identified as an essential business per the list from the Department of Homeland Security and the Texas Division of Emergency Management. Other motions reviewed by the court can be viewed on the agenda, and other Denton County news updates are available on their website. The Denton County MHMR crisis hotline is also available for residents who need mental health support.
Katelyn Garst can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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