Governor clears amusement venues to open Friday, June 5; Joyland will open June 12

Governor clears amusement venues to open Friday, June 5; Joyland will open June 12
Joyland Amusement Park will be allowed to open under Gov. Abbott's new order. (Source: Joyland Amusement Park Facebook Page)

LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued executive orders Wednesday, June 3, 2020, allowing Joyland to open with some restrictions starting Friday, June 5, 2020. Owners of Joyland say they will open Friday, June 12.

Local businessman and former Lubbock Mayor Marc McDougal is a member of the governor’s Strike Force to open Texas. He describes today’s decision as “the best news for Texas since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis.”

Per Gov. Greg’s order, every business establishment in Texas shall operate at no more than 50 percent of the total listed occupancy of the establishment; provided, however, that:

I. There is no occupancy limit for the following:

a. any services listed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) in its Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce, Version 3. 1 or any subsequent version;

b. religious services conducted in churches, congregations, and houses of worship;

c. local government operations, including county and municipal governmental operations relating to licensing (including marriage licenses), permitting, recordation, and document-filing services, as determined by the local government;

d. child-care services; e. youth camps, including but not limited to those defined as such under Chapter 141 of the Texas Health and Safety Code, and including all summer camps and other daytime and overnight camps for youths; and

f. recreational sports programs for youths and adults;

2. Except as provided below by paragraph number 5, this 50 percent occupancy limit does not apply to outdoor areas, events, or establishments, except that the following outdoor areas or outdoor venues shall operate at no more than 50 percent of the normal operating limits as determined by the owner:

a. professional, collegiate, or similar sporting events;

b. swimming pools;

c. water parks;

d. museums and libraries;

e. zoos, aquariums, natural caverns, and similar facilities; and

f. rodeos and equestrian events;

3. This 50 percent occupancy limit does not apply to the following establishments that operate with at least six feet of social distancing between work stations:

a. cosmetology salons, hair salons, barber shops, nail salons/shops, and other establishments where licensed cosmetologists or barbers practice their trade;

b. massage establishments and other facilities where licensed massage therapists or other persons licensed or otherwise authorized to practice under Chapter 455 of the Texas Occupations Code practice their trade; and

c. other personal-care and beauty services such as tanning salons, tattoo studios, piercing studios, hair removal services, and hair loss treatment and growth services;

4. Amusement parks and carnivals shall operate at no more than 50 percent of the normal operating limits as determined by the owner, except that in counties with more than 1,000 cumulative cases of COVID- 19, amusement parks may not begin operating until 12:01 a.m. on June 19, 2020;

5. For any outdoor gathering estimated to be in excess of 500 people, other than those set forth above in paragraph numbers 1, 2, or 4, the county judge or mayor, as appropriate, in consultation with the local public health authority, may impose additional restrictions;

6. For dine-in services by restaurants that have less than 51 percent of their gross receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages, the occupancy limit shall increase at 12:01 a.m. on June 12, 2020, to permit such restaurants to operate at up to 75 percent of the total listed occupancy of the restaurant;

7. For indoor bars and similar indoor establishments that are not restaurants as defined above and that hold a permit from the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, only those customers who are seated may be served;

8. For any business establishment that is subject to a 50 percent “total listed occupancy” limit or “normal operating limit,” and that is in a county that has filed with DSHS, and is in compliance with, the requisite attestation form promulgated by DSHS regarding minimal cases of COVID-19, the business establishment may operate at up to 75 percent of the total listed occupancy or normal operating limit of the establishment starting 12:01 a.m. on June 12, 2020;

9. For purposes of this executive order, facilities with retractable roofs are considered indoor facilities, whether the roof is opened or closed; and 10. Staff members are not included in determining operating levels, except for manufacturing services and office workers.

Schools

For the remainder of the 20 19-2020 school year, public schools may resume operations for the summer as provided by, and under the minimum standard health protocols found in, guidance issued by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). Private schools and institutions of higher education are encouraged to establish similar standards. Notwithstanding anything herein to the contrary, schools may conduct graduation ceremonies consistent with the minimum standard health protocols found in guidance issued by TEA.

This executive order shall supersede any conflicting order issued by local officials in response to the COVID-19 disaster, but only to the extent that such a local order restricts services allowed by this executive order, allows gatherings prohibited by this executive order, or expands the list or scope of services as set forth in this executive order. Pursuant to Section 418.0 16(a) of the Texas Government Code, I hereby suspend Sections 418.1015(b) and 418. 108 of the Texas Government Code, Chapter 81, Subchapter E of the Texas Health and Safety Code, and any other relevant statutes, to the extent necessary to ensure that local officials do not impose restrictions in response to the COVID-19 disaster that are inconsistent with this executive order, provided that local officials may enforce this executive order as well as local restrictions that are consistent with this executive order.

Amusement Parks

Amusement parks contained in counties with less than 1,000 cumulative positive cases of COVID-19 may operate up to 50% of the normal operating limits as determined by the amusement park operator. Effective June 19, 2020, all amusement parks may operate up to 50% of the normal operating limits as determined by the amusement park operator, which includes Six Flags Over Texas.

The order also permits Six Flags Over Texas to open with restrictions on June 19, 2020.

Video Game Facilities

Other amusement centers in Lubbock like Adventure Park, Main Event, Altitude, Mr. Gattis, 50th Street Caboose arcade and Chuck E. Cheese will be allowed to open with restrictions effective June 10, 2020. Video game facilities may operate up to 50% of their total listed occupancy. Video game facilities must ensure at least 6 feet social distancing between operating machines

Restaurants

Also mentioned in the order - restaurants can expand from 50 to 75 percent capacity beginning June 12 and customers can now sit in groups of up to 10 people. Tables not six feet apart are required to be separated by a barrier of some sort. Restaurants may continue to provide to-go or delivery services.

Bars

Bars or similar establishments may operate for in-person service up to 50% of the total listed occupancy inside the bar or similar establishment if only those customers who are seated are served. There is no occupancy limit outdoors at a bar or similar establishment. Bar or similar establishment employees are not counted towards the occupancy limitation. For these purposes, bars or similar establishments are establishments with a permit from TABC that are not otherwise considered restaurants.

Weddings

A wedding reception held in a restaurant should follow the restaurant protocols. Wedding reception services held at other indoor locations are limited to 50% of the facility’s total listed occupancy. Wedding receptions held outside are strongly recommended and are not subject to an occupancy limit. Employees and contractors of the wedding reception venue are not counted towards the 50% occupancy limitation

KCBD NewsChannel 11 is looking through the order for information on Quinceañeras or wedding receptions. We will update this story as soon as that information is clarified.

Bowling Alleys, Bingo Halls, Simulcasting, Skating Rinks

Bowling alleys and similar interactive amusement facilities, bingo halls, simulcasting, and skating rinks may operate up to 50% of their total listed occupancy. Bowling alleys and similar interactive amusement facilities must ensure at least 6 feet social distancing between operating bowling lanes or other interactive games (as appropriate), bingo halls must ensure at least 6 feet social distancing between customers playing bingo, and facilities which are simulcasting must ensure their patrons are engaging in at least 6 feet social distancing.

Outdoor Events

Outdoor events, such as July 4 celebrations and other large outdoor gatherings with estimated attendance of 500 or more, are permissible to hold in Texas. The county judge or the mayor, as appropriate, in coordination with the local public health authority, may decide if a particular outdoor event should be modified or the occupancy further limited based on the facts and circumstances of the event and COVID-19 in the particular jurisdiction.

Fine Arts Performance Halls

Effective June 10, 2020, fine arts performance halls may operate in Texas. Fine arts performance halls may operate indoors up to 50% of the total listed occupancy; there is no occupancy limit on fine arts performance halls operating outdoors, however, 6 feet distancing between groups is needed and groups cannot exceed 10 persons. The performance hall’s employees and contractors are not counted towards the 50% occupancy limitation.

Open Texas Checklists: Phase III – June 3, 2020

New

Revised

Copyright 2020 KCBD. All rights reserved.