Corpus Christi Hair Salons Can Open Friday, May 8
Hair and nail salons, barbershops, and pools can reopen — with restrictions — Friday, May 8, according to an announcement from Texas Governor Greg Abbott at a media conference Tuesday, May 5.
Weddings, memorial services, and funerals also were given the go-ahead as were graduation ceremonies. Not reopening yet are gyms and bars. Gyms are scheduled to reopen May 18. No date has been set for bars.
"Texas is in a position to continue opening parts of our economy because of the efforts and determination of the people of Texas," said Gov. Abbott in a media release. "Over the past month, Texans have worked together to contain the spread of COVID-19 by following social distancing practices and staying at home whenever possible.”
Originally, salons and barbershops were set to reopen May 18. Abbott moved the day up citing statistics based on increased testing for COVID-19 that showed the percentage of positive cases per capita declining.
Called the Texas COVID-19 Positivity Rate, the statistics were compiled by National Guard surge response teams deployed across the state by the governor’s task force. The chart contains three weeks: the week before the governor began reopening businesses, the week businesses reopened, and the week after.
The positivity rate for tests run the week of April 20, the week before some reopenings, was at 7.20 percent. By May 4, the week after reopening began, the rate dropped to 4.65 percent, despite more than doubling the number of tests.
“This is one of the most important data points we look at,” Abbott said. “Before April 27, the rate was at 10 percent and sometimes more. Now the number is down to 4.65. Anything over 10 percent is a red flag and that is what I look for when making these decisions. “
Restrictions for the new openings include:
Stylists can only work with one customer at a time. Waiting areas must be able to provide for 6 feet of social distancing or customers will have to wait in their cars.
Those held indoors at venues other than churches must limit occupancy to 25 percent. This includes wedding receptions. Limits do not apply to outdoor weddings or receptions.
Both indoor and outdoor swimming pools may operate at 25 percent capacity as of May 8. Operating limits are to be determined by the pool operator. Local public swimming pools may operate only if permitted by the local government. Water parks and splash pads are still prohibited. Note, the city of Corpus Christi is not yet opening pools.
Schools may choose from one of four different types of ceremonies for their graduates: virtual ceremonies; hybrid ceremonies using videos of students being recognized in person; vehicle ceremonies in parking lots; or outdoor in-person ceremonies under certain requirements.
Outdoor ceremonies are allowed between May 15-31 in rural counties that meet requirements described in the Governor’s Report to Open Texas for seven days before the ceremony. Outdoor ceremonies may take place in any Texas county after June 1.
The governor cautioned Texans that the phased reopening of businesses did not mean life was returning to normal overnight. He urged the continued use of face masks and social distancing for the near future.
“As we move forward, I urge all Texans to continue following these social distancing guidelines and the health standards we have provided,” he said. “With every Texan doing their part, we will contain COVID-19, we will unleash our entrepreneurs, and we will make it through this challenge together."
For details on the governor’s latest orders, visit gov.texas.gov/opentexas.
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