Opening the State of Texas

Texas Case Counts microscopic example of a coronavirus

On Monday, May 18, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott issued an Executive Order to announce the second phase of the ongoing plan to open additional businesses and activities in Texas. This announcement expands upon the businesses and activities included in the first phase of the plan to Open Texas while minimizing the spread of COVID-19. All newly opened businesses and services are subject to the recommended minimum standard health protocols outlined by DSHS.

The Governor's April 27 announcement of the first phase of the plan to Open Texas was accompanied by Texans Helping Texans: The Governor's Report to Open Texas. This detailed report, available on the Governor’s Strike Force to Open Texas website, helps Texans understand Phase I by outlining the new protocols, guidance, and recommendations.

Also included in the Governor’s plan are statewide testing and contact tracing initiatives to identify and test Texans who contract COVID-19 and mitigate further spread of the virus.

Additionally, the plan to Open Texas includes a process for rural counties with five or fewer laboratory confirmed cases of COVID-19 to, on an individualized basis, increase occupancy limits for certain businesses if the county judge certifies and affirms to DSHS that certain requirements have been met.


Minimum Recommended Health Protocols (PDFs)

In accordance with Governor Abbott’s Executive Orders GA-23, GA-21, and GA-18, the following are the minimum recommended health protocols for Texas.

Effective May 1, 2020

Effective May 5, 2020

Effective May 8, 2020

Effective May 18, 2020

Effective May 22, 2020

Effective May 31, 2020

▲ Top


Attestation for Rural Counties with Five or Fewer Laboratory Confirmed Cases of COVID-19

Rural counties may, on an individualized basis, increase capacity for restaurants, retail, and/or movie theaters if the county judge certifies and affirms to DSHS that the standards have been investigated and confirmed to be met.
County Trends Dashboard

The attestation form (PDF) is to be completed by the county judge and emailed to coronavirus@dshs.texas.gov. Please use the term “Attestation” in the subject line of the email for proper routing.

See the list of counties that may operate at 50% capacity per the attestation process.

▲ Top


Executive Orders Related to Opening the State of Texas

On May 18, 2020, Gov. Abbott issued Executive Order GA-23 to coincide with the second phase of the ongoing plan to expand openings of certain businesses and activities in Texas.

On May 5, 2020, Gov. Abbott issued Executive Order GA-21 to expand openings of certain businesses and activities in Texas.

On April 27, 2020, Gov. Abbott issued several Executive Orders to coincide with the first phase of the State of Texas's ongoing plan to Open Texas while minimizing the spread of COVID-19:

On April 17, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott issued several Executive Orders to begin the process of re-opening the state of Texas:

Review the other recent Texas Executive Orders & Public Health Disaster Declaration issued in response to COVID‑19.

▲ Top


This page is being updated as new information becomes available.

Last updated May 22, 2020