Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Friday announced that a “statewide strike force” of medical and economic experts would work on a plan to reopen the state’s economy amid the coronavirus pandemic. In a press conference, Abbott said his administration was pushing for May as a target date. He issued a series of executive orders outlining the standards to be used to guide the reopening of private businesses. One of the orders will allow retail stores to open up on April 24 however stores will only be allowed to bring products and orders straight to customers’ cars, similar to restaurants who provide road-side takeout. “We’re now beginning to see glimmers that the worst of COVID-19 may soon be behind us,” Abbott said. “We have demonstrated that we can corral the coronavirus.”
The governor said that the task force will announce plans on April 27 for opening business, which will depend on whether the state has been able to contain the pandemic that has killed 428 people and infected at least 17,371 across the state. While the plan determined by “data and by doctors” is focused on business, Abbot said that schools will be closed for the remainder of the school year and everyone will continue to adhere to social distancing for the foreseeable future.