AUSTIN – Attorney General Ken Paxton today issued letters
to three Texas counties (Dallas, Bexar, and Travis) and two mayors (San Antonio
and Austin), warning that some requirements in their local public health orders
are unlawful and can confuse law-abiding citizens. These unlawful and
unenforceable requirements include strict and unconstitutional demands for
houses of worship, unnecessary and onerous restrictions on allowing essential
services to operate, such as tracking customers who visit certain restaurants,
penalties for not wearing masks, shelter-in-place demands, criminal penalties
for violating state or local health orders, and failing to differentiate
between recommendations and mandates.
“Unfortunately, a few Texas counties and cities seem to
have confused recommendations with requirements and have grossly exceeded state
law to impose their own will on private citizens and businesses. These letters
seek to avoid any public confusion as we reopen the state,” said Attorney
General Paxton. “I trust that local officials will act quickly to correct any
orders that unlawfully conflict with Texas law and Governor Abbott’s Executive
Read the letter to Bexar
County and the City of San Antonio here.
Read the letter to Travis
County and the City of Austin here.
Read the letter to Dallas