Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley signed a second amended disaster declaration to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 after Tarrant County announced 13 new positive cases Saturday.

The new restrictions go into effect at 6 p.m., according to a Tarrant County news release. The ordinance will close in-person worship services, but worship support staff can facilitate online services.

The ordinance will also close malls and other nonessential retail establishments such as barbershops, hair salons and nail salons, as well as spas and massage parlors.

Whitley signed an executive order for the second amended disaster declaration Sunday. The executive order signed went into effect at noon, according to a separate Tarrant County news release Sunday.

It clarifies that the ordinance will not hinder operations of any critical infrastructure industries, defined by the Department of Homeland Security such as healthcare services, pharmaceutical, food supply and business delivering essential services.

Currently, no limit to online sales by retail stores or employees necessary to facilitate online sales has been placed. People still need to be 6 feet apart, according to the news release.

Whitley declared the first local state disaster declaration for Tarrant County on March 13, according to a previous Shorthorn article. It was issued for a period of no more than seven days unless renewed or continued by the Tarrant County Commissioners Court.

The first declaration was unanimously extended by the commissioners court for an additional 90 days on Tuesday.

Grocery stores, pharmacies and other establishments that sell household goods will remain open, according to the news release. In-house dining at restaurants remains closed, but drive-ins, drive-through, takeout and delivery are still permitted.

Gatherings of more than 10 people, regardless of the situation, are prohibited.

“We cannot stress enough that Tarrant County residents practice social distancing, where you stay at least 6 feet away from other individuals,” Whitley stated in the news release.

@david___a23

news-editor.shorthorn@uta.edu

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