Texas, Florida Target Bars in Bid to Rein in Surging Covid-19 Cases By Investing.com

Texas, Florida Target Bars in Bid to Rein in Surging

© Reuters.

By Christiana Sciaudone

Investing.com — Texas Governor Greg Abbott is shutting the state’s bars, and Florida banned alcohol consumption at bars as they try to rein in soaring rates of new infections of Covid-19.

The sank more than 620 points as Abbott issued an executive order rolling back plans to reopen the economy against a backdrop of soaring hospitalizations. Bars must close by 12:00 PM local time Friday.

Florida, which attributed the new cases to young adults gathering at drinking establishments over the past month, confirmed almost 9,000 new cases of Covid-19 infections on Thursday, compared to the previous record a day earlier of 5,500. The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation said on Twitter that drinking alcohol at bars has been suspended statewide.

And in Texas, “The targeted, measured directives in the executive order are based on links between certain types of businesses and services and the recent rise in positive cases throughout the state,” according to a statement.

“We want this to be as limited in duration as possible. However, we can only slow the spread if everyone in Texas does their part,” Abbott said in a statement. “I know that our collective action can lead to a reduction in the spread of COVID-19 because we have done it before, and we will do it again.”

Directives in Texas include:

  • All bars and similar establishments that receive more than 51% of their gross receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages are required to close at 12:00 PM today. These businesses may remain open for delivery and take-out, including for alcoholic beverages, as authorized by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission.
  • Restaurants may remain open for dine-in service, but at a capacity not to exceed 50% of total listed indoor occupancy, beginning Monday, June 29, 2020.
  • Rafting and tubing businesses must close.
  • Outdoor gatherings of 100 or more people must be approved by local governments, with certain exceptions.
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