LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - Every week Angelina County and city leaders meet to discuss the COVID-19 infection rate, new information, and get everyone on the same page.
Tuesday evening the Texas Department of State Health Services contacted counties in the Trauma Service Area region H and notified them that some restrictions would be put in place. Angelina County Judge Don Lymbery tells us who will be impacted.
“Number one, 75 percent businesses that are operating, that have been released to 75 percent are going to automatically roll back to fifty percent occupancy,” Lymbery said.
This includes gyms, retail shops, and restaurants. Lymbery said Governor Greg Abbott has identified bars as being a hotspot for COVID-19 infections.
“Those will close. There’s only going to be a few bars that are affected in Angelina County because most of them have gone to the fifty-one percent or better food serving,” he said. “As long as they’re doing that, they’re a restaurant.”
Trey Jansing, the general manager at Restoration Bistro and Angelina Brewing Company said they have been between 50 and 75 percent capacity to keep to social distancing.
“So what I’ll do now is just keep a couple of tables closed off. I want to keep people a little bit further than six feet apart, if possible, same with the bar up here,” Jansing said. “And I’m okay with that, I really am. I just want to get it over. If we team up and group together and do what we’re supposed to do, then this thing, it’ll be gone.”
Casey Adams, the owner of FITT LIFE gym says the roll back will mainly impact children’s birthday party sizes. They are also going to offer more group class times to keep the capacity in classes low. Adams says their goal is to keep people moving, especially in times like these.
“Studies have shown that exercise will help boost your immune system, will help with, if you do get sick, as far as the recovery rate goes, the number one thing is to keep on exercising,” Adams said. “So we’ll keep posting through our platform, just keep on motivating as much as we possibly can so that nobody really gets discouraged any more.”
Lymbery said leaders believe the increase came from people gathering over the Thanksgiving holiday. With Christmas and New Years coming up Lymbery says he has concerns.
“Please everybody be very aware of what you’re doing. Keep your family, your coworkers, your friends safe. Wear a mask, use good sanitizing, handwashing, and social distancing.”
The state released today’s hospital capacity and region H is still above 15 percent, today’s report at 16.92 percent.
In order for a region to go back to 75 percent, hospitalizations must be below 15 percent for seven consecutive days.