(KTAL/KMSS) — A few counties in East Texas say they are opting out on enforcing Gov. Greg Abbott’s face mask order that includes fines if someone does not comply after a verbal warning.
According to state officials, counties can file for an exemption from the order if they have less than 20 active cases. In 30 days, a county can apply for an exemption if they fall under the 20-case threshold, but are right now currently above it.
Some counties are refusing to issue citations, but they are encouraging voluntary compliance to the order. Here is a list of counties that have indicated what their intentions are:
Judges from the following two counties have specifically stated they have fewer than 20 active cases and intend to opt out:
- Marion – Judge Leward Lefleur says they only have seven active cases and the county is opting out.
- Morris – Nine active cases – Judge Doug Reeder announced late Thursday night on his FB page that he will be filing for exemption.
- Cass – 11 active cases – Judge Becky Wilbanks reversed her original statement Friday morning after saying Thursday afternoon that they were not opting out.
These counties have not released a statement:
- Bowie – 144 active cases as of Thursday, according to the TXK COVID-19 site, 250 according to TX DHS site
- Harrison – 58 active cases per TX DHS
- Red River – 39 active cases per TX DHS
- Shelby – 52 active cases yesterday, per TX DHS
- Panola – 27 active cases yesterday, per TX DHS
- Titus – 96 active cases yesterday, per TX DHS – Judge just shared a Texas Tribune story Thursday on the governor’s order and did not make any statement.
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