Despite not being over the 20-active-case limit for exemption, the state has informed Pecos County that it is no longer exempt from the mandatory mask-wearing G-29 order issued by Gov. Greg Abbott.
In response, Pecos County Judge Joe Shuster and Fort Stockton Mayor Chris Alexander formally ordered mask wearing under their respective emergency declaration powers.
Per the governor's order, people may be fined $250 for not wearing a mask. A person may not be arrested or jailed for failure to wear a mask.
Shuster said that the county is currently at 17 active cases, but may likely go above 20 this week. The county has recorded 96 COVID-19 cases, of which, 78 have recovered, 17 are still active and one death assigned to the county by the state.
The move does not impact business capacities, which are currently set at Phase 3 levels of 75%. If the county climbs above 45 active cases, it would be forced to roll back to the Phase 1 25% levels.
The impact on events and gatherings is not yet known, accoridng to Shuster, who said he is reviewing the governor's orders and guidelines.
The following people are exempt from the rule:
Masks are not required when participating in the following activities:
But, the mask requirement does apply while:
Penalties for not complying with this order:
A person may not be detained, arrested, or confined in jail for refusing to adhere to this order. However, law enforcement may consider someone who refuses to leave the premises a trespasser and may enforce trespassing laws accordingly.
Local law enforcement and other local officials are responsible for enforcement of the order. In many places you can call 3-1-1 or the police non-emergency line, but check your city or county's website to be sure. Search for your city's website or county's website.