By Chris Edwards
AUSTIN – On Monday Gov. Greg Abbott issued a proclamation that extends the COVID-19-related disaster declaration originally issued in March.
Abbott initially signed-off on the declaration on March 13. What the declaration does is cover all 254 Texas counties during the pandemic and provides resources at the state level to help curb its spread.
Abbott also authorizes the use of all available resources of the state government and of any political subdivisions “that are reasonably necessary to cope with this disaster.”
The proclamation states that a state of disaster continues to exist in all counties due to COVID-19 and renews the existing declaration.
In a prepared statement, Abbott said the renewal helps to ensure that Texans have resources and strategies in place to help communities respond to the pandemic. “I urge Texans to take precautionary steps to protect their health by wearing a mask, social distancing and sanitizing their hands,” said Abbott. “Working together, we will slow the spread and keep our communities safe.”
In Tyler County, the coronavirus active case numbers are down by half of what they were at this time in August. At press time, the county’s Emergency Management Office announced three new cases, bringing the active total to 15.
There have been 197 total cases reported in the county since the first case here in late March. Of those cases, 176 have been reported as recovered and six deaths have been attributed to the virus.
Nationally, the numbers of positive cases saw a decline since mid-July but increased slightly in the last report available from the Centers for Disease Control for Week 35 of COVID-19 reporting, which ended on August 29. Overall, though, the CDC reports that weekly hospitalization rates and mortality attributed to the virus has declined, but still remains above the epidemic threshold.