City of AustinFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Construction and Religious Services Identified as Essential
Austin, TX — On March 31, an Executive Order released by Governor Greg Abbott’s office included differences to essential services and activities from the City’s Stay Home-Work Safe orders. Consistent with the Governor’s orders, the City issued updated guidance which recognizes all construction and religious gatherings as essential.
"The Governor’s Order trumps the city and allows construction to proceed," says Mayor Adler. "We’ll continue to enforce the non-conflicting parts of the City Order to mitigate the risk for workers, their families, and the city at-large."
Due to the Governor’s Order, the City cannot stop residential or commercial construction. The safety requirements and requests in the City’s current Stay Home Order and written Guidance remain in place. Enforcement will focus on educating workers and owners/managers and enforcing those safety requirements.
Construction projects no longer require committee review to determine eligibility for project continuation. The City’s worker protection requirements remain in place. Austin Code inspectors will continue to monitor construction sites to ensure that social distancing and recommended hygiene practices are being observed.
Additionally, persons may gather for religious services conducted in churches, congregations, or other houses of worship if they cannot be conducted from home or through remote services. However, all persons must observe the social distancing requirements described in City’s Stay Home-Work Safe Order.
The state-issued executive order is in effect through April 30, 2020, and is subject to extension based on the status of COVID-19 in Texas and the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"At this point in this epidemic, it's on each of us to make the right decisions to save lives," added Mayor Adler.
Austin Public Health continues to stress the importance of practicing good personal hygiene and maintaining physical 'social' distance during essential activities to disrupt the spread of the virus.
Proper hygiene practices include:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow or use a tissue to cover it, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
For more information and updates, visit www.austintexas.gov/COVID19.