County Commissioners review 19-20 budget (copy)

The Lamar County Commissioners’ Court in September 2019 work on the county budget for the coming fiscal year.

Lamar County commissioners came short of issuing a shelter in place order Tuesday, but instead issued a resolution with limited exposure recommendations in an attempt to thwart the local spread of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

However, a shelter in place order could be a next step as evidenced by resolution words “to avoid further restrictions allowed under” state statute.

To date, Gov. Greg Abbott has avoided a statewide shelter in place order and left such decisions to local authorities.

Along with a resolution, Lamar County Judge Brandon Bell released a statement in which he urged residents “to impose certain restrictions on themselves in an effort to avert a local health disaster and to avoid more restrictions by state and local authorities.”

Because of the limited availability of virus testing, Bell said it is impossible to know the degree of community transmission.

“Because of this, more restrictive measures should be taken,” Bell said. “The goal is to limit the number of close gatherings to the extent possible.”

Bell’s statement, along with a copy of the resolution are available on The Paris News website.

The county’s set of recommendations limits gatherings to 10 people or less, limits restaurants to take-out service, recommends closure of non-essential services such as amusement establishments, personal care businesses, event centers and retail stores that do not sell essential household goods.

The order recommends closure of in-person church services and encourages church staff-produced audio and video services.

The resolution recommends a single family member do necessary shopping rather than in groups. Convenience and package stores, pharmacies and drug stores along with medical facilities are not included in a recommended closure list.

Mary Madewell is a staff writer for The Paris News. She can be reached at 903-785-6976 or at mary.madewell@theparisnews.com.

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