This is Jasper County Judge Mark Allen's STAY-AT-HOME ORDER that went into effect at 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, March 28th, 2020.

Click on the PDF file to download it if you would like to read the original version, or, you can read it below:


I, Mark W. Allen, duly elected Judge of Jasper County, Texas, based on the most recent information received from the Southeast Texas Emergency Operations Center Emergency Management personnel, the President of the United States, the Governor of the State of Texas, the Texas Commissioner on Public Health and local Public Health Authorities within Jasper County and the Southeast Texas Region, issue this ORDER REGARDING THE OCCUPANCY OF PREMISES THROUGHOUT JASPER COUNTY, TEXAS, INCLUDING MUNICIPALITIES:

WHEREAS, on March 17, 2020, Jasper County Judge, Mark W. Allen issued a Declaration of Local Disaster for a public health emergency to allow Jasper County to take measures to reduce the possibility of exposure to COVID-19 and promote the health and safety of Jasper County residents in accordance with Section 418.108 of the Texas Government Code; and

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, a Declaration of State of Disaster was issued by Governor Abbott to take additional steps to prepare for, respond to, and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 to protect the health and welfare of Texans; and

WHEREAS, on March 19, 2020, the Governor of the State of Texas Greg Abbott, issued an Executive Order, containing orders instructing the public to avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people, as well as temporarily closing schools to protect the public health from the spread of COVID-19 infection; and

WHEREAS, on March 19, 2020, the Texas Commissioner on Public Health, John W. Hellerstedt, M.D, issued a Declaration of Public Health Disaster in the State of Texas; and

WHEREAS, on March 16, 2020, President Trump acknowledged the gravity of the COVID-19 pandemic, releasing strict new guidelines to limit people's interactions, including that Americans should avoid groups of more than 10 people; and

WHEREAS, on March 23, 2020, the Jasper County Commissioners Court continued the local Declaration of Disaster, issued by County Judge Mark W. Allen on March 17, 2020, approving the extension by an additional sixty ( 60) days, pursuant to Sec. 418, Texas Government Code and such Declaration of Disaster for Jasper County, Texas remains in effect; and

WHEREAS, County Judge Mark W. Allen has issued a First Amended Emergency Order and 1 Addendum thereto, which, among other things, prohibits citizens from gathering in groups of more than 10 people; and WHEREAS, the COVID-19 virus is contagious and spreads through person to-person contact, especially in group settings; and

WHEREAS, the COVID-19 virus causes property loss or damage due to its ability to attach to surfaces for prolonged periods of time; and

WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends an "All of Community "approach focused on slowing the transmission ofCOVID19 through social distancing to reduce illness and death, while minimizing social and economic impacts; and

WHEREAS, given the ongoing evaluation of circumstances related to the COVID19 virus, the updated recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and the Texas Department of State Health Services, and the substantial risks posed by the COVID-19 virus to Jasper County residents and their property, the following extraordinary measures must be taken to protect the public's safety.


That the findings and recitations set out in the preamble to this ORDER are found to be true and correct and they are hereby adopted by the County Judge and made a part hereof for all purposes. This Order is in addition to any previous orders and addendum issued by the Jasper County Judge and hereby incorporates all previous orders by reference.

Summary: The virus that causes 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) is easily transmitted through person-to-person contact, especially in group settings, and it is essential that the spread of the virus be slowed to protect the ability of public and private healthcare providers to handle the influx of new patients and safeguard public health and safety. Because of the risk of the rapid spread of the virus and the need to protect the most vulnerable members of the community, this Order requires all individuals anywhere in Jasper County, to stay at home, except for certain essential activities and work to provide essential business and essential government services or perform essential infrastructure construction, including housing. This Order takes effect at 11 :59 p.m. on March 28th, 2020 and will continue through 11 :59 p.m. on April 10th, 2020, subject to the limited exceptions and under the terms and conditions more particularly set forth below.

1. Effective as of 11 :59 p.m. on the 28th day of March, 2020, and continuing until 11:59p.m. on April 10\2020:

a. All individuals currently living within Jasper County are ordered to remain at their place of residence except for essential activities as defined in this order. All persons may leave their residences only for essential activities, or to provide or perform essential governmental functions, or to operate essential businesses, as defined in Section 2. For purposes of this Order, a residence includes homes, hotels, motels, shared rentals, and similar facilities. To the extent individuals are using shared or outdoor spaces, they must at all times as reasonably as possible maintain social distancing of at least six feet from any other person when they are outside their residence.

b. All businesses operating within Jasper County, except essential businesses as defined below in Section 2, are required to cease all activities at facilities located within the County. For clarity, any business may continue operations consisting exclusively of employees or contractors performing activities at their own residences (i.e., working from home). To the greatest extent possible, all essential businesses shall comply with the Social Distancing Guidelines attached, including maintaining six-foot social distancing for both employees and the general public.

Financial institutions may continue to provide services with drive through operations.

c. All public or private gatherings of any number of people occurring outside a single household or living unit are prohibited, except as otherwise provided herein. Nothing in this Order prohibits the gathering of members of a household or living unit. Nothing in this Order affects orders or agreements regarding child-related visitation or custody arrangements.

d. Individuals may go to public parks and open outdoor recreation areas. However, public playground equipment may increase spread of COVID-19 and, therefore, shall be not be utilized. Parades, whereby large gatherings occur, shall cease operation.

e. Restaurants, bars, micro-breweries, micro-distilleries, wineries and other establishments that serve food, with or without drive-in or drive-through services, are prohibited from serving food for consumption on the premises and may only serve food and/or alcohol by take out, delivery, or drive-through services as allowed by law.

f. Gyms, indoor recreational sports and fitness training centers, indoor and outdoor public swimming pools, and other facilities that are used or intended to be used for any type of indoor training, martial arts, sports or recreation shall close.

g. Spas, licensed massage businesses, tattoo parlors, concert halls, live performance theaters, arenas, stadiums, movie theaters, game rooms, businesses with 8-liners, arcades, indoor and outdoor flea markets and swap meets, arcades and bingo halls shall close.

h. Faith leaders may minister and counsel in individual settings, so long as social distance protocols are followed. Religious and worship services may only be provided by video and teleconference or drive up services where individuals do not exit their vehicles. Religious institutions must limit in-person staff to those necessary for preparing for or conducting video or teleconference services, and all individuals must follow the Social Distancing Guidelines, including the six-foot social distancing.


A. For purposes of this Order, individuals may leave their residence only to perform anyofthe following ''Essential Activities":

1. To engage in activities or perform tasks essential to their health and safety, or to the health and safety of their family or household members (for example, obtaining medical supplies or medication, visiting a healthcare professional, or obtaining supplies needed to work from home).

11. To obtain necessary services or supplies for themselves and their family or household members, or to deliver those services or supplies to others (for example, food, pet supplies, and any other household consumer products, supplies needed to work from home, and products necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation, and essential operation ofresidences ).

111. To engage in outdoor activity, provided the individuals comply with social distancing requirements of six feet ( for example, outdoor sports and recreation, walking, biking, hiking, camping, running, hunting or fishing).

1v. To perform work providing essential products and services at an essential business or to otherwise carry out activities specifically permitted in this Order.

v. To care for a family member, pet or livestock in another household, or to perform any personal farming, ranching, timber and agricultural activity.

For purposes of this Order, 'Essential Businesses" include:

Essential Critical Infrastructure. Work necessary to the operations and maintenance of the 16 critical infrastructure sectors identified by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security National Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), provided that they carry out those services or that work in compliance with social distancing requirements of six feet to the extent possible. See Attachment (CISA' s Guidance on Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce). Essential Businesses providing essential infrastructure should implement screening precautions to protect employees and all activities shall be performed in compliance with social distancing guidelines.

Essential Government Functions. All services provided by local governments and municipalities located in Jasper County needed to ensure their continuing operation to provide for the health, safety and welfare of the public, including law enforcement,jail operations and other services. Further, nothing in this Order shall prohibit any individual from performing ''Essential Government Functions". All Essential Government Functions shall be performed in compliance with social distancing requirements of six feet to the extent possible.

Essential Healthcare Operations. Healthcare operations, including, but not limited to, hospitals, clinics, dentists, pharmacies, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, other healthcare facilities, healthcare suppliers, mental health providers, substance abuse service providers, chiropractors, blood banks, medical research laboratory services, or any related and/or ancillary healthcare services. Homebased and residential-based care for seniors, adults, or children are also considered healthcare operations. Healthcare operations also include veterinary care and all health and welfare services provided to animals. This exemption shall be viewed broadly to avoid any impacts to the delivery of healthcare in Jasper County.

Essential Retail. Food producers and service providers, including grocery stores, warehouse stores, furniture suppliers, big box stores, liquor stores, gas stations and convenience stores, farmers' markets that sell food products and household staples. Food cultivation, including farming, ranching, fishing, and livestock, as well as livestock auction barns and houses. Timber, logging and wood product industry. Food production, including the production of canned goods, bottled beverages and other grocery items. Businesses that provide groceries, food, goods or services at their place of business, curbside or directly to residences. Restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food, but only for delivery, drive-thru or carry-out. Schools, congregate meal centers, and other entities that typically provide free services to students or members of the public on a pick-up, delivery and drive-through basis only. The restriction of delivery or carry-out does not apply to cafes and restaurants located within hospital and medical facilities, but Social Distancing Guidelines do apply. Laundromats, dry cleaners, and laundry service providers. Gas stations, auto supply, auto and bicycle repair, hardware stores, and related facilities. Pawn shops, firearms sellers, saw shops, timber and logging support companies. Businesses that supply products needed for people to work from home. Barber shops, hair and nail salons shall operate only when Social Distancing Guidelines can be met between customers and only when the owners, employees and customers wear proper personal protective masks, gloves and clothing to prevent the spread of infection, and if these requirements cannot be met to safely prevent the spread of CO VID-19 infection, the barber shop, hair or nail salon shall cease operation.

Providers of Basic Necessities to Economically Disadvantaged Populations. Businesses and nonprofit organizations that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needed individuals.

Essential Services Necessary to Maintain Essential Operations of Residences or Other Essential Businesses. Trash and recycling collection, processing and disposal, mail and shipping services, building cleaning, maintenance and security, warehouse/distribution and fulfillment, storage for essential businesses, funeral homes, crematoriums and cemeteries. Plumbers, electricians, real estate agents, exterminators, yard and maintenance crews, housekeepers, janitorial staff, pool cleaners and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operations of residences and Essential Businesses. Professional services, such as legal or accounting services, when necessary to assist in compliance with legally mandated activities. Businesses that supply other Essential Businesses with support or utilities needed to operate. Caregivers and helpers who provide services to seniors, children and disabled individuals. Mobile home sales and services, storage building services, portable building sales and services. HV AC and generator sales and services.

News Media. Newspapers, television, radio, and other media services.

Childcare and Adult Care Services. Childcare and adult care facilities providing services that enable employees exempted in this Order to work as permitted.

Infrastructure, Development, Operation and Construction. For example, public works construction, construction of housing or other types of construction including commercial, manufacturing, airport operations and aircraft manufacturing, maintenance or repair, water, sewer, gas, electrical, oil refining, roads and highways, public transportation, solid waste collection and removal, internet, and telecommunications systems (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, and web-based services).

Transportation. Businesses related to the operation, maintenance, construction, and manufacture of transportation services. For example, (a) vehicle manufacturers, automotive suppliers and parts depaiiments, car dealerships, parts distributors, maintenance and repair facilities, auto body shops; (b) businesses supporting airport operation; ( c) street and highway maintenance and construction; ( d) gas stations and other fuel distribution businesses.

Veterans Services. Critical services including, but not limited to, providing for the health, wellness, education, employment assistance, mental health and other essential services to active duty and veteran members of the military branches of the United States of America.

Labor Union Functions. Critical labor union functions, including the maintenance of health and welfare funds and checking on the well-being and safety of members.

Airports and related operations. Airport and airline activities, operations, maintenance and repairs, and the hotels that serve these essential businesses and essential infrastructure.

Professional services. Professional services, such as legal or accounting services, insurance services, title companies, and real estate services when necessary to assist in compliance with legally mandated activities or to further essential businesses, essential government functions, or critical infrastructure.

2. These infection control precautions apply to all Essential Businesses: ( 1) practice social distancing by requiring patrons, visitors, and employees to be separated by six (6) feet, to the extent feasible (2) provide access to hand washing facilities with soap and water or hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol; (3) post a sign in a conspicuous place at the public entrance to the venue instructing members of the public not to enter if they are experiencing symptoms ofrespiratory illness, including fever or cough; and ( 4) adhere to other general communicable disease control recommendations by public health authorities. 3. Grocery stores, supermarkets, warehouse stores, hospitals, and medical facilities are experiencing highlevels of demand for a large number of products, requiring more deliveries from manufacturers and distribution centers to serve their customers. A number ofTexas cities and local associations have implemented restrictions on delivery hours to stores to mitigate truck noise and traffic. Due to the need to deliver products as quickly and efficiently as possible during this critical timeframe, this Order hereby suspends all delivery hour restrictions for transport to or from any entity involved in the selling or distribution of food products, medicine, or medical supplies or equipment in Jasper County for the next sixty ( 60) days.

Only one member of a household can enter the following retail/wholesale establishments at one time, unless an individual is handicapped and requires assistance, or is a parent, guardian or caregiver of a child or children for whom there is no alternative care.

This applies to the following retailers: Grocery stores, warehouse stores, big-box stores, hardware stores, any store within a strip shopping center, liquor stores, gas stations, convenience stores, and farmers' markets.

- All retailers, wholesalers and customers of the above listed retail/wholesale outlets are immediately put on notice: Pursuant to Texas Government Code, Section 418.173, Peace officers are hereby authorized to enforce the current Order and Addendum. Any retailer, wholesaler or customer who violates any provision of these regulations, upon conviction, is punishable by a fine of not more than One Thousand ($1,000.00) dollars, or up to 180 days confinement in jail.

4. Ifsomeone in a household has tested positive for COVID-19, all residents of the household are ordered to isolate at home until cleared by a public health authority or medical provider.

5. Nursing homes, retirement, and long-term care facilities are instructed by this Order to prohibit nonessential visitors from accessing their facilities unless to provide critical assistance or for end-of-life visitation.

6. This Order shall be effective until 11 :59 p.m. on April 10, 2020 or until it is either rescinded, superseded, or amended pursuant to applicable law.

7. In accordance with Tex. Gov't CodeĀ§ 418.173, any law enforcement agency based in Jasper County is hereby authorized to enforce this order and the failure to comply with this Order is an offense under this Order and is punishable by a fine that does not exceed $1,000.00 or confinement in jail for a term that does not exceed 180 days.

8. Jasper County will post this Order on the Internet. In addition, the owner, manager, or operator of any facility that is likely to be impacted by this Order is strongly encouraged to post a copy of this Order onsite and to provide a copy to any member of the public asking for a copy. If any subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or word of this Order or any application of it to any person, structure, gathering, or circumstance is held to be invalid or unconstitutional by a decision of a court of competent jurisdiction, then such decision will not affect the validity of the remaining portions or applications of this Order.

The Jasper County Courthouse and all Jasper County Sub-Courthouses will remain open with flexible staffing, however access to the Courthouse and SubCourthouses by the public will be significantly limited to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infection. Most services can be accessed by the public electronically or by mail. Therefore, it is advisable that you telephone the department head or elected official whose department you wish to visit prior to coming. Persons who are granted entry must agree to undergo a simple health screening protocol upon entering and, if the health screening indicates that they may pose a health threat, they may be denied entry.

It is hereby ORDERED that a twenty-four (24) hour curfew shall be in place immediately throughout Jasper County for all individuals under the age of 18, who

a) are not in school or at a school-sponsored event; or

b) are not accompanied by school personnel, a parent, guardian, caregiver, or

a family member 18 years of age or older; or

c) are not going directly to their place of employment or going directly home from that place of employment; or

d) are not traveling for emergency medical purposes.

This Order does not apply to special needs students during the times local school districts are required by federal law to provide those students services.

WHEREAS, this state of disaster requires that certain emergency measures be taken pursuant to the Texas Disaster Act of 197 5 relating to Emergency Management; Every hospital, physician, health care provider, public health authority, or other individual or entity shall, immediately, but no less than within 4 hours of learning of a suspected or positive case of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), report same to the Southeast Texas Emergency Operations Center, located at the Jefferson County Office of Emergency Management via email to EOC@Co.Jefferson.TX.US. Such report shall include the individual's name, address, age, current location, and information relating to whether such individual had recently traveled outside the six counties of Jefferson, Hardin, Orange, Jasper, Newton, or Tyler County.

For additional information, please refer to the Executive Orders issued by Greg Abbott, Governor of the State of Texas, effective on 11 :59 p.m. on March 24, 2020.

https ://gov. texas. gov /news/post/ governor-abbott-issues-executive-order-tostrengthen-reporting-capabilities

Failure to comply with such reporting requirements shall be a violation of this order punishable by a fine not to exceed One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) or confinement in jail for a period not to exceed 180 days.

This information is required in accordance with guidance from the US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Civil Rights and 45 CFR 164.512.

It is therefore Ordered that the following regulations shall take effect immediately upon execution of this Order and shall remain in effect until the state of disaster is terminated or this Order may be amended:


A person shall not sell any of the following goods or services for more than the price the person charged for the goods or services before March 17, 2020, which is the date of the original Emergency Order:

a) groceries, beverages, toilet articles, ice;

b) construction and building materials and supplies and earthmoving equipment and machinery;

c) electrical and gas generating and transmission equipment, parts and accessones;

d) charcoal briquettes, matches, candles, lamp illumination and heat unit carbides, dry batteries, light bulbs, flashlights, and hand lanterns;

e) hand tools (manual and power), hardware and household supplies, and equipment rental;

f) automotive parts, supplies and accessories;

g) plumbing and electrical tools and supplies;

h) apartment, duplex, multi-family dwelling, rooming house, hotel and motel rental;

i) gasoline, diesel oil, motor oil, kerosene, grease, and automotive lubricants;

j) restaurant, cafeteria and boarding house meals;

k) services of roofing and building contractors, plumbers, electricians, mechanics, tree surgeons, and automobile wrecker companies;

1) medicine, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment and supplies;

m) blankets, quilts, bedspreads, bed liners, mattresses, bedsprings, bedsheets, bedsteads, towels and toilet paper; and n) furniture and clothing.


These price control regulations shall have the effect of ordinances when duly filed with the County Clerk.

This order does NOT extend to law enforcement activities, emergency response operations, emergency management operations, court operations, including jury operations, and to all school districts of Jasper County.

All Jasper County employees must report for work as required by their supervisors.

This order shall take effect immediately and shall remain in effect until amended or terminated.

ORDERED, this 27th day of March, 2020

Mark W. Allen, County Judge

Jasper County, Texas