El Paso County Judge Holds Press Conference – Here’s What He Said
The COVID-19 numbers in El Paso County are still on an upward trajectory with no end in sight. Two weeks ago, El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego put a shutdown and stay at home order in place that instead of being followed by restaurants, retail outlets, or El Paso citizens, it got him a court battle with a number of El Paso restaurants, and the Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.
The group said that the order overturned Texas Governor Greg Abbott's order and was illegal. The El Paso Police Department weighed in saying that they wouldn't enforce the order, but the El Paso County Sheriff's Department and the Constables said they would and they did. There were a number of restaurants that were cited for not following Samaniego's order and a couple even had their licenses suspended for a time.
Last week, a state judge said that the lawsuit brought by the restaurant owners and the Attorney General was legal and the group immediately filed an appeal. That appeal will be heard on Thursday and a decision is expected by Friday.
Wednesday afternoon, Judge Samaniego held a news conference. In it, he restated that the COVID-19 numbers are not going down. The County order he put into place two weeks ago remains in effect. Samaniego says he remains optimistic that the state court will render a decision on Friday to allow him to maintain the order he put into place two weeks ago because hospitals are overwhelmed and his order will help offer some relief to medical workers. You can take a look at the complete, updated order by clicking here.
51% of all patients in El Paso hosptials are COVID patients. That shocking when you think about how many hospital beds that actually adds up to. Samaniego said the stay at home order caused a bit of a decrease even though it wasn't widely followed. The Judge says by staying home it helps decrease the positivity rate.
Samaniego's new order will stay in effect until Tuesday, December 1, at midnight. This is, of course, after Thanksgiving and he did that on purpose to keep gatherings at a minimum. So that's it folks. Wear your mask. Wash your hands. Don't take the whole family shopping. Use take-out and delivery for restaurants. If we don't do this then who knows how many more times we will be under orders, so please do the right thing.