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Bars left out as Gov. Abbott allows other Texas business to welcome more customers

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 3:58 PM CDT
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(KOSA) - Governor Greg Abbott is adjusting his stay at home orders to allow more customers back inside Teas businesses.

Starting on Monday, Texas businesses can start welcoming more customers.

Everyone, except for bars that don’t serve food.

The governor outlined a plan to allow all restaurants, retail stores, offices and gyms to seat 75% of their maximum capacity.

Abbott said going forward regions can reopen further depending on the percentage of COVID patients occupying local hospitals.

“If the COVID hospitalizations are less than 15% of all hospitalizations for seven consecutive days, then the region is safe enough to allow additional openings,” Abbott said.

But either way, bars that don’t serve food aren’t on the table.

“Because bars are nationally recognized as COVID spreading locations,” he said. “They are still unable to open at this time.”

The governor said he hasn’t found a way for bars to reopen that doesn’t risk outbreaks.

Disappointing news for The Buffalo Nickel’s co-owner, Crystal Wright.

“A little bit sickening and angered,” she said on how she felt when she heard the news.

Wright said she doesn’t see why a bar can’t follow the same rules as a restaurant and at the very least seat 25% of their usual customers.

“I guess I’m confused as to what he would want bars to try to do,” Wright said. “I think there’s this conception that everyone’s like dancing in close proximity at bars and that’s not, y’know, we’re a bar, we’re not like a dance hall.”

The Buffalo Nickel has been closed for the better part of six months.

Wright said her bar will be alright after they add a food menu, but remodeling is a luxury not everyone can afford.

“We’re more fortunate than most,” she said. “I mean, I think there’s a lot of bars that are saying they’re going to close by October if things don’t change.”

The governor said he wants to work with bars to find a safe way for them to reopen, but he didn’t offer any ideas on what that would look like.

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