Texas Supreme Court temporarily halts mask orders in Dallas and Bexar counties

Submitted by Freedomman on Wed, 08/25/2021 - 20:03

AUSTIN, Texas (PNN) - August 15, 2021 - The Texas Supreme Court on Sunday temporarily blocked mask mandates in Dallas and Bexar counties, marking a pivotal moment in the showdown between state and local government as coronavirus cases and hospitalizations reportedly surge in Texas.

The ruling comes after several school districts and a handful of counties across the state defied Governor Greg Abbott’s executive order that restricted local entities from instituting mask mandates. On Friday, the Fourth Court of Appeals in San Antonio upheld a lower court ruling that permitted Bexar County to require mask-wearing in public schools. Shortly after, the Fifth Court of Appeals in Dallas upheld a more far-reaching order from Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins that required masks in public schools, universities and businesses.

In a petition for a writ of mandamus to the Texas Supreme Court, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office said the Texas Disaster Act of 1975 gives the governor power to act as the “commander in chief” of the state’s response to a disaster. Attorneys representing cities and counties that have sued Abbott over his executive order have argued that his orders should not supersede local orders.