MARFA-clouds-bg.svg
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
KRTP, our signal in Alpine, Texas, is having issues. We're aware of the problem and working to return to air.

Big Bend Governments Extend Emergency Ordinances in Response to Coronavirus Pandemic

get-go-sign
As Big Bend officials extend orders to slow the spread of the coronavirus, many shops are enacting their own preventive measures. (Carlos Morales / Marfa Public Radio)

By Public Radio Staff, updated April 27, 2020

Tri-county area governments this week have extended their local disaster ordinances and shelter-in-place orders, which largely mirror Gov. Greg Abbott's executive order calling on Texans to take preventative measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Through April 30, Texans are ordered to "minimize social gatherings and minimize in-person contact with people who are not in the same household" unless to provide or obtain essential services.

A list of essential services is provided by the Texas Division of Emergency Management.

Marfa Public Radio has compiled ordinances from Brewster County, Jeff Davis County, Presidio County, Alpine, Marfa, and the City of Presidio. These rules are stricter than statewide orders currently in effect and are enforced by local authorities.

Brewster County

Brewster County has extended both the shelter-in-place and local disaster ordinances with amendments through Thursday, April 30, 2020.

  • Hotels, motels and short-term rentals are to close and vacate their guests through Thursday, April 30 with exceptions for rentals that are a primary place of residence; for active military, law enforcement, and national reserve; for emergency services personnel to support government functions or Sul Ross State University and school district operations; for healthcare professionals and employees.
  • RV Parks and Campgrounds are to close and vacate their guests through Thursday, April 30. The only exception during this time period is if guests have established these rental units as their primary place of residence; or the RV Parks/Campgrounds use the facility for employee housing.
  • Curfew - Unless conducting or traveling to or from an essential activity, work at an essential business, or work at an essential government function, members of the public shall remain at home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
  • Travel - Travel is prohibited except for purposes of essential activities or to perform or obtain services from an essential business, essential governmental function, or critical infrastructure.
  • No gatherings - All public or private gatherings of any number of people occurring outside a single household or living unit are prohibited.
  • Quarantine - If someone in a household has tested positive for COVID-19, the entire household is ordered to isolate at home. Members of the household cannot go to work, school, or any other community function.

Here are the amended shelter-in-place and local disaster ordinances for Brewster County.


Jeff Davis County

In an emergency meeting on April 20, Jeff Davis County Commissioners voted to extend its shelter-in-place and disaster declaration through Thursday, April 30.

  • Hotels, motels and short-term and RV rentals and campgrounds are ordered to continue to stop their operations until April 24. Any such rental properties may only be used for active military, law enforcement, National Guard, or Texas National Guard; park hosts and seasonal employees or volunteers at Davis Mountains State Park, Fort Davis National Historic Site, Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center, or Texas Nature Conservancy's Davis Mountains Preserve; permanent or current residents residing over 30 days in hotels, motels, or RV parks; emergency services personnel or healthcare professionals assisting Jeff Davis County or Federal or State Government or the Fort Davis or Valentine Independent School Districts; individuals under quarantine, or any other individuals specifically sent to assist with limiting the spread of COVID-19.
  • Davis Mountains State Park shall cease overnight accommodations for guests, including the Indian Lodge, all campgrounds, and any RV accommodations. Park hosts that are on the property as of April 2 shall be allowed to stay and consider their current accommodations as their residence.
  • Regulation of long-term rentals - Long-term rentals (longer than 30 days) may be advertised and rented only to active military, law enforcement, National Guard, or Texas National Guard; park hosts and seasonal employees or volunteers at Davis Mountains State Park, Fort Davis National Historic Site, Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center, or Texas Nature Conservancy's Davis Mountains Preserve; permanent or current residents residing over 30 days in hotels, motels, or RV parks; emergency services personnel or healthcare professionals assisting Jeff Davis County or Federal or State Government or the Fort Davis or Valentine Independent School Districts; individuals under quarantine, or any other individuals specifically sent to assist with limiting the spread of COVID-19.
  • Quarantine - Any individual with a first or second residence in Jeff Davis County is required to self-quarantine for at least 14 days if they are returning to the county from a place that has active COVID-19 cases or if they have been exposed at any time during the preceding month to an individual who has contracted COVID-19.
  • Door-to-door sales and solicitations are prohibited.
  • Church services - In accordance with Governor Abbott's Executive Order GA-14, church and worship services are classified as an Essential Service. It is strongly recommended that services be held virtually to minimize the risk of the spread of COVID-19. If religious services cannot be conducted from home or through remote services, then parishioners inside a church or place of worship are limited to 10 people for every separated space. All parishioners shall practice social distancing before, during and after worship services as well as practicing good hygiene, environmental cleanliness, and sanitation, and by implementing social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Here are the full amended shelter-in-place and local disaster ordinances for Jeff Davis County.


Presidio County

Presidio County has extended both the shelter-in-place and local disaster ordinances with amendments through Thursday, April 30.

  • Hotels, motels and short-term rentals are to close and vacate their guests through Thursday, April 30. The only exceptions are for rentals that are a primary place of residence; for active military, law enforcement, and national reserve; for emergency services personnel to support city, county, state, and school district operations; for healthcare professionals and employees; individuals who provide support to essential operations at the Presidio/Ojinaga Port of Entry, including people in the farming or agriculture industry who must travel to Marfa or Presidio for work; individuals engaged in official government or diplomatic travel who support the movement of cargo between the U.S. and Mexico.
  • RV Parks and Campgrounds are to close and vacate their guests through Thursday, April 30. The only exception during this time period are guests that have established a rental unit as their primary place of residence, or if RV Parks/Campgrounds use the space for employee housing.
  • Long term rentals - Rentals (longer than 30 days) may be advertised and rented only to individuals who are essential personnel or actively engaged in essential business, as specified by the Texas Department of Emergency Management and the U. S. Department of Homeland Security; and local permanent residents of Brewster, Jeff Davis, and Presidio Counties and/or their caregiver.
  • Curfew - Unless conducting or traveling to or from an essential activity, work at an essential business, or work at an essential government function, members of the public shall remain at home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
  • Travel - Travel is prohibited except for purposes of essential activities or to perform or obtain services from an essential business, essential governmental function, or critical infrastructure.
  • No gatherings - All public or private gatherings of any number of people occurring outside a single household or living unit are prohibited.
  • Quarantine - If someone in a household has tested positive for COVID-19, the entire household is ordered to isolate at home. Members of the household cannot go to work, school, or any other community function.

Find the amended shelter-in-place and local disaster ordinances for Presidio County here .


Alpine

The City of Alpine extended it's emergency ordinance through Thursday, April 30, 2020.

  • Hotels, motels and short-term rentals are to close and vacate their guests through Thursday, April 30 with exceptions for rentals that are a primary place of residence; for active military, law enforcement, and national reserve; for emergency services personnel to support government functions or Sul Ross State University and school district operations; other providers of essential services as defined in Gov. Abbott State of Texas orders, during this time period.
    • All hotels, motels, and short-term rentals must report their occupancy numbers to the Alpine Chief of Police on a daily basis.
  • Curfew - Unless conducting or traveling to or from an essential activity, work at an essential business, or work at an essential government function, members of the public shall remain at home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
  • Travel - Travel is prohibited except for purposes of essential activities or to perform or obtain services from an essential business, essential governmental function, or critical infrastructure.
  • No gatherings - All public or private gatherings of any number of people occurring outside a single household or living unit are prohibited.
  • Quarantine - If someone in a household has tested positive for COVID-19, the entire household is ordered to isolate at home. Members of the household cannot go to work, school, or any other community function. Any person who displays symptoms of COVID-19, including fever, shortness of breath, or dry cough should refrain from leaving home and call Big Bend Regional Medical Center, 432-837-3447.

Read the City of Alpine's updated ordinance here , beginning on page 66.


Marfa

Marfa has extended both the shelter-in-place and local disaster ordinances with amendments through Thursday, April 30.

Marfa's Orders:

  • Hotels, motels, and short-term rentals - All hotels, motels, short-term rentals, and short-term rental activities and businesses shall remain closed; however, hotels, motels, and short-term rentals may be utilized exclusively for guests that are active military, law enforcement, National Guard, Texas National Guard, emergency services personnel, health care professionals, and local residents of the tri-county subject to quarantine or self-quarantine.
  • Regulation of long-term rentals and all rental advertising - long-term rentals (longer than 30 days) may be advertised and rented only to individuals who are essential personnel or actively engaged in essential business, as specified by the Texas Department of Emergency Management and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security; and local residents of the tri-county.
  • Self quarantine - Any non-essential individual, including any visitor, employee, resident, or landowner with a first or second residence in The City of Marfa, is required to self quarantine for at least fourteen days if they are coming from another state or from an area, county, or city in Texas that has active COVID-19 cases; if the individual has been exposed or has reason to believe he or she may have been exposed at any time during the preceding month to an individual who has contracted the COVID-19 virus; If any non-essential individual subject to quarantine is a member of a household, then the entire household shall be subject to a 14-day quarantine unless the potentially exposed individual isolates himself/herself within the household under CDC guidelines to prevent the potential spread of COVID-19.
  • Essential travel - Travel in and out of Marfa is limited to those perform Essential Personal Activities, Healthcare Operations, operate Essential Businesses, or maintain Essential Governmental Functions and Essential Infrastructure Operations.
    • UPDATED: Marfa residents traveling out of the tri-county solely for non-emergency, elective, and emergency medical treatment do not have to quarantine for 14 days. Contact with the public at large should be avoided, and CDC social distancing and personal hygiene practices (including recommended use of face masks) should be followed.
    • Other examples of the kinds of travel still allowed:
    • Travel to care for the elderly, minors or other vulnerable persons.
    • Travel required by law enforcement or court order.
    • Travel for non-residents to return to their place of residence outside the county.
  • Door-to-door sales and/or solicitations are prohibited.
  • Curfew - Unless conducting or traveling to or from an essential activity, work at an essential business, or work at an essential government function, members of the public shall remain at home from 10 pm to 5 am.
  • UPDATED: Small private gatherings of ten (10) people or less in private residences are allowed, so long as CDC social distancing and personal hygiene practices are followed

Here is the City of Marfa's updated shelter-in-placeorder and disaster declaration.


City of Presidio

The City of Presidio updated its local disaster declaration which will remain in effect until Wednesday, April 29.

  • No gatherings - All public or private gatherings of any number of people occurring outside a single household or living unit are prohibited.
  • Curfew - Unless conducting or traveling to or from an essential activity, work at an essential business, or work at an essential government function, members of the public shall remain at home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.
  • Essential businesses shall comply with social distancing guidelines to the maximum extent possible including maintaining six-foot social distancing for employees and the general public and should limit the number of people within the essential business at any time to one (1) customer per every thousand (1,000) square feet of business space.
  • To the maximum extent possible, all Customers, Citizens and Individuals leaving their residences for an essential activity and to visit an essential business should limit the number of people conducting the activity to a minimum (i.e. children should remain home if at all possible) and a face covering should be worn while in the public.
  • Residents entering a local business or public space must wear something to cover their mouth and nose when entering a business or public place in Presidio. 

Find the updated disaster declaration for the City of Presidio here.