Texas Supreme Courtroom temporarily strikes down Bexar County’s mask mandate

Bexar County’s mask mandate in public educational facilities was temporarily struck down by the Texas Supreme Court on Thursday, providing a victory to Gov. Greg Abbott and Lawyer Basic Ken Paxton.

Abbott and Paxton submitted an crisis movement to the courtroom on Tuesday, in search of a remain on the injunction that allowed Bexar County’s mask mandate to shift ahead. The court docket granted the continue to be, but has not however ruled on the state’s request to forever lift the injunction as the scenario moves its way by means of the courts.

The injunction was to begin with granted by 57th Civil District Court docket Choose Toni Arteaga on Aug. 16 following Bexar County sued the governor, arguing that he overreached on his government get that barred governmental entities, which include educational facilities, from requiring deal with coverings. Arteaga cited the vulnerability of youngsters in school and a “dire situation” in Bexar County hospitals amid a surge of COVID-19 cases.


The point out officials filed an attraction with the Texas Supreme Courtroom just after the Fourth Court docket of Appeals upheld the injunction on Aug. 19.

Bexar County’s lawyers have argued that the governor’s government orders violate the Texas Overall health and Basic safety Code, which allows regional health and fitness officials to enact mandates for community wellness explanations.

Legal professionals for the condition argued the momentary injunction breaches on the governor’s authority granted to him under the Texas Disaster Act. They also claimed the mask mandate was adding to “statewide confusion arising from the many, conflicting orders that courts at all ranges of the judiciary have issued in the past a number of weeks.”

Paxton praised the determination in a assertion launched Thursday.

“The Texas Supreme Courtroom has sided with the law, and the conclusion to implement mask mandates lies with the governor’s legislatively-granted authority,” Legal professional Typical Paxton stated. “Mask mandates throughout our condition are illegal, and judges must abide by the legislation. Further non-compliance will end result in more lawsuits.”


Meanwhile, the county’s attorneys are preparing their future transfer.

“While I am individually dissatisfied in the order handed down now by the Texas Supreme Court, I will continue to do all that I can to struggle for the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Bexar County,” said Bexar County District Lawyer Joe Gonzales. “We are continuing to perform with the Metropolis of San Antonio to ascertain the subsequent techniques in light of the order issued currently.”

Regardless of the county’s mask mandate, many San Antonio space university districts have enacted mask needs of their very own that could be in result till challenged by Paxton in court docket. Gonzales mentioned that he will not prosecute university district officials who retain the mandates intact.

As of Wednesday, Bexar County hospitals had been reporting 1,371 COVID-19 people, with 391 in the ICU and 238 on ventilators. Only 7% of staffed medical center beds are offered, stressing healthcare facility personnel and sources.


Considering that the pandemic began, 3,802 Bexar County people have died of the virus.

Read through the timeline underneath, recapping the again-and-forth court struggle involving Bexar County and Texas:

  • June 5: An Government Buy issued by Abbott went into impact prohibiting counties, cities, faculty districts, general public health authorities, or authorities officials from demanding or mandating mask donning.
  • July 29: Abbott issued a further executive order that additional taken off nearby governments’ qualities to enact insurance policies like necessitating folks to have on masks, get vaccinated or established potential restrictions.
  • Aug. 10: A Bexar County Civil District Court Judge granted a ask for from officials with Bexar County and the Town of San Antonio and issued a short-term restraining purchase from Abbott’s government purchase. The ruling authorized the Bexar County Wellbeing Authority to difficulty a health and fitness directive for community faculties to difficulty a mask mandate in community educational institutions and other guidance like quarantine protocols. As a final result, university districts in Bexar County introduced they would demand masks inside of campuses.
  • Aug. 16: 57th Civil District Court Judge Toni Arteaga dominated in favor of Bexar County. The ruling grants a momentary injunction that stops the enforcement of Abbott’s govt order that barred area governments from issuing coronavirus-relevant mandates. The ruling is most likely to be appealed by the governor and Attorney Common Ken Paxton. The mask mandate on public schools and metropolis personnel will remain in outcome until eventually the trial is scheduled, except larger courts reverse the selection prior to then.
  • Aug. 24: Abbott and Paxton filed an crisis motion to the Texas Supreme Court docket, looking for a continue to be on the injunction that allowed Bexar County’s mask mandate to shift forward.
  • Aug. 26: The Texas Supreme Courtroom grants temporary keep on Bexar County’s mask mandate.

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Lashell Coykendall

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