WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — On Thursday, Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order that requires all Texans to wear face coverings over their nose and mouth in public spaces, with exceptions.
According to the order, this applies to residents of counties with more than 20 positive cases of COVID-19. This comes after several Williamson County City Mayors have already made the move to make masks a requirement.
Thursday, a Leander couple was met with some relief after hearing Abbott’s announcement.
Leander residents, Morgan and Richard Baldwin just started their family less than a year ago. Having a vulnerable baby, and family members is the reason they have been pushing for a mandatory mask ordinance.
“During the beginning of her life, she has aspirated meconium. We spent the first few days as a new family in the ICU,” said Morgan Baldwin. “Having had that experience and not wishing to relive that, has been a significant part of why we have decided we are going to shelter in place.”
Morgan says as a front-line worker too, she has a responsibility to protect those outside her family too.
Her husband, Richard recently send an email to the City of Leander with concerns of the ‘no-mask required’ ordinance.
“I’m not one to reach out to anyone in city government. I was really triggered by the city’s lack of response to everything going on,” said Richard Baldwin.
In Richard’s email to the Leander Mayor Troy Hill he wrote this:
“I’m an writing to express my concern at the lack of requirements businesses are having with regard to masks when operating their businesses…… I am very disappointed to learn of the lax regulations for mask wearing…. My wife and I have decided to no longer support businesses in the Leander area until masks are required.”
Now, cities won’t have an option.
Days before the Governor’s announcement, Round Rock called for all residents 10 years and older to wear a mask inside a business or outside when social distancing isn’t possible.
“We shut down, and we just opened back up yesterday,” said Edward Abeita, Owner of Recuerdos Tex-Mex.
Edward and Johnny own Recuerdos Tex-Mex on Main Street. The two opened up just in time for Round Rock to issue its ordinance.
“I was glad to get everybody on board. It’s not just the individual community members, but for everybody’s safety,” said Abeita.
Round Rock says violations would bring a fine anywhere from $200 to $1,000 dollars.
“In my opinion, I think they should so people will wear them,” said Abeita.
The governor’s order cites that a fine that won’t exceed $250, and only after a verbal or written warning for a first-time violator.