Stop the Spread

Kingsville Mayor Sam Fugate addresses a press conference on Friday, March 27, during which residents were advised of a stay-at-home order imposed on Kleberg County residents to stop the spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus.

Kleberg County’s stay-at-home order went into effect on Friday, March 27 and runs until April 8 at 11:59 p.m. to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus in the area.

The order does place some restrictions on day-to-day activities in the county, however residents may be able to perform essential activities as defined under the order.

Staying at home

The order states, “All individuals currently living within Kleberg County are orders to shelter at their place of residence.” 

Residences include:

•Homes, condominiums, townhomes, apartments and duplexes;

•Hotels and motels;

•Shared rentals and

•Recreational vehicles and motor homes.

According to the order, individuals are allowed to leave their residences or leave the territorial limits of Kleberg County “only for Essential Activities, or to provide or perform Essential Government Functions, or to operate Essential Businesses.”

The list of reasons a person may leave their household include:

•To obtain medical supplies, medications or visit a health care provider;

•To work as part of an essential business;

•To obtain necessary equipment to work from home;

 •To grocery shop, buy necessities for pets or purchase materials necessary o maintain a residence including cleaning supplies;

•To engage in outdoor activities including walking, biking, hiking, fishing, running, boating wading or surfing, while practicing social distancing of being six feet apart from individuals;

•And to care for family members or pets in another household.

The order states any gathering outside of a single living unit is prohibited, however, nothing in the order prohibits the gathering of members of a household or living unit.

What stays open?

All businesses not deemed essential businesses in the order are to cease all activities at facilities located within Kleberg County, the order states.

However, non-essential businesses may continue operations “consisting exclusively” of employees working from home.

All essential businesses shall comply with six feet apart social distancing guidelines.

Nursing homes, retirement and long-term care facilities are instructed to prohibit non-essential visitors from accessing those facilities unless to provide critical assistance or for end-of-life visitation, the order states.

Religious and worship services may be provided by video or teleconference, the order states, and must maintain a staff limit of 10 or less.

The order also says that all beaches within Kleberg County boundaries are open with regular hours of operation, except will have a curfew of 8 p.m.

All city and county parks, with the exception of Dick Kleberg Park, will remain open.

Essential businesses

•Healthcare operations such as hospitals and clinics;

•Government functions;

•Financial institutions such as banks, credit unions, pawn shops, bail bond sureties and payday lenders;

•Critical infrastructure and maintenance type work including telecommunications and internet services, plumbers, electricians, roofers, exterminators, air conditioner repair and appliance repair services;

•Education and research for “distance learning” operations for schools;

•Transportation providers, such as taxis;

•Insurance title, real estate and legal or accounting services;

•Essential retail such as grocery stores, big box stores such as Walmart and HEB, gas stations, liquor stores and framers’ markets that sell food products and house supplies;

•Businesses that provide, food, shelter or social services;

•Restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food, however they may only provide take-out, drive-through or delivery services; 

•Trash and recycling collection;

•News media including newspapers, television news and radio stations;

•Childcare and adult care services;

•Laundromats, dry cleaners and laundry supply services;

•Mail and shipping services;

•Funeal homes;

•Car care services and automobile, large truck and RV dealerships; and

•Hardware stores landscaping, and related facilities.

What happens if the order is not followed?

A violation of the order by any person is punishable by a fine up to $500 per violation for the first offense. A second offense may result in a fine up to $1,000 per violation or up to 180 days in jail.

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