The city of Lufkin has modified its emergency declaration to further restrict day-to-day activities in the city under threat of a $1,000 penalty or the potential for jail time up to 180 days.
The decision was made after Lufkin’s medical community appealed to city leaders, asking for more restrictions due to an influx of patients with COVID-19-like symptoms, according to a press release from the city.
There is only one known patient in the county at this time, but there are several tests pending.
“The modified order is being done because of the increase in symptoms and issues that our local health care providers are seeing,” Gerald Williamson, Lufkin’s director of public safety, said. “This order should decrease the rate of infection, which apparently has not been affected enough by our current order.”
This is not a shelter-in-place order, according to the release because it doesn’t shutter any more businesses or confine citizens to their homes.
“A shelter in place literally shuts down all but essential businesses and activities,” city attorney Bruce Green said. “What we are doing allows more movement.”
The order will go into effect at 11:59 p.m. Saturday.
City officials said travel is only allowed for the following purposes:
■ To and from work/child-care.
■ To pick up groceries/supplies from a store.
■ To pick up take-out food.
■ To pick up medication.
■ To seek medical care.
■ Religious activities/funerals (groups of no more than 10; six-foot distance).
Businesses that are open must enforce the following requirements and develop a written plan for enforcing the requirements:
■ Maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals inside and outside the businesses.
■ Regular cleaning of high-contact surfaces within the business.
Employees displaying any of the following symptoms are not allowed to work — fever, dry cough, shortness of breath. The modification includes the original restrictions:
■ No gatherings of more than 10 people.
■ No dine-in services for restaurants.
■ The closure of bars, lounges, taverns, private clubs, gyms, health studios, theaters and commercial amusement facilities.