Governor Abbott Renews State of Disaster Following Violent Protests
TO ALL TO WHOM THESE PRESENTS SHALL COME:
WHEREAS, I, Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas, issued a disaster proclamation on May 31, 2020, certifying under Section 418.014 of the Texas Government Code that the threats and incidents of violence starting on May 29, 2020, which have endangered public safety, constitute and pose an imminent threat of disaster for all counties in the State of Texas; and
WHEREAS, on June 30, 2020, I issued a proclamation renewing the disaster declaration for all Texas counties; and
WHEREAS, these events have caused or imminently threatened widespread or severe damage, injury, and property loss, among other harms, at a time when the State of Texas is responding to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) disaster; and
WHEREAS, while all Americans are entitled to exercise their First Amendment rights, it is imperative that order is maintained, all persons are kept safe and healthy, and property is protected; and
WHEREAS, peaceful protestors, many of whom are responding to the senseless taking of life by the reprehensible actions of a few, should themselves be protected from harm; and
WHEREAS, the declaration of a state of disaster has facilitated and expedited the use and deployment of resources to enhance preparedness and response to the ongoing threats, including by ensuring that federal law enforcement officers can fully assist with the efforts; and
WHEREAS, a state of disaster continues to exist in all counties due to threats of widespread or severe damage, injury, and property loss, among other harms;
NOW, THEREFORE, in accordance with the authority vested in me by Section 418.014 of the Texas Government Code, I do hereby renew the disaster proclamation for all counties in Texas.
Pursuant to Section 418.017, I authorize the use of all available resources of state government and of political subdivisions that are reasonably necessary to cope with this disaster.
Pursuant to Section 418.016(a), I hereby continue the suspension of all relevant provisions within Chapter 1701 of the Texas Occupations Code, as well as Title 37, Chapters 211-229 of the Texas Administrative Code, to the extent necessary for the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement to allow federal law enforcement officers to perform peace officer duties in Texas. Additionally, pursuant to Section 418.016, any regulatory statute prescribing the procedures for conduct of state business or any order or rule of a state agency that would in any way prevent, hinder, or delay necessary action in coping with this disaster shall be suspended upon written approval of the Office of the Governor. However, to the extent that the enforcement of any state statute or administrative rule regarding contracting or procurement would impede any state agency’s emergency response that is necessary to cope with this declared
disaster, I hereby suspend such statutes and rules for the duration of this declared disaster for that limited purpose.
In accordance with the statutory requirements, copies of this proclamation shall be filed with the applicable authorities.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto signed my name and have officially caused the Seal of State to be affixed at my office in the City of Austin, Texas, this the 30th day of July, 2020.
Governor Greg Abbott