It's Past Time Judge Floyd Rescinds County's Covid Disaster Declaration

 

OPINION — In the northeast corner of the DFW Metroplex, Collin County Judge Chris Hill took the lead in Texas by rescinding his local disaster declaration made March 16, 2020. At 10 a.m. Friday morning, Feb. 26, 2021, Hill ended his county’s emergency orders with the final sentence of a new order that read, “I hereby rescind and cancel the Declaration of Local Disaster for Public Health Emergency for Collin County.”

Collin County, with its 1.035 million population (2019) and home to the City of McKinney, reported 292 new Covid-19 infections Friday, the same day the order was rescinded, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services. Fatalities in Collin County from Covid have dropped to just a trickle, low single digits since Feb. 3.

Judge Hill said he made his decision because Covid hospitalizations have fallen below 10 percent of Collin County hospital capacity and he noted that the entire Collin County Commissioners’ Court is behind him, according to The Texan.

Hill told The Texan he drafted the order rescinding the emergency declaration on Sept. 24 last year, but did not publish it then because he was warned some municipalities, residents and businesses may lose eligibility for CARES Act funding. A few weeks later, on Oct. 9, Collin County bars were opened at 50 percent while judges in sister counties in the Metroplex kept bars closed. On that day, Governor Greg Abbott had issued an executive order stating that re-opening bars and increasing capacity at restaurants was at the discretion of county judges.

County Judge Steve Floyd on Looming Shutdowns in March 2020

County Judge Steve Floyd on Looming Shutdowns in March 2020

Tom Green County Judge Steve Floyd should consider rescinding the Covid emergency here, too. Covid-19 hospitalizations and new infections have dwindled to a trickle here where only 14 new cases were added to the rolls on Friday, Feb. 26. Only 16 are hospitalized, down from over a 100 hospitalizations during the peak of the pandemic just months ago.

In his October declaration, Governor Abbott put rising hospitalization rates at the forefront as the reason to shutdown local economies. His order noted that should a trauma service region’s percentage of Covid-19 patients rise above 15 percent of total hospital bed capacity, bars should be ordered closed and the capacity at restaurants reduced. Tom Green County’s medical facilities account for the vast majority of hospital beds in the multi-county trauma service area that envelopes the Concho Valley. There are 846 staffed hospital beds in our region. With 16 hospitalized for Covid-19 as of Feb. 26, those patients make up only 1.9 percent of capacity. Our region has held Covid-19 hospitalizations under 4 percent capacity for a week. In neighboring regions like Abilene and Midland/Odessa, the Covid hospitalization rate has been at around 4 percent. Even Lubbock has low hospitalization rates, just above 5 percent until Friday when it dropped to 4.37 percent.

Remember why in March a year ago the lockdowns were initially mandated? The reason for destroying the most robust economy in the world was to provide time and space for our hospitals to obtain PPE, ventilators, and staffing to handle a large influx of patients. Do you remember “15 days to stop the spread”? Now, not 15 days later, but nearly 325 days — almost year — later, at 1.6 percent Covid-19 hospitalizations and shrinking, isn’t it time to remind our leaders why we had lockdowns to begin with?

In addition to the very low hospitalization rates, the vaccine is now widely administered. The Texas Tribune reported that there are 72,801 vaccine doses administered each day across Texas and as of Feb. 25, 5.8 percent of all Texans have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

Vaccination rates are not the full picture. Across the state, there have been 2.3 million Covid-19 cases and an additional 353,630 probable cases, and those who have had Covid now have natural immunities and antibodies.

By adding together the 1.7 million vaccinated Texans with another 2.7 million recovered from Covid and with natural immunity, it totals 4.8 million who are known to not be at risk. How many more have recovered from Covid-19 but were never tested?

In Tom Green County, the health department reported Friday, Feb. 26, that 16,324 county citizens have recovered from Covid-19 over the past year while Shannon is vaccinating more than 3,000 citizens a week (and that’s just Shannon), according to State vaccine allocation reports. The number of Tom Green County residents who are with known immunity to Covid-19 is approaching 30-40 percent of its 117,000 population. How many more have recovered from Covid-19 but never tested?

At a press conference in Corpus Christi Thursday, Feb. 25, Governor Abbott said he was thinking about lifting all statewide orders concerning Covid, to include ending the mask mandate.

Not only are the chances of catching Covid falling fast, the chances of anyone under 65 dying of Covid-19 are extremely small. Seniors can continue to socially distance. Opening up our economy, ditching the masks, and getting back to work will save more lives than cowering in corners clutching to a bottle of Purell while avoiding our neighbors.

Judge Floyd can help Abbott make that decision but joining Collin County’s judge in leading the state by signaling to Abbott that we need to be repealing Covid restrictions. The crisis now isn’t Covid, but how the shutdowns harmed almost every local business in the county except Walmart and H-E-B. The Texas economy demands a new tactic in leadership. Will Judge Floyd get Tom Green County to lead the state by calling for an end to the Covid madness here now? Will the Tom Green County Commissioners’ Court stand behind Judge Floyd if he does?

Let’s get back to work!

Subscribe to the LIVE! Daily

The LIVE! Daily is the "newspaper to your email" for San Angelo. Each content-packed edition has weather, the popular Top of the Email opinion and rumor mill column, news around the state of Texas, news around west Texas, the latest news stories from San Angelo LIVE!, events, and the most recent obituaries. The bottom of the email contains the most recent rants and comments. The LIVE! daily is emailed 5 days per week. On Sundays, subscribers receive the West Texas Real Estate LIVE! email.

Required

Video Coverage of the 2021 San Angelo Rodeo

Comments

Apropos piece!  My wife and I had already decided to end our voluntary compliance with these silly and useless edicts on April Fool’s Day. I encourage Judge Floyd to follow Collin County’s lead and call an end to the restrictions on our God-given liberties immediately. 

I agree that we should get back to work, but safely. You want to cast away what keeps us all healthy to the wind in the advancement of commerce. I vehemently disagree. You scoff at masks and I assume distancing. Apparently you have not had someone in your life that has has had a problem with Covid. Lucky you.

you say: Covid-19 hospitalizations and new infections have dwindled to a trickle here where only 14 new cases were added to the rolls on Friday, Feb. 26.

Have you considered people have not had the opportunity lately for contact due to the deep freeze? The infections will go up again once we mingle. Just watch.

Low hospitalization rate does not indicate we should no longer wear masks.

You say: By adding together the 1.7 million vaccinated Texans with another 2.7 million recovered from Covid and with natural immunity, it totals 4.8 million who are known to not be at risk. How many more have recovered from Covid-19 but were never tested? 

Since you have no empiracle evidence, this is basically your personal opinion with no basis in fact. There is no evidence that one who has has Covid has an immunity for an extended period of time.

You say: Not only are the chances of catching Covid falling fast, the chances of anyone under 65 dying of Covid-19 are extremely small. Seniors can continue to socially distance. Opening up our economy, ditching the masks, and getting back to work will save more lives than cowering in corners clutching to a bottle of Purell while avoiding our neighbors.

With new variants showing up that are more "infective" I do not know how you can say that the chances of catching Covid are falling fast. These new strains are faster to infect and are likely to infect.

So, if you are under 65 you cant get Covid? That will increase your readers, likely hood... Under 65 are the spreaders. They do not wear masks. Do not give them hope.

You can stick the comment about Purell to a place where the sun does not shine.

This statement about those over 65 is obscene. Pointing out that everything is wonderful except for seniors and that they should follow different rules is discrimination at it's best. You really need to wakeup and smell the coffee. I can't wait until you age. Seems like you are like our Lt Gov who did not really care about the older folks. He said they should sacrifice for the greater good. Is that what you are saying? Glad you are under 65. Hate that you have a dunb ass opinion.

.So,just note tha I do not agree with you.

There is an old saying to argue the facts when the facts are on your side, but pound the table when they are not. Sir, you are pounding on the table.

According to the CDC, the Covid mortality rate for people 60-64 is .456% . Said another way, the survival rate is 99.544%. The mortality rate falls for every younger age group until it reaches .001% for the 5-9 age group. My point being, this virus is not so deadly as to warrant shutting down the nation's economy or, frankly, to mandate mask wearing.

And, speaking of masks, there is not a consensus among scientist that masks provide protection against Covid transmission. An internet search of "masks provide no protection against Covid transmission" will return several sources to back this point.

You say "Since you have no empiracle (sic) evidence, this is basically your personal opinion with no basis in fact." Two points: 1. The article is clearly labeled Opinion, and 2. The article is full of data to support the author's opinion. I do notice, however, that you did not include any data to support your counterpoints. 

Bill, your personal attacks on the opinion article author (e.g. "you have a dumb ass opinion", put the Purell "where the sun does not shine") reveal a high level of emotion on your part. I suggest you take a deep breath and recognize that there are legitimate views contrary to your own. 

" An internet search of "masks provide no protection against Covid transmission" will return several sources to back this point."

Did this, top five results:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/coronavirus-mask/art-20485449

https://www.pnas.org/content/118/4/e2014564118

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover-guidance.html

https://www.ucsf.edu/news/2020/06/417906/still-confused-about-masks-heres-science-behind-how-face-masks-prevent

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/coronavirus/coronavirus-face-masks-what-you-need-to-know

EVERY SINGLE ONE says that mask are effective against preventing the spread of coronavirus. Nice try, but you are wrong.

Every single one?

You either did not read my comment or are intentional misrepresenting it. My comment was: "And, speaking of masks, there is not a consensus among scientist that masks provide protection against Covid transmission. An internet search of "masks provide no protection against Covid transmission" will return several sources to back this point."

Key words: Not a consensus. Several sources back this point.

I believe my comment was correct.

https://www.cebm.net/covid-19/masking-lack-of-evidence-with-politics/

https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2020/04/commentary-masks-all-covid-19-not-based-sound-data

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp2006372

http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/13523664

 

Every single one of the FIRST FIVE RESULTS.

All of your examples are at least 8 months old, some a nearly a year old. You can find someone that says anything you want if you look hard enough and have enough bias, for example I can find plenty of websites that say the earth is flat and we never landed on the moon. Fact is masks are better than nothing at all, and if you don't want to wear one, you are selfish and don't care about anyone but yourself, a common theme I see in people who don't want to wear a mask.

The point in my reply to BILL TIEDEMANN and then to you was that there are a legitimate differences of opinion. The science is not settled as there are scientists that argue both sides. Though both you and Bill resorted to name calling, I merely wanted to make a counterpoint. And I have done so without calling either you or Bill a name. I respect your opinion, though mine differs.

Courage is required to jump off the Covid train. Will the Mayor exercise some common sense and encourage Judge Floyd to end the Covid restrictions and the useless mask mandates?

King Floyd, Queen Gunter, King Abbott,

LET MY PEOPLE GO!!!

Free us ALL from your overreaching unconstitutional STUPID  covid mandates!

 

It’s not all about “the advancement of commerce”, it’s about a return to some sort of normalcy and the ability for individuals to make a living.

The risk of contracting coronavirus is probably not going away anytime soon. At some point it becomes a personal choice as far as “mandates” are concerned. If you’re worried about getting sick then wear a mask etc. Or for that matter stay home nothing discriminatory about that! 

" the ability for individuals to make a living."

"Or for that matter stay home"

How you going to make a living if you stay home? You contradict yourself.

Still it’s a choice. My point is there’s always going to be some risk involved.

Post a comment to this article here:

X Close