Additional openings announced include massage and personal care businesses (includes tattoo and piercing studios), child care centers️ and youth clubs (YMCA, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, etc.) on May 18. Additionally, beginning May 22, restaurants can function at 50 percent capacity and additional businesses can open at 25 percent capacity including bars, bowling alleys, bingo halls and skating rinks. Day and overnight youth camps and youth sports can begin May 31, and school districts can hold summer school if following social distancing guidelines beginning June 1.
For complete guidelines and information about upcoming reopening announcements, please visit the website for the Governor’s Strike Force to Open Texas.
- Texans Helping Texans: The Governor’s Report to Open Texas
- Open Texas Checklists
- Executive Order GA-23
- Texas Department of Emergency Management (TDEM) - Essential Services
- Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19 (OSHA)
Local Guidance Regarding Occupancy Limitations
According to Governor Abbott’s executive order GA- regarding reopening Texas, some reopened businesses are required to reduce occupancy levels for a period of time. However, some local businesses may not have an established occupancy load as part of their city-issued Certificate of Occupancy. To assist, the City of Longview Development Services has established a basic guideline for determining recommended occupancy levels.
For assembly-type businesses, such as restaurants and theatres, the occupancy is calculated as a factor of seating and other areas. These types of businesses typically have a maximum occupancy listed on the Certificate of Occupancy. If the business does not have a current Certificate of Occupancy, the business should apply through Development Services and a maximum occupancy will be assigned. If the business does have a Certificate of Occupancy, but has not been assigned a maximum occupancy, then the business can determine temporary maximum occupancy by adding maximum seating capacity with the number of employees on a normal shift. Use this number to multiply by .25 to get the 25% allowable occupancy rate.
According to Gov. Greg Abbott, the limitation is for the number of restaurant customers in the restaurant and does not include essential employees of the restaurant.
Mercantile or retail type establishments have traditionally not been assigned a maximum occupancy with their Certificate of Occupancy. Normal occupancy is calculated as 1 person per 30 square feet of public space. Use this number to multiply by .25 to get the 25% allowable occupancy rate.
For business type establishments, such as professional services or offices, normal occupancy is calculated as 1 person per 100 square feet. Use this number to multiply by .25 to get the 25% allowable occupancy rate.
This is a rough guide for purposes of calculating allowable occupancy in compliance with the Governor’s orders and is a general rule of thumb, only. It is not the exact calculation for determining maximum occupancy used by Longview Development Services under normal circumstances, which includes other factors such as exiting and available restrooms.
For questions related to occupancy please contact Development Services at 903-237-1060. If the line is busy please leave a detailed message and the call will be returned promptly.
Social Distancing Signage for Retailers
Encourage visitors to your businesses to practice social distancing. Optional businesses signage is provided below in English and Spanish.
- English - Social Distancing 11x17 Printable Poster (.pdf)
- Spanish - Social Distancing 11x17 Printable Poster (.pdf)
COVID-19 Checklist for Restaurants
In Texans Helping Texans - The Governor’s Report to Open Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott provided a variety of checklists to help guide different industries in reopening including a checklist for restaurants.
COVID-19 Checklist for Barber Shops (May 8), Hair Salons, (May 8), Gyms (May 18) and more
Open Texas Checklists for businesses opening on May 8 and May 18 are now available on the Governor’s Strike Force to Open Texas website.