Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton today issued a letter explaining that political subdivisions may not restrict the ability of State agencies, agents and contractors from providing governmental services, including travel to and from their places of employment. As declared in Executive Order GA-08, which holds the full force and effect of the law, “all critical infrastructure will remain operational, and government entities and businesses will continue providing essential services.”

“Our state government offices provide services that are essential to the public. Governor Abbott’s executive order makes the need for continued, unburdened operation of state offices clear,” said Attorney General Paxton. “It is our duty to protect and provide for Texans, and we are committed to serving our citizens during this health crisis.”

Local officers, like the Governor, may control the movement of people and occupancy of premises within a disaster area during a health event; however, quarantine orders cannot supersede the jurisdiction of the State. As a free and sovereign state, Texas is subject only to the United States and Texas Constitutions. Local government regulations must remain consistent with the State constitution and laws.

Read a copy of today’s letter here.

For information on the spread or treatment of Coronavirus (COVID-19), please visit the Texas Department of State Health Services website.