COVID-19 pandemic restrictions have been a contentious issue in Texas, especially in El Paso. In October, El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego put into place a shutdown and curfew that required restaurants and all non-essential businesses to close. Gyms, salons, and other businesses had to close their doors but there were many that refused to. El Paso Mayor Dee Margo also had a problem with the shutdown and asked for a clarification from Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton as to whether or not Samaniego's order was valid. There was a lot of back and forth, but ultimately, Paxton and a court ruled that the order was not valid.

A few weeks later, Samaniego said that because of the rising COVID rates and deaths, he was considering putting a holiday curfew into place to keep people from gathering. The order also required restaurants to close their establishments to in person seating at 10 p.m. As a result, Christmas and New Year's Eve celebrations were cut short for El Paso establishments.

Saturday afternoon, Margo tweeted that the order to restaurants to close at 10 p.m. has been rescinded:

"In light of the Texas Supreme Court’s Order against the City of Austin and Travis County, and the amended pleadings filed against the County of El Paso by the Texas Attorney General, I have rescinded the order closing restaurants at 10:00pm for dine-in service."

That means that there is now no reason for restaurants to close their doors to in person dining at 10 p.m. and can remain open as long as they follow COVID-19 guidelines until 2 a.m.

Hopefully, this doesn't backfire and cause us another spike in COVID cases and deaths. What a stupid thing to do.

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