Health Authority issues countywide mask mandate; Court grants temporary restraining order against State of Texas regarding Local Authority

Late Tuesday evening, officials with the City of El Paso announced that they had been granted the Temporary Restraining Order against Texas Governor Greg Abbott that would support the Local City-County Health Authority’s proposal to issue a mask mandate for all indoor facilities.

Judge Ruben Morales in the County Court at Law #7 granted the City’s petition, which was filed Tuesday, August 17. The court issued a Temporary Restraining Order finding that GA-38 exceeds the Governor’s authority under the Texas Disaster Act of 1975.

The Local Health Authority Order will take effect at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2021.

On Monday, August 16, the El Paso City Council voted 5 to 3 to file a lawsuit against Texas Governor Greg Abbott that would support local protective measures.

City-County Health Authority Dr. Hector Ocaranza issued a countywide mask mandate for all indoor facilities, which would include the following:

  • All individuals over the age of two (2), are to wear some form of face covering over their nose and mouth, while in indoor spaces.
  • A face covering may include a variety of options.
  • Parents and guardians of children over the age of two (2) and under the age of ten (10) shall be responsible for appropriately masking children when outside their residence.
  • A face covering is not required on anyone who has trouble breathing, has a medical condition or disability that prevents wearing a face covering, or is actively exercising indoors and not within 6 feet of any other individual not from the same household.
  • A person is not required to wear a face covering while the person is consuming food or drink.
  • Wearing a face covering is not a substitute for the COVID-19 vaccination, for maintaining 6-feet social distancing and handwashing, as these remain important steps to slowing the spread of the virus.

The Local Health Authority Order is below and online at  For our previous coverage, click here.