SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – If COVID-19 numbers continue to rise in Bexar County, bars that do not serve food may be shut down again.
Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff allowed them to reopen last month, but the positivity rate, the percentage of coronavirus test results that come back positive, has reached 9.4 percent. Wolff says he’s following the recommendation of the Community Response Coalition to close bars if the positivity rate remains at 10 percent or higher for two weeks.
Another number that would affect the closure of those establishments is the percentage of coronavirus patients in local hospitals. As of Tuesday evening, nearly 11 percent of hospital patients were being treated for COVID-19.
“The governor only allowed those bars to be open if it was less than 15 percent, so we’re getting very, very close to that,” said Wolff. “Hopefully, we’ll all work together and get these numbers down , but if they keep rising the way they are, they’ll automatically have to close, regardless of what I say.”
Most of the bars in the San Antonio area serve food and are classified as restaurants, so this directive wouldn’t affect them.
The Community Response coalition also recommends prohibiting dine-in service at restaurants, but Wolff does not have the authority to do that. It’s up to Governor Greg Abbott.
Tuesday, 422 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized, including 67 who were transferred from El Paso. Sixty-five coronavirus patients were on ventilators and 149 were in ICU.
Bexar County added 292 coronavirus cases Tuesday, which brings the total since the pandemic began to 70,528. Three more deaths were reported for a total of 1,304.