Update as of 8 p.m. 1/1/21
The Texas Supreme Court has blocked Austin and Travis County's dine-in restaurant and bar restrictions that stopped service after 10:30 p.m. Attorney General Ken Paxton had argued the city and county restrictions were in violation of Governor Abbott's orders.
The city and county had imposed a four-day shutdown of dine-in food and beverage services from 10:30 p.m. to 6:00 a.m., December 31 through January 3.
“We thank the Supreme Court of Texas for upholding the rule of law. Local declarations cannot order needless shutdowns in conflict with the governor’s order, and these orders demonstrated blatant contempt for the citizens and businesses of our great state,” said Attorney General Paxton. “The Court was right to end these oppressive, illegal city and county declarations and I wish every Texan and Texas business a happy and safe New Year.”
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has announced he will be asking for an emergency stay with the Supreme Court of Texas, urging the court to halt enforcement of Austin Mayor Steve Adler’s and Travis County Judge Andy Brown’s illegal local orders, which impose a four-day shutdown of dine-in food and beverage services from 10:30 p.m. to 6:00 a.m., December 31 through January 3.
“The city and county orders clearly violate the governor’s Executive Order No. 32. Local authorities have no authority to override it,” said Attorney General Paxton. “Releasing these orders in the dark of night right before a major holiday demonstrates Adler’s and Brown’s bad faith and blatant contempt for Texans and local businesses. And now, because of their games, we’re having to pull litigants and our highest court away from their New Year’s Day holiday celebrations just to deal with local officials’ arbitrary declarations."
“These illegal city and county declarations are needlessly oppressive, lawless, and cannot be allowed to stand. My team and I have full confidence that the Texas Supreme Court will stand with the rule of law. We cannot have local declarations conflicting with Gov. Abbott’s clear order. I will continue to fight for Texans, small businesses and for an open economy," said Paxton.