Bryan and College Station share shelter-in-place FAQ for residents

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COLLEGE STATION, Tex. (KBTX)- The shelter-in-place orders of Bryan, College Station and Brazos County. went into effect Tuesday night at 9:00 p.m. Since then, many residents have had many questions about the orders.

This has lead to an influx of calls to the shelter-in-place order hotline, 979-361-5136.

To help answer some of the questions, the cities of Bryan and College Station have put together a list of FAQs. You can find the documents in the related documents section.

Some key points of the FAQ document include:

Is this mandatory, or is it just guidance?
Yes, it’s mandatory. This Order is a legal Order issued under the authority of Texas law. You are required to comply, and it is a crime (a misdemeanor) not to follow the Order.

I work for an Essential Business, as defined by the Order. Do I need to have a letter from my employer or other documentation to travel?
No. You do not need to carry official documentation demonstrating that you are exempt under the Order. But be prepared to explain if requested by law enforcement why your travel is authorized under the Order.

Can I leave home to go to my church, synagogue, or mosque?
No. For your safety as well as the safety of your fellow worshippers, we need to help each other fight the spread of COVID-19 by staying at home. Places of worship may offer remote access to services, such as by emails, video streaming, or teleconference.

How should I know if I should report to work?
Contact your employer/supervisor for instructions or guidance. Essential businesses are allowed to operate under this Order.

What happens if I don’t comply with this Order?
This is a legally enforceable order. It is a crime to violate this Order, and you may be punished by a fine for doing so.

Will all business offices and stores be required to close?
No. “Essential businesses” may keep their facilities open (and are encouraged to keep them open) to continue providing essential services and products to the public. Employees may leave home to go to these jobs.
Non-essential businesses may keep facilities open only to maintain minimum basic operations, such as maintaining the value of inventory, keeping the site secure, or ensuring that employees are able to work remotely. The Order does not prohibit any employees from working from home.

Can landscaping services continue?
Landscaping services may continue if they are necessary to protect the safety, sanitation, or operation of essential businesses, such as weed abatement and other fire prevention, tree trimming to prevent a dangerous condition, or clearance of irrigation infrastructure. In addition, residential landscaping, such as lawn mowing, may continue given that operators maintain social distancing standards and limit, to the greatest extent feasible, the number of employees. Landscapers performing services under contract with agencies should consult the relevant agency to determine whether their services are deemed essential.

I work for an essential infrastructure organization—can I leave home to go to work?
Yes. You can go to work to maintain and operate essential infrastructure, including public works construction, construction of housing (in particular affordable housing or housing for individuals experiencing homelessness), airport operations, water, sewer, gas, electrical, oil refining, roads and highways, public transportation, solid waste collection and removal, internet, and telecommunications systems (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, and web-based services).

What if my business is not considered an Essential Business? Does this Order require that I shut down my business facility?
You and your employees are allowed to perform “Minimum Basic Operations” at your work place, so long as employees maintain a distance of six feet from one another to the greatest extent feasible. Minimum Basic Operations include maintaining the value of inventory, ensuring security, and ensuring that employees can work remotely. Other than to maintain “Minimum Basic Operations,” employees can only work remotely from their residences.

I run a construction company. Can we continue to build new units and perform renovations?
Yes. Construction is considered an essential service. However, temporary modifications have been made to the City of Bryan’s Permit and Inspection process. Please visit https://www.bryantx.gov/conductbusiness/ under the Planning and Development Services tab to learn more.

Click here for the Bryan FAQ document.
Click here for the Bryan FAQ document in Spanish.
Click here for the College Station FAQ document.
Click here for the College Station FAQ document in Spanish.