COVID-19 Updates and FAQ

Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) Updates and FAQs

(This list will be updated frequently)

Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) Updates and FAQs

Update as of Thursday, November 12, 2020 - CDC Suggestions for celebrating Thanksgiving safely.

Traditional Thanksgiving gatherings with family and friends are fun but can increase the chances of getting or spreading COVID-19 or the flu. Follow these tips to make your Thanksgiving holiday safer.

The safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving this year is to celebrate with people in your household. If you do plan to spend Thanksgiving with people outside your household, take steps to make your celebration safer.

For more information, please click here.

Update as of Wednesday, October 7, 2020 - Governor Abbott Update

The Office of the Governor Greg Abbott has announced the opening of bars and similar establishments to 50% capacity in regions with low #COVID19 hospitalizations. ‪Beginning October 14th, County Judges can opt their county into these openings provided they assist in enforcing health protocols.

Additionally, businesses like amusement parks, movie theaters, zoos, aquariums, and bowling alleys can expand to 75% capacity in counties with low #COVID19 hospitalizations ‪beginning October 12th.

To see the revised protocols, please visit https://open.texas.gov/…/opent…/OpenTexas-Checklist-Bars.pdf.

Update as of Thursday, September 17, 2020 - Governor Abbott Update

Gov. Abbott announced in a press conference this afternoon. Thursday, September 17, 2020, that capacity in many Texas businesses will be allowed to expand next week thanks to steady and significant improvements in COVID-19 trends statewide since their peaks in July. Here are the highlights:

• Retail, restaurants, office buildings, manufacturing facilities, gyms, museums, and libraries may expand to 75% capacity beginning Monday, Sept. 21.
• Bars will remain closed.
• Nursing homes, assisted living, and other long-term care facilities that do not have an active COVID-19 outbreak may reopen to visitation on Thursday, Sept. 24.
• Hospitals in regions with COVID-19-related hospitalizations under 15% will be allowed to resume ordinary, elective surgical procedures.

Several other business types will remain at 50% capacity for now, including wedding reception venues, movie theaters, amusement parks and waterparks, bowling alleys, fine arts performance halls, video game facilities, zoos, aquariums, natural caverns, and more.

Gov. Abbott did not address his statewide mask order in today’s press conference other than to say that wearing masks, social distancing, and other CDC-recommended sanitation protocols were responsible for the state’s downtrends in hospitalization and positivity rates.

For a complete list of current restrictions and protocols, visit https://open.texas.gov/ 


Update as of Monday, August 25 - Tarrant County Extends Mask Mandate to November 30, 2020

Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley on Tuesday extended the county’s mask mandate until at least Nov. 30.

County commissioners also voted unanimously to extend the COVID-19-related declaration of disaster until Nov. 30, which allows the mask order to be in place. Whitley originally put the order in place on June 25.

The order reinforces Gov. Greg Abbott’s July 2 order, which requires people in counties with 20 or more confirmed COVID-19 cases to wear a face mask in buildings and businesses open to the public and outdoors where maintaining six feet of distance from another person isn’t feasible.


Update as of Tuesday, July 21 - Tarrant County Order issued to Begin School Year with Virtual Learning Only

According to a joint control order issued earlier today, Tuesday, July 21, 2020, by the local health authorities, school systems in Tarrant County, including Arlington and Burleson, are not to re-open for face-to-face on-campus instruction or activities, with certain exceptions, until September 28.
For additional information, contact the Hurst-Euless-Bedford Independent School District or your local ISD.
Click here for the complete order.


Update as of Wednesday, July 1 - Tarrant County Coronavirus Temporary Relief Fund for Rental Assistance.

Under the leadership of Commissioners Allen and Brooks, Commissioners Court has established a rental assistance fund for COVID19 Impacted families either facing eviction or simply unable to pay the rent. Tarrant County Community Development is currently working with landlords and tenants to assist people in paying their rent during this difficult time. Should you have any questions, please contact our office at 817-850-7940. For more information, visit the Tarrant County Rental Assistance page.

UPDATE as of Thursday, June 25 - NEW EXECUTIVE ORDER FOR WEARING MASKS:

Today, Thursday, June 25, 2020, Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley announced an executive order requiring the wearing of masks in most public situations, which will go into effect Friday, June 26, 2020, at 6:00 p.m.  This order comes after Gov. Abbot’s Monday, June 22, 2020 address that COVID-19 was spreading at “an unacceptable rate” in Texas. 

Tarrant County Public Health has recorded 9,846 positive cases. The past two weeks have seen a 52% increase in cases, a 67% increase in hospitalizations, and a 14% increase in deaths. 

"We believe that masks are our best alternative at this time," Whitley said,  emphasizing that he does not want to return to the restrictions instituted in March.

To review the entire executive order and its requirements, please visit https://www.tarrantcounty.com/content/dam/main/global/Covid-19/TarrantCountyJudgeExecutiveOrder6-25-20.pdf.

Pursuant to Executive Orders issued by Governor Abbott, outdoor gatherings of more than 10 individuals taking place in an unincorporated area in Tarrant County are prohibited unless approved by the County Judge. If your event falls within a city located in Tarrant County, you are required to obtain approval from the City’s Mayor. In either case, a Tarrant County Request for Approval of Large Outdoor Gathering (+10) form must be filled out and submitted two business days before event is to begin.

Here are the highlights of the executive order:

What is required of businesses?

Any commercial entity in the county that provides goods or services directly to the public must develop a "health and safety policy" that includes requiring anyone inside their facility to wear a face-covering when in close proximity to other people. Businesses may add other measures to their policy, in addition to masks, such as temperature checks or health screenings, and their policy must be posted “in a conspicuous location” so that it’s visible to the public. The county order also includes an example policy that businesses may use.

Who has to wear a mask, and when do you need to wear it?

The order urges anyone 10 years or older to wear a face-covering that covers their nose and mouth anywhere in public where it is difficult to keep six feet of separation. It requires that masks be worn in Tarrant County businesses that provide goods or services to the public, as well as outdoor areas where 100 people or more are present. Please note: The CDC does not recommend face coverings for children under 2 years old.

When don’t you need to wear a mask?

• When eating or drinking
• When receiving a service where the wearing of a face covering would impair the performance of the service (i.e. receiving a facial)
• If wearing a mask poses a “significant mental or physical health risk” to the individual

Can you be fined for not wearing a mask?

Businesses can be fined up to $1,000 for each violation of the order if they do not "develop and implement" a health and safety policy within five days of when the order goes into effect. The order goes into effect at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, June 26, 2020, so businesses must have their policies in place by Wednesday, July 1, 2020.

How long does the order last?

The order is in effect until 6:00 a.m. on Monday, August 3, 2020. Please note that it may be extended, modified, or ended early by Judge Whitley.


When are particular businesses allowed to reopen in the City of Bedford?

UPDATE as of Friday, June 26, 2020: NEW EXECUTIVE ORDER LIMITING CERTAIN SERVICES AND BUSINESSES

Today, Friday, June 26, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order limiting certain businesses and services as part of the state’s efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19. This decision comes as the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 and the number of hospitalizations have increased and the positivity rate in Texas increased above 10%, which the Governor previously stated would lead to further preventative action. 

The targeted, measured directives in the executive order are based on links between certain types of businesses and services, and the recent rise in positive cases throughout the state.

The order includes the following:

  • All bars and similar establishments that receive more than 51% of their gross receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages are required to close at 12:00 p.m. today. These businesses may remain open for delivery and take-out, including for alcoholic beverages, as authorized by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. 
  • Restaurants may remain open for dine-in service, but at a capacity not to exceed 50% of total listed indoor occupancy, beginning Monday, June 29, 2020.
  • Rafting and tubing businesses must close.
  • Outdoor gatherings of 100 or more people MUST be approved by local governments, with certain exceptions.

“As I said from the start, if the positivity rate rose above 10%, the State of Texas would take further action to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Abbott. “At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars. The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to swiftly contain this virus and enhance public health. We want this to be as limited in duration as possible. However, we can only slow the spread if everyone in Texas does their part. Every Texan has a responsibility to themselves and their loved ones to wear a mask, wash their hands, stay six feet apart from others in public, and stay home if they can. I know that our collective action can lead to a reduction in the spread of COVID-19 because we have done it before, and we will do it again."

Read the entire Executive Order here: https://gov.texas.gov/uploads/files/press/EO-GA-28_targeted_response_to_reopening_COVID-19.pdf

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Governor Greg Abbott issued executive orders on April 27, 2020 setting out the timeline and guidelines for reopening businesses across the State of Texas. Information on this timeline and guidelines can be found in his report Texas Helping Texans: The Governor’s Report to Open Texas 

  • Governor Abbott’s revised ’Open Texas’ checklists can be found here

How do I report businesses that are not complying with the order?

Texans can report a potential violation by emailing complaints@tabc.texas.gov, calling 888-THE-TABC, or using the free TABC:Mobile app for Apple and Android devices. To view TABC’s guidance for the alcoholic beverage industry, visit www.tabc.texas.gov/coronavirus.

How do I properly clean and disinfect my home?

The Safety, Health, and Consumer Council has provided a guide for properly cleaning and disinfecting the home at https://www.safehome.org/resources/keeping-house-clean-flu-coronavirus/ 

Where can we go to find the Mayor’s Message with Bedford COVID-19 updates?

Mayor’s Message - Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19)

The City’s Facebook Page

The City’s Twitter Page

Where can I get a COVID-19 test?

To locate a COVID-19 testing site, visit: http://covidtest.tdem.texas.gov

Where can I get specific information about Covid-19 so I can make the best decisions to help prevent the spread of the virus?

  • The Center for Disease Control’s Covid-19 FAQ webpage.
  • 2-1-1 Texas has initiated a special line for COVID-19. 2-1-1 specialists across the state are available 24/7 to answer the most frequently asked, non-medical questions (food, health, housing,  etc.) based on material provided by the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If 2-1-1 cannot answer your question, you will be referred to DSHS and your local Public Health Department COVID-19 info lines. More information can be found at www.211texas.org.
  • Starting April 24, 2020, retail outlets previously deemed “non-essential” and closed will be allowed to reopen under a temporary “Retail-To-Go” model. Customers may purchase items for curbside pickup or delivery, but may not enter the store premises. In-person services such as hair salons, barbers, fitness studios and gyms remain closed at this time under the governor’s statewide order.

    With “Retail-To-Go” all payments should be done over the phone or internet if possible, and contact should be minimized if remote payment is not available. Purchased items should be delivered to the backseat or trunk of the customer’s vehicle whenever possible to minimize physical contact with the customer. Employees must wash or sanitize their hands after each interaction with a customer, and whenever possible, must disinfect any item that came into contact with the customer. The customer should wash or sanitize their hands after the transaction. Additional guidance from the Texas Department of State Health Services can be found at https://dshs.texas.gov/coronav…/…/ReOpenedRetailGuidance.pdf

Where can I get the most up to date information and details on positive COVID-19 virus cases?

As a public health authority, Tarrant County Public Health (TCPH) is responsible for public health matters, including the COVID-19 virus. TCPH is also required to maintain the privacy and confidentiality of those individuals who may receive services from the agency. To find out more about the TCPH’s recommendations and case statuses regarding COVID-19, please visit https://www.tarrantcounty.com/en/public-health/disease-control---prevention/coronaviruas.html.

What City Facilities are open (or reopened)?

  • Tennis courts are open.
  • City Hall, building A
  • City Hall, building C
  • The Law Enforcement Center
  • All Bedford Fire Stations – Reopening lobbies only
  • City Parks and Trails – Will continue to remain open while playgrounds, water fountains, and restrooms remain closed.
  • The Bedford Public Library - Open with restrictions: Masks are required, entry is restricted to 25%, and guests are asked to keep their visits to 30 minutes or less. Computers are available and can be used for up to 90 minutes per day.  The drive-up window is still open for hold pickups and the manual book drop is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All items will continue to be quarantined for 72 hours before being checked in.
    --New hours of operations for seniors or at-risk patrons: Tuesday and Friday from 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
    --New hours of operations for the general public: Monday and Wednesday from 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m., and Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., closed on Sunday.

What City Facilities are still closed?

  • City Hall, building B – This includes Human Resources, however, their services continue and they can be reached via phone at 817-952-2178. 
  • The Old Bedford School - Remains closed with all Senior Center Programming canceled until further notice.
  • The Animal Shelter – Remains closed with adoptions by appointment only.
  • Roy Savage Pool.
  • Bedford Splash Aquatic Center.
  • The Boys Ranch Activity Center – The building remains closed and will not reopen due to Phase Next.

Are City events/programs still taking place?

No, at this time, all summer programs and events, including Bedford Splash Aquatics Center, summer camp, 4thFest, and the Bedford Blues & BBQ festival have been canceled.

How can I pay my water bill during this time?

In-person at the Customer Service Department (Water Utility Billing), newly located at City Hall, building C at 1805 L. Don Dodson Dr. In addition, payments can still be put into the dropbox at City Hall Building B parking lot facing Forest Ridge Drive. All late fees and/or disconnects will be suspended for 30 days and for those looking to pay a water bill can do so online at www.bedford.dpnetbill.com/
Contact Customer Service at 817-952-2112 or customerservice@bedfordtx.gov for assistance. For new applications, please visit 2turniton.com.

What are the hours for grocery stores?

Bedford businesses and grocery stores can help during this difficult time. Several offer delivery or pick-up options, as well as, creating special or updated hours of operations.

Senior and At-Risk Citizen Hours 

  • Wal Mart (Market and Supercenter) – daily 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. (every Tuesday)
  • Albertsons – 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. every Tuesday, and Thursday
  • Kroger – 6:00 a.m. - 7:30 a.m. every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday
  • CVS – no special hours for at-risk customers
  • Walgreens – no special hours for at-risk customers. 24-hour drive-up prescriptions.

Normal Operating Hours 

  • Wal Mart (Market and Supercenter) – daily 7:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
  • Albertsons – daily 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
  • Kroger – daily 6:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m.
  • CVS – daily 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
  • Walgreens – back to normal operating hours, please contact the store for specific hours of operations

How do I obtain a permit?

Visit the Development Department at City Hall Building C (1805 L. Don Dodson Drive) or call 817-952-2140 and a Permit Technician will assist with the appropriate permit application to fill out and submit online or by fax.

Is Republic Trash/Recycling Service affected?

Republic Trash and Recycling services are operating normally. To help Republic Services serve you better and to comply with city ordinances, please do not place trash and recycling materials at the curb before 6:00 p.m. on the evening prior to your regular trash/recycling day, and always have your trash and recycling materials at the curb before 7:00 a.m. on your scheduled days. 

Additional reminders from Republic:

  • All waste MUST be baggedor containerized to ensure the safety of our employees.
  • As people are isolating at home, the amount of debris going to the curb is increasing and increasingly delaying our routes. If this continues to increase we will have to make adjustments to what can be collected as solid waste is our primary concern for the health and safety of our communities. 
  • Recycling contamination increased by 20% last week. While we are doing everything possible to keep up, our processing costs have significantly increased due to contamination. Please ensure that recycling material is dry and free of contamination.

Missed collections can be reported to Republic Waste at 817-332-7301.

Is Simple Recycling service collecting?

Yes, Simple Recycling has resumed its normal scheduled (Monday or Tuesday trash service day) service.

Can I watch Council meetings from home?

Council meetings are shown live on the City’s website at https://bedfordtx.gov/250/City-Council-Meetings-Online or tune in to channels 16 (Spectrum) or 99 (AT&T). 

Are City Council Members meeting in person? How can I speak to the Council at a meeting?

Yes. however, those meetings will be closed to the public for the foreseeable future.  In order to allow citizens the ability to participate in these meetings, citizens may provide written comments or a request to speak via telephone on specific agenda items by filling out the City Council Meeting Sign Up Form, emailing the City Secretary’s Office, or calling the City Secretary’s Office at 817-952-2104. All comments and requests to speak will need to be received by 3:00 p.m. on the day of the meeting. Comments will be read during the appropriate portion of the meeting.  Citizens who requested to speak will be called during the appropriate portion of the meeting. 

Any person desiring to speak at a Council meeting under the Persons to be Heard portion of the agenda must request so, in writing, to the City Secretary’s Office by noon the Wednesday before the scheduled meeting. Please be specific as to the topics you wish to address to the Council. If you have presentation materials, please send an electronic copy to the City Secretary’s Office by 5:00 p.m. the Monday prior to the meeting. 

How can I watch a past Council meeting?

Council meetings are recorded and available the following day on the City’s website at https://bedfordtx.gov/250/City-Council-Meetings-Online.

When will the alcohol petition election take place?

The alcohol petition election has been postponed until November 3, 2020.

What is happening with Phase Next?

The Phase Next Park Improvement project will continue as planned. The gas line along Doug Rivers is being relocated during the month of June to allow for the construction of new ballfields on the Northeast Corner of the park. All buildings within the park have been closed to ensure social distancing, as well as, the impending construction.  In July there will be an auction of City property which will not be utilized when the new facilities open.  August will include asbestos abatement activities in all of the structures and construction documents reaching 100% completion, which will be submitted to the contractor for final pricing.  After the City Council approves the contract in September, construction will commence in October 2020.  During the month of September, the Bedford Fire Department will use the empty buildings for training purposes.