For current information on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) (en inglés y español) Click Here
Latest COVID-19 Update:
April 3, 2020 - As of 6:50p.m. today, Anderson County has not received notification of any new confirmed cases. Anderson Counly currently only has one confirmed case this is currently in home isolation under the care of a physician.
More COVID-19 Information
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April 3, 2020 - As of 6:40p.m. today, Anderson County has not received notification of any new confirmed cases. Anderson Counly currently only has one confirmed case this is currently in home isolation under the care of a physician.
March 31, 2020 - As of 1:25p.m., today, Judge Robert Johnston received notification of the first confirmed case of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Anderson County. The individual is currently at home under isolation under the care of a physician. This was identified as a travel-related case as the individual had recently traveled to an area within the state of Texas that already had positive cases.
March 30, 2020 - As of 6:00p.m. we still do not have any known confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Palestine or Anderson County.
March 26, 2020 - As of 11:57a.m on March 26, 2020, there are NO confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Palestine or Anderson County. There have been rumors reported publicly that there is a case tied to the Texas State Railroad but that is not true
March 21, 2020 - In a joint statement from Anderson County Judge Robert Johnston and Palestine Mayor Steve Presley, "There is not any curfew, quarantine, or shelter in place order at this time for Anderson County."
As of March 25, 2020 at 6:15p.m. we still do not have any known confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-9) in Palestine or Anderson County.
The City of Palestine fully supports and will be abiding by Governor Abbott's executive order and Anderson County Judge Johnston's disaster declaration guidelines.
We closed ALL of our City offices and buildings to the public beginning at 5:00p.m. on Friday, March 20, 2020, through Monday, April 6, 2020, at 7:00a.m. This closure will be discussed on Monday, March 30th with City Council to decide if it the closure to the public will be extended beyond April 6th if it is determined that it might be in the best interest of our community and citizens to help reduce the potential risk to our community. City staff will still be working throughout the public closure and you may contact us via e-mail, telephone, or social media. We have installed a doorbell at the front of City Hall if the public need to speak with staff during this closure.
Click here for helpful contact information on how to access City services during our closure to the public.
We will be updating our City COVID-19 webpage throughout the day as we address how our city operations will change over the next two weeks. We are grateful to our healthcare providers at the federal, state, and local level who helped us evaluate these decisions to help protect our community.
Citizens should contact their Primary Care Physician (PCP) via telephone if they have concerns about possible exposure to someone who may have the Coronavirus (COVID-19) or have some of the symptoms of the virus.
If you do not have a Primary Care Physician (PCP), you may contact the Texas Department of State Health Services via e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org or via a toll-free number that is staffed Monday - Friday by medical professionals and call specialists who can help make the decision whether you should get tested for COVID-19 at your closest medical facility. Individuals who feel they may have been exposed to COVID-19 are asked to call 2-1-1 and select "Option 6."
There are a few steps that you can take to keep yourself, your family, your co-workers, your friends, and your community healthy:
(last updated 4/5/2020 at 6:05p.m.)
Anderson County and City of Palestine have a joint COVID-19 Task Force who are actively working together on how our community responds to the current pandemic. The Task Force Members are:
|Judge||Robert Johnston||Anderson County|
|Mayor||Steve Presley||City of Palestine|
|City Manager||Leslie Cloer||City of Palestine|
|Chief Executive Officer||Roy Finch||Palestine Regional Medical Center|
|Doctor of Emergency Medicine||Kenneth DeKay||Palestine Regional Medical Center|
|Doctor of Family Medicine||Jose Tovar||Palestine Regional Medical Center|
|Emergency Management Coordinator||Christina Crockett||Anderson County|
|Interim Emergency Management Coordinator||Mendi Chambers||City of Palestine|
|Assistant Director||Stephanie Walker||Northeast Texas Public Health District|
As COVID-19, is continuing to spread throughout the state of Texas and the United States, the City has been in daily contact with county and state health authorities. We are working with our area public health officials so we can evaluate any steps we need to take in precaution for our community. If anything changes with our current risk levels for COVID-19, the City and the County will be a united front for our next course of action. Our City staff and cleaning staff are taking appropriate precautionary measures, including conducting more frequent disinfection processes at our highly trafficked facilities.
We have temporarily cancelled all Boards and Commissions meetings. We have transitioned to virtual meetings for City Council. We have cancelled events that would exceed Center for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC's) current guidelines not to exceed groups of 10 people or more.
GoToMeeting (link posted on the agenda)
AV Capture (streamed live)
If you would like to submit comments of public interest or comment on agenda items, send those electronically before the meeting starts on the date of the City Council meeting to our City Secretary, Teresa Herrera at email@example.com. Please include your name and either a phone number or e-mail address so we can reach out to you if we need any clarification prior to the City Council meeting. You may still reach out directly to your elected official for your district. We will be posting go-to-meeting registration information on City Council agenda meetings if you wish to watch the live meeting.
Please refer to the CDC's website as this may change. Governor Abbott issued Executive Order GA-08 on March 20th that every person in Texas should avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people.
Here is a brief summary regarding Governor Abbott's executive order GA-08 on closures:
These orders will be effective on a statewide basis starting at 11:59 PM on March 20, 2020 and will end at 11:59 PM on April 3, 2020, subject to extension thereafter based on the status of COVID-19 in Texas and the recommendations of the CDC.
We closed ALL of our City offices and buildings to the public beginning at 5:00p.m. on Friday, March 20, 2020, through Monday, April 6, 2020, at 7:00a.m. This closure may be extended if it is determined that it might be in the best interest of our community and citizens to help reduce the potential risk to our community. City staff will still be working throughout the public closure and you may contact us via e-mail, telephone, or social media. We have installed a doorbell at the front of City Hall if the public need to speak with staff during this closure.
If we implement any future precautions, modified service hours, or facility closures, please be aware that these decisions will be made in the interest of safety for our citizens, visitors, and employees after coordination with the City, Anderson County, and our public health officials.
Palestine Public Library will have modified hours for staff service during the City Closure. We will close at 5:00p.m. to the public on Friday, March 20, 2020 to the public. Staff will be available via telephone, e-mail, or social media via the hours of 9:00a.m. - 6:00p.m. Mondays - Fridays. Any phone calls, e-mails, or social media messages will be responded to during the weekday. If your due date for items you have checked out is beyond March 20, 2020, please just place your items in the drop-box located by the main entrance at Palestine Mall.
Yes, just call the Palestine Public Library at 903-729-4121. We can issue a library card via telephone during this closure. Although you will not be able to check out any physical books, audio books, or other items we have a LARGE digital media offering that would be great for you or your family to access during this period where we are required to avoid crowds of 10 people or more.
Governor Abbott's executive order number GA-14 (effective at 12:01a.m. on 4/2/2020 will have ALL schools temporarily closed to in-classroom attendance through May 4th.
Parents or guardians should all refer to your school district's website or social media for information about completion of assignments and how to continue to participate in the school lunch program. As this joint statement was for all of Anderson County, you need to make sure that you pay attention to the changes for your particular district.
Neither the City or County have issued any official order to modify/change hours of operations for any of our businesses. As of March 20, 2020, restaurants in Palestine and Anderson County are only permitted to be open to the public for drive through windows, and pick-up/delivery orders. This has been extended by Governor Abbott's executive order number GA-14 through April 30, 2020.
The public restroom areas at all of our City parks are currently closed due to COVID-19 precautions including: Calhoun Park, Farmer’s Market, Greens Park, Larry Street Park, Mitchell Campbell Park, Reagan Park, and Willie Meyers Park. As of right now, the parks and recreation areas will remain open, only the restroom areas will be closed at this time. We will be keeping the splash pad closed until further notice.
However, the best way to stop the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) is to stay home and stay safe. If you decide to get out, remember that playgrounds, benches, and equipment are not sanitized and germs can live on surfaces for extended periods. It is absolutely necessary to abide by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on social distancing and stay at least six feet away from others. Only play with people from your household. No social gatherings of groups larger than 10 people. We also recommend no shared balls or equipment. Please do not use City of Palestine park areas if you or a member of your household is currently experiencing symptoms of COVID-19: fever, cough, or shortness of breath. When you get home, wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds, then rinse. Do not touch your face, especially if your hands are not sanitized. COVID-19 enters the system mainly through touching an infected surface and then touching the eyes, nose or mouth. Wash your hands with soap after you touch surfaces or objects that are not sanitized. If soap is not available, use a hand antiseptic that contains at least 60% alcohol.
2020 Census surveys are just now getting distributed in our community via the postal service? If you have received your survey packet, then you can enter your 12-digit survey ID, and fill it out online here. The Census data is SUPER important to our community. This data is used to evaluate what amount of funding our community receives to help support our schools, the City, and the County.
Did you know that Anderson County was selected as one of twenty-three communities in the state of Texas to be selected to work directly with Connected Nation Texas to develop a community-specific Technology Action Plan that will include free data mapping and broadband analysis? As we are having some employers and our schools beginning to transition to more frequent use of internet technology at home, we are going to be drastically increasing our current usage of broadband services in our community. This high volume of usage is going to slow all of our users access speeds down. We need ALL of you to click here to participate in this brief 10-minute online survey for Anderson County so we can show how much we need to improve our broadband capabilities in our community.
The City and Anderson County do not control daycare/childcare facilities. If you have questions about available licensed daycare providers in our area, please click here to go to the Texas Health and Human Services department.
The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses who would suffer substantial economic loss as a result of the Coronavirus. Click here for more information.
While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not suggest cloth material as a first-line of defense against the coronavirus causing COVID-19, cloth masks work well for other conditions and can help conserve precious reserves of N-95 respirator masks for use by medical providers and first responders. Thank you to the staff at Stitchin Heaven in Quitman, who are organizing face mask donations for medical providers in North and East Texas. Click here to go to their website for free mask tutorials and details on how to get involved. Please do not attempt to donate directly to a medical facility as they each have their own protocol for what they can accept.