Gov. Greg Abbott issued a proclamation on Tuesday announcing additional services and activities that can resume under his second wave of reopenings, allowing food courts in shopping malls to reopen immediately and giving the green light for water parks to begin operations with limited capacity starting Friday.

Recreational sports programs for adults can restart Sunday, though games and similar competitions may not recommence until June 15. Abbott also permitted driver education programs to resume operations immediately.

For food court dining areas that choose to reopen, Abbott is encouraging malls to designate one or more individuals who are responsible for enforcing social distancing and ensuring tables are cleaned and disinfected between uses.

His announcement comes nearly a week after he announced his second wave of reopenings designed to kickstart the state’s economy during the coronavirus pandemic. Last week, child care facilities and bars at limited capacity were given the green light to reopen.

The governor began a phased reopening of the economy in late April, letting the state’s stay-at-home order expire and allowing retail stores, restaurants, movie theaters and malls to operate at 25 percent capacity. He then allowed barbershops and salons to reopen May 8 under certain restrictions.

Abbott’s proclamation Monday came a day after the total number of coronavirus cases in Texas increased to 55,971, including 1,527 deaths, according to the latest data from the Department of State Health Services. Out of Texas’ 254 counties, 228 are reporting cases.

This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune, a nonpartisan, nonprofit media organization that informs Texans – and engages with them – about public policy, politics, government, and statewide issues.

Alex Samuels, The Texas Tribune

Alex Samuels is a political reporter for The Texas Tribune, where she helps with national campaign coverage, writes stories about the intersection of race and politics in Texas, and covers the hottest...