The Lubbock City Council voted to continue and affirm Lubbock Mayor Dan Pope’s declaration of disaster regarding COVID-19 until April 30.

The declaration, which was voted on during a special-called Lubbock City Council meeting hosted virtually on Zoom at 2 p.m. Friday, follows Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's executive order, which told Texans to stay at home and outlined essential businesses that could remain operational.

“One is that it changes the date that our declaration expires April 30, consistent with the governor's order. There is a bit of wording changed under the health department's ability or abilities and talking to allow us to control occupancy," Pope said regarding the update to the declaration.

The updated declaration also lists the current number of confirmed COVID-19 cases and confirmed deaths related to the virus, Pope said.

Councilman Randy Christian also suggested having a plan in place for after April 30.

“We cannot continue to go like this…,” he said. “We don't have a silver bullet to kill this virus. So, how we're going about trying to defeat right now is not going to change a whole lot, probably for the next 60 or 90 days or well, maybe into the late summer or early fall.”

The council should see what they can do to possibly open and help smaller businesses but also keep people safe from COVID-19, Christian said.

Although, Councilman Steve Massengale said flattening the curve is the most important issue currently.

“I own two small businesses here in Lubbock that have been very impacted by this crisis, and I look forward to reopening those businesses, but right now we are in the response phase of this crisis,” Massengale said. “And I anxiously await the recovery phase and look forward to that. But right now, we need to stay focused on what we can do to flatten the curve and reduce the number of positive cases.”

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