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COVID death count at 51

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Three new deaths in Bandera County were attributed to COVID-19, bringing the death count since the start of the pandemic to 51, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) as of Monday morning.

DSHS listed 63 active COVID-19 cases in Bandera County as of Monday, up from last week’s count of 53.

On Monday, Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order stating no entity in Texas can compel receipt of a COVID-19 vaccination by any induvial, including an employee or consumer, who objects to such vaccination for any reason of personal conscience, based on a religious belief, or for medical reasons, including prior recovery from COVID-19.

“The COVID-19 vaccine is safe, effective, & our best defense against the virus, but should always remain voluntary & never forced,” Abbott tweeted when announced his latest executive order. According to a press release

According to a press release from Abbot’s office, the Governor also sent a message to the Chief Clerk of the House and Secretary of Sate adding this as an item to the Third Special Session agenda.

Should the legislation pass, the executive order would be rescinded.

“The maximum fine allowed under Section 4 1 8. 173 of the Texas Government Code and the State’ s emergency management plan shall apply to any ‘failure to comply with’ this executive order. Confinement in jail is not an available penalty for violating this executive order,” read the executive order signed by Abbott on October 11.

The number of new COVID-19 cases in the state is steadily dropping, according to the Coronavirus Resource Center at Johns Hopkins University, with 45,884 cases reported in the past week, along with 1,201 new deaths.

Both categories are down more than 20 percent compared to the previous week.

Lab-confirmed COVID-19 hospitalizations in Texas also continue to drop, with 6,730 reported Sunday by the Texas Department of State Health Services, a drop of 18 percent from the previous week.

The number of Texans fully vaccinated has crossed the 15 million mark, 51.6 percent of the state’s total population.