Will Texas cities be likely to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations
as a condition of returning/continuing to work as a general employee or, more
specifically, as emergency service personnel?
It doesn’t appear that such mandates will be widespread
according to the survey results of an informal working group of Texas
municipal human resource officials. Cities in the workgroup were asked
the following question: “Will your city mandate the COVID vaccination
for general employees? What about emergency response personnel?”
Of the 27 cities that responded, 22 cities answered “no” to
both questions. Several of those 22 said that vaccines would be “highly
encouraged” or something similar, though not mandated.
The remaining 5 cities were undecided.
No city reported that they for sure will mandate vaccines for
either category of employees.
Thank you to Heather Morehead from the City of Arlington and
Kathleen Shields from the City of DeSoto for compiling these answers and
letting us reference them.
If we hear any changes in this trend, we will report on them
in future Updates.
What’s the latest on vaccine rollouts?
Cities are reporting to us, and The Texas Tribune confirms, that the early
rollouts are chaotic and unpredictable.
The first problem appears to be a gap between the number of
vaccines that the state believes have been delivered to providers and the
actual numbers those providers say they have administered. Compounding
that problem is confusion and lag time in reporting accurate administration numbers
back to the state. Because the state essentially directs to which and
how many vaccines get shipped to providers, this disconnect is slowing the
The League has reached out to numerous state officials and
agencies to see what additional role cities can play in helping the process
but the results have been mixed. There have been joint vaccine and
therapy facilities opened in Houston and Austin, for example, but not a large
level of intergovernmental cooperation beyond that at this stage, and not yet
for smaller cities. We will continue to work with the state, including
offering this email newsletter as a tool for distributing any needed
information to Texas city officials.
Meanwhile, what’s the best source of information about vaccine
The best one-stop location for the state rollout of vaccines
is this DSHS website. It contains a useful overview of the
staged rollout plan, where we are in that plan as a state, and sub-links to
things like provider location maps and weekly allocation histories. We
urge all city officials concerned about vaccines to make themselves familiar
with this website.
Where can I find archived issues of the TML Coronavirus
TML Coronavirus Updates are archived by date here and by subject here.