Yesterday, we surveyed whether mayors believe that Fourth of
July celebrations in excess of 100 people should be allowed. How
did the survey go?
The results showed that some mayors appear to be much more
cautious right now. Asked whether they would allow private outdoor
gatherings in excess of 100 people, 68 percent (76) of the 112 responding
mayors said no. (The League has 1,160 member cities)
When we compiled a previous survey’s results back in May, 95
mayors, from cities with a population ranging from 192-118,000,
responded. Seventy-seven percent voted in favor of allowing Fourth of
July celebrations, with appropriate virus-prevention protocols. Of
course, conditions in some areas of the state are now much different.
In response to the surge in cases, the governor, in Executive Order GA-28 and his Open Texas guidance, prohibits outdoor gatherings in
excess of 100 people. However, a mayor can approve a larger gathering in a
city’s limits, and such approval can be made subject to certain conditions or
restrictions. (The conditions can include a face mask requirement, but
as of now the governor’s position is that no penalty can be imposed on an
individual for not wearing one.)
This time around, respondent city populations ranged from to
482-2.3 million. The following questions were asked:
-Will you be approving PRIVATE outdoor gatherings in excess
of 100 people (with or without conditions)? Out of 112
responding mayors, 76 said no and 36 said yes. Of the 36 responding yes,
21 reported that they will impose conditions or restrictions on the
-Will your city be conducting a CITY (e.g., city-sponsored,
city-funded, on city property, etc.) Fourth of July celebration (including a
parade and/or fireworks)? Out of 111 responding mayors, 84 said no and 27
said yes. Of the 27 responding yes, 19 reported that they will impose
conditions or restrictions on the gathering.
What did the governor say yesterday about the virus?
According to News4SanAntonio, with regard to local face mask mandates:
Gov. Greg Abbott said in an interview with us Monday evening
he would not be giving local authorities more control, because of what
happened in Dallas.
Abbott said the incident in Dallas, which led to a salon
owner's arrest when she did not follow local orders, is what's keeping him
from giving back power.
“Let’s say we give them the power." Gov. Abbott said.
"How are they going to enforce it? A person was not following the
citation, she got arrested. My point is, it almost inevitably leads to
And according to a press release from the governor’s office:
“The Office of the Governor and Major League Baseball
Hall-Of-Famer Iván ‘Pudge’ Rodríguez today issued a new public service
announcement (PSA) on the importance of wearing a mask to mitigate the spread
of COVID-19. In the PSA, Rodríguez urges Texans to wear a mask in public to
protect themselves and others from the virus.”
What are the results of TML’s mid-year Fiscal Conditions
Each year, TML conducts a fiscal conditions survey of its
member cities. With an unexpected public health crisis and an economic
recession, most cities will have to make difficult decisions over the next
coming months. This is why TML created a special-edition, mid-year fiscal
conditions survey to help cities navigate the upcoming budget planning
process. With 552 cities responding, the survey demonstrates that the
Coronavirus pandemic has impacted cities significantly.
The full results are on the TML website at: https://www.tml.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/172.
What information did the comptroller release regarding sales
Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar today (July 1) said state sales
tax revenue totaled $2.67 billion in June, 6.5 percent less than in June
2019. According to his press release:
“The majority of June sales tax revenue is based on sales made
in May and remitted to the agency in June. Widespread social distancing
requirements were relaxed across much of the state in May.
‘The decline in state sales tax collections was driven
principally by steep drops in remittances from oil- and gas-related sectors,’
Hegar said. ‘Collections from the construction and amusement service sectors
were also sharply down.’
While collections from restaurants also were depressed, the
extent of the decline was checked by increased takeout and delivery sales.
Retail trade receipts rose significantly, buoyed by increased online shopping
and building material purchases, as business premises were modified for
‘Retail sales likely also were boosted by increased alcoholic
beverage sales at package, grocery, and convenience stores. That’s because
this category of spending shifted from restaurant and bar on-premise
consumption, subject to mixed beverage taxes, to purchases for at-home
consumption subject to sales tax. Increased spending by businesses to
facilitate teleworking resulted in higher tax collections from vendors of
computer hardware and software products.’
Total sales tax revenue for the three months ending in June
2020 was down 9.7 percent compared to the same period a year ago. Sales tax
is the largest source of state funding for the state budget, accounting for
57 percent of all tax collections, but the effects of the economic slowdown
and low oil prices also were evident in other sources of revenue in June
Texas collected the following revenue from other major taxes:
-motor vehicle sales and rental taxes — $394 million, down 7.6
percent from June 2019, a substantial improvement from results in April and
-motor fuel taxes — $250 million, down 24 percent from June
-natural gas production tax — $20 million, down 84 percent
from June 2019;
-oil production tax — $83 million, down 77 percent from June
-hotel occupancy tax — $23 million, down 61 percent from June
2019, an improvement from the record decline in May; and
-alcoholic beverage taxes — $65 million, down 47 percent from
June 2019, significantly better than May’s results.
For details on all monthly collections, visit the Comptroller's Monthly State Revenue Watch. For an
extensive history of tax policy developments and fees since 1972, visit our
updated Sources of Revenue publication.”
June sales tax numbers for cities should be released in about
Where can I find archived issues of the TML Coronavirus
TML Coronavirus Updates are archived by date here and by subject here.