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Hidalgo County judge: ‘This is not the time to relax our community controls’

The next 10 days will be critical in assessing how effective early efforts at slowing the spread of COVID-19 in Hidalgo County.

That’s according to Hidalgo County Judge Judge Richard F. Cortez in a 10-minute long video message he delivered Tuesday, saying “this is not the time to relax our community controls.”

Cortez said he’s received reports of heavy travel leaving Hidalgo County to other parts of the state and to Mexico over the Easter weekend. The return of those travelers may have an impact on the rate of infection, Cortez said in a news release, adding that early indications are encouraging.

Out of all Texas counties with a population of more than 300,000, Hidalgo County has the lowest rate of infection per 100,000 people, the release said.

 Judge Cortez also said he had requested the help of the Texas Army National Guard, which this week deployed a unit to help with logistical support of the Rio Grande Valley Food Bank in their efforts to feed the food insecure of Hidalgo County — particularly children and the elderly.

Cortez also announced the formation of a Recovery Task Force composed of businessmen and community leaders to begin the process of addressing the economic impact of the pandemic in Hidalgo County.

“The county continues to work closely with the state and federal government to secure the necessary resources to help mitigate the effects of the pandemic and hasten the region’s economic recovery,” the release stated.




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