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Texas Border Counties Hardest Hit By Coronavirus Urging People To Stay Home

AUSTIN, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) - While some big cities in Texas are reporting signs that an alarming surge in cases of the coronavirus may be leveling off, officials in counties along the border with Mexico said Tuesday that the outlook there remains bleak.

Dallas County officials said the daily number of new COVID-19 cases dropped way below 1,000 on Tuesday for the first time in more than two weeks, and officials in Houston are seeing signs of optimism.

But along the border in Starr County, Judge Eloy Vera said "we're very close to losing the situation" and plans to issue voluntary stay-at-home recommendations this week.

He said it would be similar to one issued Monday in Hidalgo County, which set a curfew and recommends that all nonessential businesses cease any activity that can't be provided at curbside or by takeout.

The orders, however, are not enforceable under Gov. Greg Abbott's past mandates that do not allow local officials to set their own stay-at-home restrictions.

Texas on Tuesday reported 9,305 confirmed new cases and 131 deaths, the state's second deadliest day of the pandemic.

The true number of cases is likely higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick.

Meanwhile, Texas is pressing ahead with plans for high school football this fall.

The University Interscholastic League, which governs high school sports in Texas, released guidelines that push back the start of the football season for the largest schools into late September.

Attendance will be limited and masks will be required.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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