COVID-19 Response

The City of Galveston has been under a Declaration of a Local State of Disaster related to the emergence of the COVID-19 since March 16. This emergency declaration remains in effect until May 31. 

Governor Greg Abbott lifted the state’s stay-at-home order and began reopening Texas businesses with certain restrictions. The order is available here

This order is the first phase of the State of Texas’ ongoing plan to safely and strategically open Texas while minimizing the spread of COVID-19. In the plan, all retail stores, restaurants, and movie theaters within the City of Galveston are allowed to reopen Friday, May 1 with capacity limited to 25 percent. Museums and libraries are also allowed to reopen, but hands-on exhibits must remain closed. 

The state includes the minimum standard health protocols for these businesses in Texans Helping Texans: The Governor’s Report to Open Texas. 

A stay-at-home order issued by the state will expire after April 30. However, Gov. Abbott urged Texans to continue following health guidance from the CDC and the state, including maintaining social distancing, avoiding crowds, limiting physical contact and using face coverings in public to reduce the spread of the virus. 

 With the expiration of the stay-at-home order, hotels and short-term rentals within the City of Galveston will no longer have restrictions on nonessential guests beginning May 1. Charter fishing operations will be allowed to reopen May 1. Fishing piers will also be allowed to resume business on May 1. However, all must follow social distancing requirements. 

The City of Galveston had implemented a series of emergency orders related to COVID-19, including a Stay at Home order. There were also restrictions on hotels, short-term rentals, restaurant dining rooms, bars, major attractions, and charter fishing operations. The public beaches also are closed. A full list of the orders in effect through April 30 is available below.

The City of Galveston continues to provide all city services, however we encourage city business be handled online or via phone where possible. 

These measures are being taken in an effort to protect the public health, particularly our most vulnerable populations, and to slow the progression of this virus, which in turn eases the burden on medical care providers. Preserving the health and safety of our staff allows city services to continue without interruptions.

For the latest update on COVID-19 cases in Galveston County, visit the Galveston County Health District.


City seeks public input on plan for CARES funding

   The CARES Act made supplemental CDBG funding available through the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for grants to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus. HUD has awarded the City of Galveston $714,670 in CDBG-CV funding. The City of Galveston has developed the following projects for consideration of funding and will present this CDBG-CV Program to City Council for approval on May 28th:

  • University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) COVID-19 Testing $300,000 - fund additional COVID-19 testing and re-testing to focus on low-moderate income hospitality industry workers and low- moderate income population as needed and provide for the health and safety of the citizens, would provide for an estimated 3,000 tests at the Galveston facility. This is a public service activity.
  • CDBG-CV Administration $142,934 - fund administration costs at no more than 20% of the grant (regulatory allowance) for the CDBG-CV program to ensure regulatory requirements are met and implementation of the projects.

The City will amend its 2019 Consolidated Plan to implement coronavirus pandemic disaster projects for the CDBG-CV funding of $714,670.

A virtual PUBLIC HEARING to receive citizen comments on the City’s 2020 CDBG-CV Proposed Program will be held during the: 

City Council Meeting

Thursday, May 28, 2020, 1:15 p.m. 

The meeting will be conducted by telephone/video conference in order to advance the public health goal of limiting face-to-face meetings ("social distancing") to slow the spread of the Coronavirus / COVID-19. Please go to the City’s website at for additional information on the agenda and submitting public comments.

The City of Galveston encourages citizen participation in the Consolidated Plan process.  Please remit any comments on the projects or for the Public Hearing in writing to the Grants & Housing Department, 2508 Ball Avenue, Galveston, Texas 77550, by email to or by telephone at (409) 797-3820 Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Comments received by 12:00 p.m. on May 28, 2020 will be considered with the approval of the projects. Additional information is at

Orders under the Emergency Declaration in effect:

Órdenes bajo la Declaración de Emergencia vigente:

news flash

Changes to City Services

Special Events

Effective immediately and for the next 14 days, the city will not issue special event permits to any events with 50 or more participants. This suspension will be revisited after two weeks.                                                                                              

We strongly encourage private event organizers in Galveston to consider postponing events with 50 or more people.

Paying Your Water Bill

The City of Galveston encourages water customers to pay online at Water bills may also be mailed to 823 Rosenberg, Galveston TX 77550. In addition, payments may be dropped off at City Hall in the overnight deposit.


We encourage residents and contractors to apply for building permits online at Applicants may also call 409-797-3660 for more information.

Recreation Centers and Public Pool

McGuire Dent Recreation Center, Wright Cuney Recreation Center and the Lasker Park Community Pool are all closed until further notice.

Municipal Court

Beginning Monday, March 16, 2020, Galveston Municipal Court will be suspended for two weeks. Tickets may be paid online at

For All Other City Services

We encourage any other matters that can be handled online or by the phone to be done in that manner. If you believe your request cannot be handled over the phone, please contact the department for a walk-in appointment.

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Chamber Resource Guide

More Information

To follow developments at the city, stay informed with For health developments, follow the Galveston County Health District and the Center for Disease Control.

Information about what to do if you believe you may be sick is available at