Texas schools, stores divided on masks as mandate ends

DALLAS (AP) — The impact of Texas’ governor repealing many of the state’s COVID-19 restrictions is beginning to take shape. Some businesses are shedding rules. Some city leaders are plotting new safeguards. And the state’s 5 million schoolchildren largely remained under orders to keep wearing masks for now. President Joe Biden on Wednesday also reacted to America’s second-largest state winding down virus restrictions for nearly 30 million people, calling it “Neanderthal thinking.” The mask mandate and occupancy limits on restaurants and retail stores end March 10. Already, some stores announced they still won’t allow maskless customers, while social media users began tracking evolving polices on crowdsourced spreadsheets.