CISA Expands Scope of Essential Businesses to Revive Agriculture Industry Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

May 27, 2020 | Insights



By Brad Nitschke

A recent update by the federal Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) expanded the scope of essential business activities allowed to resume and operate without restriction across Texas, especially in the agriculture industry. On May 19, CISA published Version 3.1 of its Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce for the COVID-19 pandemic. Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s most recent Executive Order reopening businesses around the state automatically adopts the most recent version of CISA’s COVID-19 list of critical infrastructure activities as part of the “Covered Services” not subject to Texas’ occupancy and operating limits which temporarily govern other types of businesses. In addition to several minor clarifications, “CISA 3.1,” as the updated federal guidance is known, confirms that workers in the following fields are essential during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • Workers for providers and services supporting effective telehealth,
  • Workers enabling the sale of human and animal food,
  • Workers in livestock, poultry, and slaughter and processing facilities,
  • Workers producing agricultural inputs for domestic consumption and export,
  • Veterinarians, veterinary nurses and technicians, and others supporting service animals, support animals, and rescue dogs, and
  • Workers providing childcare and eldercare necessary to maintain a comprehensive supportive environment for individuals and caregivers needed these services.

The full list is available here.


Brad NitschkeMeet Brad

Brad Nitschke is a partner in Jackson Walker’s Trial and Investigations & White Collar Defense practices. In addition to representing business and healthcare clients in litigation from demand through trial, Brad has particular experience in investigations and crisis response involving allegations of sexual misconduct, financial impropriety, and health care fraud and abuse.

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Please note: This article and any resources presented on the Jackson Walker Coronavirus microsite do not constitute legal or medical advice.