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Draft Columbia mask ordinance released

You may see many more people wearing masks in Columbia soon.

The City Council will consider an ordinance Monday (7/6) night to make them mandatory for almost everyone at least 10 years old. The draft released Wednesday has exceptions for socially distanced activities and sports outside, dining out, and medical needs.

Under the proposal, individuals could be fined $15 for not following the order, and businesses face up to a $100 fine. Businesses would also be required to provide masks to employees who must wear them under the terms of the ordinance. Here are the exceptions listed in the ordinance:

1. While outdoors when able to maintain a distance of at least six feet from others;

2. While exercising outdoors;

3. When engaged in a sporting activity;

4. While at home and exclusively in the presence of members of their own household; provided however, the wearing of a Face Mask shall be required in all common areas of any multifamily structure;

5. When in a vehicle and exclusively with members of their own household;

6. While eating or drinking only when inside or in the outside dining area of a restaurant or other establishment that offers food or beverage service, provided that person is able to maintain a distance of at least six feet from persons seated at other tables, and provided this distance restriction is enforced by the restaurant or other establishment;

7. When an individual has a medical condition, mental health condition or disability that prevents wearing a Face Mask;

8. When any party to a communication is deaf or hard of hearing and not wearing a Face Mask is essential to communication;

9. While obtaining a service that requires temporary removal of the Face Mask, such as dental examinations;

10. When necessary to confirm the individual’s identity;

11. When federal or state law prohibits wearing a Face Mask or requires the removal of a Face Mask;

12. When requested by a law enforcement officer;

13. When requested by a medical provider, including emergency response personnel;

14. When in a business/commercial/office setting and not within six feet of any other person; provided however, when moving from place to place in a business location a Face Mask shall be worn;

15. Under such other circumstances identified in any subsequent order issued by the Director;

Mayor Brian Treece asked city staff to draw up a mask order last week. St. Louis City and County begin a mask mandate Friday.

(This story was last updated at 4:30 a.m. Friday.)

One comment

  1. Russell Miller

    Shouldn’t this be a personal responsibility? Why do we constantly have to have government in our faces all the time. When are people going to tell the Government to stop taking away our rights to make our own decisions? Weather they are good or bad, It’s our decision. If we drop a cinder block on our foot, do we need to be told that we should not do it?
    I am personally getting tired of being told what I can and can’t do. If I make a mistake I learn from it. If I don’t then it’s my problem for being stupid. It’s time to tell the People we elected to stay in their own lanes. Or we should elect others to take the job.
    We live in the land of the free and the home of the brave. When did we give up the right to be FREE?

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