Mask Up: Iowa City Mayor Enacts Mask Mandate, Declares Civil Emergency
With the delta variant causing COVID cases to soar nationwide, and hospitalizations in Iowa at the highest level since January, some leaders are asking citizens to mask up once again, while others are taking a more aggressive apprach. One such leader is Iowa City Mayor Bruce Teague. Mayor Teague has declared a civil emergency according to a Des Moines Register story. Just yesterday, Thursday, he ordered a mask mandate for the city. But, is it enforceable?
Gov. Reynolds: the mandate is "against the law"
The Register's story quoted a spokesperson for Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds. They referred to Mayor Teague's mandate as simply, "against the law" and also not legally enforceable. The mayor's mandate is in effect until September 30, though he says it could be extended if needed. the announcement was made on social media with members of the city council at the mayor at the time.
Under this order, residents are asked to wear a mask that coverers their nose and mouth when indoors and indoors and requires people to stand at least 6-feet apart when in public. Mayor Teague created a similar mandate last July. Story continues below.
There are some exceptions to the rule:
- Individuals that are 12 years old or younger.
- Residents with breathing issues.
- When alone or with members of the same household.
- While traveling alone or with members of the same household.
- During outdoor exercises.
- At a restaurant while consuming food or drink.
- If for any reason a doctor advises against using a mask.
- Emergency personnel while carrying out public safety work.