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Phelps County Commission adopts Face Mask Order

The Licking News

On November 24, 2020, the Phelps County Commission adopted a Face Covering Order. This order affects anyone in a public space in Phelps County.

Included in the order’s background was the following information:

“Whereas: As of November 20, 2020 the Phelps/Maries County Health Department is reporting successive days of active positive cases in excess of 500, 40 cumulative deaths, and a positivity rate in excess of 16%; in addition, inpatient bed capacity in central Missouri is at 29%.”

In the order, “face covering” is defined as “a device that covers the nose and mouth.”

“Social Distancing Requirements” is defined as, “to the extent possible, maintaining at least a six-foot physical distance from other individuals.”

Provisions of the order include the following.

“Face coverings must be worn by:

  • “All persons over the age of 11, including employees or visitors, present at any Business or Public Space; or
  • “All persons over the age of 11 when outdoors in a public space when anyone other than members of their household or living unit will be within six feet; or
  • “All persons over the age of 11 attending a gathering of individuals who are not members of their household in any area, which will necessarily involve close contact or proximity to others when six feet of separation is not feasible. This restriction does not apply to gatherings of individuals at personal residences.”

The order states, “children between the ages of 3 and 11 are strongly encouraged…to wear a face covering while under the direct supervision of an adult.”

Those excluded from the order include:

  • “Children under the age of three;
  • “Persons with health conditions that prohibit wearing a face covering;
  • “Persons who have trouble breathing, or are unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the face covering without assistance;”
  • Hearing impaired people or those communicating with the hearing impaired;
  • People who are consuming food or drink (while social distancing from other patrons and staff at a place of business or public space);
  • “Persons who are at a public pool while in the water;
  • “Persons who are obtaining a service involving the nose or face for which temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service;
  • “Persons playing a sport;
  • “Persons exercising or using exercise equipment where participants are at least 6-feet apart.”

“All businesses and other entities that provide a public space must post the requirement that face masks are required for entry and must continuously be worn while present” and “are authorized to deny entry to members of the public who refuse to wear face coverings.”

Enforcement measures spelled out in the order include:

“In addition to other civil and criminal penalties that may be sought, the Phelps County Health Department may enforce this Order…. The Health Department may proceed with closures and enforcement actions including:

  • “At the individual level, including isolation and quarantine of cases, family members, and close contacts;
  • “At the business level by location of transmission;
  • “At the industry/sector level, if businesses in that industry are found to be particularly associated with transmission.”

“The maximum punishment that may be imposed for a violation of this Order, which by statute is a class A misdemeanor, is a fine not to exceed $1,000.00.”

The order takes effect “beginning at 12:01 a.m. Monday, November 30, 2020.” It remains “in effect until February 2, 2021 or until revoked by the Phelps County Commission.”

1 Comment

  1. Gary on December 5, 2020 at 1:44 pm

    I was just in walmart and I would say that there was at least 20 or 30 people with out a mask on

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