Local mask mandates could be in jeopardy

Local News

Muscatine’s new rule that requires people to wear a mask in public could be in jeopardy.

The Iowa attorney general’s office says the city of Muscatine can not mandate mask wearing in the city.

Mayor Diana Broderson introduced the proclamation Sunday, which would require people to wear masks whenever out in public and social distance can’t be maintained.

The attorney general’s office says the state of Iowa would have to make that mandate
But Broderson says the proclamation will move forward.

“We know that from our health care experts, all the way down the chain, they’re all saying, wear a mask, social distance if you can,” Broderson said. “We know that is the one proven way that works, so let’s do it. Let’s make it more than a recommendation, let’s make it a mandate, because unfortunately, everybody doesn’t follow recommendations.”

Muscatine’s county attorney has indicated he won’t be enforcing the mask proclamation. Mayor Broderson says she’ll be looking to find a way to still be able to enforce the rule.

What happens in Muscatine could affect other places too.

Scott County supervisor Ken Croken says he’s moving forward with his motion to require masks in the county.

Croken says local governments should have more control than state governments when it comes to rules like this.

“The governor’s proclamations should establish the minimal required response by local authorities,” Croken said. “But should leave open the possibility for increased restrictions if it suits the health needs of that community.”

The Scott County board of supervisors will vote on the mask requirement Thursday.

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