Leon County Commissioners Make Face Masks Mandatory in Leon County

Leon County Commissioners Make Face Masks Mandatory in Leon County

At a special meeting today, the Leon County Commissioners unanimously voted to make face coverings mandatory inside businesses in Leon County. The order will take effect at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday, June 25.

The decision comes after a spike in reported COVID-19 cases in Leon County as well as throughout Florida.

Chairman Bryan Desloge said the order will be reviewed every week and adjusted based on the community’s response. County Commissioner Kristin Dozier said the order will likely last for a month or more.

Under the order, face coverings will be mandatory in establishments including restaurants, retail stores, public transit, churches, and nonprofits. Establishments will be required to post signage telling patrons to wear masks.

Commissioner Desloge noted, “You’re under a roof, you’re wearing a mask.”

The order will also encourage, but not require, people to wear masks where they cannot social distance, including outdoors.

There are numerous exceptions to the order, including children under the age of six, people with trouble breathing because of medical problems, and public safety personnel. Additionally, people exercising while maintaining six feet of distance will not be required to wear masks.

Violation of an emergency order is a second-degree misdemeanor, which is punishable by a fine of up to $500, up to 60 days in jail, or both. Commissioners Nick Maddox and Kristin Dozier expressed concerns that these penalties are too extreme given how many people oppose the requirement.

Because changing penalties requires an ordinance, the Commissioners approved enacting an emergency ordinance to change the penalties from criminal to civic penalties.

The Commissioners voted to model the penalties after Alachua County’s sliding scale. They modified the penalties to a $50 fine for the first violation, a $125 fine for the second violation, and a mandatory court appearance and a $250 fine for all subsequent violations. Violation of the order will not authorize the search or arrest of individuals.

The Commissioners will revisit the order at their next meeting on July 14.

166 Responses to "Leon County Commissioners Make Face Masks Mandatory in Leon County"

  1. Avatar
    Pat Adams   November 14, 2020 at 5:54 pm

    F U I am not wearing one.

    Reply
  2. Avatar
    Jerry Kimbro   October 26, 2020 at 8:19 am

    So when is this crap over with?

    Reply
  3. Avatar
    DOLORES JOHNSON   August 13, 2020 at 12:59 am

    I DONT THINK ANY GOVERNMENT SHOULD BE ABLE TO TELL A US CITIZEN WHAT TO WEAR ON THEIR FACE. THE WEARING OF THE MASKS SHOULD BE A RECOMMENDATION NOT A COMMAND. GIVE PEOPLE THE FREEDOM TO CHOOSE. LEAVE IT UP TO THE CITIZENS TO VOTE YES OR NO FOR THE DEMAND OF WEARING FACE MASKS. THEY ARE VERY IRRITATING TO FACIAL SKIN AND DO MAKE BREATHING FREELY A PROBLEM TO MANY PEOPLE. DOLORES JOHNSON

    Reply
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