Post Falls City Council votes down mask mandate

Post Falls City Hall
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POST FALLS, Idaho — The Post Falls City Council voted against a mask mandate on Tuesday.

This comes as case rates and hospitalizations are surging across Idaho. The state has reported five consecutive days of more than 1,000 new COVID-19 cases per day, including a record 1,403 new cases on Saturday, and hospitals are operating at near-capacity.

Medical experts have asked Gov. Brad Little for a statewide mask mandate, but the governor has said that he prefers to leave that decision to local government.

Several councilmembers said they were in favor of encouraging people to wear masks, but not making an official mandate.

Previously, the Panhandle Health District had a county-wide mandate, but that was lifted. Shortly after, the Coeur d’Alene City Council passed a mask mandate.

The mandates have been largely ignored and not enforced, with many saying they are against the government enforcing any kind of requirement.

A motion was filed during Monday’s meeting to have a mandate in place when the PHD identifies the county in the “red” risk zone, but the motion quickly failed, as well. The council did, however, vote in favor of a motion recommending people wear masks in the city and that they be required in city hall. That motion will be formally voted on at a later time.

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