Community, Government, Latest News, Westover Council

Council passes city mask ordinance

Face covering must be over nose, mouth

Westover City Council is following the lead of neighboring  City of Morgantown by mandating masks be worn in public.

Morgantown deemed not wearing a mask or face shield indoors in public within the city limits  a misdemeanor punishable by a $25-$500 fine. Following suit, Westover City Council recently passed an identical ordinance. 

Morgantown Council adopted a tiered process for isolating businesses deemed outbreak sites — defined as three or more cases stemming from a single location. The ordinance mirrors a county-wide mandate put forward by the Monongalia County Health Department.

As previously reported, the decision-making process involved Dr. Lee B. Smith,  MCHD executive director and county health officer,  as well as state lawmakers.

Although Westover council has not been meeting in person, city council member Ralph Mullins said passing the ordinance was well communicated and a “quick turnaround.”

“We have not been meeting virtually,” Mullins said. “We have been having teleconferences, and they have been few and far between.”

Westover Mayor Dave Johnson  reached out to the council members, discussed the Morgantown  ordinance and how Westover should handle it. The emergency ordinance  went into effect  Tuesday and will be in effect for 61 days.

“I suggested we pass one that mirrors Morgantown … everyone agreed,” Mullins said.

The ordinance includes wearing a face covering that “fully covers the nose and mouth, including cloth masks, bandanas or handkerchiefs, face shields and dust mask.”

Mullins additionally said that each violation is a separate violation and is confident the ordinance will serve the city as it is serving Morgantown to contain the risk of rise in numbers of COVID-19.

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