Governor Says Cities, Counties Cannot Pass Face Mask Requirements

Statewide Iowa — (RI) — Governor Kim Reynolds says she has not given Iowa cities and counties authority to enforce local ordinances that require people to wear face coverings in public.

Reynolds says that means the proclamation Muscatine’s mayor issued Sunday requiring face coverings is not appropriate, but the governor says if conditions change dramatically, she may adjust her public health proclamation.

(as said) Reynolds says. “All things are on the table and we’re going to continue to review, manage, mitigate, and contain the coronavirus, we can do that in a responsible way.”

The governor says she will elevate the message about the importance of wearing a mask to protect others.

(as said) “This is the same information that we’ve given to Iowans from the very beginning. People need to practice personal responsibility.” Reynolds says.

In the past two weeks, 60 percent of the Iowans who’ve tested positive for COVID-19 were adults between the ages of 18 and 40.

(as said) “People have been locked down. You know, they’re ready to get outside. They’re ready to get together with friends and family, so I don’t think it’s entirely surprising that we’ve seen a little bit of an uptick,” Reynolds says. “So now, we need to dig into the details. We need to figure out why and then we need to talk about maybe what we can do, what are the next steps that we can do to continue to protect Iowans.”

The governor says there’s a worrisome increase in cases among young adults in Iowa’s college towns and larger cities. Reynolds says she would consider adjusting regulations on bars, perhaps ordering an earlier closing time, if that trend continues.

(as said) “There’s a perception that because COVID is less serious for younger adults, that an increase in positive cases among this age group isn’t an issue, but that perception is false,” Reynolds says. “The consequences of COVID-19 continuing to spread among young adults increases the likely the virus will continue to spread and then will spread to others, including those that are most vulnerable.”

Reynolds says for the past two weeks, the Test Iowa program has far surpassed its targeted capacity of three-thousand tests per day. From Monday through Thursday of last week, more than 13-thousand-six hundred Iowans were tested through the program. Reynolds says a new Test Iowa site opened Wednesday in Algona. An estimated 10-thousand motorcyclists from around the state gathered just outside Algona last weekend, raising concerns the virus would be spread in the community.



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