WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – UPDATE: The Wichita City Council has voted to extend the city’s mask ordinance. The ordinance was set to expire on Tuesday. The city council members voted 4 – 3 to extend the mask mandate until September 8.
The ordinance, first enacted on July 3, mandates that face coverings are worn when residents are in any public space where social distancing of six feet at all times is not possible. There are exemptions to this mandate, including those with medical conditions, mental health conditions, or disabilities that would preclude them from safely wearing a face covering, customers eating at restaurants and more. Residents may inform business owners and their employees of their medical exemptions and are not required to show documentation from their medical provider.
The city has provided free templates to area businesses to help educate customers about mask requirements. They can be downloaded here.
WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Wichita mask ordinance is set to expire on Tuesday. There will also be a vote Tuesday to possibly extend the mandate ordinance until at least September 8.
“We could just not take a vote but our mask ordinance ends tomorrow,” said council member Cindy Claycomb. “I think there probably will be an extension of that, but I can’t say for sure. I don’t know how my other council members will vote.”
At least one council member said he will be a no vote on the extension.
“I still believe we should let businesses, as well as citizens, decide for themselves whether they feel like they can social distance or not versus the city being in there to mandate it,” said council member Jeff Blubaugh. “We are not the health department.”
The health department works with the county board of health which is the county commission. The county still has a mask mandate in play, but Wichita Mayor Brandon Whipple has said he believes the city needs to maintain a mask ordinance for now. Claycomb agrees.
“It looks to me from hospital numbers that mask-wearing has made a difference,” said Claycomb. “And so I think maybe we need to do that (mask ordinance) for a little bit longer.”
The council is set to vote on extending the mask ordinance as an agenda item on Tuesday.
The city will also take action on the budget as well.
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