STORY COUNTY, Iowa — As of Thursday, people in Story County are required to wear masks. The Story County Board of Health says the mandate has been in the works for months and should have been a statewide mandate.
“It is something that should come from the governor’s office, but she has said time and time again that she is not going to do that. Though she tells us that she understands the science and understands the importance of it, she doesn’t seem to feel that it’s important enough to make people wear masks. So we have to do what we can do,” Story County Board of Health Chairman Dr. John Paschen said.
The mandate requires everyone to wear a mask when in public and can’t be six feet away from others. There are exemptions, like when you are in eating at a restaurant, or in your car. There are some penalties that are put in place if a person is caught not wearing a mask, but they will not be implemented unless allowed by the governor, which Dr. Paschen thinks could be a reality as cases continue to climb.
“It’s treated as a misdemeanor, which is $65 for the first occurrence and then up to $600 for further occurrences,” Dr. Paschen said.
People two and younger and those with certain medical conditions are not required to wear a mask.