Supervisors approve mask mandate for all businesses, public buildings
The Warren County Board of Supervisors approved a measure Monday that will now require anyone entering a business or public building to wear a mask. The order comes just days after a similar order went into effect within the Vicksburg city limits.
The county’s order will go into effect Monday at noon and continue through at least Sept. 8. It will impact all businesses and public buildings — including churches — outside the city limits.
According to County Attorney Blake Teller, who presented the ordinance to supervisors, the ordinance mirrors the city’s action and goes to “minimize the infection and spread of COVID-19.”
Supervisors made a few changes to the order that was presented and then approved the revised order.
Here’s the full order:
RESOLUTION AND ORDER OF WARREN COUNTY TO MINIMIZE THE RISK OF INFECTION AND TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF COVID-19 EFFECTIVE MONDAY, JULY 20, 2020, AT NOON THROUGH 8:00 A.M. ON SEPTEMBER 8, 2020
WHEREAS, pursuant to §33-15-17 of the Mississippi Code of 1972, as amended, the Warren County Board of Supervisors, (“County”), is authorized to proclaim that a Civil Emergency exists defined as any natural disaster or man-made calamity resulting in the death or injury of persons to such an extent that extraordinary measures must be taken to protect the public health, safety and welfare; and
WHEREAS, §33-15-17 authorizes the County to control or restrict egress, ingress and movement within Warren County, outside the City limits of Vicksburg, necessary to facilitate the protection of life and property; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to these laws, the County is authorized to issue such orders as deemed necessary to protect the public health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Warren County, outside the City limits of Vicksburg, Mississippi; and
WHEREAS, the Coronavirus (COVID-19) that has spread across this nation is a worldwide pandemic and as of July 19, 2020, the Mississippi Department of Health has reported 690 positive confirmed cases and 22 deaths in Warren County, including Vicksburg; and
WHEREAS, previous emergency orders of the State and County have required that persons stay at home and that certain businesses be closed in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19; and
WHEREAS, the COVID-19 pandemic remains an emergency in Warren County with continuing rise in the number of confirmed cases and deaths in Warren County, and it is necessary for County to safely open businesses and allow citizens to safely return to work in the midst of the pandemic.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED AND ORDERED BY THE WARREN COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS, pursuant to §33-15-17 of the Mississippi Code of 1972, and such other powers as the County may have, the County finds the COVID-19 pandemic remains an emergency in Warren County with continuing rise in the number of confirmed cases and deaths in Warren County, and it is necessary for the County to safely open businesses and allow citizens to safely return to work in the midst of the pandemic, and hereby resolves and orders the following regulations apply to Warren County, outside the City limits of Vicksburg:
1. FOR ALL BUSINESSES AND ORGANIZATIONS, whether for profit or nonprofit, which sell items or services to the public, or which offer services to the public of whatever nature, including government and charitable services, (collectively hereinafter “Businesses”), the business owner, operator, director, supervisor, or manager, (collectively hereinafter “Employers”), whether operating indoors or outdoors, shall adopt and enforce the following measures:
a. Employers, employees, and volunteer workers, shall wear a face covering or mask, covering the mouth and nose, and shall be required to wear a face covering or mask while on duty or in close proximity to others, and such face covering or mask shall be cleaned or replaced at least daily.
b. Any person entering the business facilities or premises shall wear a face covering or mask, covering nose and mouth, while inside the business facilities, or when in close proximity to others on the business premises.
c. Hand sanitizer shall be made available to all employees and shall be made available to all other persons at points of entry and exit, in or near the bathrooms, and at the cashier or payment stations.
d. Make all reasonable efforts to maintain 6 feet separation between all persons within the business facilities and premises at all times, including 6 feet separation while waiting in cashier or payment lines.
e. Carts and baskets and all other surfaces that are routinely contacted by customers during the course of providing services shall be sanitized after each use. All other high-touch areas, including all door handles, shall be sanitized once every two hours at a minimum.
f. Businesses shall post a sign notifying all persons that a face covering or mask is required prior to entering the business facilities or premises.
g. Gas stations shall post a sign notifying all persons to maintain social distancing and to wear a mask while pumping gas when in close proximity to others while doing so.
2. ALL BUSINESSES shall screen employers, employees, and volunteers before each shift by asking:
a. Have you been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the past 14 days?
b. Are you experiencing a cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat?
c. Have you had a fever in the last 48 hours?
d. Have you had a new loss of taste or smell?
e. Have you had vomiting or diarrhea in the last 24 hours?
3. EXCEPTIONS TO THE FACE COVERING REQUIREMENTS: Face coverings do not apply to the following:
a. Any individual who will not come in contact with any other individual (outside of their immediate household members) or who will be able to maintain strict social distancing of six (6) feet apart from any other individual (outside of immediate household);
b. Any child under the age of eight; however, all children between the ages of two and seven years old are strongly encouraged to wear a face covering or mask;
c. Any individual with a medical condition that prevents the wearing of a face covering or mask;
d. Any individual who is consuming food or drinks;
e. Any individual seeking to communicate with someone who is hearing impaired;
f. Any individual temporarily removing his or her face covering or mask for identification purposes.
5. ANY BUSINESS THAT SELLS ALCOHOL OR ALLOWS ALCOHOL FOR ON-PREMISES CONSUMPTION, other than those under the jurisdiction of the MS Gaming Commission, shall close by midnight each night. This includes restaurants, bars, BYOB, or other entertainment venues that sell or allow consumption of alcohol on the premises.
THIS RESOLUTION AND ORDER OF WARREN COUNTY SHALL BE IN EFFECT BEGINNING MONDAY, JULY 20, 2020 AT NOON, AND SHALL CONTINUE UNTIL 8:00 A.M. ON SEPTEMBER 8, 2020 UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED HEREIN OR EXTENDED, MODIFIED OR REPEALED BY A SUBSEQUENT ACTION.
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