JASPER, Ala. (WIAT) — The Jasper City Council is expected to vote on a mask ordinance Tuesday to give officials more ability to enforce the requirement.
Despite Governor Kay Ivey’s face covering mandate in her order, leaders said a local ordinance is required to allow officers to issue a uniform non-traffic citation.
“Most people when our officers will call on them to comply, you’ve got compliance. But we’ve had some folks that were very defiant and will tell our officers to buzz off and that gets you a citation,” said Jasper Mayor David O’Mary.
O’Mary said officials learned of the need after a conversation with the Jasper Municipal Court Judge last week.
“Municipalities have to pass an ordinance that ties to the enforcement for our courts to be able to enforce any citations that are given for violation of the mask order,” said O’Mary.
Without an ordinance, O’Mary said any citations might be deemed improper and removed from the court.
“It is not our mission to give people citations, but we have situations where there was a need and we will put our city in a position to enforce an order if need be,” said O’Mary.
Leaders know that some do not agree with a mask requirement. For others, the issue is personal.
“I lost my mom to it and she was a nurse and she was a pretty healthy woman and came down with it and it was really horrible for us and we are still dealing with a lot of grief,” said Katherine Earley, who lives in Jasper.
Earley said she would support the idea of an ordinance; believing it is in place to protect everyone.
“I think it is safer for people, in general, walking in public to stay with a mask and wear it. I think it saves more lives than hurts,” said Earley.
The Jasper City Council meets Tuesday morning and is expected to vote on the issue during the meeting.
Stay with CBS 42 for updates.
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