ROCKDALE COUNTY, Ga. - Rockdale County joins the list of local municipalities defying the governor's order by issuing a face covering mandate.
The Rockdale County Board of Commissioners adopted an ordinance this week requiring the use of face masks in public.
The ordinance was presented to the BOC for the first read, with the second read being waived and adopted at Tuesday’s meeting. The ordinance replaces a previous resolution’s suggestion of wearing face coverings and masks to an offense which can be enforced by general penalty.
"The ordinance has been drafted in accordance with the Executive Order issued by Governor Brian Kemp as stated in Code Section 38-3-51 that 'all residents and visitors of the State of Georgia are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings as practicable while outside their homes or place of residence, except when eating, drinkingor exercising outdoors,'" according to a press release sent to FOX 5.
The Rockdale board says these measures have been taken to "protect the safety of the community during a time where COVID-19 is still very active within the county and throughout the country."
Requirement to wear face covering or mask encompasses the following:
- All persons present in Rockdale County, who are over the age of eight (8) years old are required to wear a face covering or mask which covers the nose and mouth when in any public place.
- No employer shall prohibit an employee from wearing a face covering, except to the limited extent that doing so would prevent the employee from performing an essential job function that cannot be performed while wearing a face covering.
- This shall not be construed to prohibit the use of medial or industrial face coverings, shields or other forms of personal protective equipment which offer more protection.
To see exemptions or for more information, visit rockdalecountyga.gov or the following link: https://rockdalecountyga.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/mask-ordinance.pdf.
Gov. Kemp overruled local governments in the state that have issued mandatory mask laws in an executive order last month.
The executive order reads in part:
“State, county, or municipal law, order, ordinance, rule, or regulation that requires persons to wear face coverings, masks, face shields, or any other Personal Protective Equipment while in places of public accommodation or on public property are suspended to the extent that they are more restrictive than this Executive Order.”
Depiste the executive order, many local municipalities throughout Georgia have defied the governor and issued mandatory mask ordinances.
The governor filed a lawsuit against the City of Atlanta and the mayor over the city's mask mandate and Phase-1 reopening restrictions. The lawsuit has since been withdrawn.