COVID-19

Kzoo will not rescind mask mandate

Some other counties have cancelled mask rules due to worries over new state regulations.

Kalamazoo County will not get rid of its mask mandate for staff and students in schools teaching kindergarten through sixth graders. A news release put out by the Department of Health and Community Services (KCHCS) on Friday said the county was “committed to protecting the public’s health.”

The notice comes on the heels of a newly signed state budget that contains language threatening the funding of counties with mask or vaccination mandates. However, Governor Gretchen Whitmer has stated she would not enforce such rules.

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Despite that promise, at least three health departments have rescinded their mask rules out of fear for their funding. That includes Allegan County, which issued its mask mandate jointly with Kalamazoo County.

In its statement KCHCS acknowleged that the mask rule may affect its funding, but said it would continue to enforce its order.

Meanwhile, the Kalamazoo County Commission has an item on its Tuesday agenda that would call on KCHCS to halt its mask order. Thought it’s not likely to pass, the four Republicans on the commission are vociferously opposed to the order and could take up a lot of time arguing against it.

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