COLUMBUS- Columbus Mayor Jim Bulkley at an emergency City Council meeting Tuesday voting to require facial coverings in premises open to the general public due to COVID-19.
The mandate will go into effect starting at midnight on Saturday. Public premises include private sector and public sector entities, commercial or business establishments, private clubs, religious centers or buildings, and public transportation, including vehicles used for business purposes. Exceptions to the mandate include children under the age of 6, courts, public utilities or federal, state, county or city operations, and those officiating a religious service. Other exceptions include those who are seated at a bar or restaurant or are eating and drinking as well as those who are asked to remove a face covering to “verify an identity for lawful purposes.” Norfolk, Hastings, David City, Ralston, Beatrice, Kearney and Gretna have also passed mask mandates. The requirements are set to expire at 11:59 p.m. on February 23, unless extended by the City Council.
Violators would be subject to a $25 fine.